Scion has some good things to celebrate these days, but also some looming challenges. The good news is that in May, the new 2011 Scion tC showed super strong sales at 119% over May of last year. Scion sold 2664 tC’s in May for a total of 10,832 year to date. For the year, sales of the new redesigned tC are up 103.4%. The sales show that the new shape is really resonating with buyers out there.
The Scion xB was down 32% over May of last year selling only 1178 copies. The xD on the other hand saw an increase of 61 units over May of 2010, a small increase but good news none the less. Both the xB and xD designs have been around for a while however and it’s not unusual for sales to decline as the models get older.
Late this year Scion can look forward to a boost from the launch of the new iQ microcar which should bring a new customer base to the brand. The car was originally supposed to launch about now, but the earthquake in Japan set the schedule back a few months.
Additionally the launch of the new FT-S sports car will be a huge shot in the arm for Scion, starting a new chapter for the brand and helping them redefine what Scion means.
And that gets to much of the conversation in the media of late. There has been a lot of talk about Scion marketers taking a hard look at how they present the brand, who they are aiming it at, and how they sell it.
While it has always been aimed square at young hip happening trendsetters, the reality of who actually buys the cars has been quite different for some models. Many of the very same Gen Y hippsters Scion wants to court actually see the brand as a joke, a cliché gone wrong despite the merits of product.
And the latter of course has been a challenge too. Since both the xB and xA were replaced with schlubbed out ghosts of their former selves sales and energy for the Scion brand has waned. Many say the division flat blew it by turning their top stars into boring, dull, slow and lifeless cars. That might be true to some extent.
Regardless of what is or isn’t, there is no question that with the two known models coming soon to Scion dealerships, new energy is on the way. The question becomes will there be a new and cohesive message from the marketers that not only goes with them, but rings true.