2010 Scion xP - the 'P' stands for Pickup

Though the launch of Toyota's new full-size Tundra pickup has been a rocky one, the Japanese juggernaut is taking notes, learning on the fly and will undoubtedly not make the same mistakes twice. Perhaps after studying its domestic competition in the full-size truck market, Toyota noticed an untapped strategy that the Big 3 have allowed to languish – the entry-level pickup. Mike Levine from Pickuptruck.com is reporting that Toyota is seriously considering adding a two-door unibody pickup to its Scion lineup with a design inspired by the Fuse Concept that debuted at the New York Auto Show last year.
More details after the jump.

Thanks for the tip, Judd!

[Source: Pickuptruck.com]

The rendering ordered up by Pickuptruck.com looks very much like the Fuse from the front and has a stance more akin to an Australian 'ute (or old time El Camino) than a small pickup like the Ford Ranger. It features blacked out A-pillars that create the effect of a wraparound windshield, as well as a backwards leaning B-pillar that matches the rake of the windshield. Levine reports that power would be provided by Scion's 161-hp/163 ft-lbs 2.4L four-cylinder, which, while not capable of towing 10,500 lbs., would at least marry decent performance with acceptable fuel economy and throw in a traditional truck bed for transporting home that new flat-panel LCD you just bought from Costco. Furthermore, Levine also claims the bumper features an infrared sensor that when tripped by your foot will lower the tailgate. The tailgate itself can be used as a seat for two when down, and rear foldout speakers will allow you to pump up the volume outside the interior. Finally, a beverage cooler will also be tucked into the rear of the center console.

The report from Pickuptruck.com contains too much detail to ignore, including a projected starting price of around $12,000, and we know Levine doesn't post gossip if there's not at least a few shreds of truth contained therein. At the same time, one can see Toyota's strategy here. There is no competition left in the entry-level pickup market, which is populated almost solely by the Ford Ranger, a pickup that hasn't seen a redesign since the first Bush was president. If Toyota make waves with the Scion xP in the entry-level pickup segment, those customers would be all the more likely to purchase a new Tundra when the time comes to do some real work.

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