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Vibe/ Matrix v. PT Cruiser v. ZX5 v. Protege5 v. Elantra GT v. Aerio SX

toyotas1toyotas1 Posts: 134
edited March 2014 in Toyota
I like the new Vibe. Justtest drove it. And saw the Matrix at the dealership. Are there any new sport wagons that are butter? Let me know. I'm buying oe by summer and I want one tha women find sexy and I'll find fun!
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Comments

  • badtoybadtoy Posts: 368
    doesn't say where you live, so I have no idea what the women in your neck of the woods like; but here's my take on the styling of the vehciles you mentioned:

    The Vibe is a very nice take on a modified sport-ute, with typical Pontiac agressiveness. I would avoid the base model with the gray-colored cladding, though -- it ruins the looks of the car and demonstrates that Pontiac still hasn't fully learned its lessons from the Aztek.

    The Matrix was designed for the SoCal street scene, and considering the car's high profile is very successful in that regard. Large numbers of people between the two coasts may prefer the more conventional look of the Vibe, however.

    The PT Cruiser has been a runaway success for the last couple of years, and I still like the looks of it; but here in LA, it is considered an old fogey's car. Midwesterners may feel quite different about it. Quality, ride and handling are not up to Vibe/Matrix standards.

    The Focus is a great driver's car, and I love the styling, but reliability has been poor. Damn shame -- the Focus keeps walking off with all the marbles in the fun-to-drive category.

    The Protege5 looks great, handles beautifully and manages to look sharp without being too radical. Mazda has a checkered history when it comes to reliability, however.

    All of these are great cars in their own way. I'd consider the financial consequences of the quality and reliability issues, then make your decision based on which one you find yourself dreaming about.
  • tbaytbay Posts: 22
    Service manager at local dealer says recent Proteges hold up well and different sources like CR and LemonAid back this up. Our 99 Protege and 2000 MPV are doing very well! 626 Automatic transmissions in the last decade......well that's a different tale
  • mrolandmroland Posts: 129
    The Zx5 owners at myfordfocus.com have almost no problems with theirs. About 15 people have one that post there, and 2 have had minor issues. One with brakes, and one with underbody not finished well. The consensus seems to be that the 2000 Focus modesl had lots of problems, mostly recalls, and Ford has really sorted this car out.

    The PT Cruiser is the best looking of the lot. But it can't top my Focus in the Corners.
  • dollar for dollar, the ZX5 is the best value. its got great standard features and it's the most fun to drive of any car i've ever owned. the 5-speed makes it peppy and responsive and adds to the driving experience with this car. i'm thinking about another focus for my next car already. the reliability issues have never been about the drive train, its been small stuff. we've had no problems with ours. bought in early november. even if you're biased against it, at least test drive one before you buy anything else. you will be impressed!!
  • toyotas1toyotas1 Posts: 134
    New ZX5's before, so I know how SWEET they drive, but the Vibe GT I just tested is just as responsive, rommier, and MUCH more powerful! And it doesn't look like the thing that came out of the guy's stomach in "Alien" (may he rest in peace)!!!
  • mrolandmroland Posts: 129
    Look an awful lot like a ZX5, but more square sided, and certainly less spritely looking. Who designed the interior on those two? Probably the same people behind the Aztek, it looks like a Datsun F-10 from 1976 with the slab sided plastic and holed in dials.
  • toyotas1toyotas1 Posts: 134
    No doubt!!!! And it will tag that [non-permissible content removed] on any stoplight you can think of! AND it has optional NAV (it'll be EONS before Ford can do that!).......
  • seminole_kevseminole_kev Posts: 1,722
    boy! Yeah it will be a regular whooping with that 130hp versus 130hp match up. Or the Vibe GT 180hp versus the SVT Focus's 170hp. Wow! talk about massacare. You guys kill me. This is a very evenly matched market right now for 5-door hatches. I'm just glad that we're finally getting some choices again. Now if VW would put the 1.8t engine back in the Golf. Very stupid decision.
  • TupTup Posts: 200
    Is there a 5 door SVT? I thought it was just a ZX3 variant. Also, you have to admit that the Vibe/Matrix do give a lot of variety....Base, AWD, 180Hp versions.
  • revdrluvrevdrluv Posts: 417
    Vw pulled the 1.8t engine from the golf? So its only in the GTi now or what?
  • seminole_kevseminole_kev Posts: 1,722
    yep! You can only get that engine in the GTi version, not the Golf. You want a Golf, you either get the base 2.0 engine, which doesn't do anything for me. Or you can get the diesel. Diesel isn't really a bad choice, just not what I want.
  • mrolandmroland Posts: 129
    The Golf and the Elantra GT were not included in this comparo?
  • seminole_kevseminole_kev Posts: 1,722
    probably could be covered best by the "Which 5-door hatchback" topic.
  • revkarevka Posts: 1,750
    Here's a discussion from the Station Wagons messge board that some of you may find interesting: Ford Fusion. It sort of fits into the 5 door hatch category, imo.

