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2014 Scion tC Review

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2014 Scion tC Expert Review

By

KBB Expert Rating: 7.1

The sporty 2014 Scion tC coupe isn't the quickest 2-door on the market, and it is eclipsed in the fun-to-drive department by Scion's new FR-S rear-drive sport coupe. But, the tC continues to hold appeal to buyers looking for an affordable and fun coupe loaded with high-tech audio and add-on features all for a price in reach of anyone who can secure a car loan. Toss in an enviable reliability and resale history, a usable rear seat and improvements to the car's performance abilities and the tC seems destined to thrive.

You'll Like This Car If...

The Scion tC for 2014 offers a balanced blend of driving enjoyment, good fuel economy and cutting-edge audio connectivity as to make it an easy choice for most first-time buyers. Numerous accessories and aftermarket parts allow nearly infinite customization options, and the big rear hatch provides excellent cargo hauling potential.

You May Not Like This Car If...

Performance expectations don't always live up to the promise offered by the tC's good looks. If you're looking for a seat of your pants thrill ride, the 2014 Scion tC would be better substituted with Scion's FR-S sports coupe. An abundance of black inside the tC's cabin is another detractor.

KBB Expert Ratings

  • 7.1
  • 6.0
  • 6.4
  • 6.2
  • 6.0
  • 9.8
How It Ranks

#19

out of 19

Fuel Economy

#5

out of 19

Horsepower
View all rankings

Consumer Rating

8.5 out of 10
View all
consumer ratings
2014 Scion tC Low/wide front photo What's New for 2014

The 2014 Scion tC receives a new front end, LED accent lights and a freshened interior. A new standard audio system incorporates a 6.1-inch touch screen, while a new 6-speed automatic transmission is programmed for quicker shifts and features rev-matching technology. A limited-production 10 Series edition is also offered.

Driving the tC
2014 Scion tC Front angle view photo

Driving Impressions The tC driving experience has always been the biggest source of debate in regards to the car's designation as a sports coupe. Improvements to the 2014 Scion tC move the...

... needle a bit more to the Yes column, but not definitively. A 6-speed automatic transmission lifted from the Scion FR-S now features downshift rev-matching technology and is a vast improvement over last year's automatic. But, we still prefer the 6-speed manual gearbox both for its light clutch pedal and precise, quick shifts. Road manners and chassis feel are improved for 2014, with stiffer calibrations for the springs, shocks and stabilizer bars, as well as a retuned electric power steering setup. Low-rpm engine response is quite good but revving out the 2.5-liter four generates only average thrust. Compared to other coupes in its class, it's not nearly as powerful or capable, though for city driving it's probably good enough for most buyers.

BESPOKE PREMIUM AUDIO
Offered as an enhancement to the standard touch-screen radio, the BeSpoke audio system includes full navigation as well as the Aha smartphone app service that allows access to 30,000 free radio stations including Scion's own station featuring 17 separate music channels.

BUILD YOUR OWN
Personalization is a consistent Scion theme, and between the factory and the aftermarket, it's easy to make your tC really your tC. There are many forums, groups and clubs dedicated to Scion customization.

2014 Scion tC Details
2014 Scion tC Dashboard, center console, gear shifter view photo Interior

For 2014, the Scion tC receives a modest interior upgrade with better seat materials and more contrasting trim on the dash. Color, however, is still absent from the overly black and gray interior palate. The tC's driver's seat is adjustable enough for all shapes and sizes, and rear-seat passengers will be surprised by the amount of room they actually have. Dials and instrument clusters have a round theme that is pleasant and manages to be Spartan without looking like anything is missing. A 60/40-split folding back seat allows trips to actual supermarkets, not just convenience stores.

Exterior
2014 Scion tC photo

The 2014 Scion tC's biggest change can be seen up front, where a new wide-mouth lower grille is topped by a longer hood and new headlights with LED accent lighting. New 18-inch wheels feature a dark gray finish with contrasting machined-spoke surfaces. Where other, smaller coupes in its class can look excessively what-you-see-is-what-you-get, the tC coupe looks aggressively playful. The limited edition Scion 10 Series features Silver Ignition paint, silver seat belts and a solar-powered illuminated shift knob.

Notable Equipment
Standard Equipment

The 2014 Scion tC carries great youth-appeal cred with standard equipment that includes 18-inch wheels and the impressive Pioneer sound system. That sound system includes a new 6.1-inch LCD touch screen and HD Radio capability, and you can connect your phone to it as long as you're running Bluetooth 2.0 or higher. There are two microphones in the ceiling-light array to help facilitate use of the hands-free phone option. Toyota's Star Safety System is also standard and features eight airbags and traction and stability control along with active front headrests.

