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Toyota Echo

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    babyboomerbabyboomer Member Posts: 205
    At the local Walmart today the salesgirl
    was fussing about how much trouble she
    has had with her 5 month old new car.
    She said it leaks oil and cut off one time.
    I asked her what kind of car it is and she
    said it was a Focus. I told her there must
    be something good about it. She shook her
    head negatively. I secretly grinned in joy
    that I did not buy a Focus. I have never been
    in a Focus (yet) but the testimony from that young lady verified the negative Focus posts I have read here. Anyone deciding between the Echo and Focus needs to read the previous posts on this site.
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    echoluvrstecholuvrst Member Posts: 111
    Even though I do not have my Echo yet and will not have it by the time you come down, I would love to meet you (even if you don't drive your Echo down. LOL) and show you the sights of our city. But why are you coming to KC from Canada? That part puzzles me.

    I don't know if you gamble, but I live very close to three of the casinos which is probably where I will be in a couple of hours.

    So M&M (Melody and Mong) when are we going to meet?
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    echoluvrstecholuvrst Member Posts: 111
    It is not very Christian to take joy in someone else's pain, but I can understand. Anyone who is thinking about buying an Echo or a Focus should read these posts as well as the posts for the Focus. If "our" posts don't scare you, "theirs" sure will!
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    kristi4kristi4 Member Posts: 13
    I am a Christian....having said that, that post was so weird, I never knew many Christians until I moved here, I grew up, and lived most of my life, with the majority of people being Jewish. Christians out here assume everyone else is like them.
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    azechoazecho Member Posts: 12
    Just a reflection... For Christians to believe that everyone will be the same, forgets that God created everyone to be a special and unique individual. In my lifetime, I have found too many that do not agree in their belief systems, to even begin to believe all Christians are the same. The only sameness that there should be is having the Image of what the name Christian really means:
    Followers of Christ.**** Just to simply believe and don't get hung up in the dispute of the differences with others!*** that is my guideline for myself...
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    azechoazecho Member Posts: 12
    So many posts since that last time I logged on!
    Got to tell you, we have had tons of rain... could have had a raft in the parking lot. It is sitting ankle high or more!~~~ Having daughter check in and tell how her Echo is handing on the wet roads(frequently)... Last night I drove it!! she was too tired to drive home one of my daughters friends. So this Mom said: "hmmm...I'll take her car.... my chance!" Here I have my name on the title with her and a key is on the ring, so few opportunities to get to drive it. It did well...

    I knew we could count on the mad scientist to give the scoop on hauling stuff! Now tell me how does adding on the little spoiler... does that help with any of the wind ???'s and add a little bit more weight? What do they weigh 10 lbs less or more?

    re: the focus, I think I have read too much to even begin to contemplate buying one... I think the advantage that Toyota has with creating a small car and it being as GREAT as all Echo owners have repeatedly said, is the fact that they have done well with small cars already! The amazing thing I remember, my used 1973 Corolla (at that time, even the Celica had it too!)having a very similar body style but without the perfection in the engine and front wheel drive etc. The '81 Tercel had alot more room then most small cars offer, till they shrunk a little. I kind of see the Echo having both features....

    Got to admit it was nice to drive a small car last night... I might have to get one myself, we'll see....
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    mong1mong1 Member Posts: 32
    Hey... I just ordered my Echo!!!! It's the Seafoam Blue!!!!

    The dealer called me yesterday asked me what is my second color choice, I said Gray... today I drop by to order, they already have the gray Echo that meet my requirements, and ready to go.... I insisted and wanted a Seafoam Blue.... so, they went to the office, figure out, talk to the boss... the boss came to me said I'm lucky as they just going to order more cars from the manufacturer next monday... I'm on time to order the seafoam blue...

    The price? Well.... kind of ok, I mean I was too rush actaully. Here is what happened:

    I made my choice of adding an Alloy Wheel last minute... so I screwed up what I have calculated before.

    4DR 5 speed Manual Echo MSRP = $10,525
    FE (Entrance charge) = $50
    CK All Weather Guard MSRP = $275
    RF Rear Spoiler MSRP = $100
    GI Upgrade package 1 MARP = $1,020
    GJ Upgrade package 2 MSRP = $1,465
    CF Carpet Floor Mat MSRP = $65
    AW Alloy Wheel MSRP = $499
    Destination charge = $455

    Total MSRP = $14,454

    They offer me $14,050 at first..... I talk to them about the TMV, and Dealer Holdback... they said there is no Dealer Holdback on Echo (Edmund said that too)...So, I ended up with $13,900 (I requested $13,600)....

    It's not that bad right? I know the TMV is about $630 below MSRP... but I didn't realize that at that time. They waved my processing fee also.

    Anyway, before we sign everything, I said I have the Toyota discount coupon...they're surprise, I mean in a happy way. They know what that is, and impressed that I did my homework and got the coupon. They didn't ask anything and accepted it.
    So, adding the discount coupon, I saved $654.... close to the TMV, so I'm happy with it as long as it's a friendly and stressless transaction, I don't mind to give a little extra to award them for their great service.

    So, that concludes my order process. So, echoluvrst try Molle Toyota, I'm sure you can do better than me.... I'm not experienced and this is my first car buying experience. I have a co-worker who has Green Echo... she bought it there too (with almost the same price, $13,600 but with less thing I guess). Fire Superior Toyota because their document processing fee is way too high. I should get my Echo in 4 to 6 weeks' time, the boss told me, in actual, they can get it in 2 weeks' time, but to be safe... they make it 4 to 6 weeks. They will call me on Monday to tell me the actual delivery date.

    Go for it, and hey, make sure you get the Toyota Discount Coupon... it saves you another $100.

    We can meet when we get our Echo!!!!