    Revka
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  • biker16biker16 Posts: 26
    image

     new optional Interior Versatility Package (IVP) includes a fold-forward front passenger seat that can be used as a working surface or rucksack holder, a 40/20/40 rear seat back, a smart package tray in the boot, additional stowage nets, kangaroo pockets and hooks and a reversible load carpet that lets you carry messy loads safely.
  • revkarevka Posts: 1,750
    but just a reminder that our Town Hall Agreement forbids posting materials/photos that may infringe on the copyright protections of any person or other entity. Okay?

    So if you don't own the picture, or have permission to use it here, please just provide us with a link/url to the picture location instead of posting it directly into the message. Thanks. ;-)

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  • edchenedchen Posts: 31
    Are the rear headsets new also or only available in Europe? That was a big turnoff for us along with the tick-tock turn signal. :) BTW, if you fold down the front seat it gives the starboard rear passenger a nice place to put her feet.
  • seminole_kevseminole_kev Posts: 1,722
    The rear headrest are not available anymore (well I'm pretty sure!). I liked them, but I guess I was in the minority as most people complained about the lack of visability. Yes the turn signal is LOUD.
  • protegextwoprotegextwo Posts: 1,265
    Boxes, Size Small:

    Chrysler PT Cruiser

    Ford Focus ZX5

    Pontiac Vibe

    Mazda Protegé5

    Suzuki Aerio SX

    Toyota Matrix XRS

    http://www.caranddriver.com/xp/Caranddriver/comparisontests/2002/june/200206_comparo_boxes.xml?

    Very interesting....

    -Larry
  • mrolandmroland Posts: 129
    That road test was from Car and Driver, not Motor Trend.

    I love the tick tock turn signal. WHen I first drove I thought it was so cute, sounds like no other car.
  • mpgmanmpgman Posts: 723
    No contest. It beats them all on price, content, warranty, and size. Focus has old fashioned side mirrors that don't fold...Elantra GT's fold and are heated. Matrix and Vibe are overpriced. Pro-5 is nice but Elantra GT is much better for driver comfort and leg room. PT Cruiser mpgs are poor. GT the only one with standard side air bags, 4 wheel discs, trip computer, leather. Hyundai has come a long way since they hired a ton of Honda engineers.
  • mrolandmroland Posts: 129
    Elantra GT is a lot of car for the money. No doubt about that. But we can find one nice off ramp I'll tell you which hold the road better. My focus is more fun to drive. It always depends on what you priotities are, that is why there are so many cars on the market that manage to find homes.
  • 5port5port Posts: 395
    Realistically speaking...what are you doing the most in your car 1) driving straight ahead and accelerating hard or 2) in a turn and trying to find the max G reading? If you picked 1 go with the GT. If you picked 2 go with the p5.
  • shov6shov6 Posts: 177
    God help me if the day ever comes that I choose my car on the basis of whether or not the side-mirrors fold.

    -SHOV6
  • jaskingjasking Posts: 10
    Nice thing about the Focus is that the mirrors don't just fold, they fall right off (judging from the number I've seen with packing tape holding them on).
  • shriqueshrique Posts: 338
    I've actually noticed that. And on that note...more Focus issues http://www.auto.com/industry/defect7_20020607.htm


    Personally the P5 was the right combination. Man that thing handles great!

  • dogtrainerdogtrainer Posts: 96
    Let's see...the engine may stall at speed, the front suspension collapses, two different air bag malfunctions, rear wheel bearings may fail, and the engine may catch fire.

    This in addition to eight, count 'em, eight recalls for problems ranging from failing seat latches and windshield wipers to throttle sticking open!

    Yeah, Ford has sure made great strides in quality. I'm sure glad I bought a Matrix.
  • revkarevka Posts: 1,750
    From Edmunds' Future Vehicle Section, here's some information about the 2003 Chrysler PT Cruiser Turbo. What do you think?


