$4,706 - $6,435

2009 Scion xB Interior Review

Note: This interior review was created when the 2009 Scion xB was new.


Interior: 7.6

According to most, the 2009 Scion xB's interior is spacious, has lots of headroom and legroom, and is stocked with features. Some say Scion relies a bit too much on plastic fixtures, but don't feel that this is a fatal flaw for the class.

  • "The shape is even cooler inside than out; it's so spacious it recalls full-sized vans from the '70s." -- Car and Driver
  • "Although it may not look like it from the outside, the interior of the xB has seating that is both roomy and comfortable, even in the second row." -- Kelley Blue Book
  • "If the Scion has grown up a bit on the outside, a similar maturation has bestowed the interior with an extensive list of tech options and more usable cargo space than the airy cabin of the original xB." -- CNET

Front Seats

There are seats for five passengers in the 2009 Scion xB, with four of them considered very comfortable. But a missing telescoping steering wheel, and an awkwardly placed gear shift make the driving position awkward.

  • "Legroom in front and second rows is only an inch or less than what's in the Escalade." -- MSN
  • "The driving position isn't quite perfect: The steering wheel tilts up and down but does not telescope in and out; positioning the seat a comfortable distance from the pedals put me a bit too far away from the steering wheel." -- About.com

Rear Seats

Several say the 2009 xB has a roomy second-row compared to other small cars.

  • "In the coach row, there's enough room for knees and limbs to remain inside the car -- something we couldn't promise in the original xB." -- The Car Connection
  • "Plenty of adult-size headroom, foot space, and legroom, even with front seats all the way back." -- Consumer Guide
  • "The three kids who rode in the rear seat of our xB didn't have a problem, but three adults would. Two adults wouldn't be uncomfortable though, because you can easily slide your feet up under the front seats." -- New Car Test Drive

Interior Features

Even before you trip this entry-level car out with aftermarket toys, writers say the xB comes well-equipped. But the xB does fall short of some competitors when it comes to placement of gauges.

  • "The xB's dash is an imposing slab, multitiered, with a few handy cubbies and a fan of four tidy gauges set into a pillbox in the center." -- Car and Driver
  • "Some elements of the xB's cabin take getting used to. The instrument pod includes a digital speedometer and is mounted high in the middle of the dashboard, out of the driver's direct line of sight." -- Consumer Guide
  • "We're disappointed in the quality of plastic in the Scion xB, particularly the silver colored plastic panel on the center stack and around the shift lever. Scion offers a $175 interior upgrade but c'mon..." -- Washington Examiner
  • "Annoyance: Too tall shifter in the automatic. While reaching for dash controls, I sometimes hit the shifter, flipping the car into neutral." -- The Boston Globe

Stereo and Entertainment

Reviewers report that Scion aces entertainment features by providing standard and optional amenities like Scion Sound Processing, six speakers with two tweeters, iPod integration and not one, but two rear-seat DVD players optional. But some say these features don't perform as well as expected.

  • "Sound quality is good but not overwhelming." -- The Family Car
  • "The stereo head unit is a Pioneer piece -- and typically aftermarket in its unintuitiveness. … And for all the fuss, it's only putting out decent sound quality through the chosen speaker set. It does change colors on command, and you can program in little video clips on its screen, but really -- shouldn't it sound great first." -- The Car Connection
  • "Each of the rear-seat DVD players comes with its own wireless headphones. The only design flaw I can see is that both players are controlled by the same remote, which might lead to squabbles among the kids." -- BusinessWeek
  • "Yes, the kids can each watch their favorite DVD, but they will still engage in sibling bonding while fighting over the remote." -- CNET


There were mixed impressions of the 2009 Scion xB's aftermarket navigation system -- though the gadget gurus at CNET do acknowledge its competency for the class.

  • "We longed for simpler controls." -- New Car Test Drive
  • "The navigation system's execution is also top-notch and leaves little to be desired at this price, save perhaps voice activation as seen on some competing Hondas." -- CNET


Scion dramatically increased cargo room in the xB with a redesign last year -- the newest iteration comes with 21.7 cubic feet of cargo space available behind the backseat and 69.9 cubic feet with the rear seats folded, which is an increase of approximately 28 cubic feet over the previous model. So even though the xB still isn't class leader for utility and configurability, reviewers are still impressed with what's provided.

  • "Boasting 21 cubic feet of cargo space behind the rear seats and 70 cubic feet with those seats folded down (only 3 cubes smaller than the Toyota RAV4), the xB is a legitimate fair-weather alternative to compact SUVs." -- Edmunds
  • "Several bins and trays -- including a cubby beneath rear seat -- supply handy interior storage. The split rear seatback folds nearly flat without removing headrests. The cargo area has an under-floor bin." -- Consumer Guide
  • "During our week with the car, we used it to pick up a 50-inch Samsung HPT5064 plasma TV, which it swallowed in the box with the rear hatch closing easily." -- CNET
  • "The front passenger seats recline, and that's good for naps, but with the passenger seat down there isn't any more practical cargo space because it reclines right on top of the folded rear seat. … The Honda Fit and Mazda5 remain the masters of cargo space in a small vehicle." -- New Car Test Drive

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