The 2013-2015 Scion FR-S is exactly the sort of car gearheads crave. It’s a front-engine, rear-wheel-drive, 2+2 coupe with a manual transmission and an affordable price tag. Really, there’s nothing not to love with that combination. In 2012, when the FR-S and its corporate cousin, the Subaru BRZ came to market, we were overjoyed.
Many initial opinions of the cars suggested the 200-horsepower four-cylinder was underpowered, though with only 2,758 pounds to move and 13.79 pounds for each horsepower, its weight to power ratio bests the 2014-2015 Ford Fiesta ST and 2016 Hyundai Veloster Turbo R-Spec, at 13.8 and 13.93 pounds per horsepower, respectively. You hardly hear folks complain about those two being underpowered. Heck, it even bests the 2013-2015 Mazda MX-5 Miata’s 14.85 weight to power ratio. Sure, there are other variables to how powerful a car feels, like drive ratios and transmission gearing, but these stats still speak volumes.
Arguments aside, the FR-S has the spec sheet of a purpose-built sports car. Its engine is just a few millimeters forward of being a front mid-ship design and its weight distribution is only three percent from perfectly balanced. Heavily bolstered seats, good visibility, a manual transmission and parking brake, and an appetite for revs from its 2.0-liter flat-four gives the FR-S plenty of credibility.
To put its creds to the test, I spent a week with a 2015 FR-S fitted with three pedals. This isn’t my first time in an FR-S, but my last tester came with the kill-joy automatic. Thankfully my suspicions about the manual transmission curing all my reservations with the automatic FR-S were true. This car was made to row your own.
Continue reading for the full review.
Back in November, I covered each of the competitors in the Scion Racing Tuner Challenge, which is an annual build-off between three automotive media outlets to create the “ultimate Scion” in the 90-day run-up to SEMA. Each participant was allowed a $15,000 budget and free reign in terms of modifications. Taking the win was this old-school throwback from Speedhunters, which beat out both Super Street and GT Channel for the $10,000 grand prize. The “86” racer recently made an appearance on Jay Leno’s Garage, giving us a close-up look at just how much work went into its creation, not to mention a quick blast around LA with Leno at the helm.
The video begins with some of the technical bits that make this Scion so special, including the wide-body kit and custom wheels. Speedhunters also decided to pay homage to the IMSA era of U.S. GT racing, with a white, red, orange and yellow livery. The “86” you see plastered all over the body panels alludes to the car’s forerunners, including the legendary Toyota AE86 Hachi-Roku sport compact.
The FR-S’sublime handling characteristics are beefed up with stiff RS*R Black-i coilovers, plus a few extra complementary components to give it that true race car feeling in the bends. But the best bit lies under the louvered hood, where Speedhunters installed a Cosworth supercharger kit that pushes the powerplant to produce roughly 300 horsepower at the wheels.
In true car-guy fashion, Leno has his fun on the freeway and through the canyons, praising the car’s extra power. At the very least, you gotta hit play to hear that tuned flat-four sing.
Continue reading to learn more about the Speedhunters FR-S.
Ah, the holidays. The perfect time to sit around the fire with family, roasting chestnuts and relaxing with a soothing cup of spiced eggnog. Well, either that, or roasting the tires off an FR-S with a super gulp serving of counter-steer.
That latter scenario was the retreat of choice for professional driver Ryan Tuerck as he slid his way up some 2,000 feet of switchbacks and blind corners in his 600-horsepower Scion FR-S. That hazy scenery behind the clouds of smoke is Burke Mountain in Vermont, which makes for some rather epic public-road drifting action. Adding to the fun, we find fellow Formula D driver Pat Goodin coming out in a black 1JZ-powered Nissan S13 for tandem madness.
Long story short, that white car isn’t stock. In this walk-around video, Tuerck lets us peek under the skin of this hyperspace FR-S. Motive power is provided by a turbocharged, Toyota 2JZGTE inline-six with cam gears and a stroker kit from Brian Crower. Making boost is a Garrett GTX3582R turbocharger, with two 44-mm (1.73-inch) wastegates. Two Radium Engineering catch cans condense blow-by vapors, while the tuner’s fuel regulator helps with the dino juice. Finally, Mishimoto cools with a thick radiator help in the corners. Dominant Engineering is responsible for all the fabrication work; check out the custom side exhaust dump peeking out of the passenger side fender.