    PS: look for Mary Witt and tell her you're refer by Moses Ong... I will get bonus!! ;)

    Thanks everyone.... I learned a lot from this forum as well as Edmund.. have a great weekend!!!
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    echoluvrstecholuvrst Member Posts: 111
    Congrats! I was going to post that I went to Adams Toyota and picked up a 2001 brochure and found out Toyota still offers the Seafoam Blue, but I see you already know that.

    One thing I did not understand about your post is if you are guaranteed to get a Seafoam Blue or if they can call you and say they were not able to get it. If you do get the Seafoam color, I think you will be the only one in Kansas City! The kid at Adams said he had never seen one.

    I told him I was sure that I was going to have to factory order my Echo because I wanted every bell and whistle it had. He then proceeded to tell me that the Echo did not have power windows so he hoped I did not want it with power windows. I guess he was not really listening because I said I wanted every bell and whistle it had. I did not say I wanted every bell and whistle any car had. He freaked me out when he claimed to have "my" Echo on the lot. Turns out it was a 2 door auto when I want a 4 door stick.

    I do know that I will not be getting my Echo at Adams because their documentation fee is the same amount as at Superior Toyota.

    I must admit to leaning toward Jay Wolfe simply because they are so close to my house, but I will keep Molle in mind.

    The price seems pretty good. Not sure if I will be able to do any better. I will let you know.
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    echoluvrstecholuvrst Member Posts: 111
    Spoilers on the street legal cars that we drive do nothing in terms of handling. A spoiler is simply a way for a dealer to charge more or to change the looks of a car (take your pick). I believe that a car has to be doing close to 200 miles an hour for a spoiler to do what most people think it does and that is to hold the car better to the ground.
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    echoluvrstecholuvrst Member Posts: 111
    A couple of things. Number one, how do you hide a response like you did to your response to my post? Number two, which post was weird? My post or your post to me? Finally, I am proud of being a Christian and will never hide it.

    It may not be the Echo brochure, but if anyone (Christian or otherwise) wants a good read, pick up the Left Behind series. I am up to the book entitled Assassins.
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    echoluvrstecholuvrst Member Posts: 111
    In your listing of the price of the car, what is a front end charge? Also, to my mind, I would not include destination charges in the price of a car. Yes, it is something you have to pay for, but it is not a part of the car like air conditioning or a spoiler is.

    You say they waived your processing fee. Do you mean the document processing fee? If so, it does not matter what a dealer tells you their document processing fee is, it matters what you actually pay. This is why I am still considering Superior Toyota.

    The only dealers I have totally eliminated are Adams Toyota due to an experience I had with another of the Adams family of dealerships and Kenny Thomas' Olathe Toyota. I have posted this before, but since you are new to the board I will go through the scenario again.

    When I went for my test drive at KT, I ended up playing fuzzy math with a salesman. I told him that I wanted to know the lease payments for a 48 month lease with 12,000 miles a year and a $3,000 cap reduction payment with a car having a sticker of $14,500 or so. He came back with something like $199 a month. This was not including taxes. I think I finally got him down to $190 a month with $1500 down, taxes included. I walked because the car was not the color I wanted.

    I checked out Bankrate.com later and the dealer really would have loved it if I had taken them up on the $199 a month with my giving them $3,000. According to Bankrate.com, the break even monthly lease payment for a car priced like the car I was looking at was $199 a month. This means they would have made $3,000 right off the bat!

    I do not begrudge a salesman a living understand, but I found what he was trying to do to me a crime. I may be able to forgive, but I cannot forget.
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    echoluvrstecholuvrst Member Posts: 111
    I want a Black Sand Pearl Sedan with manual transmission with upgrade packages #1 and #2, the All-Weather Guard Package with additional options of the rear spoiler, ABS, and side airbags. Are there any options I missed? LOL.

    Personally, I find Edmunds' site really hard to figure out the cost of the vehicle. I wish there was a site that had boxes you can check off and it would do the calculation of the costs for you. Ford's site does a pretty good job of this.

    Does anyone want to do me a favor and figure out the figures on "my" Echo? You would make me eternally grateful.
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    azechoazecho Member Posts: 12
    Thanks for the spoiler tidbits. I agree with your comment about being a Christian. Not hiding it. I found it extremely cool when our Pastor knew that my daughter finally got her first car, he repeated the Word Echo all through the Sermon on the following Sunday and was proudly smiling at her. When she drove it her first Sunday, everybody had to see what kind of car it was and she had a big day of proudly showing it off.

    I hid my message because Krist4 did. You write your message, post it and then click on the number that is blue. you can scribble it out or click on
    hide and then it will hide the message. You can also unhide it but only you can. This kind of helps, I guess, if you had a comment that really didn't pertain to the Echo and you wanted to post if directly to someone. Although, it still can be viewed but, then it is that persons choice to read it. Also, if it is things that aren't about the Echo, it is being considerate to others and makes
    it is easier to skim past it when going up and back over the archives. But I am sure like me everybody looks. We are all curious creatures.

    Haven't read the book(Left Behind), but I am hearing alot about the movie previews....

    One thing I truly believe...My daughter had God watching over her.. When she was in the Wrecho with the Echo and she slid into that intersection when her car didn't stop at the red light. Even though she did hit one of the oncoming cars, She had about 15 cars behind that one, who knows the other way and one stopped inches away from her driver's door. She was eye to eye with the driver. I without a doubt believe Divine intervention was the true result of it and Extremely Thankful!!!
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
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    mong1mong1 Member Posts: 32
    Well, I believe I was garuanteed to get the Seafoam Blue... before I leave, I ask "is the seafoam blue right?" They said yes, and in the paperwork, it's written "Seafoam". Here is another story.... I called Toyota at 1-800-Go Toyota... spoke with the customer service to make sure the Seafoam is not discontinued... I told him I heard a rumor about it and he said it could be... then I said www.toyota.com and the brochure has it... so then he said in that case it's available, but no available in all area.

