"I have gone back and forth with this car- whether to keep it or sell it. I'm leaning toward selling it.
For a small car it does feel very spacious but I'm just over 5 feet tall and the visibility is terrible for me. I have to sit on a pillow to see up and over the dashboard. And with the rear being as high as it is I just can't see anything in this car. It handles great but I don't feel safe in it. I think I have just talked myself into selling it... so if you're six foot and interested in a Matrix..."
"I've read some reviews that said the car is gutless. The automatics are, the XRS 6-speed is definitely NOT. I'm glad the teenagers haven't discovered this car. They wouldn't know how to handle the excelleration.
I work on the road and this car has handled the abuse over the last 3yrs wonderfully. I'll buy another when this one wares out, in 10 yrs."
"This has been a great runabout car. I haul everything in it. There are only 2 things I would change. The first would be the ground effects in the front. They are too low and scrape all the curbs. Secondly, I would change the icons on the CD player, they rub off. Besure to get tinted windows if you live in the sunny south."
"we got it new at the end of 02... its reliable, gets 26 mpg (4wd), payed 17-18 grand for it, 120,000 miles and three wheel bearings is all we have had to do to it. complaints now: its SLOW. gettting on it is a must if you want to go anywhere in the thing. its ugly. enough said there... no trunk space, although backseat space is ample."
"I love this car. I had a full size Dodge 1500 before this and as much as I loved the pick-up, I didn't like the gas mileage. The matrix goes forever for under $30 at the pumps, compared to my pick-up at $70 and half the distance. The matrix can handle a good load with the seats down and I think it is very comfortable. I heard from other reviews that the matrix was gutless up hills, but I have no idea why someone would say that. Mine is an automatic and flies up hills without a problem even with the AC on full. It is very quick and has plenty of power. It looks great and my wife looks hot in it as well! A+ to Toyota on this one."
"I bought my 2004 Matrix XR used. I happened to be working for the dealership I bought it from. I didn't want a car payment so I was looking for something with good gas mileage and that was on the lower end of the price range. I was looking at the Mazda 3 wagon, the Honda Element, Toyota Corolla, Honda Civic and the Pontiac vibe. The Element did not get the gas mileage I wanted. The Corolla screamed RENTAL CAR. Cant swing a dead cat with out hitting a CIVIC. so that left me with The Vibe(basically the matrix) and the Mazda 3. Putting the Vibe and the Matrix side by side the Matrix won out in looks. The XR has such a more aggressive look compared to the Vibe. I have never been a big fan of Mazda and with the weird back end on the Hatchback 3 The Matrix won out. This car is massive on the inside. I have been able to put a lawn mower in the back. I am 6 ft1 and 250 and I don't feel like I drive a clown car. I have had many Toyotas before and I am a big fan. However you can tell this is a joint venture with Pontiac. The fit and finish is not up to par with most Toyota's I have owned. Not saying that is a huge draw back for the price point. You can just really tell what parts came from Pontiac. The red dialed radio is the worst. The car preforms well. Not a power house but for city driving it does well. With gas prices hitting $3 a gallon it has never cost more than $30 to fill up.
So to review, depending on the new body style I would be interested in a new Matrix but it would need more power and a better fit and finish. It is a fun car to drive."
"I have owned just about every size car from a Toyota Celica (which was my mid-life crises car) to a Dodge Caravan. But I LOVE THIS CAR. The size is perfect for keeping a large dog kennel set up and still have plenty of room for packing up and going off to the beach. Of course, I do not use the rear seat, except as cargo. The styling is attractive, it handles well, I love the brakes and there was minimal damange and no personal injury at all when I was rear ended by a Lincoln Navigator. When I have used the rear seat for adult passengers, they were pleasantly surprised by the large amount of space they had. Gas economy is good, but could be better. Overall, this is a great all around car.
Not the quickest car on the road, but adequate for most situations.
Only reason I gave comfort a 4 instead of a 5, is that the drivers seat took a little time to get used to.
