The Toyota iQ is a transverse engined, front-wheel-drive city car that was manufactured by Toyota and marketed in a single generation for Japan (2008–2016), Europe (2008–2015), and North America (2012–2015) where it was marketed as the Scion iQ.[2][3] A rebadged variant was marketed in Europe as the Aston Martin Cygnet (2009–2013).

Designed at the Toyota European Design and Development studio in Nice, France, the iQ is noted for its specialized engineering to maximize passenger space, while minimizing exterior length. The design accommodates three passengers—and provisionally a fourth, under very tight conditions.

Following a concept presention at the 2007 Frankfurt Auto Show,[4] the production iQ debuted at the March 2008 Geneva Auto Show. Japanese sales began in November 2008 and European sales in January 2009.[5]

In 2008, the iQ was named the Japanese Car of the Year. The name iQ, an initialism of the term intelligence quotient, recalls a competitor, the Smart Fortwo. The letters "iQ" also stand for "individuality", "innovation", "quality", a hint at its "cubic form" and also a "cue" for owners to embrace new types of vehicles and lifestyles.

The iQ reached the end of production in December 2015, and it was discontinued in Japan on 4 April 2016.


Toyota iQ (Japan)

The IQ design emphasizes low fuel consumption, maneuverability, environmental friendliness, and maximized interior space. Six specific design factors contribute to IQ's minimal overhangs, forward windscreen location, maximized cabin space and overall compactness:

  • A newly developed differential mounted further forward than usual
  • A centre take-off steering gear
  • A flat fuel tank positioned underneath the cabin floor
  • Rear-angled shock absorbers to encroach less on rear passenger space
  • A smaller heater/air conditioning unit mounted centrally behind the asymmetric dashboard
  • A slimmer seat design.

The iQ features a transmissions differential housing located ahead of, rather than behind, the engine; a starter motor incorporated in the engine's flywheel, a high-mounted steering rack and a compact, high-located air conditioning unit behind the dashboard central area. The arrangement allows the front passenger to sit forward of the driver, giving increased rear passenger legroom. A shallow under-floor fuel tank reduces rear overhang.[6]

Because of its overall width and engine displacement, the iQ is classified in its home market as a supermini, though its length complies with kei car dimensional regulations.

Production of the Scion iQ EV (Toyota eQ in Japan) was to be limited to 100 units for special fleet use in Japan and carsharing demonstration projects in the U.S.[7][8] Deliveries of the all-electric version with a range of 80 km (50 mi) began in the U.S. in March 2013.

AJ10 (KGJ10/NGJ10/NUJ10; 2008–2015)

iQ Concept

Body styles

Body style 2-seat 4-seat 4-seat 4-seat
Engine 1KR-FE 1KR-FE 1NR-FE 1ND-TV
Years 2009–2015 2008–2015 2008–2015 2008–2015

The two seat version was only sold in Japan.

Body colours

Preview Name
Pearl White
Tyrol Silver
Decuma Grey
Eclipse Black
Chilli Red
Burnt Orange
Deep Amethyst


Model Type Power @ rpm torque CO2 emission (g/km)
Petrol engines
1.0 998 cc (60.9 cu in) I3 (1KR-FE) 68 PS (50 kW; 67 hp) @ 6000 98 N⋅m (72 lbf⋅ft) @ 4800 99 manual, 110 CVT
1.0 (Japan) 996 cc (60.8 cu in) I3 (1KR-FE) 68 PS (50 kW; 67 hp) @ 6000 98 N⋅m (72 lbf⋅ft) @ 4800 CVT: 101 in 10・15 mode, 112 in JC08 mode
1.33 1,329 cc (81.1 cu in) I4 (1NR-FE) 98 PS (72 kW; 97 hp) @ 6000 123 N⋅m (91 lbf⋅ft) @ 4400 113 manual, 120 CVT
1.3 (Japan) 1,329 cc (81.1 cu in) I4 (1NR-FE) 94 PS (69 kW; 93 hp) @ 6000 118 N⋅m (87 lbf⋅ft) @ 4400 CVT: 101 in 10・15 mode, 112 in JC08 mode
Diesel engines
1.4D 1,364 cc (83.2 cu in) I4 90 PS (66 kW; 89 hp) @ 3400 190 N⋅m (140 lbf⋅ft) @ 1800–3200 104 manual

The 1.0L engine is similar to the engine in Toyota Aygo.[9] The iQ achieves 65.69 mpg‑imp (4.3 L/100 km; 55 mpg‑US) by European standards.[10]

UK models include only petrol engines.

