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All-New 2009 Toyota Matrix



  • The newspaper quoted the '09 Matrix at $26,000-$30,000.
  • It seems to me if they were going to make the model different enough to justify a quantum leap in pricing then they would have to call it a new model name and not present it as just a new Matrix.
  • moparbadmoparbad Posts: 3,868
    Vibe less than $16K

    Pontiac Vibe will have lower price for 2009, I'd be very surprised if the Matix did not also have a lower price.
  • That sounds far more likely than the huge increase mentioned earlier. I find it hard to believe any car maker would introduce a totally new model at a totally new price point using an old model name unless the name were being resurrected from retirement and had a lot of nostalgic market pull attached..
  • jefe47jefe47 Posts: 3
    i want to buy a matrix and can not decide between 08 and 09. i can't find out when the 09 is really coming out. can anybody help? thanks.
  • nippononlynippononly SF Bay AreaPosts: 12,726
    The official date is February 15. I think you will see exactly ONE new Matrix (the '09) at dealers on that day, and if it gets sold the next day, you won't see another for a week.

    But by March, you should begin to see decent stock at dealers.

    There's not that much to distinguish between the old ('08) and the new ('09) unless you want the bigger engine or the AWD. In those cases you would need to wait for the '09. Apart from that, power is about the same, size is about the same, interior materials are about the same, and at any given price point features are about the same (except for standard ABS and 6 airbags on all models). With the discounts on the old model now, you could probably get an '08 with the airbags and ABS for the same price as you will be able to get a comparable '09 for, for the first few months of availability.

    And of course, there's a styling change, as minor as it have to decide which one you like the looks of more. :-)

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

  • jaxs1jaxs1 Posts: 2,697
    It's disappointing that gas mileage on the 2.4 is almost the same as the larger RAV4 and many much more powerful V6 sedans.
    Why does the 2.4 use so much gas for so little horsepower?
  • Not really a bad engine, the 2.4. It's just that the new Toyota 3.5 V-6 is so good.

    The 2.4 has been around for awhile now, so it's not the most modern 4 out there. I think the Nissan 2.5 is possibly a better engine overall, and the VW 2.0 Turbo is just amazing.

    I've really curious as to what Toyota has up its sleeve in the new 2.7L 4-cylinder coming in the new Venza.
  • jaxs1jaxs1 Posts: 2,697
    It's not just the 2.4 engine, since the RAV4 with the same engine gets about the same mileage ratings despite being in a significantly large and heavier vehicle.
    The Camry also gets competitive mileage with this same engine.
  • Good point.

    Reference: the revised 2008 Ratings for the RAV4 with 2.4 Auto are 21 / 27 - both numbers down 3 mpg from 2007.

    Matrix 2.4 Auto are 21 / 29. I was surprised that the wheelbase of the Matrix is only 2.3" less, and that the weight is only 335 lb less. (Matrix gained 209 lbs in the re-do). Yet, the same City mileage for a 10% lighter car is kinda fishy. I'll bet that physics won't be cheated, and we'll see better real-world City mpg with the Matrix.

    I wonder if the higher stance on the RAV allows for a freer-breathing exhaust?

    The good news is we have the option of the 1.8 Auto; it's listed at 25 / 31 - 19% better City mileage, and nearly 15% Highway than RAV4. THe Manual numbers are 1 mpg better. This is the model I want to test drive for myself. I now have Highlander with the 2.4 Auto, 3516 lbs. and I'm hoping the Yamaha-built 1.8 is smoother than 2.4, and gives me equivalent (or better) performance with better mileage.
  • nippononlynippononly SF Bay AreaPosts: 12,726
    Where are you getting those numbers?

    Per Toyota's own website today, RAV4 AWD 2.4 (auto) is rated at 20/25 for 2008. Matrix AWD 2.4 (auto) is at 20/26. The '09 Matrix in its AWD trim only weighs about 100 pounds less than the RAV4 2.4 AWD, probably the main reason the numbers are so similar.

    What stinks is that all 2.4L versions of the Matrix get the 5-speed auto EXCEPT the AWD! What's that all about? The AWD only gets the 4-speed, which must detract from fuel economy.

    Another significant item to me is that the gas tank in the Matrix remains only 13.2 gallons, fine for the smaller engine with its higher mileage, but not so great for a 2.4L Matrix which will require fill-ups every 250-300 miles with that little gas capacity.

    Compare this to the Subaru Impreza, priced the same and making a point better in gas mileage (and an extra 10 hp), but with a 16 gallon tank for much improved range compared to Matrix.