    Also, for more focused discussion on the PT Turbo, come join us in our new 2003 PT Cruiser Turbo discussion on the Wagons Board. See ya there! ;-)


    Revka

    Host

    Hatchbacks & Wagons Boards

  • crkeehncrkeehn Posts: 513
    Why is the turbo discussion on the Wagons board if the normally aspirated is on the Hatchback board? Inquiring minds want to know ;-D
  • revkarevka Posts: 1,750
    I started it up on the Wagons board mainly because Edmunds classifies it as a midsize wagon in their Future Vehicles section.

    Btw, our main PT Cruiser discussion is linked to both the Hatchbacks and Wagons board. I could also link the PT Turbo discussion to Hatchbacks if people would like that. I thought I'd wait to see if the discussion drew much traffic. Okay? ;-)

    Revka
    Host
    Hatchbacks & Wagons Boards
  • mrolandmroland Posts: 129
    Have not had a recall.
  • crkeehncrkeehn Posts: 513
    Even Edmunds can't decide what the PT Cruiser is ;-D

    If it's any help, the State of Maryland classes the PT Cruiser as a 4 door sedan.
  • seminole_kevseminole_kev Posts: 1,722
    Insightful as ever. Pro, that was an almost troll like post.....
  • Kirstie_HKirstie_H Posts: 11,101
    No need to post in topics if all you're planning to do is put down models you don't own. Golden rule: if you don't have something that contributes to the discussion, don't post.

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  • seminole_kevseminole_kev Posts: 1,722
    contributes? never heard of the word ;-)

    Actually, the cars listed in the topic are all good cars in there own ways. Right now this is a hotly contested section. Not like the midsize sedan line where you'll have a lot of dead wood. (Malibu, 626, Sable, etc...)
  • Kirstie_HKirstie_H Posts: 11,101
    true enough, kev. If I were shopping for a Hatchback, all but one of the cars on in this topic would be on my test-drive list, and the one would be excluded only because I've already driven it.

    There seems to be a resurgence of the hatchback market. When the old-style Escort hatchback went the way of the Dodo, the rest of the market seemed near extinction as well. I'd love to see sales trends over the past 5 years, inclusive of 2002, for hatchbacks.

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  • seminole_kevseminole_kev Posts: 1,722
    The only one that I didn't seriously consider was the PT crusier because it isn't as fun (to me) to drive as the others above. Still it is a very effective layout, and it is stylish.

    Problem with some here is that they think everyone else has the same exact needs in a car and prefers the exact same things. While the PT cruiser's not for me, it is still a very competent offering.

    By the way, if, and when, do you think Honda will bring over the 5-door civic? Or do you think that they'll only hurt CRV sales by doing that?
  • Kirstie_HKirstie_H Posts: 11,101
    The PT Cruiser is the only one I've driven, and that was as a rental car in -- get this -- downtown San Francisco. Needless to say, it wasn't the car for THAT particular job! But kudos to Chrysler for taking the chance on a really different looking car.

    I'm really not knowledgeable about the 5-door Civic, kev. It'd be great to see, since it would expand Civic's market to include young families with children who prefer NOT to have kids climbing over seats to get into the back. The CR-V is a totally different vehicle. I like to think of it as the urban SUV - An SUV, yes, but small enough to park in high-density street parking areas.

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  • seminole_kevseminole_kev Posts: 1,722
    by the way, if you don't like the styling of the Si, you're not going to like this:


    http://www.honda.co.uk/new_cars/images/big_cars/Family_10400_5_front.jpg


    But I think they should still offer it here. Of course, I wish they'd sell the Jazz here too. Bet they could sell more of them than the Toyota Echo does.


    http://www.honda.co.uk/new_cars/images/big_cars/Compact_10409_5_front.jpg

  • Kirstie_HKirstie_H Posts: 11,101
    OK, I'm not trying to be funny here, but add two doors to this 1974 Civic, and you'll see a similarity! Sure, the new one is more sleek, but you can tell they're related.

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  • seminole_kevseminole_kev Posts: 1,722
    that things in pretty darn good shape.
  • mrolandmroland Posts: 129
    Whatever your preference is, I think its great that five door hatchbacks may finally be having thier day. I have always had European car tastes, small light cars that handle well, five doors and a hatch. I like a hatch much better than a trunk. My second car was an Acura Integra which I was amazed what I could fit into it. (I think I killed the trans from overstuffing it), and than I had a Saturn sedan. I missed the conveniance of the Hatch.

