Home / Auto News / News article: Scion iQ Gets $99 Lease to Compete With Low Cost Chevy Spark - AutoGuide.com News
 |  Oct 17 2012, 8:31 AM

Scion has announced a bargain $99 per month lease rate for its iQ mini car, hoping to boost deliveries as competition in the segment grows with Chevrolet’s recently released Spark off to a strong start.

Both cars are sold with the same goal in mind: bringing buyers in with an entry-level car and hoping they stick around for a bigger purchase later on. But the two brands are seeing very different sales results. Chevrolet has already sold more than 4,800 Sparks in the U.S. since its quiet launch in late July. Scion counts almost 6,200 iQs out the door, but that’s since January. In September the brand only sold 548. Now the Toyota sub-brand is offering its micro car through a 36-month lease that costs $99 per month with $1,969 due at signing.

Chevrolet Spokesperson Annalisa Bluhm chuckled a little, saying the Spark is “eating [the iQ] for lunch.” It’s hard to argue with that based on the sales figures, but Scion isn’t ready to admit defeat either and says the lease program isn’t a response to the Chevrolet’s stronger sales.

Instead, Scion representative Craig Taguchi says the brand thinks there are probably people who haven’t had the chance to experience the car, something the lease is meant to mend.

But why haven’t they had that chance? You don’t have to look much farther than the two car’s starting prices to understand. While the Spark starts at about $13,000 after delivery, the iQ will cost more than $16,000.

“The current iQ lease is successfully driving traffic to Scion showrooms where customers are realizing how cool the iQ really is and how well it fits into their lives,” Taguchi said, pointing out that the iQ is the world’s smallest four-seater.

Then again, anyone with a little wheel time logged in the iQ knows how tough those rear seats can be to use. As AutoGuide found, it’s possible to fit three adults in the car, but very uncomfortable.

It’s something Bluhm highlighted in the Spark, which is about two feet longer than the iQ. “I always encourage people to get in the back seats,” she said. “The spark is roomy. It fits four adults. You can still fit things in the back. You can go shopping with friends.”

While there’s no question the Spark is the more practical choice, the iQ comes almost fully equipped while entry-level Sparks run without tech options like bluetooth device pairing. The price difference between starting MSRPs might be enough to sway some buyers, but that won’t matter, at least not for a few months.

Only sold in 18 cities so far, the Spark is so new that lease programs haven’t been ironed out yet, meaning the iQ can actually be cheaper than the bargain bin Spark — for now.

For more on both of these cars read AutoGuide’s Scion iQ Review here and Chevy Spark Review here.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_5ZT24BZWGTLUQUOPY5G2DN64FQ Kenny

    the IQ is an answer to a question on one is asking. It’s WAY too expensive and is small only for the sake of being small. Fortwo is cuter, and the Yaris is more money for the price! At $13-14K it would be competitive and ‘right’ priced for it’s size!

  • Shaun

    The Smart is one ugly looking car ,
    . Just another generic looking appliance economy car, but without any utility or performance or soul . I like the handsome iconic look of the IQ and sporty cuteness of the Spark. Either one drives and ride better than the smart .. And you won’t fall asleep from boredom like the smart .

  • Umotio

    you got taste,bro

  • Petra

    I would buy the Iq in a heart beat but I does not come in a manual version for the Us.
    Sorry IQ but I don’t like automatics regardless how cool the car is. Drops every little but of fun out of any car.