2016 Scion iM Review – For the Expressionist in all of Us

The 2016 Scion iM is a brand new offering from Scion in the crowded segment of compact cars. With a class that offers so many options, the iM was really going to have to be something special in order to announce its arrival with enough fervor to generate some sales. And while it exceeds in some areas, it has some shortcomings attached to it as well.

The Scion iM is a car that is brand new to us here in the United States (the Toyota Auris, which this car is a repurposed version of, has been on sale in Europe for a little while already).

Scion itself is advertising this car as the free-spirited, expressionist brother of the iA. If the iA is in finance, then the iM is into making experimental silent films featuring an all-animal cast.

The iM’s free-spirited soul comes through in the styling of the car. It has a sporty, agile look to it. I am especially a fan of the 17-inch wheels (it is amazing how much a well-made, unique set of wheels can add to the look of a car) and the taillights that give a bit of a 3d-popping effect. Meanwhile, the grille has a slanted look that gives the iM a bit of a furrowed brow, but it actually does fit in with the overall aesthetics of the car.

Unfortunately, the iM’s engine was unable to match its sporty appearance. A 1.8 liter, 4-cylinder engine that produces 137 horsepower and 126 pound-feet of torque is paired with the CVT (unless you opt for the manual version). Right off the bat this doesn’t sound like much power, but when you consider the iM isn’t exactly light, weighing in at around 3000 pounds you can really start to understand the underpowered nature of this car. The CVT, like most CVTs, is noisy and sounds like you should be going much faster than you actually are. Steering is fairly responsive and the handling is probably the performance aspect that the iM is best at.

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