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Old 01-30-2013, 06:49 PM   #16
skysailor OP
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Location: Kenora, Canada
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I'm most likely going with a Subaru. Toyota dealer is ten minutes away, Subaru dealer two and a half hours....but..
Lyle
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Old 01-30-2013, 07:26 PM   #17
NJjeff
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Well if you go with the Toyota watch the earlier ones (2003-2008) with the base 1.8L (1ZZ-FE engine). Some can eat alarming amounts of oil. There is an XRS model with a 1.8L (2ZZ-GE). Not the same engine and does not have the problem.
The early manual 5 speeds also have a 5th gear pop out issue.
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Old 01-30-2013, 07:55 PM   #18
McB
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Wife has an '06 Vibe, which is just a Matrix in Pontiac clothes. Reliable as a stone. One of those cars you'll drive 200k miles and forget 10 minutes after you replace it. Utilitarian. Like a crock pot with wheels.
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Old 01-30-2013, 07:57 PM   #19
McB
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Originally Posted by NJjeff View Post
Well if you go with the Toyota watch the earlier ones (2003-2008) with the base 1.8L (1ZZ-FE engine). Some can eat alarming amounts of oil. There is an XRS model with a 1.8L (2ZZ-GE). Not the same engine and does not have the problem.
The early manual 5 speeds also have a 5th gear pop out issue.
Neither of those have been our experience. 5 speed works fine and it doesn't use a drop of oil. Just sayin'.
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Old 01-30-2013, 08:04 PM   #20
bisbonian
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Location: Bisbee, AZ & Banamichi, Sonora
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We've got a 2004 Matrix that my wife bought new, it's as basic as you can get.

We use this car as a pickup truck, I cannot believe the crap she loads into that thing; on occasion she's even loaded manure in it and evidently the smell is difficult to get out.

It's an uninspiring car but it has been as reliable as an anvil with nothing but oil changes done to it.

Base 1.8l with a 5-spd.

She has ruined two sets of hubcaps, evidently she likes to park close to the curb.
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Old 01-31-2013, 03:33 AM   #21
JBADV
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Originally Posted by falconati View Post
Can you expand on that? Why?
Yes.
No power,not just a low power 4 cyl,but no power.The thing would have to downshift 2 gears on the interstate for any hill,and vehicle speed would drop like a stone.It got passed by everything.
Toyota did nothing.
Transmission would shift so hard that the dash would shake,and it made a banging noise underneath the car.
Toyota did nothing.
AWD would work,sometimes.Most of the time,when I would have to push the thing in my driveway,only the right front wheel would spin.
Toyota did nothing.
Door handles,inside and outside,that would stop working.Pull on the handle all day but the door would not open.My wife liked crawling in and out of the passenger side.
Toyota repaired several times.
Seat belts would not come out,just stay locked in.Or,they would not retract.
Toyota replaced the seatbelts,but intermittently they still would not work.
Roof trim,there was one on each side,would just blow off.Just driving along,hear a drum noise that would get worse,then see the trim fly off in the mirror.It happened several times.
Toyota replaced the roof trim,alot.
Fuel mileage was terrible for a small car.Mid/high teens and low twenties.
Toyota did nothing.
It used oil.
Toyota did nothing.
There was more small stuff.
Toyota had the car for days at a time.
There is no Toyota in the driveway.
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Old 01-31-2013, 04:01 AM   #22
seuadr
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Location: Eaton Rapids,mi
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Originally Posted by morerpmfred View Post
At 170 klics other then regular maintenance the only thing done was front brakes and tires.
you've only driven it 100 miles and you had to do the front brakes AND tires?!
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Old 01-31-2013, 05:23 AM   #23
kruzuki
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Location: Thornhill & Thornbury, ON
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Originally Posted by skysailor View Post
Okay, I don't "need" a truck. Time to say goodbye to my gas guzzling GMC. I still need 4X4, so I'm looking very seriously at the Matrix. I'm figuring on a 50% savings on my fuel burn alone. Anybody drive a Matrix? Likes? Dislikes?
Lyle
Just got rid of my 2005 EX fwd 5 speed. Best car I ever owned.. Stone reliable, practicle. Yes, a bit noisy, only because it's basically a big box. Had 17" rims and good tires, handled great and with the rear seats down and the plastic interior, I was amazed at the amount of stuff I could carry around.
I traded it in last fall because I ws getting tired of drviing stick and it was starting to shows it's age at 180000km & I was due for something newer.
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Old 01-31-2013, 09:27 AM   #24
Crocker
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I'd get a Suzuki SX4 before a matrix.
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Old 01-31-2013, 09:47 AM   #25
JBADV
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Originally Posted by Crocker View Post
I'd get a Suzuki SX4 before a matrix.
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Old 01-31-2013, 10:44 AM   #26
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A good friend of mine has one. Maybe an '05? It has been good to him, other than the radio is on the way out. His is awd and must be the 1.8l auto, because it has no power. I dropped him off at the airport, and on the way back that thing was hunting between gears going 60 mph on flat ground I sure don't want one, but I do like Toyota reliability. It is a fine econo-box.

