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Toyota Echo

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  • pulgopulgo Posts: 400
    I visited my Toyota dealer last week to take a look at the new (only for Canada) Echo hatchback.
    I test drove a plain 2 door, manual transmission Echo (very plain, no extras, not even power steering) and I liked it a lot. Price = US$ 10000. Not a bad deal in my opinion although I would add AC.

    Dealer checked brakes and found them at still 60% and suggested a brake fluid drain and fill. Sounds like a very good idea to me.
  • majorthomechomajorthomecho Posts: 1,331
    Sorry I haven't posted lately, but my computer at home remains the same slow dinosaur and it has been next to impossible to get online here at work.

    My roommate and I think of her Echo as being silver in color and that is her Echo's name, "Silver." As in, "Hi Yo Silver, Away." You also have to know that my roommate and I go to casinos and we both like the Lone Ranger video slot game.

    Had the car for a couple of weeks now and it still looks pretty clean even though we have not been able to wash it. Quite a contrast from Major Tom (my black Echo) which looks dirty a couple of hours after I wash it.

    Silver has her (yes, the car is a she) first door ding. Not bad and hard to spot, but a ding nonetheless. We have been so careful. All I can say is that people are such jerks at times.

    One thing I noticed was that Toyota changed the wording of the break-in period. Now you are not supposed to drive at high speeds during the first 1,000 miles. Would someone tell me what "high speeds" mean?

    Silver had 906 miles on her when my roommate's son took her for a trip to St. Louis this morning. I told him to keep her at 60 or under for the next 100 miles. He claims his mother told him 70 and I know she did not. I suppose if he does 70 that it won't hurt that much since we are so close to the 1,000 mile mark.

    Well, I better post this as I want to visit another thread before I have to sign off and go to work.
  • wrgrahamwrgraham Posts: 112
    Pulgo, that plain hatchback sounds like a great deal at $10K US. What is the feel like when inside, is it roomy, and does the hatchback area look to be of real functional value? I personally prefer a car without all the modern fancies. My friend was talking about his new MiniCooper and how he liked it, then started talking about all the electronic gadgetry with it. No thanks. Maybe a large part of my disdain is due to owning cars up through high mileage, and not wanting to have all those issues to deal with at the repair shop.
  • pulgopulgo Posts: 400
    The hatch back has the same room as the regular Sedan. It just does not have the big trunk. Other than that it looks the same on the inside.

    Go to www.toyota.ca to have a look.

    The surprising thing was that even without power steering I felt the steering was very responsive and the car was very agile.

    Only when parking the heavier steering effort was noticeable.

    Wrgraham:

    I feel the same as you about cars with all kinds of electronics and gadgets. I used to own a 91 Chev Caprice Classic with all options. The engine and transmission were bulletproof (sold at 280k miles), but the repairs of those electronic gizmos were starting to pile up.
  • kneisl1kneisl1 Posts: 1,683
    My wifes Saturn SL1 is getting a little transmission challanged and we might have to replace it with a new car. We both like the ECHO, but there are other cars for sale now where you can get 0% financing. Toyota wants you to go to a bank and pay like 5%. So I looked at the Focus and ION just to see what they were like and how much they would cost. Putting $1000 down on an ION 1 with ac would result in a $184 dollar a month payment..not bad. I was hoping it would be simple like the SL 1 but it isnt. The battery is in the trunk (where it can outgass hydrogen in an airtight area and be too far from the starter...and cost a fortune to replace the positive cable) The oil filter isnt spin on and the cover which screws over it is PLASTIC. There is a brake line routed over the exhaust pipe behind the engine which is only four inches from it. Its covered with a cheapo piece of insulation which looks like it will fall off in a year or so. The front strut mountes are covered with the insulating stuff which is crudely cut out and you can peal it off by hand. The car drove ok and its a big car for the money. Also, it has the ECHO type central mount speedo! Im going to wait until there is some reliability data on it befoire seriously considering buying one though. The Focus drove VERY nicely and was all around a nice solid feeling car. The interior was nicer than he ION. The oil filter is behind the engine like my wifes old Accord...fails right there in my book! Its a nice car but I sure dont want to commit to something thats got such a lousy repair record. If I bought one I know it would end up in the shop and boy would I be PISSED! If they get some better financing for the ECHO maybe well spring then but for now just nurse the SL1 along. That new hatchback might loosen my wallet quicker but alas not in the USA yet.
  • suvshopper4suvshopper4 Posts: 1,110
    I was just in Quebec, and was very surprised by the number of Echos I saw on the road. On the ride around the Gaspe Peninsula, Echo was by far the most common newer car I saw.
    [I was also suprised by the number of Tercels I saw there.]
    I guess people there are on a much stricter car and fuel budget than here in South Jersey. And I guess the econo Toyotas handle the weather there real well. Made this RAV-er proud.
  • You won't be able to get an Echo Hatch in the states. This car is only being built for the Canadian Market.
  • odmanodman Posts: 309
    Canadians buy a lot more small cars than Americans to begin with, and Quebeckers buy them the most. The reasons are a) they have more expensive gas than other provinces, b) disposable incomes are lower (after-tax, etc.), and perhaps this is open to debate but c) Quebeckers seem to have LESS of a love affair with cars than Anglos. They are very fashion conscious, but more in personal clothing than cars.

