2006 Toyota Matrix XR 4dr Wagon AWD (1.8L 4cyl 4A)
Owned our Matrix for 2 months. We have taken it on several Arizona dirt/rocky roads since we like to hike a lot. Very good ground clearance for a car, never bottomed out. Hauled 22 boxes of tile and some roofing material in it. Easy to switch from a four seater car to a two seater hauler. We have a blowup mattress that fits perfectly in the back when you lay the seats down. Just plug it in to the ac outlet up front and you can be camping for the night. The cargo nets are nice to separate some permanent storage stuff in the back (blowup mattress, sleeping bag, quilt, water, etc.) which you need in the desert. It is a very versatile vehicle which fits our many needs perfectly!!!
Sunroof, AWD, High Seating, High ground clearance for a car. Great value for the price we paid. Versatility of a mini-suv without the low gas mileage. We get 21-25 city and 27-32 highway driving 75 to 80 mph (Automatic and AWD). Stylish also. Safety aspects of allaround airbags, antilock brakes.
More power would be nice. But it does handles the hills in Arizona okay. You have to crank 4-5000 rpm to get good power. I really can't complain since it was accelerating through 80 going up a 6-7% grade hill. Wider sunvisors would be nice for the cars with the side airbags.