    When I was in Molle, they said the Seafoam Blue is too rare, they can't trade it with local dealer... they still try to sell me the gray one and said that they can give cheaper with the gray one... I don't care and insisted, saying that I called Toyota, and wanted them to order for me, of course I made sure they don't charge for that. I made my point clear that I definately want the seafoam blue, and I don't mind to wait for them to get one. The boss (Randy) then said it's a cool color and you're lucky... I'm sure I'm getting that one sine they're ordering from manufacturer on Monday.

    For the Front End charge, I asked her what is that she said it is an entrance charge... I didn't really know what is that, I belive it's some sort of charge when you import the car, like custom fee or something like that.

    As for destination charge... I was told that it is included, in the sticker price... so basically, she just take the sticker price and give me the discounted price. According Edmund, the TMV should not include Destination charge... but I included it as well to get my desired price.

    For the document processing fee, they want to charge me at first (when I call in before)... so when I sign the deal, she waived it.

    For your information, I'm paying everything at once... I'm not going for financing. Leasing is not worth for me and it involved lots of paper work. Also, I watched 20/20 yesterday, about hidden fee.

    This is what happen... when you go to the Finance manager at the dealer, they get quote from banks about your APR... say the bank actually give you 10%APR, the dealer will add extra, say 2.5 to 5%... and they put down 15% APR for you... the extra goes to them or split with what ever dirty agent involved. I'm not sure how serious this problem is, but I'm not going for any financing so I just don't care.

    Anyway, try to ask around if you like to. I mean it is good to have a few quote to compare, but so far all the people I know who bought Echo in Kansas City buy from Molle. I mentioned my problem of choosing dealer with my co-worker (she has the Green Echo), she said at thought of buying the Echo from Superior Toyota as well since our office is just 1 miles from there, then she said she doesn't like the attitude of Superior Toyota.... you got the picture.

    I belive the Molle and Jay Wolf has the best price in town.

    When you buy your Echo, try to get about $640 lower than the MSRP, that is the TMV. If you can't get it some where else, then you have to try Molle, and if Molle don't give you that kind of discount, said I got it. The MSRP for the base is $10,525.. the TMV of the base car is $10,050 ($475), which is a 4.513% difference, so you should multiply the option packages you're getting with 4.513%, and those should be your deserved discount for the option packages. Adding that amount with $475 should be the targeted discount, and that discount does not include the discount coupon... that's why I said you can do better than me and I'm suppose to get extra $100 off after the coupon.

    Most dealer always say they have the car you want and is ready to go... that sometimes freak people out as well, especially today when she pointed to me that that's the gray that is ready for me.
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    mdrewmdrew Member Posts: 32
    Invoice price for the car you're talking about is $13,222; MSRP is $14,680. Carsdirect.com has one of those calculators to pick and choose different options on any car; it's handy even if you're not buying from them. (BTW, they're selling the car in your area for $13,856; it's around $200 less near me for some reason.)
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    echoluvrstecholuvrst Member Posts: 111
    Did I do this right?
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    echoluvrstecholuvrst Member Posts: 111
    Where are you? Curious since your area has "my" Echo for about $200 less than my area.
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    echoluvrstecholuvrst Member Posts: 111
    AzEcho,

    I have been involved in so many close calls especially when I was younger that I think God is my copilot and it is not my time and place to go yet.

    One reason I want ABS on my Echo is what happened when I was in my mother's '83 New Yorker many years ago. I was approaching a light going about thirty five (the speed limit), but I started accelerating because the speed limit jumped to forty five after the light. The light changes and I thought about going through but lost my nerve at the last moment.

    I jammed on the brakes and I ended up perpendicular to my original direction on the road. The cars behind me were far enough back that they were able to stop. Sure did get some funny looks when I got straightened up and the cars pulled up beside me. I think ABS would have changed the dynamics and I would have been able to steer the car straight.

    I am a very cautious and safe driver now, but given the number of times that people have come close to hitting me through no fault of my own makes me wonder if getting a black car is going to be smart, but I will chance it.
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    echoluvrstecholuvrst Member Posts: 111
    I already have my source of financing and I trust him. If ToyotaFinance can give me a better deal on the interest rate (by that I mean three to five percentage points) then I might go with them.

    Moses, are you saying that you paid cash for your car? If yes, what company do you work for. Maybe I need to work for them too. LOL.

    Does anyone know the phone number where I can order a tape or transcript of the 20/20 broadcast that Moses (aka Mong1) is referring to?

    I had forgotten that I have also played fuzzy math with a dealer at Superior, but this was on behalf of a friend. Get ready for a long post.

    When I went to Kenny Thomas Olathe Toyota to test drive the Echo, I had some friends with me. One of them ended up taking a test drive of a new Celica. The salesman said that to get her payments on the Celica in the same ballpark as what she was paying at the time ($300 a month), he needed about $2,000 down in addition to her trade. She had a '98 Dodge Neon that she was upside down on.

    Some weeks down the road, Superior started running ads stating that they would give you $2,000 above what your trade in was worth. I called up my friend and we went to Superior. I had checked several sources beforehand and according to them her car was worth anywhere from the mid sixes to eight thousand dollars perhaps more.

    I asked for a salesman that I had talked to before and I was first told he was in the back, then I was told he was on a test drive. They gave us another salesman and I guess they did not tell him what they told me because when I asked about the other salesman, he told me that the first salesman was not there and it was his day off. I think they told us the stories to keep us there until they could find a salesman.

    Anyway, the salesman came back and the numbers were just ridiculous. I think they wanted $450 a month. I asked what they were offering for the car and he hemmed and hawed and never did give me a straight answer the first time.

    I finally pinned him down and the end result was that they offered my friend $6,000 for her car. I kept asking what about the $2,000 above ad and never did get a straight answer. The moral of the story is that you need to find out who determines what your car is worth. I think in their mind they were running a truthful ad because they were going to pay people $2,000 above what the trade in was worth to them (the dealer).

