Report: Scion Still Considering Small Pickup Truck

Report: Scion Still Considering Small Pickup Truck
Speculative Rendering by Mark Stehrenberger Design, 2007, for PickupTrucks.com

Scion is still interested in building a compact pickup truck, according to a report in Ward’s Auto.

In 2007, we first wrote about Scion's plans to offer a small truck as part of Toyota's youth-oriented lineup. We called it the xP -- get it?

But our sources later told us that the Scion runabout was scuttled by Jim Farley, who was Toyota's group vice president of marketing and the vice president of Scion before leaving to become Ford's group vice president of global marketing. Farley didn't think a small truck had a place in the Scion lineup, so the Scion truck became the Toyota A-BAT concept that was shown at the 2008 North American International Auto Show. A-BAT designer Matt Sperling even participated in an online discussion at GM Inside News about how the A-BAT did indeed start out as a compact pickup concept for Scion.

Toyota shelved plans to build the A-BAT, but the idea still lives on at Scion and appears increasingly likely. Like us, Scion seems to believe there is an overlooked need for a truly compact pickup truck now that midsize trucks have been bloated, overpriced and out of touch with small-truck buyers’ needs.

Perhaps Kia's recent Soul'ster trucklet concept has gotten Scion's attention as the Koreans attempt to go after Toyota's traditional turf and new segments.

Trucks are “not off the table,” Scion General Manager Jack Hollis said in an interview with Ward's at the 2010 North American International Auto Show in Detroit. “Toyota has such a strong heritage of doing a very good job with youth and with trucks, when you look at (the Toyota) Tacoma – I’m not trying to be too cocky, but we pretty much have owned that segment for a long time. We have to find a niche. I think there is room for it.”

You go, Jack. We're with you.

Toyota A-BAT Concept Sketch
Toyota A-BAT Concept Sketch

[Source: Ward's Auto via Automobile Magazine]

Comments

More news about a unibody compact truck.It's a pattern too obvious to miss.
Toyota A-Bat, Scion, Kia Soul'ster, Holden ute - El Camino, Dakota unibody replacement, Ford unibody? , Amarok.
I bet we will see several small unibody p/u's hit the market in the next 5 years.

i wish they'd just forget about unibody's, they stink!

Man, and I thought General Motors was mixed up with it's on-off-on-off Chevy El Camino cycle.

Toyota would be better off just shrinking the Tacoma than going with the A-BAT. Why is it so hard for automakers to make a vehicle more compact? No unibody, no crossovers-with-a-bed, just a smaller body-on-frame vehicle with real four-wheel-drive capacity and a crew-cab offering for older customers.

The older Tacoma was so small and light that the crew cab variant was lighter than today's extended cab and could easily run on four-cylinder power. Look it up-the old crew cab was lighter than today's Tacoma access cab, and with the new I4 would get better than 21 mpg with plenty of power for anybody. Why can't we get a vehicle like this? Lightweight, simple, fuel-efficient.

The Hilux needs to be shrunk for American markets, not made bigger. If Nissan can shrink it's Titan and call it a Frontier, why can't Toyota shrink it's Tacoma and call it a Tacoma Light?

Just the bring the Hilux here for crying out loud , we dont need a little trar we need a truck . If Toyota sold the Hilux here now I would be driving one instead of my Silverado and Ford , Maybe Mahindra will get my business .

I'll never buy a unibody truck, but I can understand why automakers are looking hard at them.

Their CAFE numbers will really help the whole group.

Think of it as "cap and trade" for trucks.

Having had experience with the Hiluxes. I way prefer my old silverado and current f150 over the hilux. Bigger, more comfortable, handles better, tows more, carries more, uses about the same amount of fuel. When these cheaper, smaller trucks come stateside, you will realize the grass wasn't so much greener afterall.

@Ulmus: I think these super small trucks need to be BOF, not unibody.

