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kazoospec SuperDork
11/18/17 7:23 a.m.

In reply to secretariata :

Honestly, I didn't really learn that much about them before I bought mine because it sort of "dropped in my lap" from a friend who was looking to get rid of it.  Mine is pretty much a base model as far as I can tell (steel wheels and all) and it has cruise and air. (It's an 09, so not a "current gen")  You can probably tell just by looking at interior photos.  The HVAC is three round "dials" in the center pillar of the dash.  The AC button is in the middle of the upper right dial, but it looks like the hatch has a slightly different center pillar.  Cruise is on the steering column just below the midline of the wheel on the right side.  Its a small black stalk.  The AC is decent but not overwhelming.  Its also a pretty significant drag on the engine when it kicks on and off.  The cruise is excellent.  Its super easy to set and adjust, but I am comparing it to the cruise in my 94 Miata, which is TERRIBLE, so YMMV. 

For the same money, I'd probably still take a Honda Fit for a commuter.  The issue is a Fit of the same vintage and miles would have been at least $3-4K more than I paid for my car or would have had 2 to 3 times the mileage on them.  

Because we like to enable around here: cheap, high mile Yaris hatch  That one has been on for several weeks, so they might be open to an offer.

kazoospec SuperDork
11/18/17 10:59 a.m.
kazoospec said:

Well, ordered up a TRD rear sway bar.  And so it begins . . . cheeky

And today I did the air box mod.  It's still got a decent filter in the air box, so I don't see how it could hurt.  Butt dyno says an ever so slight improvement, but the butt dyno gets all out of calibration when I lean into the engine bay of a car.  

rslifkin SuperDork
11/18/17 12:25 p.m.

IIRC, cruise on some of the later ones (09+ I think) is just a difference of whether or not it has the buttons installed.  I know I've seen a chart describing what it takes to add cruise for each year / drivetrain combo. 

Mr. Lee
Mr. Lee UberDork
11/19/17 5:51 p.m.

Yeah.. Watching this. I too went and shopped the list for these. I like what I see.

kazoospec SuperDork
11/20/17 6:23 a.m.

In reply to Mr. Lee :

I'm a little concerned I'll be blamed for what will someday be called "The Great GRM Yaris Infestation of 2017".

Mr. Lee
Mr. Lee UberDork
11/20/17 8:08 a.m.

In reply to kazoospec :

cheeky There are worse things to be blamed for! cheeky

kazoospec SuperDork
11/25/17 2:58 p.m.

Added the swaybar today.  Haven't really had time to wring it out yet.

kazoospec SuperDork
12/7/17 11:24 a.m.

TIL - the Yaris has surprisingly competent ABS for an entry level car.  I also learned it will likely kill me before the winter's over without snow tires.

RogerB HalfDork
12/8/17 10:06 a.m.
secretariata said:

Dang it, y'all are makin' me wonder about the hatchbacks!  How can you tell if it has cruise control?  I did a quick seach on AutoTrader and there were only 5 hatches with manual trans and cruise in the US for $9k or less. Is cruise part of a specific package? Cruise & AC are my current "gotta haves"...

The only way I know is to just ask the seller.  Toyota is weird about the equipment that comes on these.  For instance, to get a tach, it has to be in a higher trim level, and that higher trim level doesn't offer a manual transmission.  I figured I could find a gauge cluster with a tach on eBay.  And I did, but they were only for the sedan.  The sedan and hatch clusters are not interchangeable.  It's like the sedan and hatch are completely different cars on the inside.

Back to the cruise question... when I was looking at mine, I said the lack of cruise was kind of a deal breaker.  This was a Toyota dealership, so the guy says, "No Problem!  We can have one installed.  First they ordered the one for an automatic so they didn't have a clutch switch.  They got the correct part, but then they spent almost a week determining that they couldn't make it work.  The computer didn't have the required connections for a "factory" cruise control.

The good news is that they had an aftermarket company that they work with that put in a cruise for considerably less money and it only took a couple of hours.  It looks and functions exactly like the factory version, there is just no light on the dash telling you the cruise is turned on.

So, don't let the fact that it doesn't have cruise scare you away, just don't count on getting a "factory" cruise installed.

Having said all that, I love mine!  Very pleased with my decision.  I haven't made any mods to mine, but hope to soon.

kazoospec SuperDork
12/26/17 7:34 p.m.

Just a quick "post snow tire" update.  I put a set of Mastercraft snows on it a couple weeks ago.  It still suffers a bit from being a light car, but handled 8 inches of blowing snow with an ice base under it. Even in Michigan, I was about the only one out without a 4x4. The same lightness that makes it float a little more than I'd like on the highway makes it a hoot on empty, snow covered back roads.

Also, now that I have snows on the stock steelies, I "need" a set of summer wheels. smiley

secretariata Dork
12/26/17 7:56 p.m.

In reply to RogerB :

How well does your aftermarket cruise maintain speed up & down sizeable hills?  I live along the fall line so most of my trips involve rolling hills of decent size and grade.  Lots of cars I have driven with cruise vary by as much as + 4-5 mph downhill and - 4-5 mph uphill around here and that just bugs the E36 M3 out of me...

Dr. Hess
Dr. Hess MegaDork
12/26/17 8:38 p.m.

JC Whitney has been selling aftermarket cruise controls since before time began.  My friend's 1999 Rolla has an aftermarket one.  She bought it used and they thought it was factory. 

secretariata Dork
12/26/17 9:06 p.m.

In reply to Dr. Hess :

Yeah, but factory doesn't necessarily mean very good.  Our Tahoe doesn't seem to make any effort to slow down if you are going downhill and as soon as you lose 3 mph uphill it kicks down two gears and sounds like you've got the loud pedal matted (and for far too long, like it doesn't want to upshift once you get back to the set speed just in case you find another hill in the next day or two).  Best cruise control I have personally experienced is in our '00 Celica.  It will keep you within +/- 1 mph of set speed unless you are climbing a mountain.  Driven several mid 2000's Hondas and they might keep within +/- 5 mph of set speed.

Appleseed MegaDork
12/27/17 7:41 a.m.

In reply to crankwalk :

Did I read that correct? TE37s on a Versa?

kazoospec SuperDork
1/13/18 8:06 p.m.

Picked up a used set of these today:


Gotta wait until the snow stops flyin' to see how they look on the car. 

frenchyd Dork
1/13/18 8:17 p.m.

In reply to kazoospec :

I bought two of them for my teenager.  The first she destroyed driving while texting.  Not a mark on her but the car was a total. 

The second she drove over a cement block that had dropped off a contractors truck and that physically pulled the transmission out of the car, but luckily was insured for just that.  

Anyway I liked it,  nimble, cheap, and  strong. She’d still have it except her boyfriend and future husband needed a down payment to buy a 4X4 diesel truck to commute with. 

secretariata Dork
1/13/18 8:22 p.m.

In reply to frenchyd :

Because everyone needs a full size 4x4 diesel truck to "commute" in...LOL

Snrub Reader
1/13/18 8:34 p.m.

I don't think a Yaris, especially one with a couple of modifications is anything to  be ashamed of.  Most small cars are at least somewhat fun by virtue of short wheelbase and light weight.    They're definely more fun than the overwhelming majority of trucks, crossovers and SUVs.  Your red color looks better than 90% of the bland grey, white, black cars on the road.

malibuguy Reader
1/17/18 8:10 p.m.

Ran mine on the snow tires last month.  Ended up 1st in my class LOL



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