• (4.5) 11 reviews
  • Available Prices: $3,265–$10,321
  • Body Style: Hatchback
  • Combined MPG: 29
  • Engine: 126-hp, 1.8-liter I-4 (regular gas)
  • Drivetrain: Front-wheel Drive
  • Transmission: 4-speed automatic w/OD
2008 Toyota Matrix

Our Take on the Latest Model 2008 Toyota Matrix

What We Don't Like

  • Instrument readability
  • Engine and road noise
  • Engine performance with automatic

Notable Features

  • Hatchback body style
  • Manual or automatic
  • Versatile interior layout

2008 Toyota Matrix Reviews

Vehicle Overview
Toyota introduced its youth-focused Matrix as an early 2003 model. Described as a crossover utility vehicle, the Matrix was said to combine the functionality of a sport utility vehicle with the image and performance of a sports car. 2008 marks the last year for the first-generation Matrix; a redesigned second generation will debut for 2009. The 2008 model is unchanged from the 2007 version.

High headroom and flexible seating positions are among the Matrix's notable attributes. Two trim levels are available: base and step-up XR. An electronic stability system and six-CD stereo are among the notable options.


Exterior
The Matrix hatchback is built on a platform similar to the one used for Toyota's popular Corolla sedan. Measuring 171.3 inches long overall, the Matrix has a 102.4-inch wheelbase and stands 61.6 inches tall. Base wheels measure 16 inches in diameter.

Interior
The Matrix seats up to five people. With the rear seats folded, cargo capacity measures 53.2 cubic feet. Standard equipment includes air conditioning, intermittent wipers, a CD player and a tilt steering wheel. The XR adds remote keyless entry, a sport steering wheel, and power windows, locks and mirrors.

Under the Hood
The 1.8-liter four-cylinder produces 126 horsepower. Either a four-speed automatic or five-speed manual transmission can be installed.

Safety
Side-impact and side curtain airbags are optional. Optional antilock brakes are disc/drum. An electronic stability system is also optional.

Driving Impressions
The Matrix is stylish, well-built and nicely designed, but it's somewhat noisy. It's quiet enough when cruising, but the engine may growl and whine during acceleration. Road noise is also noticeable. The engine teamed with the automatic transmission doesn't have much oomph, either. Automatic-transmission gear changes are noticeable but not bothersome.

Stability is good, and it's easy to keep the Matrix on course. It steers with more precision and less wheel vibration than the Corolla, but still falls short of stimulating.


Consumer Reviews

(4.5)

Average based on 11 reviews

Write a Review

Such a great car!

by Delia from Saint Paul on September 15, 2017

I had my Toyota Matrix for 9 years and I loved it so much that, although I bought a new car 6 months ago, I could not make myself to sell it, and I had it sitting in the garage ever since. Difficult ... Read Full Review

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2 Trims Available

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Wondering which configuration is right for you?
Our 2008 Toyota Matrix trim comparison will help you decide.
 

Toyota Matrix Articles

2008 Toyota Matrix Safety Ratings

Crash-Test Reports

Recalls

There are currently 4 recalls for this car.


Safety defects and recalls are relatively common. Stay informed and know what to do ahead of time.

Safety defects and recalls explained

Service & Repair

Estimated Service & Repair cost: $4,100 per year.

Save on maintenance costs and do your own repairs.

Warranty Coverage

Bumper-to-Bumper

36mo/36,000mi

Powertrain

60mo/60,000mi

Roadside Assistance Coverage

36mo/36,000mi

What you should get in your warranty can be confusing. Make sure you are informed.

Learn More About Warranties

Warranties Explained

Bumper-to-Bumper

Often called a basic warranty or new-vehicle warranty, a bumper-to-bumper policy covers components like air conditioning, audio systems, vehicle sensors, fuel systems and major electrical components. Most policies exclude regular maintenance like fluid top offs and oil changes, but a few brands have separate free-maintenance provisions, and those that do offer them is slowly rising. Bumper-to-bumper warranties typically expire faster than powertrain warranties.

Powertrain

Don't be misled a 10-year or 100,000-mile powertrain warranty doesn't promise a decade of free repairs for your car. It typically covers just the engine and transmission, along with any other moving parts that lead to the wheels, like the driveshaft and constant velocity joints. Some automakers also bundle seat belts and airbags into their powertrain warranties. With a few exceptions, powertrain warranties don't cover regular maintenance like engine tuneups and tire rotations.

Roadside Assistance

Some automakers include roadside assistance with their bumper-to-bumper or powertrain warranties, while others have separate policies. These programs cover anything from flat-tire changes and locksmith services to jump-starts and towing. Few reimburse incidental costs like motel rooms (if you have to wait for repairs).

Free Scheduled Maintenance

Some automakers include free scheduled maintenance for items such as oil changes, air filters and tire rotations. Some include consumables including brake pads and windshield wipers; others do not. They are typically for the first couple of years of ownership of a new car.

Other Years