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Scion iQ Concept at 2009 New York Auto Show

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  • Looks like: Japan’s Toyota iQ gets Scion-ized
  • Defining characteristics: Small size, ginormous LCD screen
  • Ridiculous features: Odd 3+1 seating setup
  • Chance of being mass-produced: Very likely

At 126.9 inches, the Scion iQ concept is more than 2 feet shorter than the smallest Scion, the xD, but believe it or not it’s 20 inches longer than the Smart ForTwo. That means this little city car might have the chops for sale in the U.S.

The iQ is already sold in Japan and other countries as a Toyota model, but the company feels it would do better in the U.S. as a Scion. Of course, it uses the word “if” when talking about this car ever going on sale stateside. We think it would do well among Scion’s demographic and among those looking to spend a little to get basic transportation. The only modifications done to this iQ were to the exterior by way of body kits from an aftermarket tuning house. Oh, and the Toyota badges were replaced with Scion emblems.

Powered by a 93-hp four-cylinder engine, we’d expect it to get significantly better mileage than the more powerful xD, which returns 27/33 mpg city/highway.

What does that 3+1 seating mean? Basically, there’s room for only one adult in the backseat behind the front passenger, and the other seat is big enough to hold a small child or cargo. If that doesn’t sound safe, Toyota adds nine airbags, including a rear-window airbag — the first of its kind. It also comes standard with stability control and antilock brakes.

Check out more photos below and let us know if you’d like to see the iQ on U.S. roads.

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Former managing editor David Thomas has a thing for wagons and owns a 2010 Subaru Outback and a 2005 Volkswagen Passat wagon. Email David Thomas

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