$13,354 - $13,919

2014 Scion FR-S Performance Review

Note: This performance review was created when the 2014 Scion FR-S was new.


Performance: 9.2

Reviewers say the 2014 Scion FR-S may not be the most powerful sports car in the class, but its light weight, low center of gravity and superb handling make it a joy to drive. Both the manual and automatic transmissions are refined, test drivers note. Reviewers rave about the razor-sharp steering and strong brakes.

  • "If Porsche were to build a $25,000 version of its Cayman sports car, we suspect it would feel a lot like the FR-S." -- Edmunds
  • "The Scion FR-S for 2014 is built to excite the driving enthusiast who believes driving is more than just mashing an accelerator pedal and hurtling forward as fast as humanly possible. In the FR-S, the driver gets to practice the lost art of driving, not just steering.” -- Kelley Blue Book
  • "Having the fastest, most enjoyable car doesn't mean having the most powerful or the priciest. The FR-S is what budget-themed performance is all about." -- Motor Trend (2013)
  • "Being perfectly candid, we didn't yearn for more horsepower or more torque. Thanks to a very low curb weight (estimated at about 2,700 pounds), a well-balanced chassis (53/47 percent front/rear) and a low center of gravity (besting the Porsche Cayman), the Scion was as obedient as a well-trained Border Collie." -- Autoblog (2013) 

Acceleration and Power

The 2014 Scion FR-S has a 2.0-liter, horizontally-opposed four-cylinder engine that generates 200 horsepower at 7,000 rpm and 151 pound-feet of torque at 6,600 rpm. A six-speed manual transmission is standard and a six-speed automatic transmission is optional. The 2014 Scion FR-S gets up to 25/34 mpg city/highway, which is better than many affordable sports cars’ fuel economy.

While the 2014 FR-S isn’t as powerful as rivals like the Ford Mustang and Nissan 370Z, reviewers say that it has a responsive engine that provides sufficient power. They say the six-speed manual transmission has a precise shifter that makes the FR-S particularly fun to drive, while the six-speed automatic is refined and surprisingly quick to respond, especially in sport mode.

  • "If you prefer a car that can hammer down freeway on-ramps, tires ablaze, the 2014 Scion FR-S is not for you. Power is sufficient, but nothing more." -- Edmunds
  • "Power from the 2.0-liter flat-4 isn't bad, and the 6-speed manual is so good it could very well be the poster child that inspires a ‘shift-for-yourself’ revolution.” -- Kelley Blue Book
  • "The smooth six-speed manual transmission's weighty feel invites accurate rev-matched shifts. The paddle-actuated automatic gearbox does it all for you with impressive hastiness, particularly in Sport mode (engineers wouldn't divulge actual shift times), and should easily appease the growing number of driving enthusiasts who toil through gridlock on a daily basis." -- Motor Trend (2013)
  • "We blipped the throttle and the engine response was instantaneous. Running through the gears, the manual transmission had a mechanical throw making it feel very connected to the gearbox." -- Autoblog (2013)

Handling and Braking

The 2014 Scion FR-S impresses reviewers with its light weight, low center of gravity and agile handling, which make it one of the most enjoyable cars to drive in the class. Steering is incredibly precise, they say, and the brakes bring the FR-S to a stop quickly and effortlessly.

  • "The FR-S compensates with impressive grip, feel and thrills when bending around corners, however. The level of control and communication with the driver is beyond anything in this price range." -- Edmunds
  • "A slight input to the steering wheel sends the FR-S exactly where you want it, and although the rear steps out slightly, it doesn't require much correction to keep it in check. Those still gleaning their skills will find the FR-S is very forgiving, making it an excellent car to practice with on an enclosed track.” -- Kelley Blue Book
  • "Oh, wow, does this car turn in. The steering is super precise, and you have a good sense of the front of the car, even if there's not the sort of steering feel you get in a Lotus Elise or Porsche Cayman. The FR-S feels flat, balanced, neutral, natural." -- Automobile Magazine (2013)
  • "Scion has certainly succeeded in making the FR-S agile. From the quick steering to the alert chassis, the FR-S responds to driver input in a way that reminds us of the Honda S2000." -- Car and Driver (2013)
  • "We drifted left to position ourselves for entry, and then applied the brakes firmly. The pads bit hard and speed bled off effortlessly (the brakes were so good that we eventually questioned whether or not the calipers were loaded with street compound pads)." -- Autoblog (2013)

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