It's bigger, but is it better?

The 2010 Scion xB is a snappy little party wagon. While its aesthetic may have lost some of its edginess, the xB has gained more storage space, more passenger space, and more power.
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Photo by: Josh P. Miller/CNET / Caption by:

A trunk for your junk

If you're looking to build an aftermarket sound system with a couple of big subs, look no further. There's plenty of space behind the xB's rear hatch for your audio equipment and your groceries!
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Cavernous

The rear seats fold flat in an instant, opening up the huge rear storage area.
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Rear-seat entertainment

Our xB was equipped with a pair of optional headrest-mounted DVD players with 7-inch LCD monitors. The system features a wireless remote and a pair of IR headphones.
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Dropped like it's hot

TRD lowering springs (from the xB's huge catalog of available performance accessories) reduce the ride height by about an inch for a more hunkered down look and a slight boost in handling performance.
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Interior

The xB's interior, while a little quirky, looks pretty plain when compared to the likes of the Nissan Cube.
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Steering

The steering wheel is rather simple with only the most basic audio controls. The steering wheel is connected to the driving wheels via Toyota's electronic power steering, which sacrifices road feel for low steering effort.
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Photo by: Josh P. Miller/CNET / Caption by:

Backseat driving aid

The instrument cluster is positioned at the top-center of the dashboard, presumably so that even your backseat passengers can admire it. We'd have preferred the gauges be located in front of the most important passenger: the driver.
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Center stack

Below the instrument cluster is the infotainment system and the chunky climate controls.
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Premium audio by Alpine

The premium audio system is an Alpine branded unit that has more power than the basic system, as well as a color touch screen.
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Standard USB/aux-input

All xBs, regardless of audio options, make use of this standard USB port and auxiliary input. The system features iPod connectivity, but you'll have to supply your own sync cable.
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Navigation module

Adding a navigation module to the Alpine receiver opens up the world of turn-by-turn directions.
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Basic navigation

The navigation system is basic--there's no traffic--but it gets the job done.
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Tiny touch screen

The system stumbles a bit due to its touch screen, which is both small and located too far away from the driver.
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Trip computer

Navigation also adds this trip computer to the mix; it can track trip times, speed, etc.
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BLU Logic hands-free system

We're still scratching our heads over the odd placement of the hands-free calling controls, which are located near the driver's left knee.
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A good canvas

The xB is a good blank canvas vehicle, upon which you can easily add your own aftermarket tech. Its performance is actually pretty good.
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Scion accessories

Scions are known for their customization options and the xB is no exception. Our vehicle featured a mesh grill, fog lights, illuminated door sills, and larger 16-inch wheels.
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Toyota's workhorse

The 2.4-liter engine that resides under the xB's hood has already proven itself behind the grill of the much larger Toyota Camry. Horsepower and torque numbers are modest for a mill this size, but in the lighter xB, the engine's broad power band really shines.
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Four-speed automatic transmission

We were surprised to find that Toyota was still equipping the xB with a four-speed automatic transmission. However, we were equally surprised at how well the slushbox performed. There is no fuel economy penalty for choosing an automatic xB over the manually shifted variant.
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