    Scratch another dealer off my list.
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    tmetravlertmetravler Member Posts: 14
    Ok, this is an idea that I used to do to every one of my cars since the early 80's. Back then, stereo custom installs were beginning to catch on. We had to find ways of decreasing noise & buzzes & rattles in the body shell. I remembered one day that a friend was spraying "ruberized undercoating underneath his new car, including the fenderwells. I asked him what the heck was he doing to his new car? He told me that he discovered that his dad had bought a new car & a few days later, had to take it back in to have the car "rustproofed" It included drilling holes in the sills & applying an undercoating to seal it all up & to protect it from the elements. What he told me next was an idea to get my car stereo to sound better. He said that before his dad brought the car back in he noticed the "hollow" sound in the car, like empty spaces that "echoed" (like that huh??) & when they got the car back. It sounded SOLID LIKE A TANK. No noise, quiet. That sent me to explore my own car. One weekend, I decided to basically TEAR my cars interior out. All I really did was to take off all the door cards, seats, carpet, & plastic side panels. I filled the a,b,& c pillars with an expansion foam used for homes, this filled the "hollow" posts of the car with "sound proofing" I went to k-mart & found cans of "rubberized undercoating" for about $4.00 us per can. I bought about 10 cans to be sure. I sprayed all the insides of the door skins, the floor underneath the carpeting, the trunk area, underneath the fenderwells & underneath the car itself.... of course wrapping all wires, mufflers, anything that wasnt the actual "pan" of the car. Just body shell stuff. I waited til it dried (a couple of hours) & then applied another coat inside the car. When it all dried solid. I reassembled the car & WOW! Like being sealed in a soundproof room! Wind noise, booming, "echoes" & anything else just didnt exsist. We ended up using this techinique in car stereo installs. Until Dynamat was
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    tmetravlertmetravler Member Posts: 14
    Ok, this is an idea that I used to do to every one of my cars since the early 80's. Back then, stereo custom installs were beginning to catch on. We had to find ways of decreasing noise & buzzes & rattles in the body shell. I remembered one day that a friend was spraying "ruberized undercoating underneath his new car, including the fenderwells. I asked him what the heck was he doing to his new car? He told me that he discovered that his dad had bought a new car & a few days later, had to take it back in to have the car "rustproofed" It included drilling holes in the sills & applying an undercoating to seal it all up & to protect it from the elements. What he told me next was an idea to get my car stereo to sound better. He said that before his dad brought the car back in he noticed the "hollow" sound in the car, like empty spaces that "echoed" (like that huh??) & when they got the car back. It sounded SOLID LIKE A TANK. No noise, quiet. That sent me to explore my own car. One weekend, I decided to basically TEAR my cars interior out. All I really did was to take off all the door cards, seats, carpet, & plastic side panels. I filled the a,b,& c pillars with an expansion foam used for homes, this filled the "hollow" posts of the car with "sound proofing" I went to k-mart & found cans of "rubberized undercoating" for about $4.00 us per can. I bought about 10 cans to be sure. I sprayed all the insides of the door skins, the floor underneath the carpeting, the trunk area, underneath the fenderwells & underneath the car itself.... of course wrapping all wires, mufflers, anything that wasnt the actual "pan" of the car. Just body shell stuff. I waited til it dried (a couple of hours) & then applied another coat inside the car. When it all dried solid. I reassembled the car & WOW! Like being sealed in a soundproof room! Wind noise, booming, "echoes" & anything else just didnt exsist. We ended up using this techinique in car stereo installs. Until Dynamat was
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    tmetravlertmetravler Member Posts: 14
    Ok, this is an idea that I used to do to every one of my cars since the early 80's. Back then, stereo custom installs were beginning to catch on. We had to find ways of decreasing noise & buzzes & rattles in the body shell. I remembered one day that a friend was spraying "ruberized undercoating underneath his new car, including the fenderwells. I asked him what the heck was he doing to his new car? He told me that he discovered that his dad had bought a new car & a few days later, had to take it back in to have the car "rustproofed" It included drilling holes in the sills & applying an undercoating to seal it all up & to protect it from the elements. What he told me next was an idea to get my car stereo to sound better. He said that before his dad brought the car back in he noticed the "hollow" sound in the car, like empty spaces that "echoed" (like that huh??) & when they got the car back. It sounded SOLID LIKE A TANK. No noise, quiet. That sent me to explore my own car. One weekend, I decided to basically TEAR my cars interior out. All I really did was to take off all the door cards, seats, carpet, & plastic side panels. I filled the a,b,& c pillars with an expansion foam used for homes, this filled the "hollow" posts of the car with "sound proofing" I went to k-mart & found cans of "rubberized undercoating" for about $4.00 us per can. I bought about 10 cans to be sure. I sprayed all the insides of the door skins, the floor underneath the carpeting, the trunk area, underneath the fenderwells & underneath the car itself.... of course wrapping all wires, mufflers, anything that wasnt the actual "pan" of the car. Just body shell stuff. I waited til it dried (a couple of hours) & then applied another coat inside the car. When it all dried solid. I reassembled the car & WOW! Like being sealed in a soundproof room! Wind noise, booming, "echoes" & anything else just didnt exsist. We ended up using this techinique in car stereo installs. Until Dynamat was
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    tmetravlertmetravler Member Posts: 14
    was invented & Rockford Fosgate invented their own "coating". I still use this idea today, it is the cheepest way to get that car sounding like a vault. Also, stop by the car window replacement specialist & buy a box of window strips. They look like spegetti in a 5lb box, made by 3M, they are black & seal the windows against the shell. You can use this between the door skins & metal skin. just apply to metal parts & reassemble. This will give added protection againt rattles & buzzes. Please only attempt this if you have the aptitude, or else you will end up damaging interior parts & you know how expensive that could be! Sorry about the multiple repeats. my computer is crap!
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    janbeejanbee Member Posts: 127
    I was very surprised when I saw that report..dealerships here in Canada do not go through that (at least I dont think they do) Many dealerships advertise their finance rates in their ads in the classifieds...there are actually some dealerships who are advertising 0% financing...I was contemplating over a 2001 and a 2000 echo, the 2001 had a finance rate of 5.7% and the 2000 had a rate of 0.7% beacause they were clearing the 2000's...I am 25 years old and have no credit history so if I was in the states Im sure I would be paying a lot in interest...That 20/20 report was very informative, I didnt realize that was going on, everybody watch yourself!!!
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    theparallaxtheparallax Member Posts: 361
    You can erase the multiple posts by clicking on the number beside it and then clicking scribble, I think. ;)
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    toytechtoytech Member Posts: 7
    Been reading this forum for awhile and thought I would stop "lurking" and jump. I have had my Echo for 4 months <10,500miles> and enjoy the car very much. As my username implys, I have been a Toyota technician for 25 plus years, so the purchase of this car was an easy one to make. I fix cars all day so I didn't want one I have to fix at night ;-) My Echo is a 4 door , 5 speed. It was a Toyota region show car . It has 16" TRD wheels and Nitto tires, and the windows were tinted, PIAA bulbs installed in the headlamp housings,rear exhaust switched to a sportier style and the lower black cladding was painted to match the upper body color , that in itself changed the look of the car completely!

