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Scion as a brand was founded by Toyota in 2003, with a focus to attract younger customers. The Scion brand comes under the Toyota Motor Corporation. The company grew in number with its unique methods of selling cars, and was one of the most successful sub-brands of a major company. The Scion company was at its peak in the year 2006, but lost sales after the financial crisis of 2007-2008 and that was the starting point for the downfall of the Scion brand. Eventually, after a decade, Toyota Corporation abolished the Scion brand at the start of the 2017 model year in 2016; and all existing Scion vehicles were either discontinued or rebranded as Toyota vehicles. Read More...

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Scion
Scion

The founding of Scion, as we said, was with the focus of attracting more and more younger customers towards the Toyota brand. In 1999, Toyota launched Project Genesis. This project aimed at creating a label within the brand, for the compact and coupe models sold by Toyota. Under this project, the Toyota Echo economy car was introduced alongside other Toyota cars but was unsuccessful and cancelled in 2001.

Marketing and advertising

As Scion’s main focus was to attract young customers, the company used different ways to attract the crowd towards them. During 2007, Scion had the lowest average buyer age, at 39 years old in the entire industry. The kind of strategy Scion used for their marketing was unique; the strategy used by Scion was called “guerrilla marketing”. Guerrilla Marketing is an advertisement strategy which uses non-traditional methods of interaction to promote a product or a service. Scion used posters or ads in movie theatres and on TV to pique the curiosity of the consumer and this helped them a lot with the initial crowd that came to look at Scion’s cars.

Financial troubles

Scion’s emphasis was on providing inexpensive and stylish sport compact vehicles by offering a very unique one trim with no haggling policy, with a lot of customisations to offer. Scion got a good start to their company with sales numbers increasing year by year, and 2006 marked the best year for Scion, with a record 173,034 units sold. However, the financial crisis of 2007-2008 saw the decline of the brand due to Toyota’s short product cycles and aggressive pricing with low dealer margins. Scion sales went as down as 45,000 units for the year 2010. The management tried bringing up the sale numbers, but there was minor success. As the financial margins became troublesome, Toyota decided in 2016 that they required no specific brand to attract younger customers. The Scion brand was planned to be phased out after the 2016 model year. This move did not affect any sales or services, as Scion models were sold and serviced at Toyota dealerships.

Current models

Currently, there are three Scion cars being sold as rebadged Toyota cars. These cars are the Scion iA, iM and the FR-S which are being sold under Toyota’s brand. The iA became the Yaris, the iM became the Corolla Hatchback and the FR-S became the 86.

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