Funny side note, he has kept very detailed records of how much gas he has put in at what mileage and at what cost, but he has never once calculated mpg. Then why keep the records?!?! We gave him a huge ration of crap for that one day after mpg came up.
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Old 01-31-2013, 02:54 PM   #27
PaddedHat
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Originally Posted by kobudo28 View Post
I bought my son an '05 AWD Matrix to replace the biggest POS of a car ever made, a Neon. Worst car I have ever owned, period!
.
I've always read and heard that Neons were total scrap. About five years back, junior is still in high school, and ends up dropping $900 for a really questionable Neon 'Expresso" from a really questionable professional snowboarder dude (total stoner). Junior spend the next two years beating the living shit out of this little purple turdmobile. At one point he blew through a set of new front tires in six weeks. I replaced the front engine mount once for $20, then twice more with a free part, covered by warranty. Apparently drag racing this little manual trans.100 horse crap pile is a bit hard on motor mounts, who knew? The car was basically completely trouble free for the duration. Junior heads off to engineering school, gets all mature and just can't live without a Turbo Passat. THAT turns out to be the largest piece of shit on the planet, and needed $300 in repairs every time it was gently driven around the block. I sell the Neon to a local, very young and broke car mechanic. He offers me $500, I will only accept $300, and make the kid VERY aware that it has been completely abused, and it may grenade at, any moment. Last I spoke to this kid, he put another 40K miles on it and hasn't spent a penny on repairs. The wife had a similar story of wanting a 2000 Intrepid. This was supposedly a major piece of shit with the worst 6 cyl. every built. After 180K nearly trouble free miles, and ten years or exceptional service, we sell it to our mechanic. He has run it as a daily loaner for the last three years, and it's still as reliable as an anvil. Has this made me a loyal Chrysler dog? not at all. would I recommend a Neon or Intrepid to anybody I liked? No. I think that we just got stupid lucky with two cars that were real outliers. Kind of like the posters here that claim that their Matrixs were the worst cars ever. Just shit luck. The car behind it on the assembly line probably turned out great for somebody else.
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Old 01-31-2013, 03:20 PM   #28
gec343
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Absolutely the loudest car I've ever ridden in.
I drive a 2010 Pontiac Vibe AWD. As you know, it is really a Toyota Matrix. Anyway, I agree, way too loud, cramped space, and seats are too hard. I love the quality of the car, but I will be giving to my daughter shortly, when the 2014 Tundra becomes available, which should be soon.
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Old 01-31-2013, 05:50 PM   #29
zokalr13
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wife has an 05 matrix -she loves it and we have had absolutely zero issues with it- we have the dealer maintenance schedule so it has a good overall track record. only thing she complains about is turning radius- but the newer models have better steering I believe...anyways, she recommends it - remember ,it is a corolla underneath that funky shell....

zokalr13 screwed with this post 01-31-2013 at 06:25 PM
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Old 01-31-2013, 07:11 PM   #30
NSpooner
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I have an 05 vibe I use for work. I'm a sales rep so I carry a lot of crap and drive a ton of miles. I bought it about 10 months ago with 90k and have about 130k miles now on it. I need something that runs every day and gets good mileage and this is perfect for that. Yeah you have to push it up hills but it's started every day and has only needed normal maintenance. Tranny has a drain bolt so you can easily flush it which is nice. If you need an appliance like vehicle and don't care about it being sporty these things are great.
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