    Not are there very many Echos in my neck of the woods, there are none with the cladding painted body colored. The body shop manager where I work estimated that the painting costs for someone off the street would be about $350.00 to $400.00. Not a bad price to make your car stand out in a quiet sort of way.

    Unfortunatly with the onset of winter, the TRD's have to come off and the 14" Michelins have to go on.

    Enjoyable to drive, and even more enjoyable to go to a gas station and put $14.00 worth of gas in it and know I'm set for a week of driving while the SUV owner at the next pump is putting in $35 dollars for the same week of driving.
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    mdrewmdrew Member Posts: 32
    I'm in Berkeley CA (near San Fran.) On Carsdirect you plug in your zip code to see what price they've worked out with dealers in the area, where you actually get the car. I took a look at mine, then typed in a KC zipcode to see what yours would be. I got mine through them at a good price back in May; not sure how current prices compare to what you can bargain for at a dealer but it's worth looking at for comparison...
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    janbeejanbee Member Posts: 127
    Would love to see some pics of your silver echo, sounds like a beauty!!!!
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    jlb43jlb43 Member Posts: 5
    I just saw an echo for the first time last weekend on my first trip to a dealer and I just fell in love with the car. It seems like this is a car that was designed for people like me who value functionality and economy over prestige. I've been reading all the terrific information on this message board, and it seems like the people who own this car think the same way I do, so I think I'm probably on the right track. I guess there are just a few things I was hoping someone could help me understand better about safety before I go out and buy the car.

    The first thing I was concerned about is the weight of the car. Maybe the Edmunds reviewer could have been more diplomatic in his pre-sanitized critique of the car, but I was wondering if the fact that the car is only 2,050 some odd pounds should be a cause for concern. I looked at the specifications of other cars in the same class and I couldn't find another car that is lighter than 2,450 pounds, and most are in the upper 2,000's. Given that the Echo does not seem to be a particularly small car--at least relative to others in its class--why is it that it weighs so little? Is it made with different types of material than the other cars of the same size? OR does something else account for the weight difference? Did Toyota leave something out of the car that weighs a lot? Most importantly, how important is weight in terms of reducing injury is a crash?

    I've read on this post that at least in other countries, the Echo performs as well in crash safety tests as the much heavier Camry. How is this possible? And why is it that there are no crash test statistics available in this country for a car that has been on the market for over a year now?

    One of my other chief concerns is the fact that stopping the car from 70 mph seems to take about 30 more feet than the other cars in the class. Given the fact that several people on the site mentioned that the car tends to be peppier than it seems, often resulting in a slower human response to suddenly stopped traffic in front of the Echo driver, this longer-than-average distance for coming to a full stop worries me a bit. Can anyone alleviate my concerns about this?

    If I bought the car, I would definitely get the side air bags and the antilock brakes, (despite some interesting comments I've read here that antilock brakes are not all they're cracked up to be!) Would putting larger tires on the car increase safety at all, or would the fact that the car is designed for somewhat narrower tires make such a move counterproductive? Any other additional safety measures possible that anyone could suggest would be appreciated.

    Conversely, does anyone out there feel that in some ways driving a small car is MORE not less safe on certain types of roads? For instance, I live in New York City and when I drive out of the city there are parkways with pretty narrow lanes. I now rent cars and try to rent smaller ones, but sometimes they give me larger ones because that's all they have on the lot, and on these parkways I always feel nervous in the larger cars because there's not that much space between you and the car on your left and right. It seems to me that in at least a few cases, being in a small car next to a shaky driver who strays from his lane could be better than being in a wider car. Does anyone have similar feelings about this?

    Oh yeah, I saw an echo near my home that had a sunroof, and yet I don't think that is available on any of the packages in the US. How could that be?
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    azechoazecho Member Posts: 12
    Yes, you did that right! Didn't he Kristi4?
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    azechoazecho Member Posts: 12
    Welcome, (toytech) to the post. Thanks for your input, it's great to know that a Mechanic chose a Toyota Echo for his car! Curious question Bridgestone or Michelin, any reasons why two different basic types?

    I nominate (toytech) and our "mad scientist" (gaiffen) to be co-senior tech advisors... (toytech) for having the most Toyota experience and mad scientist for the whimsical and logical theory explanations.

    It is too bad they don't offer two types of Echos
    Echo & Echo lite! A Heavier Echo for all of us who can't imagine why it is the lightest car on the road.

