Scion tC


Well, after a long search and test drives, i finally made a decision to buy a used 2006 Scion tC with auto trans. The car has about 15200 miles and is driven by a female of age around mid twenties. I will be going to take a look at it tomorrow again but i want to know what should i look for in the car. Mountainbike, i know you are a fan of tC and you being a proud owner can give me some good advices. The car, according to the owner, is mostly driven on highway and seems to be in a good condition.

i will greatly appreciate your feedback my fellow cartalkers. thank you and you all have a great day. :slight_smile:


Look for maintenance records, and have it thoroughly checked out just as you would with any used car purchase.

Also be sure the sliding roof is working properly and quietly and it doesn’t have a wind leak on the highway. While mine is fine, I did have a wind leak and I read tC forums and the roof has been problematic. Should there be a problem, the mechanism (both moon roofs within their framework and including the tractor drive and motor) is not repairable and has to be removed and replaced as an assembly.

Other than the wind leak and a bulb burning out the car has run absolutely flawlessly and is still a blast to drive. Maintenance wise, it has a timing chain rather than a belt (YES!), has lifetime tranny fluid (I’m gonna change mine anyway) and has a Camry 4-banger. The oil filter is readily accessible (I thought it was buried like my daughter’s Civic’s but when I slid under the car to change my oil last weekend I discovered to my delight that it wasn’t).

Be aware that the tires, 215x45x17, can only be bought in expensive “ultra high performance” speed ratings.

I just passed 60,000 miles on mine. That’s why I’ve taken over the maintenance. I still enjoy driving the car and plan to keep it for years to come.

  • mountainbike


Hey mountainbike,
this ch@ll3ng3r from the old forum format. i took your advice and eliminated the civic and am going with tC :slight_smile:
you said that this car has “lifetime transmission” fluid. can you explain what you mean by that? i know this car doesnt have sealed tranny like vw does.
i am definitly going to check out the sunroof tomorrow. do you suggest buying the extended warranty on this car? thanks MB.


Actually, I hadn’t intended to suggest eliminating the Civic. I was only commenting that the oil filter was easier to change and I had exoected it not to be. The Civic is a great car.

I don’t recommend extended warranties. If I thought a car’s reliability was so poor that I’d have a good chance of having more problems in the period covered by teh extended warranty than the cost of the warranty, I’d not buy the car.

  • mountainbike


“Lifetime tranny fluid” only means that the Owner’s manual suggests NOT changing the fluid or otherwise servicing the transmission unless you’re using the car under the “severe use” conditions. The manual is specific on this point. I may do mine anyway. I haven’t decided yet.

Also, the recommended maintenance schedule has 120,000 miles for the first spark plug change. I’ll change mine early, perhaps even this month.


My daughters 03 Corolla has “Lifetime Fluid” in the transmission, but it was almost black by 75k miles. It took two back to back changes to clear it up. I’ve heard that some of the new Toyota transmissions require a special machine to change the fluid. If you open one of those, you loose a quart and you can’t put it back in. Most dealers don’t have the required machine, or didn’t last year anyway.


Hey MB,
Ch@ll3ng3er again, actually i posted a thread a while ago, i think about 4 months ago, asking to help me select between tC and 2005 civic coupe, and you highly recommended tC because the way it handles. :slight_smile:
plus now you mentioned the oil filter, so thats an additional point for tC. :slight_smile: i really hate it when i have to climb under my 2002 Mazda 626 and reach over the catalytic convertor to remove the oil filter.
Actually the first thing that i do after buying my “new” used car is i replace the spark plugs and the oil. so i guess if i do that, i wont have to worry about the plugs for about 5 to 6 years!! :slight_smile: man i am already loving this car!!


Thanks for the “heads up” Keith. I’ll have to check into that when the time comes. Details like that are the reason I always recommend to people that they start buy getting a manual and reading.


how many miles do you have on your tC? what year is it? if you dont mind me asking. thanks.


I don’t mind at all. It’s a 2005 with just over 60,000 miles on it.

  • mountainbike