2013 Scion iQ EV makes its debut in the United States

Article by Christian Andrei, on October 22, 2012

Scion is limiting the production of its iQ EV, its first electric vehicle, to only about 90 samples. It is set to debut in the U.S. in urban car sharing programs and on campuses across the country. As expected, the Scion iQ EV is at the top and the bottom of the electric-vehicle segment when looking at the numbers.

It’s just the Smart Fortwo Electric Drive that’s near the Scion iQ EV’s 13.5-foot turning radius. However, the Smart exceeds the Scion in overall range. Scion claims that it has a 50-mile range from a full charge on its 12 kWh battery while the Smart Fortwo ED is claimed to offer a 90-mile range.

These two small electric cars both have top speeds of 78mph. However, the Scion iQ EV accelerates from zero to 60mph in 13.4 seconds while the Smart can do the same in about 12 seconds.

What the Smart Fortwo ED isn’t capable of doing is bear more than two persons but the iQ EV can easily carry four people. Toyota said that the development of the iQ EV was influenced by what it has learned from its hybrid and plug-in hybrid R&D.

The new Scion is equipped with regenerative braking and to lessen the chances of battery degradation, a timer that matches the charge completion time with the time the car will be driven.

It has three driving models: the default D, the S to make acceleration faster, and B to optimize the efficiency of the regenerative brakes. Chris Hostetter, Toyota’s group vice president of strategic planning, said that until now, the cost and convenience issues have restricted BEV’s appeal with a wide consumer market.

He revealed that the iQ EV was specially developed too be used in urban areas where driving distances are usually short, where there are plenty of charging options, and where its compact size would be an advantage. The Scion iQ EV features heated front seats and a seven-inch screen with a navigation system. Drivers also get access to EV-specific details like an available range map (to indicate how far the car can travel on its present charge) and energy flow data.

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