    My own theory of why the Echo is lighter is, Toyota probably looked at what used to be made of metal and tested what could be made plastic and not be a safety issue and reduced the weight to give the car a better gas mileage? How close is my theory to the truth? Are the plastic items cheaper to replace? Is this recycled plastic? We could give Toyota big thumbs for being eco-minded and recycling plastic. If this were true.

    In all reality, how heavy were the Toyotas in the 70's, any body know?
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    echoluvrstecholuvrst Member Posts: 111
    I went to Carsdirect.com and priced an Echo. There must have been a few things I left out on my wishlist because I came up with a CD price of $14,300 while the MSRP was $15,400 and the Dealer's Invoice was $13,600.

    If my car is truly that much, how much does everyone think I should pay? I may not be the first Echo on the street in KC, but mine will probably be the most expensive (in terms of MSRP) on the street.
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    echoluvrstecholuvrst Member Posts: 111
    Although people say I have a vivid imagination, I cannot imagine what an Echo with the cladding painted body color would look like so I would love to see pictures of your car too.

    I think the different colors of the body and the cladding make for a visually appealing car so I could not imagine painting the cladding of my Echo when I get it to match the body.

    I do not know why but I was just wondering if anyone knew what color is easiest to paint over. Is a white color car the easiest to paint over and make it a different color?

    Well, I am down at my mother's ranch and have to go into the grocery store so I better end this and get going.
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    janbeejanbee Member Posts: 127
    Just came back from shopping at Zellers (Canadian chain, its like walmart) with my mom...she wanted those large rubbermaid storage tubs...I said remember mom we drove the little echo here we cant get too much...she didnt care, she wanted 4 106L bins and 4 109L bins plus their lids and she got 2 more small bins....we pushed both carts to the car and then she realized that she didnt get them for the sale price so she ran back in and I stayed to try and get everything to fit..I didnt think it was possible but after folding down the back seats everything fit in perfectly..Some minivan driver parked next to me was looking at me like "yeah right, there is no way she is going to get those in there" but HA! I was so surprised!! I didnt get much in the trunk because the entry is too small but wow the backseat sure fits a lot!!!
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    cliffy1cliffy1 Member Posts: 3,581
    My dealer's web site has an invoice and MSRP calculator that works very well. Check out www.alexandriatoyota.com and click on "Build a Toyota". Keep in mind that every region will have some form of a regional advertising fee that is paid by the dealers and is in addition to the posted invoice price.

    The problem you will run into is options. Every region orders the cars differently and you may have a hard time getting ABS. While a factory order is possible, it is neither easy, nor quick. Most dealers refuse to order Japanese built cars because it takes 6 months to get and most customers end up getting impatient and buying something else and we are stuck with a car we didn't want.

    A little product flexibility is the key to getting your best deal. That and patience.
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    melodyechomelodyecho Member Posts: 19
    Most of the other "car" clubs meet at the nearest SONIC drive-in. I may have told you all already but my purchase price for a 2001 4 door auto Echo with option pkgs 1 and 2;+ cold weather pkg + floor mat set + spoiler was $13,800. I had checked with several dealers and ordered in the color I wanted. This was the best price I could get on an ordered color. I might have been able to talk them down a couple hundred more, but was happy with what I got. By the way a spoiler is designed to add downward thrust to the back of a car. It does nothing for front wheel drive cars except change the looks. It does make a nice grip handle for opening and closing the trunk.
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    toytechtoytech Member Posts: 7
    Thanks for the welcome folks. As to the use of plastic is definately weight savings, and repair costs. Although the bumpers may get scratched on the finish, the plastic is alot more forgiving during parking lot encounters. Metal bends as plastic will most likely deform then return to original shape .
    As to recycling, this is one area that Toyota is most proud of as to the use of plastic for many of the crash parts. Quite often we are told in school of the great pains Toyota goes to in finding and using plastics that can be recycled.

    As to the tires that are installed from the factory, it is mostly the luck of the draw as to which tire will be on any given car on a dealers lot. Toyota like all car makers has contracts for tires from more than one source. This is done to insure a dependable supply at all times no matter what may be happening to the 2 or 3 suppliers involved. Mine came with Michelins supplied others I've seen have had Bridgestone. We have never had a problem with any of them on Toyota products.

    As to the person that saw an Echo with a sunroof, it was an aftermarket. There are some very well made ones and there are some not so good. Alot of it depends on the care and skill of the installer.

    Please forgive my disorganized reply as I have a LOT to learn about using this BBS. Took me awhile just to find out where I stopped reading the posts from this morning. I have been spoiled by Outlook Express for most of my usenet newsgoups useage.
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    echoluvrstecholuvrst Member Posts: 111
    I tried out the calculator on your site and I found it much easier to use. This time I left out the alarm system and I came up with a MSRP in the high 14s. I will be getting an alarm system and am wondering if anyone knows if the factory one is a good one or if I can get a better one at a cheaper price.

    I almost went ahead and got a quote from your dealership, but they would have thought I was a nut given I live in Missouri.

    Carsdirect.com had two spoilers listed while your site had one. Do you know why CD had two spoilers? And what are the differences between them?

