What is it?

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Last week’s photograph showed the 2012 Scion iQ, a tiny car from Toyota’s tiniest division. For a better photo and information, check out this week’s road test.

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Several readers had other guesses, however, including a Smart Car, Fiat 500, Tata Nano, Chevrolet Sonic and Toyota Matrix.

Chosen randomly from the correct entries was the name of Jerry Paul, of Evans. He wins a gift from The Augusta Chronicle.

Other readers identifying the vehicle were:

AUGUSTA: Karen Odom

CUMMING, GA.: Chris Rhodes wrote: “This diminutive car appears to be leveled at competitors such as the poor-selling Smart ForTwo and other microcars designed to appeal to consumers residing in large urban areas where parking spaces are at a premium and anything larger than a bread box is considered to be a ‘large’ car.

“Though this market niche appears to be a rather small slice of the overall new car market, the iQ seems to be at least a peg or two better than its opponents. Indeed, it may just be the tallest midget in the circus.

“Unique interior packaging, for example, allows for the placement of an actual rear seat, a feature not available in some micros. Driving dynamics also appear to be better, in large part because of a newly available 1.3-liter direct-injected four-cylinder gas engine mated to a CV transaxle. This powerplant produces less than 100 horsepower, but these ponies are hitched to a chassis that weighs in at less than 2200 pounds. When combined with a footprint that pushes the wheels out to the corners of the car, this drivetrain provides a relatively sporty and stable ride.

“The biggest concern I see with the iQ is fuel economy. With a tiny chassis, tiny engine and tiny interior, one would think fuel economy would be significantly better than cars with bigger everything. Such is not the case. The iQ is rated at 36 mpg city/37 highway. These are respectable figures, but they are actually less than those of considerably larger models from Ford, Hyundai, Chevrolet and others.

“And with a sticker price only slightly lower than these larger, more comfortable and better equipped models, the case for the iQ only gets worse.”

EVANS: PJ Rodgers wrote: “Military and college student rebates are available, for those interested.”

FRANKLIN, N.C.: Dale A. Sanford wrote: “The vehicle featured this week is the 2012 Scion iQ. This is their new urban vehicle designed to compete with the Smart Cars. Wonder if the iQ name is a play on ‘smart’? I find it hard to believe that those tiny cars get only 37 mpg. Think I will stick to my 48-50 mpg Prius and look for a little bigger parking space.”

MARTINEZ: Jeff Miller wrote: “The Scion iQ comes with a cervical-snapping 1.3-liter (79.33-cubic-inch) four-cylinder powerhouse spinning 94 horsepower and 89 pound-feet of torque that will rocket you down the 1,320 (feet) in 17.8 seconds at 78.6 mph while getting you 37 mpg (sarcasm).

“With a curb weight of 2,145 pounds, you can easily carry the Scion iQ with you wherever you go (more sarcasm).

“And, with the base model going for the piggy-bank price of $16,000, you can march down to your local dealer and purchase an iQ on your Visa card (much more sarcasm).”

Also, Jim Muraski.

NEXT WEEK’S CONTEST

Let’s look at a vintage car from our past. Tell us the make and model of this vehicle if your memory is that good. You don’t have 100 years to answer, just until noon Wednesday. You can call us at (706) 823-3419 or send an e-mail to
glynn.moore@augustachronicle.com.

Please tell us your name and telephone number and the city you live in. It helps if you spell your name for us so we can include your response.

A winner will be chosen randomly. If you win, please call or write to let us know when you can pick your prize up. Thank you.

– Glynn Moore, staff writer


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