2004 Toyota Echo Hatchback (Canadian model)

vixtervixter Member Posts: 34
edited March 2014 in Toyota
only in Canada. It'll be available in 3dr & 5dr configurations. CE, LE & RS. The pics on the Canadian website is of the current European Yaris and should end up a little different as the Canadian production model.
www.toyota.ca or www.ECHOHATCHBACK.TOYOTA.CA


  • ejonavinejonavin Member Posts: 36
    I can't say I like the way it looks. The Honda Fit/Jazz is much better looking. Of course, considering how well the ugle Echo sedans are selling this may be a non-issue. Albeit, they did fixed it in the current MY.
  • odmanodman Member Posts: 309
    ECHO 3-door HB starts from CAN$12,999, undercutting the Echo 2-door.

  • odmanodman Member Posts: 309
    It's been a busy launch weekend for the ECHO HB in Canada. Here are some reviews with mostly positive comments:

  • little_pogilittle_pogi Member Posts: 149
    Over here in California, Toyota dealers have started selling the Scion. They are very similar in size to the Echo. The Bx version looks like micro version of the GM minivan and the Ax closely resemble the Yaris. It would be nice is Edmund's message board hosts open up Scion discussion so Scion owners can share their experiences to others eargerly awaiting it in other parts of N. America.
  • odmanodman Member Posts: 309
    Both the Ax and Bx are based on the Echo/Yaris platform.

    To target young buyers Toyota USA invented the Scion brand and brought over the Ax/Bx from Japan. Toyota Canada went the less expensive route and brought over an existing hatch that was already doing well in Europe. Small hatches aren't big sellers in the US, but they sell better here, so Toyota should have brought the hatch over when the Echo first came out.
  • i_luv_toyotai_luv_toyota Member Posts: 350
    We (the US) get stuck with the fugly Scions which are currently California-only (thank god). Hopefully they are flopping in sales there so I, on the EAST coast, won't ever have to see the ugly things in living color!

    Gimme the Echo hatch. Please!!!
  • odmanodman Member Posts: 309
    I wouldn't be surprised to see a few of them exported from Canada to the US. They are, after all, ECHOs, so servicing will not be a hassle in the US. With the cheap Canadian peso, the base $13,000 car would go for $9,750, plus any import, instrument panel conversion, and misc. fees.

    Back when we had a $.65 dollar (we are now at $.75), the car companies were trying to clamp down on Canadian exports, so they said Canadian cars sold in the US would not be covered by a warranty. I don't know if this applies to Toyota.
  • cbmortoncbmorton Member Posts: 252
    Toyota Canada has just announced that the Echo hatchback will hit dealerships on 29th July. Pricing for the car, options and many (but not yet all) accessories is available through Toyota's configurator on their Canadian website, http://www.toyota.ca .

    The marketing campaign for the new hatchback is the subject of an interesting article:

  • odmanodman Member Posts: 309
    I stopped by my local dealer and saw a whole bunch of Echo hatches. Most were 5-doors, and I think that will be the preferred body style. I like better anyway.

    I couldn't get over how short in overall length it was. The car looks really tiny (but not in a bad way) and MUCH better looking than the Echo sedan. It's the closest we can get to a European SMART car. The bold red and blue colours really set it off, but I'm not wild about the gold or silver. I think that this car will do well here -- they should have launched it back when the Echo first came out.

    Toyota Canada has updated their site with the brochure. It is the same as the print brochure.
  • nippononlynippononly Member Posts: 12,555
    is a very similar car to the Yaris hatch: a five-door small hatchback with the Echo powertrain. So if you like the Yaris/Vitz/Canadian Echo, you should take a serious look at the xA. And it is roughly the same price (but there is no stripper available: A/C and power steering are standard, as are power windows and locks).

    However, xA is not selling that well. The Scion that HAS taken off is the xB (the bb in Japan, and a most unique looking vehicle!). I already see them all over the place here in the Bay Area.

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

  • revkarevka Member Posts: 1,750
    Odman - Thanks for the information/link.

    So has anyone here had a chance to test drive one yet? Anyone here thinking of purchasing one? We look forward to hearing your impressions! ;-)

    Hatchbacks & Wagons Boards
  • odmanodman Member Posts: 309
    Advertising Age has an Echo HB commercial on-line. It is short and off-beat. The resolution isn't the greatest and there aren't many good shots of the car, but it's a fun commerical.

