I still remember back in 2002, a relative of mine got a better deal on a brand new 2003 Corolla, than she would of gotten on a brand new 2002 Echo, with a start like this one; you pretty much know what I’m going to say about this car….
This is one of those vehicles that’s given the quote “environmentally conscious” a bad rap. Whether you want to agree or not: this car is not-and will never be a Prius, and unlike the Prius the Echo looks cheap….
Of course the Yaris was a big improvement from the Echo…looks better, and even has more room than the Echo could have ever dreamed of having; plus the price isn’t that much more than its predecessor was. But a few inches here and there turned the Echo into a much better vehicle; hence the reason sales on the Yaris are quite good, and people who don’t have a lot of money feel good about purchasing a Toyota product at Chevy prices.
With 14 inch wheels standard; it’s silly to expect Audi/BMW performance on this vehicle of course, but to add insult to injury, it just doesn’t measure up. Even when you put 15 inch wheels, it still falls flat. Of course one thing the Echo has which might discourage one from purchasing one; hence the reason the model doesn’t exist anymore is: the price…. You can purchase a Chevy Cavalier, Toyota Corolla, or Nissan Sentra for about the same price as you would an Echo depending on how good your haggling skill are, and opting you chances of survival just a notch in the process if you’re involved in a car accident with-say: a Rover, Escalade, etc…. Of course your chances won’t be good either way, but on an Echo: it’s almost a given what to expect if one has a collision with one of these behemoths!
The 2004 Echo was/is 164 inches long, it was smaller than even the Aveo-another unacceptable car; although the Aveo is slightly better looking and just a tad larger than the Echo was/is by about 5 inches, and of course: the Corolla is over a foot longer than the Echo was/is. The Echo’s best feature was its trunk size. 13.6 cubic feet of cargo space: making it larger than the 2008 Lexus GS; which only has a trunk size of 12.7 cubic feet. So no worries about where to put the groceries; something you would most likely done/need to do: since this car is as modest as it gets/got in the automotive world, and chances are you wouldn’t have a maid to go shopping for you if you own this vehicle, and if you were rich and drove an Echo: then you didn’t do your research very well or you would most likely have purchased another car. Side impact airbags aren’t available on the Echo. You might as well be in a motorcycle if you own/owned one, and to make things worse: no anti-lock braking system. This means your chances of getting out of control should be considerable; since the car is very lightweight to begin with, and of course beings’ there are no side impact airbags: the situation should be Shakespearian, if not interesting to say the least. Another good thing once can say about this vehicle is of course reliability is quite good, but then what else can one expect from a Toyota product, just few expected they would ever conjure up this vehicle, and even though MPG is good on this vehicle; it isn’t good enough to choose it over the Corolla….