Look very closely and you may notice the subtle changes Toyota has made to its Matrix for the 2011 model year. If your eyes are still failing you (as were ours at first glance), we'll point them all out. There are new wheels across the board, Smart Stop technology has been added to curb pedal misapplication complications, and the automaker's "Toyota Care" complimentary maintenance plan is now standard. That wasn't too difficult, was it?
As was the case last year, the 2011 Matrix is again offered in Base and S trim levels with a standard 1.8-liter four-cylinder (132 horsepower) or a more powerful 2.4-liter four-cylinder (158 horsepower). The standard powertrain is front-wheel drive, with all-wheel drive optional on the higher trim level with the larger engine. Those seeking a bit more driving excitement (well, at least visual excitement) need to add the optional Sport Package to their S model, as it adds 17-inch alloy wheels, underbody spoilers, and a painted rear spoiler. Oh, we almost forgot... a new color, called Spruce Mica, joins the exterior palate for 2011.