Are Scions Expensive to Repair?

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Key Takeaways:

  • The cost to maintain and repair a Scion varies depending on model, age, mileage, location, and shop.
  • On average, Scions have relatively low repair and maintenance costs compared to other vehicles.
  • However, costs can range widely from under $100 to over $2000 depending on the specific repair.
  • Routine maintenance on a Scion generally runs about $630 per year.
  • Parts for Scion repairs tend to be inexpensive compared to other makes.


When it comes to owning a car, one of the major factors that influences the overall cost of ownership is the expense of repairs and maintenance. For drivers interested in affordable and reliable compact cars, Scion models like the tC, xA, and xB can seem appealing. But how expensive is it really to repair and maintain a Scion?

This comprehensive article will analyze and evaluate if Scions live up to their reputation of being an inexpensive brand to keep on the road. By looking at estimated repair costs, yearly maintenance expenses, part prices, and other key factors, readers will get an in-depth understanding of the repair costs associated with Scion vehicles. Discover how repair expenses for Scions compare to other makes and models. Additionally, find out how costs vary depending on the specific Scion model, age, mileage, location, and service provider.

With Scion repair and maintenance costs explained from every angle, readers will gain invaluable insight into this hidden aspect of Scion ownership. Having a realistic idea of how much it costs to fix common issues, perform routine upkeep, and purchase parts allows potential buyers to make informed decisions. For current Scion owners, this detailed breakdown provides essential knowledge for budgeting and planning ahead. Let’s get started exploring if Scions are expensive vehicles when it comes to repairs and maintenance.

What is the Overall Cost Range for Repairing and Maintaining a Scion?

When looking at estimated repair and maintenance costs for Scions, the first question that arises is: what is the overall range? According to YourMechanic, an online marketplace connecting car owners with mechanics, the estimated cost to maintain and repair a Scion ranges from $95 to $2563. The average cost comes out to $309.

This cost range provides an initial glimpse into Scion repair expenses. While a repair bill over $2000 may seem high, there are many instances of fixing issues for less than $100. This suggests maintenance and repairs for Scions can vary widely in price depending on the specific situation.

To gain a deeper understanding, let’s break down the estimated costs for Scion’s most popular model – the tC coupe. For this compact two-door model, YourMechanic estimates maintenance and repair costs ranging from $95 to $2563, with an average of $311.

Again, the broad spread indicates the tC’s repair costs ultimately depend on factors like age, mileage, location, and the service provider. Later sections will explore how these variables impact overall repair and maintenance expenses.

How Do Scion Repair Costs Compare to Other Vehicle Makes?

Now that we’ve looked at the estimated range for repairing and maintaining Scions, it raises another key question: How do these costs stack up against other makes and models?

When comparing estimated maintenance and repair costs to other vehicles in the compact segment, Scions are on the affordable end of the spectrum. According to data from RepairPal, a leading source for auto repair estimates, popular compact models like the Honda Civic, Toyota Corolla, and Mazda3 all have average yearly repair costs exceeding $400.

Meanwhile, Scion’s average yearly repair estimate lands at approximately $309 according to YourMechanic – more than $100 below some competitors. This suggests the yearly cost to repair wear and tear for a Scion is relatively inexpensive.

Looking specifically at maintenance costs also reveals Scions to be budget-friendly. As per YourMechanic, the estimated yearly maintenance cost for a Scion averages around $630. Comparatively, maintenance costs for a Honda Civic average $704 per year while a Toyota Corolla averages $691 annually.

The lower maintenance requirements of Scions stem largely from their simple, straight-forward design. As an affordable and youthful offshoot of Toyota, Scions were engineered to be economical and reliable. Fewer bells and whistles means potentially fewer things to repair and maintain.

So when weighing Scion repair expenses against other popular compact models, the overall costs skew towards the affordable side. But it’s important to remember there are always exceptions depending on age, condition, and other circumstances.

What is the Yearly Maintenance Cost for a Scion?

Having covered the broad estimated range for Scion repairs and how they compare to key competitors, let’s now zoom in on yearly maintenance expenses specifically. This routine upkeep is crucial for any vehicle to keep operating safely and reliably mile after mile.

As noted earlier, YourMechanic estimates the average yearly maintenance cost for a Scion at around $630. What types of scheduled maintenance make up this yearly expenditure?

For most Scion models, the yearly maintenance schedule includes services like:

  • Oil changes – $40-$60 every 5,000 miles
  • Tire rotations – $20-$40 every 5,000 miles
  • Air filter replacement – $15-$25 every 10,000 miles
  • Brake fluid flush – $85 every 2 years
  • Coolant flush – $85 every 2-3 years
  • Transmission fluid change – $85 every 30,000 miles
  • Spark plug replacement – $150-$250 every 60,000 miles
  • Battery replacement – $150-$200 every 4-5 years

Additional services like alignments, new windshield wipers, and timing belt replacements may also be required periodically. But following the maintenance schedule of oil changes, tire rotations, fluid flushes, and filter swaps will keep most Scions running smoothly year after year. Properly sticking to yearly maintenance can help prevent more costly breakdowns and repairs down the road as well.

