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This was the successor to the author's Infiniti QX4, which was sadly departed. Unrestrained by Japanese bubble economy era engine standards, the seemingly flary Matrix XRS was defined by the high-singing (oh wait howling) 8000 Yamaha engine and the inability of any then-automotive journalist to actually call it a hatchback. " It's a vehicle without classification. A car without definition. Look at it. Is it a minivan, a sports car or a station wagon? The answer is yes, and it's cool" -Sport Compact Car. It was a worse crisis than what car manufacturers now a days try to rebrand a wagon as an "estate" or "grand touring model". This car is regularly driven to mountain roads for corner carving sessions and is also daily driven by a high school student. "Kent, I don't like driving the Matrix" is regularly heard by my friends. Its mildly tricky Exedy Clutch (worn to the point it is a regular clutch) requires a mix between dumping and regular clutch actuation methods. The author of this segment daily drives this Matrix. He begs to differ. Said author also thinks of it as the ultimate hot hatchback of its time and also as the spiritual USDM predecessor to the Fiesta ST.
See whose at the top of the Wheelwell Matrix Leaderboard