DETROIT – Scion’s bigger, more powerful second-generation xB, on the market since last May, appears to be resonating with male buyers more than the first generation, says Jack Scion, Scion vice president.

“The median age is still the exact same as the original generation, 39 years old, and that is very pleasing,” he says in an interview at the North American International Auto Show here.

“But it’s skewing more male, which is obviously part of the Scion call to action: 18-34 (year-old) males is our target. We’re seeing that increase, with a ratio (now) that is 55% male to 45% female,” compared with Scion’s overall 50/50 male-to-female ratio.

Some repeat buyers are trading in their first-generation xB for the latest model, as well. “The vehicle is different enough that you can see why people want to move from a 100-plus hp to a 150-plus hp vehicle,” Hollis says.

While the new xB’s debut drew criticism from Scion owners and enthusiasts for its larger size and more American profile, Hollis says the new xD is about the same size as the older model.

Although there is not a lot of cross over between the xB and xD, xA owners are upgrading to xD, which also is attracting more male buyers. Average buyer age is falling as well, with 37 the median age for the xD, compared with 39 years of age for the xA.

Overall Scion deliveries last year dropped to 130,181 from more than 170,000 in 2006. Hollis expects sales to remain in the 130,000-unit range this year, reminding that deliveries traditionally exceed the original target volume for the brand, which is 120,000-125,000 vehicles annually.

cschweinsberg@wardsauto.com