FWD Scion tC vs. RWD Miata – Observations

I’m in the process of selling my daughter’s 2006 Scion tC…

So today I left Karlino garaged at home & drove the FWD (front wheel drive) Scion to work.  After work, I was able to show the car to the prospective customer, then drove it home.  I put almost 50 miles on that little roomy coupe & I didn’t like it.  I missed my RWD (rear wheel drive) 1999 Mazda Miata I call Karlino.

That Scion has a lot of motor (2.4L, 4 cylinder) for that weight of car.  With just over mild acceleration, I could feel the car lift & lose front end traction – not good!  Also, can you say torque steer?  Those poor front tires!  They have to put up with the combined, seeming oxymoronic tasks of both steering along with acceleration/braking.  Those lazy rear tires get it easy, just doing mild braking.

Later this evening, I went to the store in Karlino and it felt like I was in a snug & comfy glove.  Yes, the car is small & I’m a big guy, but it felt good!  I felt IN the car, a vital part of the machine.  In the Scion I felt like an additional part, sort of a necessary afterthought.

It was good to be away for that 24 hour span without driving Karlino.  I now appreciate my Miata SO much more!  Racing Ready wants to know what automobile design contrasts you both appreciate & abhor…feel free to add a comment.


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5 thoughts on “FWD Scion tC vs. RWD Miata – Observations”

  1. I hear ya on appreciating a balanced RWD car. I spent last Friday-Sunday driving FWD cars/suv’s helping my brother move to his new apartment and it was a treat getting back in the seat of my S2000 Monday morning. My previous two cars were FWD (the Grand Am had a 2.4L 4cyl too) and it’s neat seeing and feeling how different they drive from the S2000.

  2. Humm….So I am thinking my 300hp FWD car is NOT balanced? LOL…Yeah I cant wait to get into RWD…one day. Dan..you really need to drive my car sometime 🙂

  3. I test drove a TC back in the day before I picked up my SRT-4, and didn’t really like it beyond its comfort. I was on the watch for a good daily driver that was RWD, but I ‘buried the hatchet’ so to speak with the test-drive and subsequent purchase of my SRT-4…the big key was getting on the throttle and feeling the limited-slip help put the power down and not allowing the inside front spin uselessly around a corner. So, though I agree that RWD is always preferable, certain cars can overcome it when tuned right. If you’re ever in the Northern Virginia area I invite you to drive a FWD car that you wont feel disconnected driving!

  4. Hey Michael,

    Thanks for your comment. I had heard of torque steer issues with that Dodge SRT model, but it does depend on your driving style, as well. Bottom line, the tC was sold a to deserving female college student & she loves it. I’m happy for her & will stick with my RWD Miata. In the future I would like to explore the handling characteristics of AWD – can you say Subaru?

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