    Welcome back Cliffy1, but where have you been? We have missed you.
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    echoluvrstecholuvrst Member Posts: 111
    Given that I want to listen to books on tape after I get my Echo and some books only come on cassette, I am going to get the radio with a cassette player and a CD player. I would like to get a trunk mounted multi-cd player and was wondering if anyone had some suggestions on a good one.
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    echoluvrstecholuvrst Member Posts: 111
    Most "other" car clubs might meet at the nearest Sonic, but we are unique. We are Echoians(?)! Where should we meet Moses? Anyone named Moses has got to be the leader. : )
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    revrobdavrevrobdav Member Posts: 1
    Well everyone..I must wish you the best with your Echo's. I have been in the market for an economical car with very good gas mileage (I commute about 800 miles a week) and have been looking around for quite awhile. Saturday I finally did the leg work. I went and checked out the Echo, Saturn, and the Focus. I hate to say it, especially after reading the numerous posts here, but I have marked the Echo off my list. Being in a region where snow is inevitable and living in the boonies..I need a car that will handle snow. I am not convinced that the Echo can. Also, frankly, I was freaked out when I first drove the car. I felt like there was nothing between me and everybody else. The safety factor is a big thing for me.
    Even with these two, I might have been able to overlook them for the benefit of Toyota's superior reliability. However, Toyota screwed itself. I went to three different Toyota dealers on the same day. I hadn't planned to, but the first one I went to wouldn't even show me an Echo. They had them on their lot..I had all ready seen it. They told me to test drive the Corolla. Echo and Corolla were the same thing I was told..Corolla was just a bit bigger. That ticked me off so I left. I went to another dealer. As soon as he found I wasn't planning on buying that day, he mysteriously disappears and leaves me in the lurch. I drive to another dealer and I told them what I was interested in. I was basically told that I would have to take whatever was on the lot and to forget trying to find what I wanted. If I am going to shell out 10,000 +, I am going to get what I want.
    So there you have it. It is either going to be a Saturn or a Focus (probably Saturn)..They sure know how to treat their customers. One of their salespeople played with my kids (ages 2 and 9 months) while the other showed my wife and I the car and answered our questions. If any of you work for Toyota...the quality of dealers is horrible. I hope all of you have the best of luck with your car.
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    elominelomin Member Posts: 4
    I had a six disc Alpine changer in my old car. It was great. Never skipped or gave me any problems until it was stolen.
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    mong1mong1 Member Posts: 32
    echoluvrst, melodyecho, everyone.

    I have done the research for you, the 20/20 show I talked about can be found here:
    http://www.abcnews.go.com/onair/2020/2020Friday_001027_creditdiscrimination_feature.html

    echoluvrst,
    See, I told you, Superior Toyota is not good, I was fooled by their over exposed advertisement. I was playing math game with them too when I ask more about document processing fee, destination charge etc... Worse of all, I asked them to give me a quote about how much my car worth for trade in and they can't give me a quote, they said I have to be commited to buy from them (put down deposite) then only they can bid a price on my car.

    One thing that make me real mad was last saturday... after I test drive Echo in Molle, I drop by Superior Toyota to get a better quote, using Molle's price to push them... at the end of the discussion, I said I can't make decision on the spot as my brother is going to pay for the car. I told them I will get back to them within 1 week's time... you know what the salesman ask me? He asked me "How old are you?".... I was very insulted... deep down I know he mean "Oh grow up, can't you make your own decition about the car and you have to ask permission from your brother like little baby?".

    Anyway, echoluvrst, I'm working as a web developer, the pay is good enough I can pay an Echo in one year, but I just started the job in September, and I need a realiable car, so I asked my brother about it since my 91 Tracker (has damn high millage) seems can't take it anymore. So, he agreed to pay for the car. It is part of the family saving (my father saved for us), I'm going to pay him back anyway, I prefer to spend my hard earn money.

    melodyecho,
    Did you get an Alloy Wheel? Your price is close to mine, but your's is Auto transmittion and mine is manual, if you don't have the alloy wheel, that mean we're getting the same kind of deal. Oh, did you use the Toyota discount coupon?

    As for the KC Echo club... don't put the pressure on me... I mean I'm not the Moses that cross the Red Sea... ;) We can meet anywhere you guys like, one thing though, I'm not familiar with the whole Kansas City, I normally hang around Kansas City Metro area, sometimes Overland Park. Perhaps we can go to Wark Park Mall, a movie night, and may be a dinner at TGI Friday.

    I think I'm going to start up a web site, featuring Echo care, photo gallery, shopping experience etc... I'm more into the front end part of the web site... so I'm not able to set up a chat room or forum for the site yet... I will see how my work goes, and if I have any spare time for it...

    Oh well, seems like the weekend is over... time to go and rest early. Keep me posted with your Echo shopping would you?
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    jlb43jlb43 Member Posts: 5
    i had a similar experience with a dealer who seemed barely interested in doing business with me if i wanted to buy an echo. I had a couple of possible rationales for this behavior: 1) that somehow the dealer makes a better margin on a corolla sale 2) toyota is in no hurry to ship echos to the US since they are almost completely made in Japan and with the high yen content at a time of yen strength, this makes the profit margin for Toyota on the
    echo also low compared to their other products. If toyota is not shipping a lot of echos to the US, there is a delay for anyone ordering an echo, and the dealer probably thinks (rightly) that he will lose the sale if the customer has to wait weeks to get his or her car.
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    danny28danny28 Member Posts: 158
    I'm back. Thanks for the invitation to tour KC. I'd really like that when I finally get there.

    About why would I want to go to KC for a holiday: Look at a map of north America and find Winnipeg, then go straight South. What do you find. Anyway I hear "they've got some crazy little women there, and I'm gonna get me one..." just kidding, I'm married already. But what direction would you go in from Winterpeg ?
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    danny28danny28 Member Posts: 158
    Sorry I forgot to spellcheck. Let me try
    again.Toyota have some kind of a technical brochure
    that
    tells about all the neat design features of the
    Echo. I think it's an internal training manual or
    something. My salesman showed me his. It explains
    that the Echo uses high strength steel in a number
    of areas around the passenger compartment to
    improve safety and save weight. Note that there is
    more to good gas mileage than an efficient engine.
    The low weight, the skinny tires and the "Hybrid
    vehicle like styling" all contribute as well.

    Toyota does offer wider tires but you have to pay
    for the alloy wheel option. I think you get better
    stopping distance on dry pavement with the wider
    tires but give up a little on gas mileage. I
    mentioned dry pavement because narrower tires work
    better in some conditions of snow and rain. They
    basically dig in deeper which is good in soft or
    slushy snow and on water where hydroplaning is a
    problem.