Early Japan models include only 1.0L three-cylinder engine. 1.33L engine option was added beginning in 2009.[11]

The car is capable of fitting 1.6L four-cylinder engine.[12]

Models with the 1.33L engine include start and stop system, however, only with the manual transmission.


Model Type
1.0 5-speed manual, CVT (Super CVT‐i)[13]
1.33 6-speed manual, CVT (Super CVT‐i)
1.4D 6-speed manual

Japan models include only CVT transmission.

Technical details

1.0 VVT-i 1.33 Dual-VVT-i 1.4 D-4D
Production Nov 2008 – Dec 2015 May 2009 – Dec 2015 Nov 2008 – Apr 2012
Standard trim level iQ iQ3 iQ
Engine Petrol Diesel
Engine Type 1KR-FE 1NR-FE 1ND-TV
Displacement 998 cm³ 1329 cm³ 1364 cm³
max. Power 68 PS (50 kW; 67 hp) @ 6000 98 PS (72 kW; 97 hp) @ 6000 90 PS (66 kW; 89 hp) @ 3400
max. Torque 98 N⋅m (72 lbf⋅ft) @ 4800 123 N⋅m (91 lbf⋅ft) @ 4400 190 N⋅m (140 lbf⋅ft) @ 1800–3200
Gearbox, standard 5-speed manual 6-speed manual
Gearbox, optional CVT transmission
Wheels / tires 175 / 65 / R15 J5 175 / 60 / R16 J5 175 / 65 / R15 J5
0 – 100 km/h in s
14.7 [15.5] 11.8 [11.6] 10.7
Maximum speed,
150 170
Fuel consumption urban,
l / 100 km
4.9 [5.7] 5.9 [6.3] 4.8
Fuel consumption extra-urban,
l / 100 km
3.9 [4.1] 4.2 [4.4] 3.5
Fuel consumption combined,
l / 100 km
4.3 [4.7] 4.8 [5.1] 4.0
CO2 emission (g/km) 99 [110] 113 [120] 104
Curb weight (kg) 845 – 885 [860 – 895] 930–955 935–975
Gross weight (kg) 1200–1210 1270 1280–1285
Noise (drive-by) (EU directive 70/157/EEC),
67.3 [70.2] 69.5 [68.6] 68.7
Euro NCAP test results
Toyota iQ 1.0, LHD (2009)[14]
Test Points %
Overall: 5 /5 stars
Adult occupant: 33 91%
Child occupant: 35 71%
Pedestrian: 19 54%
Safety assist: 6 86%


The iQ includes nine airbags,[15] dual frontal airbags, front seat-mounted side torso airbags, side curtain airbags, front passenger seat cushion airbag, a driver's knee airbag and a newly developed rear curtain airbag to protect backseat passengers' heads from rear-end collisions.[16] Vehicle Stability Control, traction control, anti-lock brakes, brake assist, and electronic brakeforce distribution come standard.

In 2013, the UK's Vehicle and Operator Services Agency voted the Toyota iQ as top three-year-old car most likely to pass its first Ministry of Transport road worthiness test.[17]

Concept cars

FT-EV concept

Toyota FT-EV concept

The Toyota FT-EV concept was unveiled at the January 2009 North American International Auto Show.[18]

It is a battery electric concept vehicle with an estimated capacity of 50 miles (80 km). Toyota plans to launch the production version of FT-EV in 2012.[19]

A slightly modified version was shown as the FT-EV II at the October 2009 Tokyo Motor Show.

iQ Customize Car (2009–)

This is a family of Toyota iQ custom body kits in Japanese market.[20]

MODELLISTA MAXI includes custom front bumper, side skirt, rear bumper. MODELLISTA MIXTURE includes custom B-pillar shadow, mirror cover, back window panel, side door trim. MODELLISTA MIXTURE side make set only includes custom mirror cover and side door trim.

