Best Cold Air Intake for Scion
Scion

Best Cold Air Intake for Scion Review

Did you know that Scion, Toyota’s compact-car brand, was discontinued in 2016? That’s right: launched back in 2003, it saw a huge drop in sales during the 2008 economic crisis. However, today, 17 years after the first Scion was introduced, these vehicles are still quite popular in the US. And in this post, I want to talk about the best cold air intake for Scion, or, rather, help you choose one.

Now, the Scion powertrain is pretty solid and well-protected against any sudden breakdowns. But it will still benefit from an aftermarket intake kit. By maximizing the airflow, it will boost the HP, torque, and even improve acceleration and fuel efficiency. So, let us take a look at my top picks for the FRS and tC models – they will be money well spent.

Best Cold Air Intake for Scion FRS (Updated December, 2020)

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Editor’s Choice

K&N Cold Air Intake Kit: High Performance, Guaranteed to Increase Horsepower: 2012-2019 Toyota/Subaru/Scion

1) K&N Cold Air Intake Kit for Scion FRS

  • Best Features:
    • Crafted from premium-quality materials
    • Makes the FRS sound like a true sports car
    • Provides a decent gain in MPG
  • Filter Type: Oiled
  • Power Increase: 6.67 HP and 5.52 lbs x ft Torque
  • Fits Models: 2009-2014 Scion FR-S

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Perrin Performance PSP-INT-330RD Red Air Intake (13 Subaru BRZ/13 Scion FRS Cold)

2) Perrin Performance Red Air Intake

  • Best Features:
    • Minimalistic, eye-catching design
    • Manufactured in the US and dyno-tested
    • A good purchase if you’re on a tight budget
  • Filter Type: Oiled
  • Fits Models: 2013-2016 Scion FR-S

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aFe Power TM-2013B-D Takeda Wrinkle Black Stage-2 Pro Dry S Air Intake

3) aFe Power Takeda Air Intake System for Scion FRS

  • Best Features:
    • Oversized, 360-degree filter
    • Roto-molded tube and one-piece air box
    • Provides a decent boost in HP/torque
  • Filter Type: Dry
  • Power Increase: 9 HP and 10 lbs x ft Torque
  • Fits Models: 2013-2016 Scion FR-S

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Best Scion FRS Cold Air Intake Reviews

1. Best Scion FRS Cold Air Intake Reviews

K&N Cold Air Intake Kit: High Performance, Guaranteed to Increase Horsepower: 2012-2019 Toyota/Subaru/Scion

Almost every little thing about this aftermarket air intake system is a pro. First of all, it’s crafted from premium-grade materials and boasts high-end engineering. Secondly, it improves the MPG (miles per gallon) ratio, helping you to save a couple of bucks in the long run. The boost in HP and torque is decent, but not that impressive. What I really liked about K&N’s cold air intake was the way it makes the engine sound.

When you hit the gas pedal, the FRS sounds like a race-track monster, not a compact sports car on a budget. On higher RPM, the growl becomes a lot less obvious, resulting in a comfortable ride. Last, but not least, let’s talk about the installation. Overall, it’s nothing to worry about. However, there may be some fitment issues. During my review, the heat shield was a bit hard to line up with the factory inlet tube. But, that can be fixed with some “fine-tuning”.

Product Rating
Performance Increase
5
Mileage
5
Easy to Install
5
Value for Money
5
Result
5
Pros & Cons
Premium build and material quality
Sounds amazing, especially on lower RPM
Improves the car’s fuel efficiency
Might not be an easy fit for the FRS

Verdict
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The superb sound quality, impressive engineering, and improvements in fuel efficiency turn this cold air intake kit into a must-have. The installation process isn’t super smooth, though, and might take some time – keep this in mind. That doesn’t mean it won’t be a good investment, of course.

2. Perrin Performance Red Air Intake

Perrin Performance PSP-INT-330RD Red Air Intake (13 Subaru BRZ/13 Scion FRS Cold)

This isn’t one of those “generic” air intakes that you just want to install and forget about. Perrin’s design is quite intriguing and looks amazing under the hood. And, as you might’ve already guessed, this minimalistic style makes installation easy and straightforward. The company produced and heavily tested it in the US to achieve optimal efficiency. Thus, it will perform equally flawlessly in the rain, snow, mud, dust, and everything else in between.

However, you won’t be able to order it to California, as the air intake doesn’t follow the CARB regulations. Make sure to check whether your state’s laws are strict this way, or not. On the bright side, it won’t cost you much. To make its product appealing to a wide range of customers, Perrin decided to keep the price low. That makes it a very good purchase for the average Scion FRS driver.

Product Rating
Performance Increase
5
Mileage
5
Easy to Install
5
Value for Money
4.9
Result
5
Pros & Cons
Unique, trendy, and minimalistic design
Produced and tested in the States
A highly affordable product
Not on sale in California/other CARB states

Verdict
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Worried that a decent aftermarket air intake kit might not fit your tight budget? Well, that won’t be a problem with Perrin’s gear. It is reasonably priced and boasts a unique and catchy design. And, as a US-made product, it was specifically calibrated for optimal performance. Sadly, it’s not legal in Cali and other CARB states.

3. aFe Power Takeda Air Intake System for Scion FRS

aFe Power TM-2013B-D Takeda Wrinkle Black Stage-2 Pro Dry S Air Intake

In contrast to the previous air intake, aFe’s offer isn’t particularly cheap. But, this company’s products are known for their stellar performance, incredible durability, and ease of use. That means the air intake system won’t be a waste of money. On the contrary: if you put reliability and quality first, you’ll most likely be impressed by it. For example, the oversized 360-degree air filter maximizes air filtration and performance in general.

