Here's a brief note!
The demand for the Toyota Scion is up, so Toyota is doing the only sensible thing and cutting back on the supply, reports Gina Chon in The Wall Street Journal (11/10/06). Say again? You heard right: Scion could easily sell another 25,000 cars above the 150,000 it already sells each year, but has decided to cap supply at 150,000. It’s even taking its popular xB model (a.k.a. The Toaster) out of production for a while, just for fun. It’s a scarcity strategy, of course, and even Lyly Lao, who sells Scions in West Covina, California, thinks it’s a good idea: "Everybody is trying to be different, so it’s important for Scion to not put too many cars out there, or they will be everywhere," she says. The strategy extends to the Scion’s media choices as well."
I wish I really understood what was going on. Toyota dealerships absolutely couldn't keep a Scion xB on their lot. My wife and I bought one in 2005. We have loved it. It is an extremely ROOMY little car. 108 horsepower engine guarantees excellent mileage and it's classic Toyota quality actually being built in Japan - where the quality is highest. Now Toyota has ceased production of this very popular little car. Here's my suspicions - I could be Way Off!
The Scion xB was strategized to be a popular introductory model for generation X. If they could introduce Gen X to the Scion, they would ultimately move up to bigger, more expensive Toyota models.
Well I don't know how popular the xB was with Gen. X but it's been extremely popular with the Baby Boomers (me 'n my wife). Lots of elderly people running around in xB's probably guaranteeing it's unpopularity with younger generations. I believe that the profit margin on the xB is probably not all that good; that's generally true of stuff in general. The less expensive, the less profit margin. I wonder if Toyota/Scion didn't decide they were actually losing money on the Scion xB. Of course they were selling it for more than it costs to be manufactured but if they believed they were stealing clients from themselves; then they were going to have to stick a fork in the xB.
Now there is a new model Scion coming out sometime 2007. It will have a bigger, more powerful engine, probably be heavier and definitely be more expensive. Some wags have suggested, from preliminary models, that it looks like a PT Cruiser on steroids.
So my little TOASTER/MILK WAGON is starting down the road to planned obsolesence. Apparently Scion was selling 150,000 of these A YEAR after only 3 years. And then they stop production. sigh
BUT, Scion does not KNOW the Rabbi Philosopher. I'll get 20 years out of this vehicle. Even more likely it will simply out live me. I'm not going to let it go; I'll drive it until it comes to an absolute stop no longer repairable. NEVER GIVE UP, NEVER QUIT.
I'm counting on Scion having actually built a terrific car that will, with good proper maintenance, outlast its projected life. That would be good.