Toyota iQ "GAZOO Racing tuned by MN" (130G, 2009–)

This is a limited (100 units) version for Japanese market. It included 1,329 cubic centimetres (1.329 L; 81.1 cu in) I4 engine, 6-speed manual transmission, stiffer sport suspension that lowers its ride height by 30 mm (1.2 in), rear disk brakes, RAYS 16x5.5-in aluminium wheels with 175/60R16 tires, enhanced brakes, stiffening brace, tachometer, aluminium pedals, rear spoiler, GRMN emblem, sport exhaust system.[21][22]

The GAZOO Racing package adds a front bumper spoiler, side mudguards, rear bumper spoiler centre muffler, Toyota front fog lamps, original decal, front sport seat covers.

The vehicle was unveiled at the January 2009 Tokyo Auto Salon.

The GAZOO Racing cars were sold through Toyota's Netz dealer channel.[23] It has MSRP of ¥1,972,000 (¥1,878,095+tax).

iQ for Sports/iQ Collection (2009)

These are show cars that demonstrate possibilities for customers to personalise their cars.

iQ for Sports reflects modern urban chic through a purpose-made body kit emphasizing the iQ's broad stance, powerful geometry and clean sweeping lines.

iQ Collection focuses on interior customisation.[24]

The vehicles were unveiled at the 2009 Frankfurt Motor Show.[25]

Scion iQ

Scion iQ (US)

The Scion iQ Concept car was built by Five Axis (California, USA) based on the Toyota iQ and displayed in April 2009 at the New York Auto Show. Based on the production Toyota iQ, the concept was equipped with a 94 hp (70 kW) and 89 lb⋅ft (121 N⋅m) 1.3-liter, 1,329 cc (81 cu in) DOHC Inline-4 engine, 18-inch wheels and widened wheel arches, with eleven airbags.[26]

The production Scion iQ debuted at the 2010 New York Auto Show and was marketed for model years 2012 to 2015.[27]

Toyota sold 15,695 units of the Scion iQ—248 in 2011, 8,879 in 2012, 4,046 in 2013, 2,040 in 2014, and 482 in 2015.[28]

GRMN iQ Racing Concept (2011)

The GRMN iQ Racing Concept was based on Toyota iQ "GAZOO Racing tuned by MN" car sold in 2009, but with a super charger and roll cage.

The vehicle was unveiled in 2011 Tokyo Auto Salon.[29]

GRMN iQ Supercharger (2012)

It is a limited (100 units) version of Toyota iQ for Japanese market, based on the Toyota iQ 130G MT. It included the supercharger found in the GRMN iQ Racing Concept car.

The prototype vehicle was unveiled in 2012 Tokyo Auto Salon.[30]

Scion iQ EV

The Toyota eQ/Scion iQ EV is based on Toyota's three generations of FT-EV concept. Shown the Toyota FT-EV III concept car at the 2011 Tokyo Motor Show.

A prototype of the Toyota eQ (Scion iQ EV in the US) was exhibited at the 2011 Geneva Motor Show. The Scion iQ EV is the successor to the FT-EV II as an electric vehicle based on the Toyota iQ chassis.[31][32] Toyota produced three generations of FT-EV concept cars, and the iQ EV is a production version of those concepts, incorporating the technological and design strengths of all three models. The exterior of the production version is based on the FT-EV III concept shown at the 2011 Tokyo Motor Show.[33]

The U.S. launch of the Scion iQ EV was announced for 2012,[34][35] and according to Toyota, for the initial roll-out the iQ EV would not be available to individual consumers, instead the carmaker decided to focus on fleet customers and car sharing programs.[36] The iQ EV was scheduled to be produced at Toyota's Takaoka Plant in Toyota City beginning in August 2012 and the initial production was planned to be limited to 600 units, with 400 staying in Japan, 100 units destined to the U.S. and the other 100 for Europe.[37] In September 2012 Toyota announced that due to customers' concerns about range and charging time, the production of the Scion iQ (Toyota eQ in Japan) will be limited to 100 units for special fleet use in Japan and the U.S. only, of which, 90 will be placed in American carsharing demonstration projects.[7][8] The iQ EV will be priced in the Japanese market at ¥3.6 million (~US$45,000). The iQ EV/eQ was scheduled to be released in both countries in December 2012.[7]

The first 30 units were delivered in the U.S. to the University of California, Irvine in March 2013 for use in its Zero Emission Vehicle-Network Enabled Transport (ZEV-NET) carsharing fleet. Since 2002 the ZEV-NET program has been serving the transport needs of the Irvine community with all-electric vehicles for the critical last mile of commutes from the Irvine train station to the UC campus and local business offices.[8] In September 2013, another 30 units were allocated to City Carshare to operate Dash, a three-year pilot carsharing program in Hacienda Business Park, in Pleasanton, California.[38]