    What's puzzling is that the Camry, with exactly the same 2.4L powertrain (and slightly better gas mileage) as the '09 Matrix, gets an 18.5-gallon gas tank, so clearly someone at Toyota acknowledges the need for a car with this fuel economy to have a bigger tank. Perhaps there's just no space under there to shoehorn it in?

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

  • My numbers were from Toyota's website - for a FWD RAV4, not AWD. See link title

    Wanna know something even crazier? I just sat in two new 2009 Corollas - they are both listed for 27/35 mpg with the 1.8 Auto.

    I just checked, the Corolla final drive ratio for the 1.8 Auto is 4.130, and the Matrix is 4.312. And the Matrix is taller, so it'll have more drag at highway speeds. Toyota is positioning the new Matrix as a "Sport Coupe" look with a hatchback. They even try to disguise the rear doors be removing the 2007's side glass behind the rear doors. So, the diff ratio is numerically higher, so the Matrix will be quicker off the line, but get lower mileage. Your mileage may vary, though.

    I guess you just can't beat the physics of it, no matter what.
  • jaxs1jaxs1 Posts: 2,697
    The 1.8 fuel efficiency is decent, but it only has 4 speeds with automatic, so you can count on high revs at 70 mph and the resultant annoying engine noise on highway drives.
    The Nissan Rogue is much, much larger and gets 22 MPG city vs 21 for the 2.4 liter Matrix..
  • 719b719b Posts: 216
    final drive ratio of the top gear will determine highway gas mileage, not the number of gears.
    another factor no one mentioned is the axle ratio. you'll have to know that also to make a fair comparison.
    this is only speculation, but from reading various forums here and other sites, the 4 speed auto is more durable than the 5 speed. i have read that the toyota 5 speed transmission has had some problems. this must explain why they are using the 4 speed for the awd matrix... it will stand up to more stress.
  • The new Corolla's are already on the dealer lots in my area. I have yet to see a new Matrix though. The web site for Toyota was saying that it should be Febuary. Visit your local dealer web site and go from there. Good luck!
  • Just stopped by the local dealer in Irvine. They had a dark gray S Auto, and I got a quick drive in it. It had the optional 215/45-17's. Impressions:

    - Roomy enough for this guy, 6"4" 260. Enough adjustment in the tilt/tele for me to lift off the gas and hit the brake without banging the back of the wheel with my knee. Seats above average comfort. Seat height relatively high - much higher than, say, and Altima. Getting out, my knees were above 90'. Big plus for me. Noticeably narrower than an xB, but OK.
    - Nice combination of ride and handling; just a tad rough for my taste, but considering the wheel/tire combo, I thought it was very good. Steering was very good. Brakes were very firm and linear.
    - A little too much road noise, again OK considering the 45 series tires.
    - Power was more than adequate. Merged onto the freeway without needing more than 3/4 throttle. (this is the 2.4L)
    - Impressively quiet ride. Very smooth engine. Less bouncy in this configuration than in the Scion xB.
    - Good rear-set room for two, or three small people. With Driver's seat ALL the way back, I sat behind it fine.
    - Very good cargo room. Seemed even larger than the fish-eye pictures showed. A nice, flat floor, with some additional storage underneath. Plenty wide, and even deeper than it is wide. Seats fold down true flat.
    - Nice dash layout. Sharp overall styling. Nose less pointy in person than in pictures. Overall, very sleek. Shapely enough for Gen Y, but classy enough for the over-50's too.
    - Well-placed mounts for roof rack for my bikes. Roof-height perfect for putting two bike up there.
    - Only negative - five speed auto shifting only so-so. Not nearly as crisp as my 4-speed auto in my 2.4L Highlander. Three distinct episodes of hunting between 2-3 upshift. (Maybe this brand-new trans needs to learn?) I had heard negative comments of 2005-2007 3.3L Highlander 5-speed auto, and went 2.4L 4-speed as a result and have been glad I did. Toyota Service reports that the 4-speed is very rugged.

    I originally wanted to try a XRS, but the one they'd had was gone. With choppy-riding 215/45-18's on the XRS, I'm more interested in seeing how comfortable the ride the Standard's tires would give.

    I left requesting a call when they got a 1.8L Auto in. I'll let y'all know what that's like as well.

    All in all, a very positive drive in a very modern ride.
  • Having brooded on the 09, I just bought the 08. I don't like the lower roof and the swept, solid rear pillars on the 09. Less vertical room and worse vision. Especially for our dogs--who wouldn't have been able to see to the right or left! Only thing I regret is not having an MP3 ready sound system.
  • I thought about the same thing. But I need the tilt/tele steering wheel, so it's not an option.