    Other factors favouring small cars include the fact that until the 1970s/early 80s, they preferred European cars (Renaults) which are smaller. As well, winters are brutal there so cars don't last as long. Finally, ever try driving in old Montreal or Quebec City? These cities predate the automobile and are tough to navigate with big cars!
  • kneisl1kneisl1 Posts: 1,683
    MY wife brought me home from the hospital after a microdiscetomy on my neck in the ECHO. It sure was nice not having squat down to get in the car and the passanger door was plenty big to get into also. You know how you feel sorry for someone wearing one of those neck collars? Well I can tell you wearing one is like having power steering! They have to cut a lot of the muscles in your neck to get at the disc and sew them back up again so the collar really helps hold you head up. Cant wear it all the time thoug. You need to exercise the muscles so they get strong again. In the operating room there were three other patients like me having the same surgyry, sort of like assembly line. The head surgeon and anestheisologist went from table to table showong the restdents how to do their jobs. Interesting.
  • kneisl1, just curious. What would cause one to have a microdiscetomy? If there were three of you in the operating room at the same time, it must be a common procedure.
  • wrgrahamwrgraham Posts: 112
    Kneisl, Glad the neck surgery is behind you and recovery is at hand. I hope that collar does its job and then leaves the scene in the near future. Thanks for letting us know about the specifics.
  • kneisl1kneisl1 Posts: 1,683
    You need that surgury to remove the pressure on a nerve caused by the interior plup protruding from a ruptured disc. I had pain in my left shoulder and into the arm with numbness and tingling in the fingers. Not bad pain, but it was getting worse slowly over about six months. My roomie in the hospital had a disc problem in his lower back. he had waited a long time before having an operation and in addition to the pain in both his legs the nerves controling his bowel movemtens and bladder were affected. However, 10 hours after the surgury he was regaining function over his bladder. At first he was going into the bottle every 15 minutes about a shotglassfull, but over time he was two hours between goings and putting a couple of inches into the bottle. Such is victory made of!
  • I am currently in the market for a new vehicle and am considering ECHO hatchback (Canadian model).

    1. How is the Echo behave like on Highway with air conditioning on (N/V/H)?

    2. Does any body have their Echo with K&N air filter and Bosch Platimun plug installed?
    Any bebnefit on the low end torque ?

    thx in advance.
  • pulgopulgo Posts: 400
    I've been using the AC almost continuously for a couple of months and it cools just fine. My commute is 80% highway and for about 40 kms or 25 miles the AC is on. It is not noisier and there's plenty of engine power.

    With the AC running you only notice a little slower acceleration when starting from a stop. Once up to speed I can easily keep up with everybody else.

    I installed Bosch Platinum spark plugs a while ago and there is no change in power or fuel economy. In my opinion the K&N is too expensive and I decided it's not worth installing it.
  • weelzweelz Posts: 20
    There is no difference from what I can tell.The car is no rocket but a 1.5 litre engine is not really small anymore when it comes to these type of cars.In Europe the car uses a 1.3 and they manage.This is most definately an economy car and you will know it when you drive it.Surprisingly it does at this early stage in the market turn alot of heads.People point and stare and for under 20K is a good laugh.

    You are not going to win any races but you will pass alot of gas stations and get alot of curious stares and of course a few laughing skeptics :)
  • vocusvocus Posts: 7,777
    My buddy has an 00 Echo sedan he bought used, and I feel the car is a little lightweight for the type of driving on the highway here in the US (mostly 80mph and sometimes quick merging). The car holds its own on the highway, but I prefer something that feels a tad heavier myself. Fuel economy is very good though. We have done 100 miles in his car on $4 in gas. :)
  • weelzweelz Posts: 20
    with the way gas is going up down there you might all be driving trash cans soon ;)
  • I recently purchased a 00 Echo automatic with approx. 65K miles. Shortly after getting it home I began to notice that when the car was accelerating or going uphill between 48 and 60MPH, the vehicle would shake. The shake was coming from the front, not so noticeable through the steering wheel but more through the floor. Fortunately, it was a Toyota certified vehicle and I have carried it back in for repairs. It has now been there a week. Apparently, they have decided the problem is in the transmission/Differential. Anyone else had this problem?
  • vocusvocus Posts: 7,777
    My friend's 00 automatic Echo shakes on the highway at about 60mph. If you could share what they said about your car, I would appreciate it. I thought it may be the brake rotors or tire balancing actually, but he never had it checked out.
  • Vocus, if the shaking only happens during braking, it is probably warped rotors. If it happens at certain speeds it may be a tire out of balance or a bad tire. However, the problem I had only happened at certain speeds while accelerating. The dealer initially tried swapping wheels. When that didn't work, they tried swapping axles. There has reportedly been much discussion between the Toyota warranty folks and the dealership about who must pay. The warranty folks reportedly required that the dealer try numerous less expensive fixes before going into the transmission. I still don't have the car back. I left it a week ago Friday. They did offer a loaner but I declined. At last report they had ordered unspecified parts to rebuild the differential and said it would likely be the middle of next week before it is ready. Sounds like this is an expensive repair. However, they assured me that I would not be expected to pay. Hope your friend doesn't have the same problem. My dealer claims they have not seen this before.
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