Toyota Matrix vs. Mazda Protege5



  • ashutoshsmashutoshsm Member Posts: 1,007
    Minivan and SUV drivers look down at sedans and sports cars all the time - guess what - nobody cares! And what does that make your 'crossover vehicle', LOL?

    That said, let this not turn into a silly pi$$ing contest, and keep the (so far) interesting comparison between the cars going in this discussion!

  • maltbmaltb Member Posts: 3,572
    I had to look down at a P5.

    Me too, and I bet your Matrix handles like my MPV too.
  • paintballguy59paintballguy59 Member Posts: 2
    i got a xrs and it is great. The p5 is a pos to me. Toyota makes a quality product and has never had big problems. the whole sludge issue was a operator error(not changing oil duh). the matrix is a great overall car. Nothing beats a toyota or lexus.
  • maltbmaltb Member Posts: 3,572
    The p5 is a pos to me

    Nothing beats a toyota or lexus.

    Just a reminder kids: Don't forget to wear your protective gear when you go play commando with paintballs.
  • badboyeeebadboyeee Member Posts: 26
    haha your pretty funny
  • shriqueshrique Member Posts: 338
    matrix sux hate toyota.

    me smart guy.
  • bri70bri70 Member Posts: 147
    I know this is the Matrix vs. P5 board but I read someone refering to the Elantra GT as a bargain hatch 'but it is still a Hyundai.'

    I know it is an opinion but for lurkers out there do yourself a favor- test drive the Elantra GT. Afterward you may still decide to go with the P5 or the Matrix. Nonetheless, I would wager that the words it is still a Hyundai would have little meaning to you.

    The Elantra is not just a couple of thousand dollars less than the P5 it is arguably a better car- period. It will depend on your taste but I found the P5 ride to be too harsh for me while the GT was more balanced. There are few options because it comes standard with nearly everything. Heck it even has heated side mirrors. The GT's acceleration is better; though I would give the twisties and styling edge to the P5.

    I am not mentioning the Matrix simply because I have not driven it. Still, if the Matrix is competitive to the P5, then the Elantra is competitive to the Matrix. The GT is a solid car. The words it is a Hyundai may have had some significance in the 80's and early 90's but this is a new century and Hyundai is not the same car company.
  • tom3ktom3k Member Posts: 91
    For months I have been 'window shopping' for a sport wagon (internet mostly) and had assumed when the time came it would be a Protege5 based on styling, specs, reviews and price. I was also considering an Imprezza TS wagon and I wanted to at least drive a Suzuki Aerio (cheap, good power-to-weight ratio). The Matrix wasn't really even on my radar screen (didn't like the styling, heavier than the P5 w/ same hp, 'TMV' was higher).

    A couple of weeks ago, I found myself needing to find a car fast - I had two beaters (my beloved '90 Integra and a '92 Escort SW) I was hoping to limp along for a couple more years until my wife's Odyssey was paid for (coulda got a WRX then ;-)), but both went to be with Elvis in rapid succession.

    After dropping the Ford off at the transmission place (where it got an eventual death sentence), I walked over to the local Mazda dealer to try and drive a P5. They only had an automatic (I think I've bought my last automatic), but I took it out anyway. I was a HAY-UGE dissapointment. I hated the action on the tranny and it was weak to the point of being unsafe. Blaming it on the tranny, I found a dealer with a couple of stripped 5-speed P5's in stock and arranged a test drive. It was much better, but still dissapointing - I found it a little tight, but not too uncomfortable, the stereo sucked (but they all did in my price range), the steering wheel was a little small for my taste, it was weak on the low-end (it wasn't all the tranny after all), and the shifter felt loose and sloppy. All-in-all, not a bad car for the price, but not the car I had been reading about for the last 6 months or so.

    The TS test drive went much better. Even stripped the price was a little on the high end (still have those Oddyssey payments!), but it was a larger, stronger, more comfortable vehicle.

