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OK, I've been test driving a few cars over the last couple of weekends because I don't think our current stratus (220,000km's) is going to last the year! So far I've driven an HHR, Caliber SXT, Matrix, and Mazda 6. granted the mazda 6 is more of a mid-size car than the rest, but Ohhhh it's a beautiful car, rides like a sports car has great space (as a wagon) an the Manual Tranny is sooo smoth, only problem is a base Mazda 6 is still nearly $30,000

The HHR is an interesting car in design but GM doesn't really know how to execute a car well, they never have. I don't know why people buy their cars. All the interior controls are in odd places that require you to to take your eye off the roas to use! the exterior visibility is very poor. On the up side the engine is pretty good.

The Matrix, what a disapointment, It's a nice car in design, the interior is comfortable, but there were 4 major issues

1) power, there is none! during our test drive, we tried to get on the highway. never been more scared. I'd hate so see what it's like with an ATX. There's just no acceleration. By the time I got to the end of the on-ramp (with my food buried in the floor) I was barely at 100K kmh .

2) the driving stance has 2 issues. The wheel position reminds me of my grandfather's tractor. The shifter is too far away, feels like a stretch each time I reach for the shifter

3) Controls. The pedals have a funnly light springy video-game like feel. Doesn't feel like a real car

4) engine. what a POS no power and it's soo loud an buzy that it's annyoing! 2700rpm at highway speed is ridiculas!

Now If I can only find a Caliber with a MTX to test drive! I will be that much closer to ording one!

I've got a few more to test drive before I Finalize my choice: Mazda 3 (and maybe the 5) Subaru Imprezza and Ford Fusion (not into the Honda's at all)
 

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For sure drive a Caliber. I didn't know that the Matrix was so underpowered...jeesh. :D
 

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caliber4whoosh said:
For sure drive a Caliber. I didn't know that the Matrix was so underpowered...jeesh. :D
It's not good when you floor it on the on-ramp and start thinking. "am I gonna make it?":D
 

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caliber4whoosh said:
For sure drive a Caliber. I didn't know that the Matrix was so underpowered...jeesh. :D
Ya.... I think the Matrix-Vibe is 126HP and in the AWD it drops to 118, pretty anemic. But.....my bro has a new Matrix, he's getting an honest 32-33MPG (imperial)in town.
I noticed the SXT I drove yesterday was rated @ 39MPG highway.....can't remember what the intown was. It was just like driving the old polaris, 6 grand and waiting for the speed to build.:):):D
 

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was98strat said:
It's not good when you floor it on the on-ramp and start thinking. "am I gonna make it?":D
Ahahahahahaa....that's classic. :p
 

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was98strat said:
...I've got a few more to test drive before I Finalize my choice: Mazda 3 (and maybe the 5) Subaru Imprezza and Ford Fusion (not into the Honda's at all)
If you check out the Fusion, make sure you drive both the 4-cyl and and 6-cyl models. I hear there is a world of difference. I drove only a 4-cyl. (Ran out of time; I figured I would go back another day to drive the V6.) When I was on the freeway going mid 60's and wanted to pass, I hit the gas hard and... nothing. Neither my speed or rpm's increased. OK that's not fun on the freeways here in the Motor City!!!

Friends who work at Ford said, "um, yeah. Try the 6 instead." Which I never got back to. (But, I have a Caliber coming, so I don't really care any more anyway!!)

It's a nice car, but, bland. And IMHO to me it looks like it is trying wayyy to hard to be a Honda Accord, both inside and out.
 

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hell my guy would not let me take the car back to the show room with out me hiting 140km when passing a guy. just to show me that the car has balls to it,
 

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The base and XR versions of the matrix are drive by wire... the new civic is the same so you will deffinetely experience a different than cable feel when using the accelerator.

They don't make the xrs any more, but that model would scoot (03/04 - 180hp, 05/06 160 something SAE). Impreza's are overpriced for what you get... the current model is being replaced this summer with the new model, the old platform is 10 years old and if you drive one it shows its age in many ways.

Ford Focus, Suzuki SX4, Mazda 3, Kia Spectra 5, the new Reno or even better the speed 3 in addition the caliber should give you some good comparisions
 
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