I only wish that I could get this car with heated seats. I would trade mine in on a new one in a heart beat!"
"This is our third Toyota (our daughter still drives the 1990 Camry and we also have a 1999 Camry) The Matrix is a great car. The fold flat seats provide alot of very usable space. Great economy (29 around town and 35 to 37 on the highway). The car is fun to drive, very agile and responsive steering. The engine is a little loud with some vibration in the gas pedal under hard acceleration. I will keep this one a long time."
"We have owned this car for 3 1/2 years with no mechanical problems whatsoever. We purchased it new and have 2 young children. It gets great mileage and handles pretty well. The interior is organized well, the backseats are a little stiff for adults on long rides. Sadly, we were involved in an auto accident last week which totalled the car. A driver in a Dodge Caravan coming in the opposite direction turned left as our car approached the intersection at 40mph. Our car hit the passenger door of the van. My husband was driving with our 12 year old 78lb son buckled in the back seat. The front air bags deployed and both walked away from the crash without a scratch. No seatbelt burns or buises, no marks from the airbags. The paramedics were impressed with how well the passenger compart held up. The front end is a mess, but the engine did not come into the passenger compartment at all. We're very impressed with the safety and reliability of this vehicle. We will definitely buy another Toyota!"
"I really liked this car at first. I went from a New Beetle Turbo to this car, and I miss the turbo a lot. This car sucks going up hills, I live in the mountains and going over a mountain pass you have to floor it to get it to almost go 40mph. If the A/C is on, you can forget about pick-up at all. Plus, I have been looking to trade it in, and in the 6 months that I have had it, the value of this car has dropped by more than $3000.00. that is too much. It has nice interior space although on long drives the car hurts my back, it has no lumbar support. If you need to to haul stuff short distances, this car is great, it also has great gas mileage, about 31-34 if you put mid grade in it. I would buy a Toyota again, just not this car."
"This car is great. It gets great gas mileage, it's cool looking, it has plenty of head and leg room (6'3" driver) and I've had not one single problem at 55k miles. It's a 4-banger, so it doesn't go up hills with the A/C on great, but it's not bad at all...and the backseat can be a little cramped, but it's not a large car - what do you expect? It's a solid car I would advise anyone to get. I went for the 6-CD, alloy wheels & spoiler package - I highly reccomend it, it is so choice."
"I fell in love with this car when I first saw it. I was looking for a bigger and more expensive car. I drove it and had to have it. I had several extras put on it and waited for four months for the car to be built. It was well worth the wait. I would recommend this car to anyone who drives a lot and needs to haul "stuff". The back seats lay down and give you lots of room for carrying large items. Lots of head and leg room too, in both the front and back seats."
"This car can be had for about $13K out the door, and provides excellent mileage, performance, remarkable comfort, and is a blast to shift. The redline on the engine is 8200 rpm! But pulling 6K rpm will move you smartly away from most traffic. I drive it about 100 miles a day to work and back, and enjoy every minute of it."
"I really wanted to like this car. I'm a pretty big guy, 6'2" 200 lbs and traded in my Pathfinder over a year ago for the Matrix. I knew it would be a change but it was good on gas and I didn't need 240 horses anyway. Well, I can't get used to it. it's just too small and cramped. The seat is too narrow and the wheel is too far forward and it takes to much effort to turn. The engine is really underpowered (118 hp) and trying to get up to speed on an on ramp with the AC blowing, for get it. I'm going to take the loss and trade it in for either a RAV4 or Honda Pilot. Some relationships just don't work out."
"The Matrix XRS is as good a small 4 door hatchback as you can get for the money. Power is great, agility in the corners is superb, has a high roof line which I need for my 6'2" body. The six-speed manual transmission is a little touchy, and you need to gentle on the clutch, but it runs like a dynamo when you get in the high 6K's (Redline is @ 8200). Looking to sell mine in the next 2 months."