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Toyota Echo



  • vocusvocus Posts: 7,777
    My 2002 Jetta has the same thing. You pop out the little black thingies in the front, and attach this part that's with the spare tire tools. Look in the owner's manual, it should say something about it there. It does in mine.
  • mralanmralan Posts: 174
    Anyone have cruise added to their Echo as a dealer option? How much did it cost?
  • wrgrahamwrgraham Posts: 112
    One of the other Echo owners talked about buying the Echo because he/she wanted a 2 door. Many years ago I can remember liking 2 doors cause they were built strong but weighed less,
    and also I thought they looked better. But the Echo 2 door looks so much the same as the 4 door, and the weight is close to the same. I do see a number of 2 doors on the road, so I thought I should just ask why do you guys buy 2 doors? The 4 door seems so practical and just fine for me. (No contrary attitude here, I just don't know!) And I do have in mind that I might buy a low mileage 2nd hand Echo sometime, and I was wondering if I would consider a 2 door.
  • sluglineslugline Posts: 391
    I remember bringing up this topic awhile back, as I think the 4-door is overall a more sensible choice, too. It provides easier ingress/egress for rear seat passengers and the smaller doors are easier to open/shut -- especially in tight spaces.
    I got more than one response claiming that the 2-door provides easier ingress/egress for the front seats because there is no B-pillar in the way. I, for one, have never noticed that, but I suppose it might depend on how far back you like to set your seat.
  • kneisl1kneisl1 Posts: 1,694
    I also wanted a 4 door for the reasons you mention, slugline. But there was a 2 door in silver with not as many options so I got that and am happy with it. Rarely does anyone use the back seat or even the front passanger seat for that matter. It is definately easy getting in and out with that w i d e door and high seat, bless its pointed little head.
    I often see that people want power windows, power locks, and cruise control, things which are either rare or non existant on the ECHO. Well, I for one dont want any of them! Wind up windows...fine. No power steering....great. Cruise control...just something else to break. The biggest option you pay $$$ for and will never need...antilock brakes! There has been NO reduction in accidents since the advent of antilock brakes. In fact,it might be worse because people think they can go FASTER safely!
    Am I the only one who thinks like this?
  • vocusvocus Posts: 7,777
    You are not the only one who thinks about ABS like that. I, for one, would not have a car without it. I almost went under an 18-wheeler one time who ran through a traffic light, but my ABS saved me.
  • micwebmicweb Posts: 1,617
    In California, the 4 doors tend to come fully loaded and the 2 doors just have the basics - air, ps, defroster, radio but no cd. (2 drs list around 12,800 with auto, 12,000 without, while 4 doors start at 13,800 and go up from there).

    Someone else asked about getting "$10,000" Echos. I have seen quite a few pop up in "dealer specials" ads. They are usually stick shift in 2 or 4 door with no air, no power steering, but are good, serviceable cars that look fine. So that is why everything on the Echo is an "option" - so they can sell a few stripped models as entry level cars. I think they are a great buy compared to Kias and Hyundais. Someone should start racing them. :- )

    Keep in mind that Corolla CE automatics are "selling" in ads for $12,888, which is $2,188 more than I paid for my auto Echo (after my discount). For me, the bells and whistles on the Corolla are not worth this extra money. A pumped up Corolla, with more options (and there are a lot of them) is closer to $17,000 - which is about $3,000 more than an optioned out Echo.

    So it is somewhat relative. An optioned out Echo is more than a basic Corolla, but still cheaper than an optioned out Corolla. They're both cheaper than a base Camry . There's no free lunch.

    I got my Echo as a second, commuter car, and I only carry an occasional passenger, who only weighs 100 pounds. Except for a couple of cases of water, I don't have any luggage in the trunk. So the Echo's ultralight weight and excellent mileage is worth more to me than the extra expense and weight (=lower mileage) of the Corolla. If I had to carry a heavier load in the car (big family, heavier people, more luggage etc.) I would have looked at the Corolla or Camry. This is why car models exist - price vs. function. The Echo definitely gives the most bang for the buck. It is the only automatic in a small car that doesn't give lousy gas mileage and/or accelerations.

