I bought this Matrix about two months ago with 175,000 miles on it for my daily 400 mile courier route and it's been great - so far. Since a 200 mile leg allows me to drive at only 55 mph, I net almost 33 mpg across the entire route - which is better than I expected. The car rides great, runs smooth, and shifts easily so it's been a pleasure to drive.
I like all the little storage compartments, the great gas mileage, and the smooth ride.
I hear an occasional vibration noise or whistling wind. I was surprised that there was no cruise control or electric side mirrors (both standard equipment on my '98 Mazda Protege).
2003 Toyota Matrix XR AWD 4dr Wagon (1.8L 4cyl 4A)
I am currently dealing with nightmare of the 2003 AWD Matrix. I do have a warranty. I am looking in to my rights under the lemon law. It seems to me that these cars are coming up with the same transmission problems and the transmission is different in the AWD then from other Matrix's that the trans is Faulty. And Toyota should be responsible. If anyone feels the same way or has any advice for me post on this forum ill be looking out. Thank you
2003 Toyota Matrix XRS Fwd 4dr Wagon (1.8L 4cyl 4A)
I am 16 years old and bought this as my first car. It has 241000 miles on it but it still runs like its new. It has great pickup and great handling and is really fun to drive. It gets decent gas mileage. The only thing I had to do was change the hoses but that is normal with cars with a lot of miles. I highly recommend this car.
My 2003 5-speed only has just over 77,000 miles on it and the bearings in the transmission are going. I bought a Toyota specifically to have a long- lasting, good car. I called Toyota customer service and got the same story about not taking it to a dealership for routine maintenance so they couldn't help me if the car hadn't been properly maintained.
I bought my Matrix, new, in Sept '02 and since then have only put 52K on it.
I have done all of the routine maintenance and have only ever had to replace the serpentine belt a few times and one brake light bulb.
This car has been more reliable than I ever could have hoped for.
Plus, it has great cargo capacity.
I can load it with dozens of bags of mulch, or a week's worth of camping gear.
Even my 29 inch mountain bike fits in the back with the seats down.
I will admit, on long drives the seating position can become annoying, but bring a small pillow or something and you can go for hours, plus, you won't need to stop for gas often!
Avg MPG, 30 in summer, 26 in winter.
It has a very wide cargo opening when considering the size of the car overall.
The rear seats truly fold flat, and the front passenger seat does as well.
I love that it sits slightly higher than a typical small car, so I'm not falling into it when I get in, or climbing to get out.
It also has rear seat heat/AC floor ducts, which was unusual for this class of car in 2002.
Keep up on the maintenance and this car should easily get 200k miles.
Also, if you put low profile tires on the Matrix, you will absolutely notice a loss in ride comfort.
Not terrible, but on long trips it can be fatiguing.
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