2009 xD New Car Test Drive
The Scion xD is a small, efficient, relatively inexpensive four-door hatchback with style. It was introduced as a totally new vehicle for 2008.
The xD has a boxy roofline and a bulbous hood. The xD is designed for easy personalization, and Scion offers dozens of dealer-installed parts, starting with an array of custom wheels.
The Scion xD is a roomy little car, with lots of headroom and comfortable space for four medium-size adults. The rear seat is particularly handy: It reclines, slides fore and aft to maximize passenger or cargo room, or quickly folds totally flat, creating an excellent cargo space measuring a maximum 35.7 cubic feet.
On paper, the Scion xD has the right stuff. Its short overhangs front and rear give it a sporty appearance suggesting agile handling. This is backed up with a 1.8-liter engine with VVT-i variable valve timing for strong power and good fuel economy. The xD is rated at 128 horsepower and 125 pound-feet of torque. The xD is EPA-rated at 27/33 mpg City/Highway with the manual transmission.
On the road, we found it has spry performance. Ride quality is acceptable in most circumstances, and while it isn't the sportiest performer in its class, it can be fun to drive. We recommend the five-speed manual transmission, because the weakest link in the xD package is the optional automatic. It's a conventional four-speed and, with the XD's free-revving engine, it feels like it needs more gears.
The xD comes well equipped, with air conditioning, a high-watt Pioneer stereo and a full complement of power accessories.
The xD sets the class benchmark for safety equipment. Front, side and curtain-style airbags are standard, as is a sophisticated anti-lock brake system. The xD is available with optional electronic stability control, which isn't even offered on most cars in its class.
The 2009 Scion xD comes with a 1.8-liter four-cylinder engine and a choice of five-speed manual ($14,650) or four-speed automatic ($15,450) transmission.
Standard equipment includes cloth upholstery, air conditioning, power windows, door locks and mirrors, remote keyless entry, tilt steering wheel with audio controls, first-aid kit, a 60/40 reclining, sliding and flat-folding rear seat, 16-inch steel wheels and a 160-watt, six-speaker Pioneer sound system wired for MP3, iPod and satellite radio.
Vehicle Stability Control ($650) is optional, and more than 40 dealer-installed accessories developed by Scion are available, including a plug-and-play navigation system ($1,950), Sirius or XM satellite radio ($449), a remote starter ($529), 16-inch alloy wheels ($795), and a cargo cover ($259). Speed and style parts are available from TRD (Toyota Racing Development). And aftermarket suppliers are supporting the Scion xD with a wide range of products, ranging from an supercharger to carbon-fiber body trim.
Safety features include dual-stage front airbags, front passenger side-impact airbags and curtain-style head protection airbags front and rear. A tire-pressure monitor is standard. Active safety features include anti-lock brakes with Electronic Brake-force Distribution and Brake Assist. VSC electronic stability control with traction control is optional.