If you want is a cheap, extremely reliable four door with way more space than you'd first notice, this is it.
If you want comfort and power, go elsewhere.
If you don't expect more than you should from this true Econo-Box, than you'll actually find the Xb a joy to own.
It's actually fun to drive and does well with it's limited HP (tho an automatic with the air on must be a drag).
It's extremely roomy inside, and easy to get into for older folks, and it'll haul lots of junk.
Top that off w/30+ mpg and rock solid reliability and cheap to maintain prices and it's perfect for those who like it's frugal design nature.
Interior size, mpg, ease of ingress/egress, fun unique looks, massive hauling space.
This is not an over-stuffed chair.
If you want comfort, buy something with more padding.
I'm sure for some who never drive much beyond their hood, the power will be lacking, tho the little 1.5 ltr 4-cylinder will pull plenty hard to 6,000 rpm when asked to.
My only wish is that these early Xb's had come stock, or factory optioned with cruise control.
Ride and sound levels on freeways will be a bit harsh for some.
This is an update on my previous review titled. 140K Upright Go-Kart Written by George on 06/14/2008. This lil'car with lots of interior room is still super reliable. I have replaced normal wear items like tires, power steering/water pump belt and front brake pads. I change the oil and oil filter every 5k, air filter every 6mo. and transmission gear oil every year. I suck out the power steering and brake fluid with a turkey baster and refill every year. The xB is pretty good in the snow with all season tires, however, it's super stable and near impossible to get stuck with snow tires.
I loved this car the first time I sat in it. The placement of the instruments, the amazing interior room, the outstanding visibility is great. I am 6'7" and have 6" head clearance as the driver and my 6'9" son can sit behind me without having his knees in my back or his head on the ceiling. I've been in quite a few different SUVs, and NONE have had as much room for 5 adults as the xB. My only gripe is the steering wheel does impinge on the leg room a bit, but that happens with virtually every car I've driven except large luxury cars. It handles well, and has a great feel for the road, though can be a bit of a rough ride if you are used to luxury rides. The storage space is minimal.
There are many, but the great visibility, sensible, but unusual instrument display and headroom are probably the top 3. Love the 30 mpg as well.
My biggest suggestion is to go back to the original design. the new ones seem to have lost some of the best features, though the storage room is improved.
140K and still tight! Handling is very nimble. Vehicle stability control works great in the snow when driving on snow and anybody spins out in front of you (or when deer shoot out from nowhere on dark rural wet roads like where I live. VSC compliments the ABS, EBD & TRAC control. The shape makes it look lower than what it actually is (measure it!). It has the same ground clearance as my Corolla). VERY good in snow I run all season tires all the way around and if the snow is substantial I'll lower the tire pressure on the front tires to 26lbs and it's super stable and tracks great. I'm impressed and I live in a very rural area with many hills (ski resort area in northern NJ).
Lots of room & handling. RELIABLE!!!
Improve it by bringing it back! I wish I had another one :(
Just totaled my XB (04/19/08) with a head-on crash with a Dodge Dakota P-up (airbags deployed). The drivers area was in perfect shape. The front end was crushed to the base of the windshield. Crumple zones worked as advertised. I walked away as did my 4 year old son who was strapped in his child seat in the back passenger side. I'm back in the market to buy another one(2004-2006). 2008 XB's look like they were designed by the Michelin Man...Yuck!
Survivability! 32 MPG on the highway/30MPH around town. Large back seat. Great brakes even though the rears are drums.
Factory cruise control(I had dealer installed/after market). Rear cargo dome light. Side airbags(on 2008 models)