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Toyota Matrix



  • thelthel Posts: 767
    I guess if you look at a car as simply being four wheels and a manual transmission then a Mustang and the XRS are pretty much the same thing LOL!
  • herzogtum71herzogtum71 Posts: 470
    There was discussion of this back in the fall of 2003. When I had our Matrix in for service the first time I asked them to check to make sure the low fuel light was working because I pumped so much gas in without the light coming on, with the needle well below the E mark. On the receipt the service manager wrote that there is a reserve in the fuel tank over and above the listed capacity. Many readers in this forum were skeptical about this claim, though. BTW, we have the 4WD version with tank capacity listed at 11.9 gallons, and when the low fuel light comes on and I fill up right away, I put 11.2 to 11.4 gallons in the tank. If there really is no reserve, the 4WD would go only a dozen miles (in town driving) or so on the 1/2 gallon left in the tank after the light comes on.
  • deg856deg856 Posts: 120
    2004 XR auto FWD with 4055 mi. 391.6 mi on last tank. 11.822 gal fill up
  • nippononlynippononly SF Bay AreaPosts: 12,726
    anyone got a new Mustang GT for $16.5K!

    I can't imagine anyone cross-shopping the Mustang and the Matrix either. I bet the Matrix handles better in the canyons, though I am sure the Mustang is quicker off the line.

    2014 Mini Cooper (stick shift of course), 2016 Camry hybrid, 2009 Outback Sport 5-spd (keeping the stick alive)

  • vonnyvoncevonnyvonce Posts: 129
    Anyone know if the non-independant rear Matrix can/should have a rear end alignment????
  • nippononlynippononly SF Bay AreaPosts: 12,726
    the rear end of the Matrix is adjustable for camber, so yes, it could benefit from an alignment.

    silverado: yes, ABS would add a certain measure of safety for an inexperienced driver. I don't know about the side curtains, though, with regard to the child seat. Can you put it in the middle? If so, I wouldn't worry. otherwise, I would contact Toyota USA or the manufacturer of the seat for further information before going ahead.

    2014 Mini Cooper (stick shift of course), 2016 Camry hybrid, 2009 Outback Sport 5-spd (keeping the stick alive)

  • herzogtum71herzogtum71 Posts: 470
    We have had the 4WD Matrix since August 2002. I have experienced the ABS kicking in just twice. The first time I purposely slammed on the brakes on an ice-covered road just so I could see how they work. The second time happened when I thought a snow plow was going to back into my travel lane from a side street. This was my first vehicle with ABS, and I am very impressed with the feature. I think even experienced drivers benefit from having them even if they kick in just once a year. But for some reason Toyota doesn't make that many Matrixes with ABS. Why is it standard on the lower-priced Scions and not on the Matrix?
  • thanks nippononly. Toyota tells me that the manual instructs you to put the infant seat and infant in the middle facing backwards. Further that the side curtain airbags will add a measure of safety to the child and that the child is pretty safe from the deployment of the curtain airbags if placed in the middle. thanks also hersogtum71. Toyota also states that ABS is especially for emergency situations as you have experienced. The wife and I want both safety features on the car. the only thing barring me from ordering the car, is the over $19K, which includes our 7% sales tax. soooon, thanks again.
  • herzogtum71herzogtum71 Posts: 470
    After experiencing ABS in the Matrix, I decided this feature was essential when I traded my '94 Corolla wagon in March of this year. Ended up with a Highlander. The ABS hasn't yet kicked in on the Highlander, but there's no way I would want another vehicle without ABS.

    Silverado, I don't want to dissuade you from the Matrix. $19K including tax is well below average these days for a new vehicle, especially one that is as well equipped as a Matrix. But if you have a 2nd kid while the first one still is in a car seat or booster seat, would you be comfortable with the older child in the rear close to the side airbag?
  • deg856deg856 Posts: 120
    2004 XR auto FWD with 4400 mi. 344.6 mi on last tank. 11.959 gal fill-up.
  • thelthel Posts: 767
    Hello there, I'm wanting to switch my transmission and differential fluid to Redline and I've located what I think are the drain fittings but I can't find where to fill them up. I can't even find the transmission fluid dipstick LOL! I'm sure this stuff is in the owner's manual but I cant find that either! Arghh!

    So, if any of you fellow Matrix owners (esp. fellow XRS owners) can help me, I'd appreciate it.
  • steine13steine13 Posts: 2,562
    thel, we both know you've got a 6sp stick... no dipstick there.
    typically -- and I'm talking VW/Audi here -- there is a drain plug in the bottom of the tranny and a fill plug ~halfway up the transmission housing. the level is supposed to be "just below" the fill plug, and the precision instrument used is a finger of your choice.
  • thelthel Posts: 767
    Well, that's the way it is in my Miata anyway. The differential drain and fill plugs are within a couple of inches of each other and the transmission drain and fill plugs are a bit further apart than that....but in the Matrix, I haven't found the fill plugs anywhere...
  • gsocatgsocat Posts: 2
    Has anyone attempted to factory order a Matrix? I have yet to see a 5-speed Matrix XR with a sunroof, ABS and side air bags in my area. And kind of doubt I ever will. So I was wondering if anyone had done a factory order. How was the experience. How long did it take.

