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2011 Scion xB Release Version 8.0 (photos)

Although the base vehicle hasn't been updated in a few years, Scion makes its xB look fresh with a limited-edition Release Version 8.0, featuring a custom paint color and a body kit.

Wayne Cunningham
Wayne Cunningham reviews cars and writes about automotive technology for CNET's Roadshow. Prior to the automotive beat, he covered spyware, Web building technologies, and computer hardware. He began covering technology and the Web in 1994 as an editor of The Net magazine.
Wayne Cunningham
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The Scion xB got a major update in 2007, which included a drastic restyling of the body. Occasionally, Scion creates Release Versions of some of its models. For the xB, this is Release Version 8.0, with a custom paint color and body kit.

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The xB features unmistakable looks, a squarish little car with softened edges. The body kit on the Release Version 8.0 adds subtle styling along the rear bumper and sides.

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The engine in the xB is not very advanced. It is a 2.4-liter four-cylinder producing 158 horsepower and 162 pound-feet of torque.

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Although a small car, the xB's design makes for plenty of interior room with ample space for five passengers, along with a decent-size cargo area.

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With its MacPherson struts up front and torsion beam rear suspension, the xB handles surprisingly well. Sport tuning leads to good stability in corners, but can also cause a jarring ride.

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Textures over the dashboard plastics make the interior look good, and cloth inserts in the door panels are a nice touch.

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As you would expect from the shape of the xB, there is a good cargo space in back.

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The xB uses an electric power-steering unit, which is tuned well for an engaging drive.

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Audio controls on the steering wheel will work with most aftermarket head units.

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Scion uses four gauges overlapping, for a nice instrument cluster effect. But the button to change the trip information display is a long reach from the driver.

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The four-speed automatic transmission is rather primitive, but the xB can also be had with a five-speed manual.

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This Alpine head unit comes with the Premium Sound package, and features HD radio. However, it does not have Bluetooth streaming audio.

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Since the Scion brand first launched, all the cars have had iPod integration standard.

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