    I am starting to see more Echos on the road out here. A stripped Dodge Neon used to be the long-haul commuter value car of choice, but maybe the Echo is starting to get some appreciation from road warriors.
  • sluglineslugline Posts: 391
    micweb: As far I can tell, the ECHO has a narrow body, narrow tires, an elevated center of gravity, and unremarkable brakes. You'd have to be quite a risk-taker to use one as a race car . . . well, maybe just drag race in a straight line. :-) I think you're "right on the money" with the value analysis versus Corolla, though.

    kneisl1: There's been lots of debate on whether ABS can reduce the number or severity of accidents. But I'm not sure I could buy the argument that they make things worse. Interesting thought, however: If car fairies came by in the middle of the night and stole all of our "safety gadgets" -- stability control, ABS, airbags, seat belts -- would we all commit ourselves to becoming safer drivers?
  • kneisl1kneisl1 Posts: 1,694
    Every once in a while a guy on my motorcycle list has an accident which, you have to say, is caused by the ABS on his motorcycle. ABS on a motorcycle can usually be turned off, especially if the bike is used offroad sometime. Loose dirt or sand can make the ABS fail to actuate the brakes and you just run into something when you thought you were braking enough to stop. The rider really needs to know to turn it off when offroad, but some dont know and learn the hard way.
    Anyway I was really wondering if there is anyne out there who likes a car without power windows, ac, ps, etc. My 1978 Checy C10 (yep, C10) has manual brakes, no ps, and a three on the tree. Love that vehicle.
  • echo01echo01 Posts: 19
    I'm probably the one who prompted the "why would someone want a 2-door" discussion.

    The reason for preferring a 2-door car is that the doors are bigger than the front doors of a 4-door and for a tall person such as myself, this makes getting in and out easier. This would have been the case to an even greater extent if I'd had to have the seat moved back, as I was considering doing before I got used to driving the Echo.

    I rarely have anybody sitting in the back seat, so if I had a 4-door version, those back doors would rarely get used anyway.

    The 2-door Echo, compared to other 2-door cars, also has a lot more headroom. That's because with most other models, the 2-door variant is made with a lower profile than the 4-door variant. My Echo is kind of a "2-door car with a 4-door car profile". Which is exactly what I wanted.


    Somebody earlier mentioned that the 2-door Echos also are typically equipped with fewer options. I hadn't considered that when buying, but on reflection, it's definitely true. And since I wanted a car without lots of added things, this made it easier to find a 2-door "low-optioned" Echo than a 4-door. Mine is a 5-speed, with only power steering, air conditioning, clock and "all-weather" package added.

    I bet 4-door is a better choice for the majority of buyers, which is probably why they make more of them and some cars, such as the Corolla, now only come in 4-door.
  • jlvjlv Posts: 14
    Recently saw a newsclip about the Toyota Ist (pronounced "east"). The clip stated the Ist will be in the U.S. in 2-3 years. Is this the replacement for the Echo? Does anyone have any info about this?
  • coolguyky7coolguyky7 Posts: 932
    I think that Toyota is going to keep ECHO around until SCION (Why all the caps?) goes nationwide where the Ist will be in its lineup. By then, the ECHO will have had its 5 year model cycle and then will get the boot. After that, Corolla should be Toyota's lowest offering with SCION filling in below that.
  • mdrewmdrew Posts: 32
    At first I was going to get a 2-door 'cause I don't drive great numbers of people around, but the 2 door Echo looked sort of chopped off or something and the 4 door looked a lot better for some reason. Now I like getting into the back seat easily (where I pile lots of stuff) and for the occasional times when I have multiple passengers. Plus I wanted some options (ac, auto) and like people say, the 2 doors tend to be more stripped down.
  • kneisl1kneisl1 Posts: 1,694
    The two door ECHO is the nearest thing to a handicapped vehicle you can buy. It SO easy getting into and out of with my bad back. Contrast that with the contortions needed to get into our Honda Accord Wagon and Saturn SL 1 sedan. I HAVE come up with a method for getting into these vehicles which is less traumatic. Open the door all the way and stand with your back to the seat. Sit down and swing your legs around. Much easier. With the ECHO however, no problem at all, just open the door and get in! Ahhhh!
    Last night (I work nights) we were all standing around looking at a fearsome rain and thunder storm. It was really coming down in buckets for an hour or so. Leaving work as I approached my ECHO, my heart sank. I had left the passanger window wide open! I ruin my cars by doing that and they rust out while everything else just keeps humming along. With dread I opened the door expecting a flood of water to come out. No water! Well, I thought, when I drive forward Ill hear that sickening sound of water sloshing back and forth like a tide. (a sound I know well) No tide! Hardly any water at all got in: the right side of the passanger seat (and the door is full of water Im sure) just got a little damp. Thank God I dont have power windows! This car is lucky for me.
  • micwebmicweb Posts: 1,617
    I just finished my first month of ownership, and ran up 3,000 miles, on my 2002 2 door automatic Echo. So far, no problems, 36.5 mpg.