    I figured I should check out everything in the class/price range (mid-teens), so the next day I went out at lunch to drive a Matrix. I was going to look at a PT Cruiser the next day. My expectations were low, but I was immediately impressed! I found the high seating position more comfortable, and I actually liked the shifter halfway up the dashboard (didn't think I would on either count). Even with the higher center of gravity, I thought it handled at least as well as the P5 and felt stronger off the line
    and faster than the P5 (specs notwithstanding). When I could sit in the back comfortably without adjusting the front seat (I'm 6'2 and of 'larger carriage';-)), I was nearly sold. My wife drove it the next day - She liked it too, but wasn't into the color ('radiant red') and we couldn't come to terms on price (they wanted $400 below sticker + $250 of bogus 'dealer overhead'). Found a price on the internet for the same car at invoice-$45. Called the dealer and they actually had it on the lot (gave me the VIN), and said the only additional charges would be Virginia sales tax (3% vs 3.2% at the Virginia dealer - How do they do that?) and tags. Faxed the price in writing. That was it - I put a deposit down over the phone and picked it up the next day. It was faster and handled better than the one I drove the day before! It's been two weeks and I'm still happy.

    Had it not been for the deal, I might have still gone with a P5 on price alone, but we'll never know. ;-)

    (Sorry about the long post)
  • bsum70bsum70 Member Posts: 37
    Does anybody know how well Matrix did in crash test?? Matrix is based on the newer chassis so I assumed that it may be better than the Protege5.... I love them both though....
  • tgif888tgif888 Member Posts: 351
    Test drive both.

    Toyota Matrix-I heard a rattles on the glove box immediately. I even see the glove box cover moves while I drive. A big disappointment. Too many options.

    Mazda Protege5-Not much noise. It is quiet in the cabinet. Only problem is hard to find a Sport automatic with ABS. Finally bought one with S-plan price and 2.9 APR financing.

    It is great and the drive is impressive.
  • newmex1newmex1 Member Posts: 2
    Argh. Time to buy a new car. We have a new (well 97 Ford Windstar) that has had more trouble than our (don't laugh) 89 Mazda 323 and 91 Protege combined. The two Mazdas have over 300,000 miles between them and so far have only had to replace the clutch on the older one. But now we have 2 kids in car seats. Anyone have any feedback on how the two cars handle a pair of carseats before we haul them off to the dealer?
    Also, are do insurance companies consider these "sport" cars or "wagons" for insurance costs.
    Pondering in New Mexico
  • the_big_hthe_big_h Member Posts: 1,583
    congrats on your Matrix, I assume you got the 180hp Matrix? That would explain the lack of power you felt in the Protege5.

    Just wondering though, what car did you have before getting the Matrix? If you had a larger, more powerful car before the new car, that would also explain the disappointment you had with the P5's power.

    Anyways, good luck with you Matrix in the future.
  • tom3ktom3k Member Posts: 91
    big h - Got the stripped base model (only power group and cold weather group added)w/ the stock 130hp motor. I wish I could have afforded the 180hp, but the base model at sticker was already out of my wife's comfort zone with those few options. Once you start getting to the higher end (where 180hp is an option), the price gap between those and the WRX wagon is so narrow I probably would have gone for the WRX. My brother just drove the Matrix tonight, and he commented on the pickup, and he just bought a 2002 Maxima with a 6-speed! He almost sounded jealous (almost). I had (I hate talking about it in past-tense :() a '90 Integra coupe that was 140 hp at it's best, but was losing oil pressure in it's last days (and I got rid of it a couple of months ago). My daily driver for the previous two months had been a very weak '92 escort wagon with engine mount and transmission problems. There were times when the automatic P5 reminded me of the Escort, which is the last thing I wanted it to do. During my search, I had been borrowing a '93 Civic 5-speed that was desparately in need of maintenance (which I did as a thank-you after getting the new car), so obviously it wasn't that I was driving race cars prior to driving the P5. Part of it was probably hype and raised expectations for the P5 and no expectations for the Matrix whatsoever. I don't know what cars the press were driving, but they weren't the ones I drove. Converseley, the Matrix is getting almost universally so-so reviews (I'm glad I didn't read them first). Again, whatever car they were driving, it wasn't mine!

    Car seats - Can't comment on the P5, but the Matrix has tons of head room (key to getting a good tight fit on a carseat IMO) and decently wide rear doors. There is also a tether attachment (already installed, not just threads like on my Odyssey) for all three rear positions. Per my casual reading of the owner's manual I think there are also special side attachments in at least the left and right positions.

    My kids are all out of regular carseats, but all three - including a full-size Century combination 5-point carseat/booster chair - fit with plenty of room to spare. I imagine it would take two carseats with no problem.
  • subyaudidudesubyaudidude Member Posts: 136
    Although we have only one child seat (the Britax Roundabout), it fits quite well, rear-facing, in the center position. Now admittedly, both my wife and I are short people (about 5'4" each), so we don't need to have the front seats pushed back very far. As it is, the Britax is in there pretty snuggly. My suggestion would be, if you're serious about the cars, to try to put the seats in them at the dealership (or even better, if you can convince the dealership to lend you the car for a few hours, take it home and try the switch there).

