I am the first, and likely only owner of a (new-to-me) 2000 Echo sedan (4-door). I've driven all of its 397,000 miles. My comments are in the main, like those of the first reviewer. My little gem gives me 40 mpg in town (actually suburban) driving.
Worst mileage ever recorded (and all mileage and service is recorded) was a week in San Francisco in August... 33mpg. Not bad, and that was 'in town' touristic driving.
Best mpg was driving on our lovely Natchez Trace, which is beautiful 50 mph byway stretching from Natchez, MS to Nashville, TN. 54 mpg!
Hooray for Toyota & we Echo drivers who appreciate the strengths of our cars, making decisions about what is important to us in selecting transportation. I appreciate the tact and even handed pros and cons laid out in review #1.
Review #2, really is out of place. It's a commentary on the first review, not about the car. I came to the site to read reviews. I am appreciative of #2's input, and do not ask for it to be removed.
I love my 2005 Echo, too. I agree with everything the original reviewer said, except I find it's peppy and fun to drive even with the automatic. It's a shame this car never took off in the U.S. because it did well everywhere except there. It came out in 2000, the same time as the record - setting recall Focus. Americans bought the lemon Focus and rejected the pearl Echo. I guess they couldn't get over its eccentric styling. If mine ever dies, I want a Toyota Yaris, another car somewhat rejected by Americans. It was not affected by any recalls.
... Here's another comment made by an ECHO owner. 2002 Echo with 5 speed transmission. This is the best thing that has happened to me. I've owned Mercedes Benz diesel, BMW's 320, 528 and 2002 (1974) ; I've owned American cars, Saturn, and even English cars as well... this is by far a Gold Medalist - the Mini Japan Le Man's car dream to all of us who drive it and enjoy how reliable it is and how this little engine takes us "there" with joy and laughter. Thank you Japan for what you DO...
I love the performance; Put Mobil 1 synthetic 10-30 in it and it just loves it. I will tell you this; I will not sell this baby.. It's here to stay. I've had days where I forgot to put gas in the car and it did take me home safe and sound!! It seemed that the car ran on fumes.. but it ran.
I also believe that I will upgrade the air filter canister to K & N, and I will upgrade the transmission fluid to synthetic. I will also replace some of the bushings to polyurethane and upgrade the tires as well. Other than than.. even the original radio and speakers are Bad A@@!! Thank you TOYOTA!!