    The only downside I can see is it is much harder to cool when its really hot. the interior because it is much bigger. I wouldn't trade the space for anything. I hope this bodystyle finally makes inroads in the country, be it a PT, Pro5, Focus, Elantra, or Civic, send em our way.
  • george00george00 Posts: 81
    How would you compare the comfort of the driver's seat in these cars? I have a 2002 LE4 Camry with a power driver's seat which I think was designed by the Marquis de Sade. I've been to 3 auto upholsterers and have tried sheepskin and just about every seat cushion on the market but still can't get comfortable. I really wish I could have the Renault 4 I bought new in 1966 in Paris for just over $1,000. It was designed for farmers taking their eggs to market and could go up a flight of stairs without breaking anything. It had only 3 gears (shift looked like an undersink pipe and came out of the dashboard), no power anything, no A/C, 25 hp, max speed of 50 mph, but made 40+ mpg and had the most comfortable car seats I've ever sat in. I loved it, but it couldn't meet US safety or emission specs, so I couldn't bring it back. Anyway, I'm looking for a car in the Camry's price bracket - low 20s - with a seat that is gentle on the back. Any experiences with these - or other - car's seat would be most appreciated.
  • seminole_kevseminole_kev Posts: 1,722
    Brush up on your reading comprehension would ya?

    My quote:
    "By the way, if you don't like the styling of the Si, you're not going to like this:"

    ie if you don't like the styling of a 2-door version of a car, you're not going to like the styling of the same 4-door version.

    figure it out would ya. If you don't like the 3-door Focus, ya ain't gonna like the 5-door. Got it?

    By the way, if I'm pleading for Honda to sell the 5-door Civic hatch here, what do you think? Jeez, and yet I got called the troll by you.
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  • mrolandmroland Posts: 129
    I would try the PT Cruiser first. It has the most comfortable driving position of any car I know. The seats are superb. Car and Driver gave it tops in this category in their recent comparison of these cars. As far as my car goes (ZX5), they are take it or leave it. I find them quite comfy, but some (including some owners) can't stand them and get aftermarket immediately.
    Wasn't it the Citroen 2CV famous for being able to drive across a field and not brake any eggs?
  • george00george00 Posts: 81
    The Citroën 2CV was the one car that my Renault 4 could look down on. The 2CV had only 2 doors, while the R4 had 4 doors and a large hatchback, which made it much more suitable for transporting produce - or anything else. We had a new baby then, and could put her and her German Sportwagen
    (baby carriage) on the back seat. Also, the 2CV was unbelievable noisy - but it was a real fun car, especially in urban conditions, where you could park it anywhere simply by picking it up and putting it down wherever you wanted it (well, that's what people used to say).

    You note that some owners of the ZX5 don't like their seats and "get aftermarket immediately." Do you know what seats they get?
  • mrolandmroland Posts: 129
    You might want to post that query in "interior design" at myfordfocus.com. I have no idea, no $$$ for that mod, and it ranks low on my list....

    You ever have a ride in a Citroen DS or CX? There was a car with a great ride. The DS had an extrmely confortable driving position too. Something about French design, too bad the cars roll like a whaling vessel at the first sign of a curve...
  • csandstecsandste Posts: 1,866
    an R16 and a LeCar. In some ways my Elantra reminds me of those cars more than the Japanese cars I've owned. Softly sprung (although much more sophisticated than the Renaults--not suprising given 20-30 years) and extremely comfortable, upright seating.

    Drove a PT Cruiser last week. Base model with five speed. Tremendously versitile package but AC wasn't quite up to fast cooling such a big space (odd for American car), soft springing-- but not as sophisticated feeling as my Elantra GLS, nice seats-- but again-- not up to the Elantra. All in all, I'm still very happy with what I bought 11.5 months and 22K miles ago. Putting extra miles on car because it is so pleasant. Drove the 97 Cavalier today....OOOOWWWW!!!
  • th003gth003g Posts: 149
    comfort of the seats is more of an opinion thing... if you liker hard seats... elantra has thichkly padded foam filled and in the GT's case leather covered seats that are stiff but I've never gotten numb from sitting in them too long... If you like livingroom couch type feather stuffed couches... go buy a caddy or lincoln apparently the harder the seat is the less likely you are to get numb from it and the more orthopedically correct it is ( according to Mercedes Benz) but I never liked their seats... made me feel like I was sitting on a set of mattress coils covered with leather... ( ever see a cutout of an MB seat... thats what they are)
    with the elantra seats I actually bought a floor model Gt to take advantage of the softer seat... people had sat in it already.. Sat in a Focus Se rental a few weeks ago... holy lack of seat adjustments.. and the i was never able to find a comfortable seating position nor was I able to warm to the interior design
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