Optional Equipment

Factory options for the 2014 Scion tC are narrowed to a few items, chief among them the BeSpoke audio/navigation upgrade, rear spoiler and sportier TRD springs and anti-roll bars. A new 6-speed automatic transmission with manual shift mode and downshift rev matching is also available. Aftermarket options for the 2014 Scion tC are as extensive as they are for all other Scion models.

Under the Hood
2014 Scion tC Engine photo

All 2014 Scion tC trim levels carry a 2.5-liter 4-cylinder engine, producing 179 horsepower and 173 lb-ft of torque. Both manual and automatic transmissions are 6-speed units. The automatic's new rev-matching technology allows smoother downshifts and changes gears twice as quick as the old automatic in the 2013 car. The manual transmission's clutch could be accused of being soft but the bolt-action precision of its shifter largely offsets that concern.

2.5-liter inline-4
179 horsepower @ 6,000 rpm
173 lb-ft of torque @ 4,100 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 23/31 mpg

The Manufacturer's Suggested Retail Price (MSRP) on the 2014 Scion tC coupe starts just under $20,000 with the 6-speed manual transmission. The 6-speed automatic adds about $1,000 to the bottom line. The tC Series 10 has an MSRP just a shade over $22,000. Resale values on the Scion tC have held up well for previous models and the 2014 should be no different, though the arrival of the excellent Scion FR-S rear-drive coupe may have some impact by pulling away the more sport-minded drivers. For the best picture of what 2014 Scion tC models are selling for in your area, check out the Fair Purchase Price on KBB.com.

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2014 Scion tC Consumer Reviews

Overall Rating
8.5
Out of 10

Based on 63 Ratings for the 2011 - 2015 models.

Review this car
  • Value
    8.7/10
    Quality
    8.1/10
  • Reliability
    9.2/10
    Performance
    8.7/10
  • Comfort
    8.4/10
    Styling
    8.5/10

The best vehicle for the price.

By on Thursday, September 11, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 7,600

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
9/10
Reliability
9/10
Quality
9/10
Performance
9/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
9/10

Pros: "Best price for a sporty fun to drive coupe!"

Cons: "interior colors are limited"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"It has been very reliable and the vehicle is loaded with lots of equipment for what you will get for the price of others in the same class. The reliability of this tc I can say is the best I have seen. It also provides more leg room & head room in its class. Sporty, and fun to drive! You definitely get more for the buck! I'm completely happy with my Scion tC and I plan to trade up to the 2015 tC."

4 people out of 8 found this review helpful

Good performance, good looks

By on Friday, April 11, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 16,000

10 8.0
overall rating 8 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
8/10
Value
8/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
5/10
Performance
9/10
Styling
7/10
Comfort
8/10

Pros: "Fun to drive, steering, acceleration, reliable"

Cons: "Terrible paint quality"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 8

"I purchased my 2014 tC in black back in August. This car is very fun to drive aggressively, or just taking it on a cruise. I had this car for about 8 months now and enjoy driving it everyday. The car is perfect on power for the average person and both transmissions offer great performance. The pioneer system is much better than other companies offer. The interior is very spacious, even for people sitting in the back seat. Nobody can believe how much leg room there is in the back even with the front seats moved back. The seats are comfortable and supportive for longer drives, and they hold you in tight when turning around corners. The only problem I have with the car is the POOR paint quality. My car is black and there are about 5-10 white chips on the hood, and my front bumper's clear coat has about 50 holes in it.I know cars get marked up, but this is just unacceptable for a car that isn't even a year old. I will have to get it repainted when it starts to look worse and get a quality job to avoid this problem in the future."

28 people out of 42 found this review helpful

Good performance, good looks

By on Friday, April 11, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 16,000

10 8.0
overall rating 8 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
8/10
Value
8/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
5/10
Performance
9/10
Styling
7/10
Comfort
8/10

Pros: "Fun to drive, steering, acceleration, reliable"

Cons: "Terrible paint quality"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 8

"I purchased my 2014 tC in black back in August. This car is very fun to drive aggressively, or just taking it on a cruise. I had this car for about 8 months now and enjoy driving it everyday. The car is perfect on power for the average person and both transmissions offer great performance. The pioneer system is much better than other companies offer. The interior is very spacious, even for people sitting in the back seat. Nobody can believe how much leg room there is in the back even with the front seats moved back. The seats are comfortable and supportive for longer drives, and they hold you in tight when turning around corners. The only problem I have with the car is the POOR paint quality. My car is black and there are about 5-10 white chips on the hood, and my front bumper's clear coat has about 50 holes in it.I know cars get marked up, but this is just unacceptable for a car that isn't even a year old. I will have to get it repainted when it starts to look worse and get a quality job to avoid this problem in the future."

3 people out of 4 found this review helpful

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