Vehicle Profile: The 2012 Scion tC Release Series 7.0
For 2012, Scion has issued the seventh limited edition model in its long-running Release Series, this time based on the new, second generation tC sports coupe. Clad in an exclusive yellow paint called “High Voltage” that Scion lightheartedly says looks like it was forged on Mount Olympus directly by the hand of Zeus, the 2012 Scion tC Release Series (RS) 7.0 is instantly recognizable.
A great limited edition needs a strong starting point, and the RS 7.0 begins with the tC coupe that was all-new for 2011. The new tC brings a bold, aggressive stance to the second generation Scion sports coupe. The blacked-out windshield frame provides the tC with a full wraparound glass look inspired by the face shield on a racing helmet.
The prominent grille and projector beam headlamps flow back into aggressive wheel arches that amplify the more athletic stance of the new coupe. For the RS 7.0 version, the look is further enhanced with a Toyota Racing Development (TRD) body kit that includes lower front and rear valences and side skirts that tie the two ends together. The TRD kit substitutes a race-inspired black honeycomb mesh grille.
In contrast to the brilliant yellow bodywork, the black side mirrors blend in with the glass, while the lightweight, gloss-black 18-inch alloy wheels add to the competition inspired appearance.
Getting inside the tC Release Series 7.0 is easier thanks to the standard Smart Key proximity keyless entry system. As long as the driver has the key in a pocket or purse, the doors unlock with just a touch of the door handle. Once inside, the engine can be started by pressing the red TRD pushbutton on the dash. The tC RS 7.0 is the first Scion available with the Smart Key.
The unique appearance extends to the interior of the tC RS 7.0 where the race-inspired flat-bottomed steering wheel is wrapped in black leather with contrasting yellow stitching. Each of the 2,200 tC Release Series 7.0 coupes has a unique numbered plate at the base of the center console.
The sport seats in the tC are upholstered in yellow and black to match the blazing exterior. As in every new generation tC, the seats in the RS 7.0 have thicker, firmer side bolsters for superior support during spirited driving maneuvers. Drivers will enjoy both of the new six-speed transmissions. The six-speed manual is quick and slick shifting, and the optional automatic features a separate gate for sequential manual shifts when the driver wants more control.
Regardless of which transmission is chosen, the tC gets an all-new 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine. The combination of Dual Variable Valve Timing with intelligence (VVT-i), roller rocker arms and a Variable-Induction Intake Manifold System work together to yield 180 hp and 173 lb/ft of torque. The variable length intake system helps optimize the airflow into the engine at different speeds to provide improved responsiveness and drivability. With either transmission, the EPA rates the tC at 23 mpg in the city, 31 mpg on the highway and 26 mpg combined.
Backing up the new powertrain is an improved chassis that starts with an enhanced platform. MacPherson struts support the front corners with an all-new double-wishbone configuration in the rear. Scion engineers have tuned the suspension to give the tC nimble, confident handling at all times.
In the tC, entertaining mechanicals come with plenty of additional forms of entertainment. Every 2012 tC, including the RS 7.0, comes standard with a new 300-watt audio system supplied by Pioneer. The AM/FM/CD/HD Radio™/USB head unit also includes standard Bluetooth® connectivity. Besides hands-free calling, Bluetooth also supports wireless stereo audio streaming from phones and media players.
Only 2,200 Release Series 7.0 tC coupes in High Voltage are being built, starting at an MSRP of just $20,905. Contact your Scion dealer today to test drive a tC and get more information about the RS 7.0.
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