    As for insurance, my insurance company (Progressive) lowered my insurance after we added the P5 and dropped my old Impreza RS. They listed it as a hatchback.
  • newmex1newmex1 Member Posts: 2
    Glad to hear the P5 is a hatchback not a "sport" car for insurance purposes!

    I know I will have to put the carseats in the cars, but Im glad to get some feedback about them because in some cars the two seats are so smashed in there that its tough to buckle my son in his booster seat. Seems like every time I turn around their is more info about keeping kids in car seats (to 60 or 80 pounds) so I know it will be a long time dealing with the seats. What I like about the van is one kid is in the middle seat and one in the back, so they dont fight as much. In our old cars I used to drive around with a big piece of foam (LOL) for stuffing between them to minimize bickering.

    Thanks so much for the answers!
  • shriqueshrique Member Posts: 338
    Your actually the first person that I have ever heard of that thought that the 130hp Matrix felt faster than the 130hp P5.
  • SporinSporin Member Posts: 1,066
    "Your actually the first person that I have ever heard of that thought that the 130hp Matrix felt faster than the 130hp P5."

    And building on that... in the recent Car & Driver comparo, they picked the Pro5 over even the 180hp Matirix!!
  • bluong1bluong1 Member Posts: 1,927
    The max torque of P5 is 135 ftxlb @ 4000 rpm. Fortunately, 95% of the max torque (i.e. > 128 ftxlb) is available between 2700-5000 rpm (from Dyno test). The max torque of the 130 hp version of the Matrix is 126 ftxlb. That means the engine of the P5 delivers larger torque than the 130hp version at almost any range (if not the entire range). The 130 ftxlb torque of the 180hp version is only obtained at 6800 rpm! Drivers have to rev the engine more than 6000 rpm then they can feel the extra power. Furthermore, the gears of the P5 are rather small, (I don't know those of the Matrix), privilege the acceleration. Both cars weight about the same. From that, I believe that the P5 should feel quicker than the Matrix, whichever the engine of the later.

  • tom3ktom3k Member Posts: 91
    Perhaps if you wind both of them up toward redline, the P5 is faster, but the Matrix felt a lot stronger between 2-4K (where it spends most of its time) than the P5. I read the car & driver article, but although they appeared to be driving the same cars, they came away with very different conclusions - for instance, they called both 'noisy' - I thought they were both very quiet for four-bangers. I was ready to buy a P5 on the strength of the review alone, it wasn't until I actually drove a couple that my opinion started to change. I was already souring on the P5 before I drove a Matrix.
  • shriqueshrique Member Posts: 338
    OooooK...I guess everyones entitled to their opinion but even the statistical evidence says that the P5 has almost all of it's torque available between the 2000-4500 range (as bluong1 detailed). Given that the Torque is higher and it's available lower, it SHOULD feel faster. I guess it's whatever the ole' seat-O-the-pants-meter tells you.
  • sunbyrnesunbyrne Member Posts: 210
    I drove the 180-hp Matrix and was totally underwhelmed with its performance. Don't get me wrong, it felt as fast as my P5, but it certainly didn't feel faster. It's a phantom extra 50hp as far as I'm concerned. (Nice to see C&D agrees with me.) I haven't driven the 130hp Matrix but I'd be stunned if it actually felt fastser than the P5. Must be some optical illusion that you get when sitting up that high (which I hated--can you say "minivan"?).

    But the Matrix has way more room, no doubt about it. I have the moon roof in my P5 and I'm not a tall guy (5'10"), but I can see how a tall guy might feel a bit cramped in my car. And feeling cramped in a car isn't very pleasant. I also really like the fact that on the Matrix, you can open the rear glass without opening the hatch. That I'd really like to have.

    Both pretty solid cars IMO, and I can see lots of reasons why one might buy a Matrix over a P5, but I just can't see performance as one of them.
  • tom3ktom3k Member Posts: 91
    I think I made it pretty clear in my original post that the releative 'strength' of the two cars at low-to-moderate RPMs may well have been perception, as the specs don't back it up - It surprised me as much as it surprises you. The Matrix is no sports car by any stretch, but the P5 isn't a "BMW at half the price" either (unless BMW's are a lot slower than I think they are ;-)). Had I not driven a Matrix, or if I had not stumbled on an excellent deal that made the Matrix a clearly better value (on that particular car that particular day), I might well have bought a P5, and I probably would have been happy about it (though not nearly as happy as Car & Driver says I should have been ;-)).
  • SporinSporin Member Posts: 1,066
    Things that turned me OFF to the Matrix...