  • mscoffmscoff Member Posts: 3
    We just returned from Montreal. Saw an Echo HB in the show room. I had planned to buy an Echo or Ford Focus but the HB was perfect for my needs. Price at the current exchange is about 10K US. The dealer would be more than happy to sell it to me and provide a 10 day transit permit for Quebec. So I stopped at the border and the Canadians will give you back the federal taxes after 60 days when you show proof of registration (CT for me)Don't know about provincal tax. So then I talked to the senior US customs inspector.
  • mscoffmscoff Member Posts: 3
    You need letter from Toyoto confirming conformance to US DOT and EPA guidlines. VIN # from CA, USA, or Mexico for free trade manufacture. Otherwise duty paid for Japan manufacture at border . Local dealer (CT) said inspection for US about $500. Customs guy said watch out. He's seen cars sit at the customs parking lot. Warantee would be no problem. But alot of work. So I bought an Echo sedan. But the little HB would have been perfect
  • odmanodman Member Posts: 309
    A lot of vehicles (200,000+/year) get exported each year to the USA. Most are SUVs and premium vehicles taking advantage of the difference in pricing after exchange rates. There should be companies that would specialize in exporting these cars.

    It may be easier to bring a USED Echo HB to the US once they become available. You wouldn't have to worry about import tariffs at that point.
  • weelzweelz Member Posts: 20
    You only get one remote with keyless entry on the new hatch.Was so nice of them to tell me that after I bought the car........now the teeni bit of $$$ I saved goes back to them for the remote and programming it which can only be done at a dealership.Not one dealership was aware of the "one" remote thing until a week+ after the car hit the lots.It does not state it on the website,brochure,sticker or does the salesman tell you (not that they even knew anyway!)Then they tell you "too bad take it up with Toyota Canada" A cheap 2 dollar peice of plastic that comes with all other vehicles with the option?

    They all ran around like idiots looking for a second that was not there.They told me it is the first Toyota to only come with one.What a cheap out way to launch a vehicle.Marketing genious at it very best :)) Thanks Toyota I really got the feeling........
  • ab348ab348 Member Posts: 18,907
    I've noticed a few of these on the roads up here the last week or so. Quite possibly the most hideous-looking car I have ever seen, and tiny to boot, to the point where I certainly wouldn't feel safe in one. It reminds me of the old Daewoo Lanos micro-hatch, only uglier, if that's possible.

    2017 Cadillac ATS Performance Premium 3.6

  • weelzweelz Member Posts: 20
    North Americans have just not figured out yet how ridicoulous they look driving huge gas guzzling vehicles.Once everyones throat has closed up and cannot breath in large cities from all the pollution spewed by these vehicles the little "tiny" cars may start look look a tad more appealing.Why is it one of the most popular vehicles in Europe and Australia for the past 3 years?Car of the year in 2000 over there?

    When gas prices begin to increase you will see alot more of these types of vehicles and for good reason with 46 MPG.If you think you are safer in a truck or SUV you might be surprised looking at some of the crash stats on them.
  • nippononlynippononly Member Posts: 12,555
    check out all the minicars that are coming from Europe in the next couple of years, starting with the Smart...and the Japanese may respond by bringing some of their microcars over as well...

    many of those will make the Yaris hatch look enormous by comparison...

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

  • odmanodman Member Posts: 309
    The Echo Hatch is the closest thing we have to the tiny SMART car in Europe -- for now.

    Americans will be getting the 4-seater fourfor model when it comes out, but Canuks will get the original 2-seater. It would be ideal for Vancouver, Toronto, and Montreal (okay, it might have trouble in the snow drifts). I'm all for the creation of affordable, economical but high quality small cars.

    The Echo is no Lanos. It's something that will still be drivable in 10-years time.
  • bodble2bodble2 Member Posts: 4,514
    Is it just an oversight on the Toyota.ca site or is it really the case that only the 5-Dr LE is available with a dealer-installed security system? Seems kind of weird since even the RS cannot be configured with a security system. Has anyone any real-life experience on this issue?
  • bodble2bodble2 Member Posts: 4,514
    The Echo Hatch may be the Japanese rebirth of the Honda Civic hatch from the '70's and early '80's -- basic, simple, funky-looking, but well-built and a blast to drive. The quintessential car for college student on a budget.

