We found the economy car efficiency, the tight build quality, and the odd body style all appealing on the 2009 Pontiac Vibe GT. But once we started looking at the details, we realized it was a Toyota. The hard flooring in the cargo area and the shape of the instrument cluster perfectly matched what we had just seen on the 2009 Toyota Matrix, and the similarities don't stop there. Both cars had the same 2.4-liter four-cylinder engine, which someone on staff suggested might be GM's most advanced engine.
However, there are differences, most notably in an area we pay special attention to, the car's head unit. Where the Toyota Matrix can be had with an in-dash navigation system, the Pontiac Vibe just has a little blue OnStar button that connects you with a nice person who can tell you how to get where you are going. In the Matrix, you can opt for a nine-speaker stereo system if you don't get navigation, but the Vibe GT comes standard with a seven-speaker audio system, and you still get the little blue button. The Vibe/Matrix represents an extreme in customer choice, where you can not only choose from myriad options and power trains, but also even what badge your car will wear.