I was like everyone else, I loved this car at first. The gas mileage was great (38mi./gal), but the day I wrecked it changed my mind. If anyone else had been in the car with me, they would've died!! It folded like an aluminum can!!! Please reconsider this car and buy something safer. I didn't have side airbags, but there was dual front airbags. I hit a deer and then hit the passenger side against a tree. The airbags did not deploy and I received a concussion from the passenger door. The whole car folded in half and I was only driving 45mi/hr.!! If you have family, please don't buy this. Their lives will be at risk. Be safe and choose a better car, any passengers with me would've been killed.
I bought my Echo, as a new car, 6 years ago. I drive 80 miles to work, 160 round trip, 6 days a week. 50,000 per year. I have logged 300,000 miles on this car. Fuel mileage is awesome. 43 in the summer, 40 in the spring and fall, 38 in the winter when it's below zero. Very few repairs. Rear shocks and O2 sensor at 100,000 miles. Front brake pads at 220,000 miles. Left front wheel bearing at 260,000 miles. These are the only repairs I've had. Still has original struts, rear brakes, etc. I am comfortable in this car. The driver's seat is worn out, but still, 3 hours a day in my Echo and I can honestly say the car is comfortable. This car still drives great. No squeaks or rattles.
Good head room and visibility. When I bought this car gas was $1.30. My friends looked at me funny for driving such a little car. When gas hit $2, my friends thought I was smart. When gas hit $3 I started looking at my friends funny.
Tire wear is an issue. I can't get more than 40,000 miles on a set of tires regardless of brand or tread wear rating. I bought a lifetime wheel alignment plan in 2001. The alignment shop says the everything checks out ok, but tires don't wear well. I wish this car was E85 Flex fuel compatible.
I currently have 149,000 miles on a 2001 model. With good tire pressure management, a clean and waxed car, and careful driving, I consistently am averaging > 47.0 mpg week in and week out during warmer weather. I'm waiting for the Endo. I know Toyota will not compromise like smart did, requiring premium fuel and only publishing 40+ mpg from a 1,600 lb car. Come on Toyota! Bring me the Endo now!
The engine. Long stroke, great torque for a 4 cyl.
Ditch the 14" rubber. I can never keep them in balance for more than 10k at a time.
I had always preferred large vehicles but took a chance on a small, economical commuter vehicle. It looked so ugly at first but upon getting in it, you find that it is large inside and really comfortable! And quality for an inexpensive car. I have had mine 5 years and I love it more than any other car I have ever had; it's just the best car ever. I will drive it til it drives no more! A GREAT CAR! And it is actually a very good looking little car!! Wait till you get inside one and drive it. Exterior holds up well too.
Looks, gas mileage, reliability, large open interior w/ better quality interior and size can't be beat. The skirt and back tail and color.
I have owned my Roxy Echo for over 6 months, and I wouldn't change a thing about it. I have a 4 door with all the optional features, and despite what this review says about the cost versus what you get, I think this is one of the most fun to drive cars on the market! A lot of people cannot get past the look of the echo, but I don't understand why. Even though its about the gas mileage, I love the look! Then again, I'm an eclectic kind of person who wants to drive something unusual and still hip. I also have to say that it's easy to get into-it's taller to provide more room-and that really helps because i'm not short! I was looking for an SUV, but fell in love with this echo!
Roxy Seat Covers (w/ roxy edition) - so easy to clean (they're wetsuit material!) The CUBBIES! So much storage for such a little car. My favorite is probably the compartment above the glove compartment!
Power windows. Technology has gotten better--hello, microchips--and i'm sure there's a way to work that into the doors.