Of course, costs for each service can rise the older a vehicle gets. But for the average Scion, an annual maintenance budget of $600-$700 covers the recommended upkeep – very affordable compared to most makes and models.

How Much Do Scion Parts Cost?

When repairs become necessary outside of routine maintenance, the price of parts is a significant portion of the overall cost. Are Scion parts expensive compared to other vehicle makes and models?

Relative to competitors, most Scion components are economical and reasonably priced:

  • Brake pads – Front $50, Rear $40
  • Rotors – Front $150, Rear $90
  • Alternator – $250
  • Catalytic converter – $350
  • Oxygen sensor – $125
  • Struts – Front $550, Rear $320
  • Control arms – Front $165, Rear $136
  • Radiator – $310
  • Starter – $245

These examples reflect national average prices from AutoZone. For the majority of common wear-and-tear parts, Scion components cost at the lower end. The reasonable pricing derives from Scion’s position as a cost-conscious Toyota brand. Shared platforms and powertrains allow Scion parts to benefit from economies of scale.

There are exceptions when it comes to specialized performance components or body panels. But for routine maintenance items and frequently replaced parts like brake pads or oxygen sensors, Scion owners will pay some of the lowest prices compared to other brands. Considering affordably priced parts is a key factor helping keep Scion repair costs down.

How Do Repair Costs Vary Between Different Scion Models?

So far we’ve looked primarily at Scion repair and maintenance costs in general. But expenses can vary across the different vehicles like the compact tC coupe, subcompact xA and xB hatchbacks, and tiny iQ microcar. So how do costs differ between specific Scion models?

According to data from YourMechanic, here are the estimated repair cost ranges for some of Scion’s most popular models:

Scion tC

Repair cost range – $95 to $2563 Average repair cost – $311

Scion xB

Repair cost range – $117 to $882 Average repair cost – $293

Scion xA

Repair cost range – $95 to $887 Average repair cost – $276

Scion iQ

Repair cost range – $95 to $505 Average repair cost – $246

As the figures indicate, the tC coupe is the most expensive Scion model when it comes to repairs, with the subcompact iQ being the most affordable. The larger hatchback xB comes in second for repair costs.

These variations stem primarily from factors like:

  • Part prices – Larger models require bigger, more expensive parts
  • Complexity – More complex systems mean more things to repair
  • Performance – The sporty tC has higher stresses than lower powered cars

However, even for the priciest tC, repair expenses remain relatively inexpensive compared to other makes in the compact coupe segment. So while costs do differ between Scion models, overall affordability persists across the line.

How Does Mileage and Age Affect Repair Costs?

In addition to the model, two other pivotal factors that determine Scion repair costs are vehicle age and mileage. Let’s analyze how these impact expenses:


As a Scion accumulates years on the road, several things contribute to rising repair costs:

  • Wear and tear builds up, requiring more repairs
  • Rubber components like belts and seals degrade and need replacement
  • Fluids and lubricants require more frequent changes
  • Interior plastics and other materials break down over time

According to YourMechanic data, estimated Scion repair costs based on age are:

  • 1-3 years – Average $208
  • 4-6 years – Average $349
  • 7-9 years – Average $462
  • 10+ years – Average $571


Higher mileage also increases the need for repairs and maintenance:

  • More miles quickly wear out parts like brakes and shocks
  • Higher usage stresses mechanical components
  • Key fluids require more frequent replacement
  • Problems like leaks and loose fittings develop

Average Scion repair costs based on mileage:

  • Under 60,000 miles – $183
  • 60,000-90,000 miles – $312
  • 90,000-120,000 miles – $428
  • Over 120,000 miles – $536

Keep in mind these are just general estimates – a higher mileage but gently driven Scion may cost less to repair than a lower mileage car that’s been poorly maintained. But in most cases, vehicles with more years and miles come with higher repair bills.

How Does Location Affect Repair Costs?

The final factor that creates a wide swing in Scion repair expenses geographically is location. Maintenance and repair costs can be significantly higher in some regions compared to others.

Major factors that cause regional variances include:

  • Labor rates – Hourly mechanic shop rates range from $70-$150 nationally
  • Competition – More shops competing can lower prices
  • Cost of living – Overhead like rent and wages range depending on location
  • Vehicle condition – Environmental factors affect wear and tear

To demonstrate these cost differences, here are sample average prices in different cities for a basic brake job on a Scion tC:

  • Houston, TX – $180
  • Phoenix, AZ – $220
  • New York, NY – $370
  • Seattle, WA – $430
  • San Francisco, CA – $510

As you can see, service costs in the same city can easily differ by hundreds of dollars. Always research local rates when budgeting for Scion repairs and maintenance.

