As expected, Toyota's youthful Scion division will indeed get a version of the diminutive iQ for the North American market, possibly by either the end of 2010 as an '11 model or in early 2011 as a '12 model. According to Motor Trend, the car will cost about the same as the Yaris and get the usual modifications for the American market, such as slightly extended bumpers and recalibrated airbags to meet U.S. safety regulations.
Fortunately, the Big-Wheels-esque body kit and rims that the Japanese automaker fitted to the conceptual Scion iQ that was shown off at the New York Auto Show earlier this year won't come to the States as standard equipment. We're not entirely sure what powerplants Toyota plans to use in the American iQ, but in other markets it's available with three engines displacing between 1.0 and 1.4 liters. No hybrid iQ is currently planned due to cost and packaging considerations.
Interestingly, MT also reports that the Toyota FT-EV electric car concept from this year's Detroit Auto Show, which was based on the iQ minicar, will hit the market by 2012. At this time, the Japanese automaker may still be deciding between tried-and-true nickel metal hydride batteries or more powerful but unproven lithium ion units. Regardless, Toyota's aiming for a 50-mile range and an eight-hour recharge from a standard wall outlet.
[Source: Motor Trend]