    Changes to date: put on 195/60/14 Bridgestone RE950 tires - this improved freeway handling and reduced susceptibility to crosswinds. Steering is a little crisper. Braking is great.

    Memorable trips: Yosemite. The trunk holds a lot!

    Things I most have to get used to: how to use the throttle position to control upshifts and downshifts on the automatic. My former Focus ZX3 automatic would nimbly downshift, but got terrible gas mileage. The Echo is willing to do a one stage downshift (probably out of torque converter lockup) but then upshifts again too quickly, unless I depress the throttle a little to keep it "eager". If I want a lot of get up and go, I have to push the throttle down a lot, but then the engine gets pretty busy (it performs well) and makes me worry I am impairing my gas mileage. Anyway, this is an "electronically" controlled tranny and you can use the pedal/throttle position to control shifts, and either get better fuel economy or better performance. Fellow auto owners know what I mean.

    So far, three oil changes - at 67 miles to replace "stock" oil with full synthetic, at 1500 to flush out any break-in by products (small fiings etc.) and at 3,000 miles to get on a 3,000 mile cycle. From here on out it will be full synthetic every 3,000 miles.

    I received my K&N air filter but will wait until 10,000 miles to put it in - I figure the stock air filter is worth 30,000 miles if you are a casual driver, but begins to degrade at 10,000 miles (reduced air flow) if you are a performance driver. The K&N should be good for 30,000 miles, and at $40 mail order (delivered) is comparable to replacing $14 paper filters every 10,000 miles. I won't be re-oiling the K&N because I have heard if you underoil, it won't work properly, and if you overoil, the oil can blow onto the hotwire airmass sensor and mess up the fuel injection controls.

    I am trying to find out about the "in development" Eichbach springs to improve the "lean factor" and/or about the TRD fulll suspension kit. There is nothing on the TRD parts online, so I may have to call a dealer.
  • majorthomechomajorthomecho Posts: 1,331
    The complaints about a well optioned Echo not being as good of a value as a Corolla is only true if the Echo and the Corolla have the same options at the same price.

    As for me, even if that had been true, I would still have chosen the Echo over the Corolla.