    Earlier models such as the Tercel and Nissan Micra tried and performance-wise they were slugs.
  • weelzweelz Member Posts: 20
    I have the 4 dr. LE.I did not get the security package on it but I can tell you that I found out keyless entry only comes with one remote.There is still alot of dealerships with this car on the lot who don't know it until the customer picks up the car?

    I asked why that was not listed on the website too?You would have to ask a dealership and "possibly" they "might" have an answer for you.Or make up some BS to sell you the car anyway.

    It is reliable car so far for me.Not much power but I did not expect it to have it anyway.It is good enough to get you around town and enough on the highway but not a rocket.It is however very quick and agile in the city,the small size really allows you to get in and out of traffic easily.Parking it is like parking a go-kart :)

    If you want a new car under 20K that gets more points and stares than a 40K car buy one.It is funny seeing all the folks stare down your "econobox" be it a good or bad reaction :)
  • odmanodman Member Posts: 309
    Hey Weelz, good luck with the Echo HB.
    What colour did you get?
    What's it like out on the highway at 120+?
  • weelzweelz Member Posts: 20
    I got the millenium gold color.Very bright and gets alot of attention.

    I am still breaking the car in and I am just over 1500 K now.1800 k is supposed to be the break in point so I have not taken it over 100k too often.

    I have passed a few cars without problem.there is enough power there with the 1.5 litre and the car is so light it moves quick enough for me. The car is surprisingly quiet.When you are at a light you do not even hear the motor.For a cheap econobox it rides well and handles good both city and highway.I would say it is very quick in the city and easy to weave in and out of traffic because of the small size of the car.It moves 4 people easily but don't expect to bring alot of cargo :)

    These days I cannot see spending alot on a vehicle unless you want to store it in the winter and keep it as a classic.This car is good on gas (very good) and the money I save there will cover the increased insurance all drivers have faced this past year not to mention increased fuel costs.

    Like I said before if you want speed and luxury look elsewhere.If you want to save some coin and have decent car proven free of problems and re-calls.....this one seems to deliver.
  • alexradualexradu Member Posts: 9
    unfortunately for a (very) short time. It drives really well, and it looks great. Isn't this very cute ?


    Me being an European, I've been waiting for this kind of cars for quite a long time - I also hope that the A-Class Merc, the Swatch, and the new Peugeots also make it here - sorry, but I really dislike most American cars - with a few exceptions (some Chryslers, for instance, which at least look good). I might be moving to the States (with the job) so I really hope that this little gem will be available in the US as well, pretty soon.
  • odmanodman Member Posts: 309
    I know there are a bunch of rules for importing a brand new car into the USA to sell to a new owner, but what about someone who already owns a car and isn't selling it. Do you still need to have the odo/speedo changed, etc? If your job is a short-term one, you might be able to just take it with you.

    BTW: Thanks for the photo link. It looks great in blue.
  • nippononlynippononly Member Posts: 12,555
    the smog and safety regs are different in the U.S., which makes it a problem to bring your Canadian car here and register it. If you could keep your Canadian reg in force, I imagine it would be OK to just keep it registered in Canada. A friend of mine tried to bring in a Volvo from his uncle in Newfoundland and was told there would be no way to bring it up to U.S. smog spec, and he ended up having to take the car back!

    I wish they would sell this little hatch in the U.S.!

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

  • weelzweelz Member Posts: 20
    I cannot understand that either....why would they not sell it in the U.S.??

    I guess the Scion is supposed to be the model you get there.I still like this hatch better though.Maybe 2005 will bring the car there who knows?

    Fun car though,really whips around town in a hurry :)
  • odmanodman Member Posts: 309
    The Scion Xa was chosen for the USA over the Echo HB, but early figures show that the Xa isn't doing as well as expected, and that the more distinctive Xb is accounting for the bulk of Scion's sales.

    I think the US marketing folks are going to watch very closely how the Echo HB does here and who buys it and what they are conquesting. Part of their decision whether to bring the hatch depends on what happens to the Echo sedan. If sales are lost to the Xa/Xb, don't expect to see the HB there. If Echo retains its different buyer base, there might be an opportunity to expand sales with the HB.
  • odmanodman Member Posts: 309
    I know that earlier standards were different, but I thought Canada had harmonized with the US. A simple check of Echo sedan hardware would verify. If Cdn and US controls are the same, then the HB should be at least 49-state legal. California would be the exception.
  • revkarevka Member Posts: 1,750
    Just curious, aside from Weelz, are there any other 2004 Echo Hatchback owners out there? We'd love to hear from!