    Minivan seating position
    Slammed RAV4 looks
    Numb Steering
    Numb Braking
    Numb Handling with exaggerated body motions due to high seats
    Pricy once you add options
    Typical Toyota salesman snobbery

    Things that turned me ON to the P5...

    Value (standard everything)
    Low factory financing
    Handling, Handling, Handling
    Communicative Steering & Brakes
    Super Comfortable Seats
    Maximum interior space with minimal exterior dimensions
    Long reliability history
    Proven Japanese build-quality
    Sweet looks
    Drives like a sports car, hauls like a wagon

    Straight line speed (0-60) is about 9th on my list of automotive priorities. Value, handling, bang-for-the-buck, quality and safety are far more important.
  • shriqueshrique Member Posts: 338
    that you feel that you have to bash a car that is so close in specs and obviously superior in handling. The P5 is a much better car IMO than the Matrix. The Matrix (low end version) feels top heavy, and underpowered. The 1.8 130hp feels way to small an engine in HP and Torque to heft it around. A car of that style should have more torque at a lower range. The suspension is tippy and underconfident in cornering and understeers like mad (probably due to pathetic tires).

    The GTS version of the Matrix on the other hand is a much more capable car. The suspension has been upgraded to a nice solid feel when cornering. The 17" wheels really help give it needed grip around corners and the lower profile tires help turn-in considerably. The HP is not in quite as useful a range but when you wind it up it goes pretty good. The torque is still low but if your the type of person that like to wind it up who cares.

    There you go. That's my opinion, I'm glad you like your Matrix.
  • tom3ktom3k Member Posts: 91
    I apologize if you think I was bashing the P5. I attempted to choose my words carefully. I think if you look back, most of my crtitcisms of the P5 or the things I like about the Matrix were purely subjective. I think they are both excellent cars for what they try to be, and at 'TMV' at least, the P5 probably is a better value. It is certainly the more attractive of the two.

    I was indeed dissapointed when I drove P5, but only because it has been so over-hyped by the automotive press to the point of raising expectations beyond what it could possibly deliver.
  • shriqueshrique Member Posts: 338
    The reason I keep getting confused by what your saying is that the ONLY thing they seemed to not like was the HP. Every article that I read said that it's HP challenged or whatever cliche they chose to use. The biggest reason people loved the car was the handling and quality feel. The only point you keep mentioning is how "slow" it felt. "over-hyped by the automotive press to the point of raising expectations beyond what it could possibly deliver." How could that statement be true when they all thought that the HP and speed of the car was "adequate"?
  • southpaw1southpaw1 Member Posts: 34
    It is only one element in these cars. Both cars are zippy, IMO, and I'd be happy in either of them. Seems the whole horsepower game is getting out of control with the automakers. I have the 180 hp Matrix. In the traffic I encounter daily brakes seem to be more important than horsepower!
  • zukhovzukhov Member Posts: 34
    We all have our opinions on this and that. That's a good thing. Here's mine. you say 'long reliability history...proven Japanese build quality for the Mazda/Ford. Toyota doesn't get much better than that in those departments. They are consistently tops. 'Numb steering & braking'. I took it for a few rides & it felt quite responsive to me. I must admit, I did not drive the P5 & I understand that it is a better handling car. I didn't mind the seating position. What I thought they got wrong was the steering wheel position.
  • SporinSporin Member Posts: 1,066
    Yes, Toyota does have a long reliability history, but the Matrix is a new car, based on another new car (the Corrolla). And it's build by the UAW in California. (don't even get me started on teh UAW)

    The P5 has been available abroad as-is for 3 years, and the Protege sedan it's based on has been in production for even longer then that. The Protege lineup has been on CR's Best Bet list for years. It's been built inteh same Japanese factory, by Japanese workers, of 95% Japanese parts for that whole time. Experience counts. That's why I gave the "long reliability history" edge to the P5.

    Besides, Toyota's quality has been slowly slipping for years (according to most surveys). They built their quality reputation 15 years ago when the competition was pure junk... and now they live off that rep. The gap between Toyota/Honda and everyone else just isn't as huge as it used to be.