    I did a lot of soul searching as well about the
    weight thing, because physics tells us that it does
    make a difference in a crash. Note that the crash
    tests are done against fixed barriers so they don't
    really tell the whole story. If you ever see a
    crash between a big vehicle and a smaller one, the
    big one generally wins.

    I guess I decided based on the fact that if i was
    going to drive a vehicle based on maximum
    protection I should proably get one of those big
    grain trucks the farmers around here drive. But my
    last vehicle was a 4000 lb. F150 4x4 that took $50
    to fill and I filled it often. It really bugged me
    to take a 4000 lb. vehicle to bring home a 5 lb.
    bag of groceries.

    So I fially decided that the problem was that we
    are all living in some kind of artificial energy
    gobbling world here because of our affluence and
    90% of the people on this planet think we are
    absolutely waco for consuming our non renewable
    resources like this. So just because everyone else
    on the road is crazy and driving these huge gas
    guzzling SUVs and trucks and luxury cars doesn't
    mean that I have to protect myself by buying a
    grain truck. I just need to keep my eyes open and
    drive defensively for about 10 more years until the
    oil crisis hits and everyone else gets on board.
    The only problem is that we'll all be riding bicycles
    then like the other 90% are doing already.
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    azechoazecho Member Posts: 12
    I applaud you for your write-up... I decided to do one last check for e-mails...so I thought I would see what was posted. The size of the car is not any different than any other... it is just lighter and has potential to slide... But I have been in big cars that slide... I have been in one that slides and then a few changes and then presto no more sliding.. that is why I am doing the figuring what changes to make to prevent it.
    Because, if I do then we will have two Echos in the family.

    I was driving in my Ford Contour the other day and a Gigantic Hummer(spelling?) It is huge when you look in the rear-view mirror. I thought, If I was in our Echo, I'd really feel tiny.. But then when in comparison those things are big to any car..

    Re: Toyota salesmen, in my Toyota shopping days, I have learned, The salesman knows, they have a good product and they know that alot of people are faithful shoppers. But catch one at the end of the month and they are trying to make their sales quotas, they'll hustle butt to get the sale then.... Always, find the top or 2nd salesman, who wants to make their quota... Ps. I have considered
    If I have to I would go to another City that could get the order faster... those that are shopping in the areas that depend on the car really being shipped. See what the waiting time is in a coastal area... The Echos here in Phoenix are starting to have Custom designs.

    When, we went to look, one dealer had two Echos and another had Ten.... When he took us out for a test drive, he drove the car... IS that idiotic or what? I questioned???? Any ways he had one of those superior attitudes and off we went to another dealership.... at the new dealership,
    We told the Salesman, my daughter and I both wanted to test drive the car... he did and this mom had him hanging on to the handle because I wanted to see how it handled... He did everything to make the sale... Even stay way past hours when the finance was putting us through the buy... We had our own financing preapproved. This helped with the buying... Not to mention that I asked about the holdback and the pricing... He thoroughly explained it... It all made sense at the time... I would have to look at the binder to remember all of it.

    He admitted his co-sales friends didn't quite have the I got to sale this car.. attitude.. He did... He told me he was trying to hold his number one position... He showed the profit that the Echo would make and the how the Corolla did have a larger margin to make a deal with and how since the Echos were new their margin was very slim. He was going to throw on all kinds of goodies on a Corolla, if we wanted it... He said he had the margin to work it.... I don't mind paying a Salesmans salary when they really give me the service during the buy (they have bills to pay too). Also the managers working with them.... But like any product, bad service and I'll buy it somewhere else or walk right up to someone else and ask them to ring me up... in front of the bad salesperson... and after all that... turns out my daughter worked in that area where we bought the car for a few months and our salesman remembered her and asked her how her car was doing and tell your mom hi!

    I think as consumers, unless obtaining the object of our purchase is not a good price or the service goes with it .... wait... In all honesty, a used cheap Toyota, that is sold by another dealership is good, until a good salesman/woman will sale the new one with better service.

    Echoluvrst and mong1 with all the stories and $$$ quotes... get their better sales service for the sale...
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    danny28danny28 Member Posts: 158
    Thx. I too went to 5 different dealers before I found a top salesman who understood 2 things. The first was that I was in charge. The second was how to give me the deal I wanted to make a sale.
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    lynnann1lynnann1 Member Posts: 85
    Sorry, you've decided against buying an Echo. If you are looking at the Focus, I would suggest you check it out thoroughly. Their quality seems to be questionable. It was one of my choices when we went car shopping and I'm glad I went with the Toyota. BTW our Toyota salesman was very accommodating. He even allowed us to drive it to our house to see if we could get some long objects in it since none of the Echo's they had available had the split rear seat. Not to mention that he let us drive it where ever we wanted to go. The Ford salesman and a salesman at another Toyota dealer dictated where we would go.

    Another poster here says the Echo does quite well on snow.

    BTW it was quite windy here this weekend. Yes I did get blown about some, but 2 hands on the wheel and paying attention worked just fine. My husband said the Caravan also blew around.
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    danny28danny28 Member Posts: 158
    I agree. 2 things that turned me off with the Focus were: 1)The "split" rear seat wouldn't fold down in a split manner. It looked like the person who designed the seat bottom didn't talk to the one who did the seat backs. The salesman said " well Ford are selling so many like this they don't need to fix it". How about that for a retarded explanation!

    The other thing was that I thought that the Focus interior looked cheesy. It reminded me of the way radios were deigned back in the 60's. They used lots of chrome plated plastic and fake looking plastic jazz. The Echo interior in contrast was very genuine looking, well finished plastic. Toyota have figured out that you don't have to make plastic parts look like something else. If the style and finish are done right it can look real classy all on it's own.
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