by Cheryl Eldridge
If you are looking for a sporty two door automobile, one for which you won’t have to break your bank, then Scion’s FR-S should be one strong contender.. My one week test drive with the $25,215 FR-S, coated in firestorm was fantastic.
My son enjoyed the drive and even my daughter and her friends; however, I could only travel with four people at a time.
This brand new automobile debuted last year according to Edmunds.
It’s nice, quiet, sleek, and is one of the sportiest cars in its family of Scions and Toyotas.
The four-seat 2014 Scion FR-S coupe comes in a single trim level. Standard equipment includes 17-inch alloy wheels; air-conditioning; full power accessories; a height-adjustable driver seat; a tilt-and-telescoping leather-wrapped steering wheel; cruise control; Bluetooth phone and audio connectivity; and an eight-speaker sound system with a 6.1 inch touchscreen, a CD player, HD radio, an auxiliary audio jack and USB/iPod integration.
In lieu of factory options, Scion offers an array of dealer-installed accessories that include foglights, a performance exhaust system and a premium BeSpoke sound system with navigation, voice command, smartphone app integration and Internet radio.
Under the FR-S’s sleek hood is a 2.0-liter horizontally opposed four-cylinder engine generating 200 hp and 151 pound-feet of torque. A six-speed manual transmission or six-speed automatic with paddle shifters and rev-matched downshifts routes power to the rear wheels.
The six-speed manual FR-S returns an impressive 25 mpg combined (22 mpg city/30 mpg highway), while the automatic achieves 28 combined (25 city/34 highway).
On the safety side, the FR-S includes antilock brakes, traction and stability control, front seat side airbags and full-length side curtain airbags.
Inside the Scion has made few concessions to style in the FR-S’s simple, businesslike cabin. It’s an environment that emphasizes driving, punctuated only by a blend of Toyota and Subaru switchgear and materials. The FR-S’s cockpit looks a little bare compared with other compact sport cars in its price range (like the feature-laden Ford Focus ST), yet it also feels like a genuine back-to-basics driver’s car. A standard touchscreen-based sound system interface is new this year, but opting for the upgraded BeSpoke system is still the way to get navigation functionality and smartphone app integration.
The FR-S’s front seats offer firm support for hard driving, but remain comfortable over long-distance travel as well. Drivers of just about any size can find a suitable driving position, and the low-profile hood allows an expansive view of the road ahead.
There’s a backseat, too, but not many adults will want to sit back there. Legroom is next to nil, heads bob perilously close to the rear glass and the center tunnel impedes hiproom. Trunk space is also small at 6.9 cubic feet, although folding down the mostly useless backseat expands cargo-carrying abilities considerably.
However, in a nutshell, I really enjoyed the FR-S and salute the Toyota engineers.
Until next week, drive safe and buckle up, it’s the law.