    I got a $180 Sony CD player with an AUX / MP# input installed in my 2007 Highlander, and it's better than the factory MP3 in the 2008 Highlander. I'm sure you must have save lots more than that with the '08 vs. the '09. So splurge and go to Best Buy / Circuit City.

    I hope you and your dogs enjoy the new ride.
  • waltchanwaltchan Posts: 124
    Longo Toyota at El Monte, CA has 10 base Matrixs with the 1.8L automatic in stock right now. Why wait?
  • Thanks for the info. If I get several hours free, I just might. I'm not in a big rush - I'm driving a Toyota right now with only 13k miles on it...

    I'd much rather buy a car from my local dealer - the one I bought from last year. I'll wait a week or two for them to arrive. Prices will likely be dropping in a bit, anyway. Patience.

    I do know that someone bought an XRS from Irvine Toyota last week.

    Has anyone here bought one yet?
  • The Toyota Website says the AWD Version has a Minimum Running Ground Clearance of 5.3";

    Is there a way to increase the Ground Clearance with damaging the drivetrain?

    Could the ground clearance be increased to maybe 7" without damaging the vehicle?
  • I just downloaded the 09 matrix pdf file off the Toyota site. Only one slight problem, the Camry was on the first page. The rest of the brochure was on the Matrix. :confuse: Maybe it will become a collector item.
  • waltchanwaltchan Posts: 124
    Good news for southern California buyers. After many days of phone calls to many Toyota dealers, only one is allowing exact invoice pricing on the new 2009 Corollas and Matrixs. It is at Manhattan Beach Toyota. Ask for the internet director manager. Save $2,000 off from MSRP right now. I just ordered my 2009 Matrix XRS Sundance color from them, since they don't have it in-stock right now. Good luck.
  • nippononlynippononly SF Bay AreaPosts: 12,726
    You can have it professionally lifted - talk to a shop that does suspension work. But you should know that lifting it will make it look a little funny unless you put bigger rims and tires on, and will make handling quite a bit worse.

    If you need an AWD car that has at least 7" of ground clearance, Subaru is where you should be shopping.

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

  • jaxs1jaxs1 Posts: 2,697
    Is it noisier than a Corolla LE/XLE?
    Does the base 1.8 have the same amount of sound insulation, acoustic glass, same tires and tall 4th gear gearing as the Corolla?

    How about the S model? I would think the 2.4 plus 5-speed automatic could possibly be quieter than the 1.8 engine, but the sporty tires may add road noise which would make it nosier overall on the highway.

    How is is the highway gearing vs the Corolla?

    At the moment all the base Matrix models in my region are really base with no options available other than automatic transmission and cruise control. So, you can't get stability control unless you upgrade to the S or XRS,
  • nippononlynippononly SF Bay AreaPosts: 12,726
    a couple of '09 Matrixes last night. I like the looks, but they are no better or worse than my '07 IMO.

    I did notice a couple of discouraging things:
    1. the rear glass doesn't open separately from the back door any more. That is one of my favorite features of the Matrix, and would be a deal-killer for me.
    2. The rear wiper is still not standard, despite the rear glass now being more steeply raked. And unlike the last gen, they are shipping base models from the factory without this option.
    3. Intermittent wipers are no longer variable intermittent. Just one fixed interval.

    If you are one to notice the newly standard features like side airbags and ABS and the telescoping wheel, you also have to consider the things they took out to make this possible. And the price certainly hasn't gone down, in fact the base models I was looking at last night were much too close to $19K sticker (with automatic) for my liking.

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

  • griswaldgriswald Posts: 33
    Reading the forums, one of the major drawbacks of the previous generation Matrix/Vibes was uneven tire wear due to lack of front end camber adjustment. I had this same problem on an older Toyota Corolla and although I'm in the market for a vehicle like this (wife actually), I will not knowingly buy another vehicle without front end camber adjustment - due to the alignment & tire wear problems I experienced first hand with the Corolla. So please, can anyone advise if this has been corrected on the new Vibe/Matrix's? :confuse:
  • carl41carl41 Posts: 5
    I'm currently looking for a used AWD Matrix/Vibe and read about the problems with the alignment. Spoke with my mechanic and he explained that it CAN be aligned. Also read where there is a kit available that allows ofr camber adjustment.
  • cryspycryspy Posts: 5
    Has anyone here drove the Vibe/Matrix 1.8L Auto?
    Please comment.
This discussion has been closed.