A Buyer’s Guide to the 2013 Scion FR-S

This sporty little twin of the Subaru BRZ offers the same light, fun to drive platform but in a bit more spartan, budget-minded form. The marriage of affordability and sports car-like driving is a successful one in the 2013 Scion FR-S, giving those who might not have the wealth for a higher-end driving experience the opportunity to tool around town in a flashy, well-styled piece of engineering genius.

Key Features

Standards abound in this model with power windows, locks, and mirrors, Bluetooth connectivity, A/C, cruise, traction control, and Smart Stop (this cuts power to the engine if the brake and gas are accidentally depressed simultaneously). Optional upgrades include a 5.8” touchscreen with navigation, a better audio system, 18” wheels, lowering springs, and a spoiler on the back.

Changes for 2013

The FR-S is an all new offering for 2013; the product of a collaborative effort involving Subaru and Toyota.

What We Like

The superior handling and sleek, sporty exterior make this a fashionable and enjoyable ride. The Torsen limited slip differential not only offers improved cornering on the daily commute but the ability to play with drifting on a closed track. As a bonus, Subaru logos are tucked away throughout, offering a bit of fun off the road, like a little treasure hunt.

What Concerns Us

The rear seats – while they do exist – offer no comfort to any self-respecting full-grown adult. If hefty horsepower is your drug, you’ll get more out of a Mustang or Hyundai Genesis. The stock audio system is less than intuitive, and as might be expected you’ll only get just under 7 cubic feet of grocery space.

Available Models

The FR-S is available in either a 6-speed manual or a 6-speed automatic equipped with paddle shifters. The rear wheels are channeled and get their power via a 2.0L flat 4-cylinder. There’s 151 lb.-ft. of torque, 200 HP, and the FR-S gets 22/30 mpg in the manual and 25/34 mpg in the automatic.

Major Recalls

There have been two recalls on the 2013 Scion FR-S. One, issued in July 2012, involves misinformation in the owner’s manual, incorrectly stating the classification and operation of the front passenger’s side restraint system. This could result in injury in the event of a crash. The other, issued in May 2013, involved mislabeling of weight limitations. In both instances the company notified owners and offered correct manuals and labels.

Common Issues

The most common complaints by owners involve grinding of gears in manual transmissions when shifting between first and second, and moisture getting into the taillight assembly.

Scion FR-S 2013 Interior


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Attila

19 years of experience
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Attila
19 years of experience
Cadillac SRX V6-3.6L - Pre-purchase Car Inspection - Edison, New Jersey
Attila was great! Very knowledgeable and actually detected a fault during a pre-purchase inspection that would have cost me later.
Lexus ES350 - Pre-purchase Car Inspection - Fords, New Jersey
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Shawn

12 years of experience
285 reviews
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12 years of experience
Chevrolet Impala V6-3.6L - Pre-purchase Car Inspection - Lansdale, Pennsylvania
Shawn was prompt, professional, and delivered the promised service as expected. This was a used vehicle pre-purchase inspection. Shawn also had to drive to multiple locations to perform the inspection, as the address listed that I provided him with was not accurate, but he still made it to the correct location within his time window and completed the inspection.
Toyota Sequoia - Pre-purchase Car Inspection - Akron, Pennsylvania
Shawn was very prompt in communicating with me and was good at helping me decide whether to purchase a used car. He help me avoid a car with a repaired rusted frame that could be a danger to my family's safety since we were planning on using the car to tow a travel trailer!

Luis

18 years of experience
320 reviews
Luis
18 years of experience
Honda HR-V L4-1.8L - Pre-purchase Car Inspection - Warren, New Jersey
Luis was great. He showed up on time, acted professionally, and gave me confidence with a pre-purchase car inspection.
Acura RDX - Pre-purchase Car Inspection - South Hackensack, New Jersey
Luis did a thorough pre-purchase inspection for me, and found several major issues that made me pass on buying the car. Had I purchased the car, I almost certainly would have ended up paying thousands in repairs down the road. Thanks Luis!

Robert

20 years of experience
1089 reviews
Robert
20 years of experience
Hyundai Elantra L4-2.0L - Pre-purchase Car Inspection - Englewood, Colorado
He did a pre-purchase inspection for me. He was knowledgeable and fast, and knew what he was looking for. I really appreciate all the pictures and documentation he took of the state of the car before purchase. He noted potential issues with the car that I wouldn't have been able to notice. Would recommend.
GMC Savana 1500 - Pre-purchase Car Inspection - Golden, Colorado
I trust Robert. He gave me a list and we will take care of it the week of June 29. I will know then that my vehicle is ready for the winter and is safe to drive. I look forward to getting things ready for another winter of careful driving.

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