    Also, if you know anyone that's interested in discussing this subject, please send them to this discussion. Here's a direct link to this discussion that you can copy/paste:


    Thanks for your participation! ;-)

    Host of Hatchbacks & Wagons Boards
  • odmanodman Member Posts: 309
    They have been on sale since late July and we are just starting to see them on the streets. In the past week I saw two black ones, a silver, a gold and a white one in various areas around the GTA. The black ones look really sharp!
  • bodble2bodble2 Member Posts: 4,514
    I saw a blue one in RS trim that looked really sharp. Can't decide if the 3-dr or 5-dr looks better. But I think the spoiler really improves the looks of either one.
  • odmanodman Member Posts: 309
    I think the 5-doors actually look better than the 3-doors. They just seem better balanced, the same way I thought the original 4-door Neons looked better than the 2-doors.

    Anyone in the Toronto area should go check out the Tuner show at Yorkdale Mall this weekend. A dealer is displaying red RS 5-door with a wild graphics package. The rest looks bone-stock, but it was cool to see.
  • phampton2phampton2 Member Posts: 1
    Here is the Dutch version of the echo (called Yaris). This is the turbo model. I think it looks cool.

  • bodble2bodble2 Member Posts: 4,514
    Only thing that has me a bit concerned is the size of the Echo. There's really not much "crumple-zone" around the passengers. In an altercation with an SUV, would it get squashed like a bug?! Anyone share the same concerns?
  • cp4hcp4h Member Posts: 18
    I guess everything is a compromise isn't it. If you were too concern about crashworthness, why not get a used four door civic for the same amount of money ? They have very good crashratings and feel very stable on highway.
  • bodble2bodble2 Member Posts: 4,514
    It's funny you should mention Civic because that is exactly the other car we're considering. But here in Canada, to get a Civic with ABS, which is standard in all Echo hatchbacks, the price is about $3k more (out-the-door).
  • carlisimocarlisimo Member Posts: 1,280
    In some colleges, she'll be driving carless people around pretty often, so backseat safety would be something to think about. If it's a long drive through a windy area, the Echo will get buffetted pretty bad.

    I'd still go for the Echo though. Take a large computer monitor box to the dealership. See which car it fits in more easily. That would be ultimate college car test. I suspect the Echo will be better for cargo.
  • odmanodman Member Posts: 309
    Here's another positive review of the Echo hatch. It points out that it drives well on the highway, and that with a very low weight, it's torque is more than sufficient for getting around better than the old gutless Tercels of yore.
    http://www.nationalpost.com/driversedge/story.html?id=92EDF704-62- 31-4147-84DB-ECB7065402F5
  • kklosekklose Member Posts: 3
    I know I paid too much, but one of our local dealers managed to import one from Canada, and after driving it, had to have it!! It is a silver auto RS. Very attractive, comfortable, very good driver, quite quick. I bought it for my son, but he's going to have to pry it out of my hands! I absolutely love it, it is just about the best handling car I've owned in my 35 years of driving.
  • bodble2bodble2 Member Posts: 4,514
    You can price one on the Toyota.ca site, do the exchange conversion and see if you paid too much. They're selling at pretty much at MSRP up here in Canada.
  • odmanodman Member Posts: 309
    You must sure turn a lot of heads with it. Where in the US are you? We are starting to see lots on the streets here and they really are distinctive. Moreso than the Scion Xa, which we don't get.

    Did the dealer import just one or a bunch? Any issues with conversion to US standards or warranty coverage?
  • fuelmiserfuelmiser Member Posts: 26
    I have been very happy with my 1987 Sprint hatchback (actually made by Suzuki) that I have owned since new. It now has 200,000 miles on it and needs to be replaced - not due to mechanical problems but rather due to rusting. It gets up to 60 miles per US gallon, and it has been a very economical car all around. I am shopping for a new car and have settled on an Echo. But the sedan/coupe style is the only one offered here in the US. I would much prefer the hatchback, so I am interested in getting a car in Canada, new, and importing it. Can anyone give me a list of dealers in the Niagara, Ontario, area and a checklist of things I will need to do to import it? And the expense of doing this? Are there any US dealers around Buffalo, NY who do this kind of thing?
  • janbeejanbee Member Posts: 127
    Try www.toyota.ca looks like there are toyota dealers in niagara falls, st catherines, welland & fort erie, which are all pretty close to the us/canada border.
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