  • mcdawggmcdawgg Posts: 1,679
    You can order one. See Toyota Camry board under Sedans, messages 6896 thru 6904.
  • jazzyjazzy Posts: 2
    I wish you better luck than I had with trying to special order a Matrix. After researching several vehicles for over 1 1/2 years for the specifications, equipment, and reliability I desired I wasted nearly 2 months with a dealership who just wouldn't be honest with me about supposedly putting in a special order for Extra Value Package #2 (QP) plus side airbags (BE) on a 2004 Matrix XR FWD. All this with biweekly updates offering alternative vehicles in inventory ready for immediate delivery! After contacting Toyota corporate directly I was informed that a decision whether to produce a vehicle only takes a few days and that these are usually based by what the regional headquarters determines is the local demand. I was so fed up I ended up going to another dealership with a 2005 AWD Matrix with side curtain airbags (even better) just delivered for use as a demo. I was trying to avoid the AWD and didn't care about having the newest year available but decided to just go with it since they seemed to be the most straightforward about what they could and could not do. Hope you get what you want!
  • gsocatgsocat Posts: 2
    Thanks! Good to see it's possible. It always amazed and frustrated me that Toyota, or at least Southeast Toyota, considerd safety features like ABS to be a 'luxury' item. A rare luxury item.
  • deg856deg856 Posts: 120
    2004 XR auto FWD with 4756 mi. 356.7 mi on last tank. 10.784 gal fill-up.
  • deg856deg856 Posts: 120
    2004 XR auto FWD with 5082 mi. 325.2 mi on last tank. 11.594 gal fill-up.
  • Has the optional DVD Navigation system been discontinued? I've seen references in reviews and on older messages on this board, but I cannot find on any website where they offer this.
  • stillageekstillageek Posts: 114
    The Nav is only available on the Vibe. Toyota switched to Toyota only radios (previous were GM/Delco).
  • m4priusm4prius Posts: 31
    Can someone tell me why the Consumer Report Annual Auto Issue (April 04) Reliability Rating for the VIBE is higher than the Matrix??? Matrix is only average while VIBE is above average??? The transmission should be all Toyota and built in Japan...I know the engine parts are from USA...but I thought both VIBE and MATRIX would use the same engine components...whats up???

  • capitanocapitano Posts: 509
    Differences in the surveys submitted by owners. CR doesn't adjust the data based on reputation.

    My guess would be that Vibe owners were more pleased with the reliability of the Vibe because of lower expectations while Matrix owners were less enthused because they expected more from a Toyota.
  • I placed an order for XR 05, exactly the same options as yours. I live in central NJ. The dealer said either 10 days if they can get it from a sister shop or 6-8 weeks if it's a factory order...
  • deg856deg856 Posts: 120
    2004 XR auto FWD with 5426 mi. 344.4 mi on last tank. 11.576 gal fill-up.
  • budhbudh Posts: 109
    In past year's versions of the Matrix a few years agp, there were complaints that the A/C did not put out enough cold air (both volume and not cold enough) than it should have.

    Would these problems expect to still be present on the 2005 models?

    Bud H
  • nippononlynippononly SF Bay AreaPosts: 12,726
    I would say check it out for yourself when you test drive it. I had one of the early ones, and I never had a problem with the A/C. Vibes had a problem because the temperature selector for the HVAC was incorrectly adjusted at the NUMMI factory, and it would not go as cold as it was supposed to. But the Matrix is manufactured in a different location.

    As for volume, it doesn't blow as much as some larger American cars do, so people coming out of bigger cars probably noticed a decrease. If you go test drive on a hot day and crank up the A/C to max, it should be a fair test of how you are going to feel about it if you buy the car.

    2014 Mini Cooper (stick shift of course), 2016 Camry hybrid, 2009 Outback Sport 5-spd (keeping the stick alive)

  • I didn't get an alarm system on my 2004 Matrix, however I'm interested in installing one - would anyone have a recommendation for a type of system preferred?
  • Thinking of buying an XR, and I wanted to know whether the 17" wheel option comes with all season tires. Do the 17" wheels make a big difference inhandling and ride?
  • thelthel Posts: 767
    has the 17's and my tires are plain old Bridgestone Potenza RE92's...what my wife's 04 Civic EX sedan came with BTW. The have a M + S rating for mud and snow, so yeah, they're no-season, I meant all-season tires.

    I drove on them all winter (bought the car in November) and they were adequate but hardly sure-footed in the snow. I'm somewhat concerned about this upcoming winter with 15,000+ miles worth of wear.

    I didn't even bother test driving an XR...knew I wasn't going the low-power route and the one I bought was the only XRS I'd found in the KC area so I can't really ocmpare the handling differences between the 16's and the 17's. I would expect any difference to be minimal at best. But then, my main daily driver is my 90 Miata so...
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