I called the original iM concept Matrix Part Deux. That wasn't a dig. I actually liked the Matrix, and the concept was pretty damned handsome. But as always, the journey from show stand to showroom has wiped away any sense of style and replaced it with anodyne anonymity. What a shame.

Yes, it's basically just a Corolla hatchback (Auris in JDM parlance) badged as a Scion, but maybe I just hoped for something more. No luck.

It's packing the miserly 1.8-liter, putting out 137 hp and 126 lb-ft of torque to the front wheels. That anemic grunt is sent to a seven-speed "automatic" that's actually a CVT with preset ratios. But there is a six-speed manual option, probably to get it below the $20,000 starting price Scion is promising.

The suspension is comprised of a torsion beam out back and a MacPherson setup in front, and the whole package weighs just under 3,000 pounds with the manual or about 100 more with the auto. There's no word on cargo capacity, but the 60/40 seats should make hauling relatively easy.

But here's the saddest part about the iM: like the iA is meant to replace the old xA, the iM is here to kill the xB. For Scion's middling middle-age demo, that's probably perfect. But with the exception for the FRS and the death of the xB, Scion has officially run out of personality. And it'll probably sell well.


Contact the author at damon@jalopnik.com.
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