The interior is gutted, while an ASD handbrake is in place for instant rear lock up. Recaro seats were installed to hold Tuerck in place. DBA Racing brake rotors, a Wisefab rear suspension kit, and BC Racing coilovers help round out the stop and turn. A Wisefab kit in the front helps eek out every last degree of steering angle.
With a car this wild, piloted by one of the drifting world’s best out in the unpredictable real world, you just know it’s going to be good. If you’ve been jonesing for some quality sideways hoonigenry, we have your prescription right here.
Click past the jump to read about the Scion FR-S.
In the latest episode of his "Head 2 Head" show, Carlos Lago from MotorTrend put two of the coolest sports car on the market — the 2013 Mazda Miata Club Edition and the 2013 Scion FR-S — head to head. Of course, for this test you will have to forget the numbers and understand it is just a fight made for fun.
The Scion FR-S will sprint from 0 to 60 mph in just 6.2 seconds and the Miata Club Edition in 6.1 seconds. The quarter-mile times are pretty much identical, as the MX-5 runs it in 14.7 seconds at a speed of 92.8 mph and the FR-S in 14.8 seconds at a speed of 95.1 mph. With these numbers aside, which car is more fun to drive?
Watch the video to see which of the two models impressed Carlos Lago the most! Also, let us know in the comment section below if you agree with him!
Matt Farah understands what makes for a sick race car. The host of Tuned has probably even seen and driven it all, yet there’s no mistaking the excitement in his voice when he was afforded the opportunity to check out VCMC Motorsports’ turbo-packed Scion FR-S at the Chukwalla Raceway in California.
As for the car itself, it was made in Canada by VCMC and Shift Auto Challenge as part of the Canadian version of the FR-S Tuner Challenge (the U.S. versions were all on display at SEMA). In achieving the 350-horsepower output on this FR-S, VCMC installed a motorsports-grade turbo kit, added nine pounds of boost and fitted KW Variant 3 coilovers, all while stripping down the interior to get rid of all the unnecessary components that don’t have a place in a full-blown race car, thus reducing the weight to about 2,400 pounds.
As you can imagine, Farah was impressed with the car after taking it out for a few laps at Chukwalla. We’d probably be as impressed too, if we had a chance to sit behind the wheel and go for a few laps, but we trust in Farah’s judgment. If it’s good for him, it’s good for us.
Besides, when you put 350 horses on that boxer-four engine and strip down the weight in the process, you know you have a pretty darn good weekend racer to play with.
One of the most eagerly anticipated events at the 2012 SEMA Auto Show, at least in our book, is the presentation of the three cars competing in Scion’s annual Tuner Challenge. This year, the Toyota-owned automaker decided to give three of the country’s best builders a chance to create their own custom FR-S in time for SEMA.
The three - John Toca from Chicago, Illinois, Daniel Song from Orange County, California, and Chris Basselgia from Lebanon, Pennsylvania - were each given a stock FR-S model to work with. On top of that, they were allocated a budget of $15,000 and three months to finish their project.
Needless to say, with SEMA less than two weeks away, we expect all three custom FR-S models to be on the last stages of their development before heading over to Las Vegas. We’re pretty excited to see what these three talented builders did with their respective FR-S models.
But before we get a chance to look at each one of them, we’ll have to settle for this teaser video that Scion presented of the FR-S Tuner Challenge 2012.
The brand new Scion FR-S is out to show the world (in it various automaker versions) just how spectacular of a sports car it can really be, but can it live to some of the veterans on the market? AutoGuide recently went searching for an answer to that question when it stacked the FR-S against the now famous Hyundai Genesis Coupe. Both models are priced under $30K and come with 2.0-liter 4-cylinder engines, but the Genesis Coupe delivers an extra 74 HP (274 HP vs. 200 HP). So, what does the FR-S bring to the table to try to overtake the Genesis Coupe?
