US: Scion iQ will start at $15,995 image

Scion has just announced the very tiny 2012 iQ will start at $15,995.

The Scion iQ launch will be released in four phases in the US, starting with the West Coast in October. The South will get the car in January, followed by the East Coast, and finally us here in the middle.

With its tiny size, youthful appeal and funky looks, the 2011 Scion iQ is the anti-Hummer.

The New York Times explains, “Cute as a square button, the iQ is a city-slicker microcar that, at 120 inches long, is barely a foot longer than the Smart Fortwo, the smallest car sold here.”

It has been fitted with puny engines, including a 1.0-liter I-3, a 99-horsepower 1.3-liter I-4 and a 1.4-liter diesel, although up to 1.6-liters will fit, Nakajima-san says. A mileage-enhancing stop-start system is already fitted to 1.4-liter versions.

Expect the Scion iQ to have a slightly better city rating than the smart fortwo (a 33 mpg car) helped by slightly easier acceleration and lower-revving. On the highway, don’t count on the Scion iQ being much higher than 41mpg, same as the smart fortwo.

The iQ is sold as a Toyota globally, but here in the United States Toyota is choosing to sell it under its youth-oriented Scion brand.

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