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Bigger isn’t always better, although domestic automakers are pretending not to hear you when it comes to compact pickups. Why?
Toyota’s youth-oriented Scion brand is open to the possibility of a pickup truck model says brand manager Jack Hollis. In an interview with Ward’s Hollis admitted that a compact pickup might fit well in the Scion brand, a reversal on previous statements that pickups are out of the question.
Initially Scion feared that compact pickups were too traditional, but now the truck market has changed and it could mesh nicely with Scion’s less traditional clientele. After all, Toyota has made a success out of the Tacoma, with sales of 111,824 last year doubling its nearest competitor, the Ford Ranger. However, the problem would be to not cannibalize the Toyota trucks for the benefit of Scion.
Hollis seems to have a plan. He believes, and rightly so, that compact pickups have grown over the years and evolved into something as capable as older full-sized trucks. As a result, Scion could build a truly compact pickup. Interestingly, Scion isn’t the only youth-oriented brand looking in this direction with Kia execs recently admitting that the Soul’Ster concept could be an attractive entry-level truck – if it ever makes it to market.
While Scion has shown a concept truck based on the xB in the past, it was a SEMA Show car and not really an official concept. The Hako concept (below), which Scion showed at the New York Auto Show back in 2008 might be a closer idea of the direction Scion might head.
While speculation is rampant, Hollis admits that there are no plans to introduce any such model in the near future. Scion, a brand which has suffered a considerable drop in popularity as of late, with sales deceasing 49.1 percent last year, is looking to reinvigorate its lineup with several models rumored to be unveiled in the next 12 months, including a model based on the Toyota iQ mini car and a much-needed replacement for the tC.