Can Using Different Service Providers Affect Repair Costs?

Beyond geographic location, the specific service provider used also results in cost fluctuations for Scion repairs and maintenance. From dealerships to independent shops to DIY repairs, prices can vary widely between providers.


Often most expensive option Better trained technicians and quality parts Convenient one-stop service Average tC brake job – $400

Independent Shop

More affordable than dealers Skilled technicians with lower overhead
May lack dealer diagnostic capabilities Average tC brake job – $220

DIY Repairs

Cheapest option but requires skills/tools Inconsistent part quality if self-sourced Access to service manuals and forums Average tC brake job – $130 in parts

While dealerships usually deliver a higher level of service, their hourly rates are expensive. Independent shops offer significant savings but skills vary. DIY repairs require know-how but cost just parts prices. Always weigh options for the service needed.

Are There Any Hidden Fees to Watch Out For?

When quoting a price for maintenance or repairs, some shops may try sneaking in hidden charges that boost the final bill. Be on the lookout for unnecessary add-ons like:

  • Shop supplies – Should be a reasonable fee, not 10-20% of total bill
  • Diagnostic charges – Free diagnosis is often included with repair
  • Mandatory replacement parts – Mechanic says certain items “must” be replaced
  • High markup on parts – Price gouging on components
  • Excessive labor time – Artificially inflating work hours

Avoid shops that pile on questionable fees instead of charging fair prices upfront. Also watch for unneeded repairs pushed instead of fixes specific to your vehicle’s issues.

Can Following the Maintenance Schedule Help Reduce Repair Costs?

One of the best ways for Scion owners to minimize repair bills is closely following the recommended maintenance schedule. Performing services like oil changes, fluid flushes, and tire rotations at the specified intervals keeps your vehicle in optimal shape.

Benefits of timely maintenance include:

  • Preventing premature part failures
  • Catching minor issues before they become major
  • Extending the life of components like brakes
  • Maintaining performance and fuel economy

Adhering to Scion’s maintenance schedule can help owners avoid costly breakdowns and maximize the time between repairs. Think of it as making minor investments today to avoid major expenses tomorrow. Protect your vehicle and your budget by staying on top of routine upkeep.

How Can Drivers Research Fair Repair Prices?

With repair costs varying so widely for Scions, how can drivers discern fair prices? Some tips for researching reasonable rates include:

  • Checking online databases like RepairPal
  • Searching online shops like YourMechanic for price averages
  • Checking parts prices at retailers like AutoZone for cost context
  • Asking local shops for quotes over the phone or online
  • Comparing repair offers from multiple providers
  • Consulting Scion forums and groups for shop recommendations

Armed with estimates and price averages, you can better gauge whether a shop’s quote is justified or excessive. Prices within 15-20% of averages are generally reasonable depending on part quality and service level.

Should I Consider an Extended Warranty?

Once their original factory warranties expire after a few years, some Scion owners opt for extended protection via third-party warranties. These plans cover repairs for an additional period of time.

Potential benefits include:

  • Peace of mind against unexpected breakdowns
  • Coverage for major costs like transmission or engine repair
  • Abide by Scion’s maintenance schedule

However, extended warranties also come with drawbacks like:

  • Expensive monthly premiums
  • Deductibles for covered repairs
  • Repairs required at specific shops
  • Lots of exclusions and limitations

On average, Scion repair costs are low enough that extended warranties may not pay for themselves. But they can provide value for owners wanting maximum protection.

Bottom Line – Are Scions Expensive to Maintain and Repair?

When looking comprehensively at estimated repair costs, yearly maintenance expenses, part prices, and other key factors, Scions consistently rate as an inexpensive brand to repair and keep running properly.

Compared to other popular compact cars, Scions have very affordable overall repair costs thanks to economical parts pricing, simple maintenance needs, and Toyota’s reputation for reliability. Services like brake jobs come with hourly labor charges on the low side for the industry.

Of course, any model of vehicle becomes more vulnerable to major repairs as the mileage and years accumulate. But Scion’s accessible pricing on both routine maintenance and significant repairs keeps costs relatively low. For drivers searching for an inexpensive vehicle to maintain long-term, Scion remains a smart choice.

However, there are always exceptions based on how well the car was cared for, where it’s being serviced, and unexpected mechanical defects. And opting for dealership service typically inflates costs compared to independent shops. But in the majority of cases, Scions live up to their thrifty reputation when it comes to maintenance and repairs

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