    I like the looks of the Echo more. I like the center mounted speedo. And I like the numerous storage spaces available in the Echo.
  • vocusvocus Posts: 7,777
    I don't really like the looks of the new Corolla, myself. I think the wheels are way too small looking for its body shape or something.
  • majorthomechomajorthomecho Posts: 1,331
    I still like the looks of my Echo to the looks of the 2003 Corolla, but you need to know that my post was about the looks of the 2001 Echo as opposed to the looks of the 2001 Corolla (the old body style).
  • kaz6kaz6 Posts: 331
    Just got back from vacation and saw lots of ECHO's in Honolulu. There wasn't any around that had cladding/spoiler like mine and most were white or silver with just the dealer added b/s moulding.
    I ended up driving an Escort rental and missed my ECHO the entire trip!
    Regarding 2dr vs 4dr: I agree with the 4dr's being sold relatively loaded compared to the usual stripper 2dr. 4dr's with 5spd is even harder to find in the Los Angeles area which is why I snapped mine up as soon as I came across it.
    I love it more with time and it's very true what they say about things you instantly like becoming tiresome over time and things you grow to like holding more appeal. The ECHO was not love at first sight but I wouldn't think of another car now!
  • 8u6hfd8u6hfd Posts: 1,391
    on the Echo platform...
  • kneisl1kneisl1 Posts: 1,694
    The oem air filter as installed on the ECHO is actually a pretty sophiscated device. It has three different filter materials of increasingly less porous elements as you go from outside to inside. I would think twice about substituting something else for it. Independent testing labs have shown that K&N filters pass more dirt than regular paper filters. Yes, they flow more air, but also more dirt.
  • coolguyky7coolguyky7 Posts: 932
    When I was in Honolulu last summer I too noticed a lot of ECHOs. Some of them had body cladding half way up along the doors. Did you notice any of that? At one point I saw 4 ECHOs at a stoplight. I can see why the ECHO is so popular in Hawaii. 1. Many of the residents of the islands are Japanese. 2. There isn't much space on that island for big cars. 3. It's expensive to live there so why waste so much money on a big car when you can't drive too far in it.
  • micwebmicweb Posts: 1,617
    Kneisl1, did you tear one apart - the stock Toyota air filter I looked at was an unusual construction, with no "rubber gasket surround" just all paper, drop in. It also wasn't pleated, it had a sort of "wrapper" with some waves. On the surface it didn't look like it had a lot of pleats, but if you tore one apart and can confirm that the factory filter is, in fact, a sophisticated filter, please let me know.
  • deluxcardeluxcar Posts: 47
    Shopping for an Echo for my 21-year old daughter. The MSRP is $14,711, invoice $13,664, dealer offered $13,444 (including $400 college student discount but must finance through them.

    The Echo is optioned as follows:
    4-door Automatic
    Air conditioning
    3-in-1 audio system
    ABS brakes
    Digital clock
    Daytime running lights
    Floor mats

    My daughter loves the car but I believe the price is a bit high. Is this a good deal? Are there any special interest deals on the Echo? The offer is open until July 1.
  • coolguyky7coolguyky7 Posts: 932
    If your daughter likes the car and you don't feel it's extremely overpriced, let her have it because I can 99% guarantee she'll love it. Everyone in this forum who owns one loves it and wouldn't trade it for anything. We will all be sad to see the ECHO go when that time comes.
  • kaz6kaz6 Posts: 331
    I didn't notice that sort of cladding on the ECHO's but most of the ones I saw were rentals. My aunt just bought a new Corolla but told me she really wanted an ECHO. I saw only 1 Prius while there as well...
    re: Air Filter
    The filter in my car (OEM) looks like a pillow with ridges. It is not your typical paper filter.
  • coolguyky7coolguyky7 Posts: 932
    I'm surprised that the Prius doesn't sell well in Hawaii. It is the right size and has great mileage. People who live there could afford a $20,000 small car.
  • mralanmralan Posts: 174
    1) Can you get cruise control added by the dealer? Has anyone priced this?

    2) Does the Echo have a timing belt or timing chain?
  • vocusvocus Posts: 7,777
    The Echo has a timing chain. And you can have cruise control added from an aftermarket source for a lower price than the dealer will charge.
  • I think the reason why there aren't more Prius(es) in Hawaii is because we're a bit leary of the technology, it really hasn't been proven yet. Maybe in a few years more will be driven. As for the Echos, yes, there are alot of them. One lazy Saturday, looking out from my highrise condo, I counted over 50 in a 3-hr period. I know they were all Echos because I used my binoculars to confirm this. Usually the locally-owned ones sport Hawaiian seat covers.
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