I like the Hilux because its smaller (used to be I dont know how big they are now) and its my first real 4x4 love (I had an 86 and an 85 Toyota RCLB 4x4 pickup) thrashed them beyond belief and smaller is better off road in my experience and it did most everything I wanted , and to Mike Levine a uni body in the spirit of the Jeep Comanche would be the only uni body truck that I would want , the attached cab/bed Honda Ridgeline type truck no way .

For very light duty hauling,and just plain Haulin....give me a 1983 Dodge Rampage 2.2 anyday.Red with black stripes please.0-50 in 6.5 seconds.And nearly 30mpg.Front wheel drive for winter,and manual 5-speed.And highly collectible at that....

I agree with Mike that any "compact" truck needs to be body on frame. It is a proven, tough, versatile platform.

I'm in the AF and just left Afghanistan and i'm now in Qatar and every truck here is either a Hilux or a Ford Ranger. And everyone is a four door and 4x4 with a diesel. Why is it so hard for these auto manuf to build a compact 4 door w/diesel in the states. These dumb ass people need to pull there heads out of there behinds and realize what needs to be done.

@Rob: The blame lies with the EPA. The U.S. has the toughest diesel emissions standards in the world. It makes it very expensive to try to sell a small diesel pickup here. I hope Mahindra succeeds. Others could follow.

please dont make this, people who buy it would be wasteing there money.

99% of the poeple out there would not think of this as a real truck. So why make it? Look what happened when Suburu tried to make a pick up from there Outback, it didnt make it.
But one truck was a unitbody and tough as nails. The Jeep Commanche!

At this point I wonder if the people in product planning even care what people who want trucks are looking for?

Heres my list for a compact:

1) I don't care if its unibody. But don't put a 2' bed and think your done. Anything less than a 4.5' bed is useless, because even with the tailgate down you cant fit much in.

2) FWD/AWD like the Ridgeline is fine. Just don't make the damn thing heavy if your going for MPG because the Ridgeline obviously isn't light. Say a combined 25MPG for Gas, maybe 30 MPG for a small Diesel?

3) Compact = is exactly that. Rav4/CR-V/RDX/EX25/X3 ish in size from the front 4 doors, and a decent bed out back.

4) Price = AWD/4dr model around $15k.

Midsize:

1) Can afford to come down in size to help out with MPG and weight. Dakota size which is no longer a true compact, but don't cheat us on the features. Maybe ala Benz Unimog? Small but highly capable. Decreasing Weight is the easiest MPG increaser, so say 20MPG Combined, 25 for a small Diesel?

2) Make the bed capable of fitting a 4x8. That is why the first Dakota was so popular.

3) Make sure it has a decent V8 like the Dakota does now. 300hp/300 Lb.Ft.

4) Give it a small Diesel. Maybe the 3.0l Diesel @ 215hp/376 Lb. Ft of Torque already in use in the Jeep Grand Cherokee. Or the Toyota Hilux already has a 3.0l Diesel in its trucks.

5) Give it good payload. It should still be like a half ton.

6) Make it reasonably priced. The existing Dakota model would work great if it actually was price right. $20k for a decent 4x4, 4dr, Diesel or V8, 6' Bed that fits a 4' sheet of plywood FLAT between the wheel arches.

Full Size:

1) This is where the 3/4 tons start at current 1/2 Sizes, but go up. This area will always be their for those who need proper towing, carrying, etc. 10' Beds and all. This part of the market has very capable trucks, and no sense messing with what works.

I don't care who makes it. I am looking for a lightweight economy small pickup truck. I drove a Ford Courier 4-spd manual that avg 30 mpg. It lasted over 200,000 miles. I drove a Dodge Ram 50 5-spd manual that avg 28 mpg. There is not a true economy truck to be found on the market at this time. It seems the manufacturers are trying to make a "jack-of-all-trades" pickup. What used to be a baby-truck has grown into mid-size and it is no longer economical. Please, someone make a baby-truck again.

we need a small truck and someone will build it rember the little chevy ,ford courier,dodge d 50 allgreat ho ever builds the first one will be top dog many years will it be one of the big 3 or should i say big 3 going the way of the horse no they dont know how to think small

that scion is a beast



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