Help me choose between the Matrix, Vibe or XD

toyota
pontiac
vibe
scion
xd
matrix

#1

Hello, great forum! I’m looking to buy either a new car or a car that is a few years old. I’m trying to decide between these three cars. Is it true that the vibe is a matrix with a different exterior? If so I’m assuming repairs would not be too expensive (since Pontiac will be no longer). I will probably own the car for a long time so resale value is not very important to me. I only care about saving money! The only other criteria is the amount of noise in the car. I like cars that are quiet inside. Any ideas which is the quietest?


#2

Except for some minor differences in trim a Vibe and a Matrix are the same car. They are built side-by-side in the same factory, and are mechanically identical. They are basically station wagon versions of the Toyota Corolla. Both offer excellent reliability and economy. I’d take whichever I could get for less money.

The Scion xD is probably more closely related to the Toyota Yaris than the Corolla, but is still a very reliable and economical car to own.

None of these vehicles will be difficult or expensive to maintain, and unless you have a warranty issue I suggest you avoid dealer service and find a good independent mechanic. This will save you money.

Quiet is in the ear of the beholder. Test drive all three and decide for yourself.


#3

The Matrix is built in Canada and the Vibe is built in California. But they are almost identical. I suspect that a winner like the Vibe will return as a Chevrolet. The Prizm did when GM stopped the Geo brand. Since it is essentially a Corolla wagon, there should be parts for years to come. Some of the Pontiac fascia may not be available a few years from now, but you could replace that with Toyota parts if they are damaged. And it is a remote chance that the front end will be damaged.


#4

Of all the Chevy Novas and Geo Prisms I’ve owned instead of Corollas, the one thing you’ll have to be careful about when choosing a Vibe over a Matrix, is the standard features it may not come with at the reduced price of the Vibe over the Matrix.

A big consideration , would be the quality of the dealership and it’s proximity if all else were equal. The Scion, I feel is an entry level vehicle with many more compromises in power and trim.

But the" I only care about saving money"quote…means you buy the cheapest and keep the longest. But how long can you live with a Scion XD compared to a quieter Matrix after a bunch of long trips ? It’s not cheaper if you dump it before its time because it “drives you up a wall”.

IMO, the longer you plan on keeping a car, the more investment you put into “creature” comforts and dealership considerations.


#5

Thanks for the responses. I will definitely take my spl meter (noise meter) when I test drive these. I’ll bet they’ve never seen that before :stuck_out_tongue:


#6

I agree, as I usually do, with dagosa.

The Scion XD is marketed toward very young drivers. As a result, road noise is not a consideration when building those vehicles, since younger drivers tend to be less interested in a quiet interior than they are in a booming sound system. Also, the ride may well be biased in favor of handling, rather than a smooth ride on the XD. That may or may not suit you.

As we always suggest on this site, an extended test drive is a good idea with any vehicle that you are seriously considering for purchase. Make sure that it is the exact same model as the one that you want to buy, simply because a more upscale model of the same marque may have more soundproofing and better seats than the cheaper models. With car sales being as poor as they currently are–even for Toyota dealers–it is unlikely that they will balk at a request for an extended test drive.


#7

One thing that shines through for the Vibe is OnStar. I think you get the standard safe and sound plan when you first get it, but can ask the salesman, or call OnStar, and ask about the upgrade to turn by turn navigation.
How much is a factory installed navigation system? How much do the DVDs cost when you need an upgrade for your factory navi system. According to OnStar’s website, TbT navi is $299/year(vs $346.80 when you pay $28.90/mo).
http://www.onstar.com/us_english/jsp/plans/index.jsp


#8

I think that a stand-alone navigation system is better. But I do agree that OnStar is a terrific option. We have it on two cars. You can use it as a hands free phone and OnStar will notify you of any unusual conditions noticed by the ECM if you have tose features turned on. It can even locate you in case of an accident.