The one-piece air box, in turn, absorbs cold air from the front of your Scion and feeds it into the engine bay. The roto-molded intake tube also works towards maximizing acceleration, fuel efficiency, and torque. The gains in HP are well above average, and you’ll actually feel the difference once Takeda is installed. So, as you can see, the steep price-tag is well-compensated by a long list of pros.

Product Rating
Performance Increase
5
Mileage
5
Easy to Install
4.8
Value for Money
4.9
Result
4.9
Pros & Cons
Large, 360-degree air filter for added efficiency
Includes a one-piece box and molded tube
Maximizes the horsepower and torque
Pricier than most similar products

Verdict
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If you like it when your FRS goes “vroom vroom”, Perrin has just the right offer for you. While it’s more expensive than the other cold air intake systems on the list, the big boost in performance, top-of-the-line parts, and highly efficient filter make it all worth your while.

Best Cold Air Intake for Scion tC(Updated December, 2020)

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Editor’s Choice

K&N Cold Air Intake Kit: High Performance, Guaranteed to Increase Horsepower: 2011-2016 Scion tC

1) K&N Cold Air Intake for Scion tC

  • Best Features:
    • Lifetime filter: will serve you for many years
    • Custom heat shield: keeps a low temperature
    • Available in multiple finishes and coatings
  • Filter Type: Oiled
  • Power Increase: 6.06 HP and 5.04 lbs x ft Torque
  • Fits Models:
    2011-2016 Scion tC
    2007-2010 Scion tC

2011-2016

2007-2010

Injen Technology SP2117BLK Cold Air Intake

2) INJEN SP Scion tC Cold Air Intake System

  • Best Features:
    • Lightweight, yet durable and highly reliable
    • Fits the 2011-2016 Scion tC like a glove
    • Fast shipment to all 50 American states
  • Filter Type: Dry
  • Power Increase: 9 HP and 8 lbs x ft Torque
  • Fits Models: 2011-2016 Scion tC

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Best Scion tC Cold Air Intake Reviews

1. K&N Cold Air Intake for Scion tC

K&N Cold Air Intake Kit: High Performance, Guaranteed to Increase Horsepower: 2011-2016 Scion tC

The reusable filter is probably this aftermarket intake kit’s biggest selling point. It can be easily removed, washed/cleaned (a hose will do just fine), and reused multiple times. That eliminates the need to always get a new filter. By the way, maintenance is only required every 100K miles or so. The custom-built heat shield is another standout feature. It does a great job of keeping the heat generated by the engine away (or, rather, dispersing it).

On top of that, K&N offers different finishes and coatings to choose from. So, just pick the one that you like, and show off to your buddies when the hood is popped. Before we move on to the next air intake, I have to mention the one big con: on low RPM (before you reach 2-2.5K), you’ll notice the Scion struggle a bit. But, once that threshold is crossed, everything will go back to normal.

Product Rating
Performance Increase
5
Mileage
5
Easy to Install
5
Value for Money
5
Result
5
Pros & Cons
The filter can be washed and reused countless times
Custom-built heat shield keeps heat away
Several coatings and finishes to choose from
Struggles on low RPM

Verdict
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The high-end filter and heat shield are good enough reasons to put K&N’s cold air intake on your list of worthy purchases. It is available in different finishes/coatings and improves tC’s characteristics in almost all regards. The low-RPM performance isn’t very impressive, though.

2. INJEN SP Scion tC Cold Air Intake System

Injen Technology SP2117BLK Cold Air Intake

To complete my list of the finest aftermarket air intakes, let us take a good look at what INJEN is all about. The first thing that caught my attention was how light (and at the same time, durable) this gear is. Another interesting aspect is the “futuristic” design. This air intake system was specifically designed for Scion’s tC, by the way, and the installation process is like a walk in the park.

Unfortunately, the performance gains are average at best. But, since this isn’t a race-track-oriented car, it’s not even that big of a deal. Besides, INJEN’s products take very little time to arrive. So, expect a delivery in 3 to 5 days, or even earlier. The price is average: it’s not very cheap, but not particularly steep, either.

Product Rating
Performance Increase
5
Mileage
4.9
Easy to Install
5
Value for Money
4.9
Result
5
Pros & Cons
Crafted from lightweight and long-lasting materials
Specifically designed for the tC – easy installation
Doesn’t take long to arrive
Minimal performance gains

Verdict
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Easy installation, the amazing sounds, superb build quality, and good looks are this air system’s biggest selling points. It will show up at your doorstep sooner than you think, which, of course, is also a big pro. The only downside – the performance gains are minimal (but you’ll still get extra HP and torque).

Conclusion

Toyota’s Scion can’t compete with the bigger, stronger cars in terms of the powertrain. For example, tC is rather slow and aims at a slightly different target audience. FR-S, on the other hand, is a sports car and boasts decent performance (for the segment, of course). So, as I mentioned in the beginning, a replacement air intake system will be a good purchase if you want that extra bit of “oomph”.

Besides, by maximizing the airflow, the intake kit will improve the sound, and, overall, have a very good effect on the engine. And that’s true for both Scion models. Make your choice wisely, and only commit to any of these products when you’re 100% sure they are the right pick. If you still have some questions about fitment, compatibility, or anything else, feel free to reach me through the comments.

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