Because the marketing department won't let them say "you're poor, here's some dull crap."
You probably don't have to squint too hard to see it, but the iM concept which Scion is bringing to the L.A. Auto Show in a few days is basically a Toyota Auris, or a Lexus ct200h without the hybrid parts. The Lexus version of this car hasn't been a big hit with either critics or buyers, and so Toyota will bring the downmarket overseas version to the US, slap a Scion badge on it and sell it for cheap, supposedly to young people.
Since the FR-S is basically the only really successful model the brand has ever had, the concept version of the car, which will debut ahead of the production version, has been tarted up to look sporty. But it is definitely just a look, since the Auris is packing a 132-horsepower 1.8-liter engine which it shares with the Carolla, not really all that sporty. Still, a cheap hatchback can certainly be a good thing, even if it isn't a sports car, and whatever Scion finally decides to call the model, we're sure it'll be just fine as transportation. Just don't try to tell us it's a hot hatch.