TribLIVE

| Business


 
Larger text Larger text Smaller text Smaller text | Order Photo Reprints

Scion's sporty FR-S attractive, nimble

On the Grid

From the shale fields to the cooling towers, Trib Total Media covers the energy industry in Western Pennsylvania and beyond. For the latest news and views on gas, coal, electricity and more, check out On the Grid today.

Scion FR-S

Base price: $24,700 with manual transmission.

Type: Front-engine, rear-wheel drive, 2+2-passenger, minicompact coupe.

Engine: 2-liter, double overhead cam, flat four cylinder with D-VVT.

Mileage: 22 mpg (city), 30 mpg (highway).

By The Associated Press
Saturday, March 1, 2014, 9:00 p.m.
 

The sportiest car in Toyota's Scion family, the 2014 FR-S, is a fun-to-drive, four-cylinder, rear-wheel drive coupe that looks more expensive than its $25,455 starting price tag.

Even better, the 2014 FR-S earned five out of five stars in overall federal government crash tests.

Still, few people will want to even attempt to sit in the minimal and carved-out back seats in the FR-S.

And big cargo won't fit in the shallow FR-S trunk.

In addition, Consumer Reports rates the reliability of the FR-S as below average.

Some people think the FR-S resembles Honda's S2000 sports car on the outside, while others liken it to earlier Porsches. Both comments are high praise for Scion, which is Toyota's brand for young, budget-conscious buyers.

Enthusiasts of any age, however, will enjoy this car's combination of balance and agility.

The test car stuck like glue to the pavement, though it was not shod with grippy, fat performance tires.

The electric power steering was quickly responsive in a natural way and never felt artificial the way some electric systems do.

The car's light weight — the FR-S weighs just 2,758 pounds with manual transmission — accounted for a satisfying “scoot” feeling, even though torque from the 2-liter, double overhead cam four cylinder peaks at 151 foot-pounds starting at 6,400 rpm.

There is considerable road and engine noise, however, and the ride can feel rough on broken pavement.

Everyone rides low to the ground in the FR-S and gets good looks at the tailpipes of big pickups.

The FR-S roofline is low on this 4.2-foot-tall vehicle. So, getting in and out requires dexterity and care so heads don't bump at the low door opening.

Even the side windows seem a bit constricted, height-wise, and views out the side rear are blocked by thick rear window pillars.

Intriguingly, though it was driven in spirited fashion, the test FR-S averaged 26.2 miles per gallon in combined city/highway travel. This was a bit better than the federal government's 25 mpg estimate for city/highway travel for a manual transmission FR-S.

 

 
 


Show commenting policy

Most-Read Business Headlines

  1. Earlier openings make Black Friday shopping easier for bargain-hunters
  2. Florida roommates find a career in playing video games on web channel Twitch
  3. October mine inspections result in 127 citations
  4. Committee looks into beneficial uses of coal ash
  5. Retailers court web customers with free shipping
  6. Company seeks to reopen coal mine in Nottingham, Washington County
  7. Retailers that won’t open on Thanksgiving hope move pays off
  8. Iron ore price decline hurts U.S. Steel’s cost advantage over rivals
  9. Westinghouse to construct colossal nuke plant in Turkey
  10. Federal agency checking whether Highmark has enough doctors in Medicare plan
  11. Amusement parks fight off home entertainment threat
Subscribe today! Click here for our subscription offers.