    What it all comes down to is subjective opinion, not right or wrong. I'm not bashing the Matrix, I just pointed out the thins that I didn't like. I'm glad there are choices out there for everyone.
  • maltbmaltb Member Posts: 3,572
    Yes, Toyota does have a long reliability history, but the Matrix is a new car, based on another new car (the Corrolla). And it's build by the UAW in California. (don't even get me started on teh UAW)

    hmmm, the NUMMI plant builds some pretty solid stuff. I don't know that there is much room to criticize Toyota on its production facilities in any country. As a Mazda supporter, I could only hope that plants in the US that build Mazdas were this good. In the case of the Protege, however, I'd say that the production facility in Hiroshima is every bit as good as a US Toyota facility.
  • SporinSporin Member Posts: 1,066
    I would say that the Mazda facility in Hiroshima is BETTER then any US Toyota facility... but we're getting into personal opinon and speculation again. I have no facts to "prove" those points, it's just my opinion and I don't mean to bash Toyota, the NUMMI plant, it's workers, or America in any way. :-D

    Clearly I've got issues with the UAW.. these are my problems and I try to deal with them as constructively as possible. hahahah ! :-)
  • zukhovzukhov Member Posts: 34
    You make some good points. Don't mean to nit pick here, but the Toyota Matrix is built in the non unionized plant in Cambridge, Ontario. This facility is consitently named as one of the top tier quality auto assembly lines in the world. As far as being built by Japanese workers with Japanese parts. The Toyota & Honda facilities here in Canada have topped their counterparts in Japan on several occasions. As far as the surveys go. I recently reviewed (I think it was JD Power..not 100%), and Toyota was # 1 for number of defects etc...
  • dogtrainerdogtrainer Member Posts: 96
    Everyone's entitled to their opinion (even tom3k), but let's at least get our facts straight. The Matrix is built at a Toyota factory in Canada. I'm not positive, but I seriously doubt it's a UAW plant. The Pontiac Vibe is built at the NUMMI plant in California.
  • dogtrainerdogtrainer Member Posts: 96
    I haven't driven the P5, but my Matrix, with the 17" wheels) has no understeer or oversteer, the suspension holds flat and hugs the corners, and the steering is very responsive. Like most power brakes, brake feel is somewhat numb, that's where ABS comes in handy. While not neck snapping, the acceleration is more than adequate for normal driving. Overall, a fun to drive car! Top quality too.
  • bluong1bluong1 Member Posts: 1,927
    actually I think all FWD cars, no exception, including P5 and Matrix, are understeer.

  • protege_fanprotege_fan Member Posts: 2,405
    ALL FWD cars will experience understeer if pushed hard enough.

    RWD and AWD cars will experience oversteer if pushed too hard.

    I'm curious but I haven't looked it up yet...what kind of suspension does the Matrix have set-up in the rear?
  • SporinSporin Member Posts: 1,066
    Sorry guys, I thought the Matrix was built in the Cali-UAW plant and the Vibe in the Ontario-non-UAW plant.

    My mix up.

    Still, I specifically wanted a Japanese car, built in Japan of Japanese parts. There aren't many around anymore. I bought this car for the long, long haul and I wanted my best chance of the best assembly, quality, and longevity. Historically, that means Japanese.
  • iamziamz Member Posts: 542
    "After dropping the Ford off at the transmission place (where it got an eventual death sentence), I walked over to the local Mazda dealer to try and drive a P5. They only had an automatic (I think I've bought my last automatic), but I took it out anyway. I was a HAY-UGE dissapointment. I hated the action on the tranny and it was weak to the point of being unsafe."

    I drive a P5 with the auto tranny and have yet to encounter the "unsafe" aspect of this combo. Please enlighten me????

    A guy here at work has his son in the hospital and his son's freind that was in the car with him is dead. They were ripping down a dirt road and lost control of the car and it rolled several times throwing both boys from the vehicle in the process.

    I don't know what kind of vehicle they were driving but I do know this.....Kids don't get in these kind of situations because of "weak tranny's" or a lack of power to the wheels.
  • tom3ktom3k Member Posts: 91
    In my last post on the topic........