AutoGuide’s goal was to see which of the two models was the quickest around their 1.86-mile 11-turn test track. The results show that the Genesis Coupe earned a time of 1 minute and 25 seconds. The FR-S wasn’t too far behind as it posted a time of 1 minute and 26 seconds. With such close results, it would really come down to everything else. Which vehicle would you buy? Check out the video and let us know in the comments section below!/p>
The Toyota GT 86, Scion FR-S, and Subaru BRZ are inching closer to getting a release date, and the lucky dogs over at Edmunds managed to get their hands on an FR-S a little early. Being the true car buffs that they are, what’s the first thing they did with it? They threw it on the dyno, of course!
You may be alarmed wondering why they are dyno testing a car that we all know produces 200 horsepower. Well, that’s not always the case. See, 99.9 percent of the time, automakers release horsepower numbers based off of the engine’s power, not the entire car. On average, you can expect to lose 10 to 20 percent of the horsepower through the driveline – transmission, driveshaft, and differential.
So what was Edmunds’ final determination of its horsepower? It was nothing short of impressively consistent. It repeatedly produced 173 horsepower at roughly 7,000 rpm and 143 pound-feet of torque at about 2,800 rpm. Not only were the peaks identical, but the horsepower and torque curves were nearly identical on every run.
To have that kind of consistency in a car is a testament to just how much engineering went into it. This also proves that the 2.0-liter flat-four that Subaru and Toyota collaborated on is truly a work of art to crank out 173 wheel horsepower. There are not too many sub-$30K four-bangers hitting that kind of horsepower consistently without the use of some forced air.
There is one very odd thing in this engine that again shows how much engineering went into it. At about 4,000 rpm you will see a 14-percent drop in torque, which the Subaru and Toyota engineers intentionally did to allow greater torque on the lower rpm range. Our collective hats go off to the team of engineers that developed this car. Now, can we just get a hold of a turbocharged model, please?
Here’s a nice new concept for a reality show that every car-loving man – and woman - on the face of this world would love to be a part of: have six people duke it out for the enviable opportunity to modify a Scion xB.
Oh wait, Scion’s already doing that.
In a new Web series that’s sure to be must-watch entertainment for a lot of us, “Reinventing the Wheels” features two film makers, two DJs, a special-effects make-up artist and a pastry chef – yes, a pastry chef – are putting their car design talents to good use by having their own individual preliminary designs on a Scion xB. And that’s just episode 1.
We’re pretty sure that as the show progresses, things are going to get a little more interesting. In the meantime, check out episode 1 to see how the six contestants all stack up against each other.
Part 2 of Episode 1 after the jump
Do you ever sit back and say, “If I had the money, I could put together a nice ride that everyone would love.” You would be lying if you said that the thought has never crossed your mind, but let’s be realistic, few people have the resources and ingenuity to design and create an automobile. That will change for three people when Scion’s new six part web-exclusive video series airs. “Reinvent the Wheels” is a competition that will allow three creative auto enthusiasts the opportunity to work with professional garages to see who can create and build the most original, inspiring and practical car possible. The contestants will be provided with expert tuners and armed with a budget to let their creativity flow and provide them with a chance to win a Scion car, accessories, and a $30,000.00 cash prize. The experience itself will be valuable to the contestants providing them with exposure and mentorship during this process.
"Embracing the youth community and inviting them to participate in the creative process has always been part of Scion’s DNA," says Jack Hollis, vice president, Scion. "This unique campaign allows us to showcase the compelling stories of three emerging artists as they transform a car with limited time and resources."
“Reinventing the Wheels” will air tonight at 9pm EDT on www.ReinventtheWheels.com.
Follow the jump for the press release.
How do you get a Scion TC to drift? Put a TRD spec NASCAR V8 in the hands of record setting drag racer Steph Papadakis and place Formula D Champion Tanner Foust behind the wheel. This combination of Papadakis as team owner and Foust as driver will be competing in the 2009 Formula D series.
More video after the jump.