I hoped this would happen.
Toyota’s announcement that it would discontinue the Scion brand rippled through the motoring world without a lot of fanfare. An occasional die-hard fan bemoaned the decision, but it was generally regarded as a logical choice that had to be made. Scion had simply lost its relevancy and its sales were caught in a downward spiral.
The upside is that Toyota said some Scion models would become Toyotas, which is probably the best thing that could have happened to the Scion FR-S.
The FR-S in the U.S. market will now be known as the Toyota 86, which is how the two-door coupe is known in Asia, South America, and Australia. In addition to the new name, the 86 also gets a mid-life update that will debut at the upcoming New York Auto Show. The car will receive new LED headlights and taillights, new bumpers, and a slight bump in horsepower and torque. The engine and transmission will stay the same, but output rises to 205 hp and 156 lb-ft of torque.
A Toyota vice president said,
When we announced the transition of the Scion models to Toyota we hadn’t planned on changing the names of our cars, but by popular demand, for our sports car, we decided to adopt the global name of 86.
That change alone should result in a sales spike, as an affordable RWD Toyota sports car has been on the wish list of many Toyota superfans since the Scion version came out.
Toyota will also keep the iA sedan but add the Yaris name once it becomes a Toyota. The Yaris iA will join the iM hatch, which will become known as the Corolla iM. The cars will go on sale soon as 2017 models.
The C-HR crossover never saw life as a Scion and will keep its name when it goes on sale as a 2018 model.
Adding established Toyota names will be a very good thing, hopefully giving the former Scion models the bright future they deserve.
Are you more likely to consider former Scion models now that they’ll be Toyotas?