    During the test drive, I attempted to pass a slow-moving truck on a hill. After moving to the left lane, when I pushed on the gas pedal it first hesitated, then raced, and while it did get me up the hill, it never felt all that strong, and yes I was was a little scared there for a second. Now knowing how touchy you P5 folks are, I perhaps should have chosen my words more carefully (don't feel too bad - they're chewing me up for agreeing with a reviewer's comment about the dim guage lights over on the Matrix board, so Matrix owners might even be a little touchier). I think I made it clear from my original posts that I'm pretty down on automatics in general, and in retrospect maybe I shouldn't have driven one even if that was all they had on the lot. The P5 (with a 5-speed) really is a nice car, it just didn't work as well for me personally as the Matrix. I really can't fault anyone for choosing one over the other.
  • iamziamz Member Posts: 542
    "I attempted to pass a slow-moving truck on a hill. After moving to the left lane, when I pushed on the gas pedal it first hesitated, then raced, and while it did get me up the hill, it never felt all that strong, and yes I was was a little scared there for a second. "

    I'm just toying with you a little Tom, but you just managed to make my point. You attempted to pass while going up a hill in a car that you were entirely unfamiliar with. Sounds like you put yourself in a potentially dangerous situation, not the P5. A weak transmission or lack of power is not the problem here.

    Every automatic I've driven hesitates a moment before downshifting.

    I've made dozens of passes in the 22,000+ miles I've put on my P5 and haven't had a close call yet.

    Know thy car and it will keep you safe. ;)
  • tom3ktom3k Member Posts: 91
    I saw it as an opportunity to put the car through its paces (there was no other traffic around). That sort of hesitation is one of the reasons I can't stand automatics, I guess (at least in four-bangers. 6's & 8's seem to do better with them. Perhaps because they have more power to spare? - Just speculation and very personal opinion, not intended to offend anyone.;-)).

    I decided to post originally because my experiences with both cars seemed so markedly different than what I was seeing posted. I expressed my honest opinions, perhaps with a little hyperbole (intended or unintended), but I called 'em as I saw 'em. Had I seen them differently, I might well have ended up making a different choice. They are both well-built cars with simiar specs in about the same price range, but this is a 'vs.' topic after all......
  • iamziamz Member Posts: 542
    "this is a 'vs.' topic after all...... "

    You are correct sir, and without opinions, these forums wouldn't be any fun.

    I like shifting manually myself sometimes. Thats what my motorcycle is for. :D
  • shriqueshrique Member Posts: 338
    what people don't get is that your experiences were s o much different than the specs and personal experiences seemed to indicate.
  • tom3ktom3k Member Posts: 91
    If they were the same as everybody else's why would I bother writing them down?;-)
  • the_big_hthe_big_h Member Posts: 1,583
    Protege5 owners, or just Protege owners in general, really do love their cars and will go the distance in defending their car!!!!

    Now, can a Matrix stir up this kind of passion from their owners???? :D
  • tom3ktom3k Member Posts: 91
    Nah. We're too busy arguing whether the dials are dim or not.;-)

    I know what you mean about passion, though. I wanted to (maybe 'expected to' would be more appropriate) get passionate about the P5, but I just couldn't. Just wasn't the car for me right now. I'm really really happy with the Matrix, but I wouldn't say 'passionate'. Now, a WRX......

    Anyways, enjoy.
  • maltbmaltb Member Posts: 3,572
    Just wasn't the car for me right now.

    Well, I have yet to meet a person that has gotten younger.

  • dogtrainerdogtrainer Member Posts: 96
    You're assuming that the reason tom3k said it isn't the car for him right now has something to do with his age. Bad assumption. People do change, sometimes in unexpected ways as the age.
  • bsum70bsum70 Member Posts: 37
    Tough decision:
    I test drive the Matrix the other day and like it a lot. Fresh design, sharp looking body panels, comfortable seats and useful cargo area. But I still wonder why Toyota put that sporty but torque-less engine in the Matrix. Yes, it is very sporty and fun to see the rpm swing to > 6k and zoom.... May be I am old (31yo) but I don't think I would like to do that too often. Plus this is not a Celica, Matrix owners actually put passengers (front and back) in their car. I am unsure about the durability (yes, I know this is a Toyota but...) of engines under these working condition. Why they don't put the base Camry engine (or even the RAV4) engine in it?? Both of these engine with lots MORE torque, with good MPG and on regular fuel as well.
    Havn't test drive the P5 yet but I like that classy but sporty look of the P5 a lot. I think I will take a test drive soon....
  • the_big_hthe_big_h Member Posts: 1,583
    you owe yourself to test drive the Protege5 before making a decision. the P5 is probably one of the most complete sporty compact wagon out there, go check it out!

    There is a reason why there's a loyal following of Protege/Protege5 owners, because they're so much fun to drive!
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