Was deciding between the Vibe, Mazda3, Mazda6, Passat, and Matrix. Decided on the Vibe/Passat based on price, gas mileage and test drives, then chose the Matrix because I started to prefer its style over the Vibe. Love the Matrix, kicks the crap out of my old '99 Chevy Metro which got a little better MPG, had no acceleration, but was a great college car (cheap and reliable). Love the storage space. I have been keeping a complete record of the gas mileage since I got the car and it gets an average of 28 MPG (the way I drive), but is capable of getting up to 33 MPG (if you drive really efficiently).
A CD-player that can read MP3 CDs would be nice (maybe that was an option I didn't see though). Better starter tires! Mine came with Continentals and I already need new ones at 22k miles because of cupping.