Toyota eQ electric city car

Designed as a city commuting vehicle, the iQ EV has a lower battery capacity that also translates into a shorter charging time, allowing the car to be fully recharged in approximately three hours, and using fast charging, the battery can be recharged up to 80% capacity in only 15 minutes. The iQ EV has a 150 cell 12 kWh 277.5 V lithium-ion battery pack that delivers a NEDC-certified range of 85 km (53 mi),[33] and rated 80 km (50 mi) in the U.S.[8] Based on further development of Toyota's Hybrid Synergy Drive technology, the iQ EV's fully electric powertrain comprises an air-cooled, 47 kW electric motor/generator, the 12 kWh battery pack, a 3 kW water-cooled battery charger, an inverter, a DC/DC converter and a motor speed reduction mechanism. Maximum torque of 163 Nm is delivered to the front wheels, giving the iQ EV 0–100 km/h acceleration of 14.0 seconds and a maximum speed of 125 km/h (78 mph). As all Toyota's full hybrid vehicles, the iQ EV is equipped with a regenerative braking system.[33]

The iQ EV has a minimum turning radius of just 4.1 m (13 ft) and with a length of 3,120 mm (123 in), making the iQ EV just 135 mm (5.3 in) longer than a standard iQ. The electric car shares the iQ overall width of 1,680 mm (66 in), height of 1,505 mm (59.3 in) and wheelbase of 2,000 mm (79 in). High tensile sheet steel has been extensively used in the body shell construction to minimize the additional weight caused by the lithium-ion battery pack, and as a result, the iQ EV weighs just 125 kg (276 lb) more than a standard 1.3L CVT iQ.[33]

Fuel economy

The U. S. Environmental Protection Agency rated the 2013 iQ EV with a combined fuel economy of 121 miles per gallon gasoline equivalent (MPG-e) (1.9 L/100 km) with an energy consumption of 28 kW-hrs/100 miles. The city rating is 138 MPG-e (1.7 L/100 km) with an energy consumption of 24 kW-hrs/100 miles and 105 MPG-e (2.2 L/100 km) with an energy consumption of 32 kW-hrs/100 miles for highway driving.[39] As of December 2014, these ratings allow the 2013 iQ EV to be the second most fuel efficient EPA-certified vehicle of all fuel types considered in all years behind the BMW i3.[40][41] The iQ EV was ranked first in DOE-EPA's 2013 Annual Fuel Economy Guide.[42]

Aston Martin Cygnet

Aston Martin Cygnet
Aston Martin Cygnet

The Aston Martin Cygnet is a rebadged variant of the Toyota/Scion iQ marketed by Aston Martin beginning with model year 2011—enabling Aston Martin to comply with the 2012 European Union-imposed fleet average emissions regulations.[43][44]

Aston Martin Cygnet interior

The Cygnet was initially only marketed in the UK. Sales commenced in January 2011 and the market coverage was expanded to cover other European countries the following year.[45] Sales were not restricted, but demand from existing Aston Martin owners for Cygnet was expected to take priority initially. Aston Martin CEO Ulrich Bez announced shipping expectations of about 4000 per year at a price of about £30,000[46] – about three times as much as the iQ.[47] Bez claimed that the Cygnet demonstrated the company's "commitment to innovation and integrity", whilst respecting the need to "satisfy demands of emissions and space".[48]

The Cygnet featured revisions to the exterior and interior but shared other specifications with the iQ, having a 97 bhp (72 kW; 98 PS) 1.3L inline-four engine,[49] it produced 110 g of CO2/km and fuel consumption of 58.9 mpg‑US (3.99 L/100 km; 70.7 mpg‑imp).[50]

In September 2013, after just over two years of production, Aston Martin announced that it would stop production of their Cygnet city car. The Cygnet has been the second shortest running production car in the history of Aston Martin after the 2012 Aston Martin Virage, which was only produced for a year.[51] The Cygnet was cancelled due to disastrously low sales, with the car reaching only 150 units in the UK[52] (approximately 300 in total[citation needed]) rather than its annual target of 4000.[52]


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