The Passo is fuel efficient, cheap to maintain  

Toyota Passo 

What you need to know:

One of the features that make the Toyota Passo popular is its affordability when it comes to fuel and service. With engine variations of 1000cc and 1300cc, the Passo is suitable for first time motorists, writes Roland D. Nasasira

Sheila Nagawa 

I bought my Toyota Passo three years ago. At the time, a litre of fuel cost Shs3,800 and I would spend Shs20,000 (approximately five litres) on fuel daily from my home in Kyaliwajjala, Kira municipality to Kampala City Centre for work and back home. My car is a very fuel efficient with its 1,000cc petrol engine.

Also, when I realised I was spending too much on fuel by refuelling in small denominations, I now fill the tank every time I refuel. With a full tank, the fuel system is always filled with fuel that when you start the engine, the ignition process does not draw much fuel from the tank but uses fuel in the system. This helps minimise fuel consumption, even when driving in traffic jam.

A Passo is the suitable car for first time motorists. Apart from fuel economy, it is also a cheap car to maintain. I service it once in four to five months and for each garage visit, I usually spend Shs120,000.

However, one thing i do not like about the car is its small boot, which makes carrying luggage difficult. Because it is a small car, I can easily diagnose some of its mechanical faults by the sounds it makes, especially while driving. 

Ritah Mirembe 

I have driven the Toyota Passo since 2020 and one of the features I like is it being a basic car. Basic in the sense that although it is not a high performance car, it is one you can easily rely on. Even when it has a mechanical problem or when its due for service and I do not have the money, I will still drive it without worrying about it breaking down. I, however, do not normally drive more than 200km past the mileage at which I am meant to service it. When I go to the garage, I spend Shs150,000 to replace engine oil, oil and fuel filters as well as the brakes. I replace parts such as the air cleaner and spark plugs upon recommendation from the mechanic.

Some of the disadvantages of the Passo is that it is a light car. There are certain speeds beyond which I cannot drive, especially on the highway. In Kampala City centre, because of poor drainage, I cannot drive in flooded places because it loses traction. Besides, it also has a low ground clearance that flooded water can easily find its way into the car.

It is a car for motorists with an average height. If you are tall, it may not give you enough legroom, let alone feel comfortable while seated in the rear passenger seats. When driving a Passo, be ready to be subjected to all kind of bullying from truck drivers and motorists with bigger cars who have no respect for those driving smaller cars. Chris Agaba

I have had the Toyota Passo as a second car for two years. I bought it for the purpose of dropping and picking children from school and I have never been disappointed with the choice I made. I stay in Bulindo in Kira Municipality and work in Naguru, Kampala while the children attend school in Mulawa, Kira Municipality. I do not have to leave work to pick children from school yet someone nearer home could drive the Passo for five minutes to pick and drop them. Because of the short distance, I service it once a year since the car is not subjected to any other work other than dropping and picking children.

I spend Shs100,000 for service. The only costly garage visit I have ever had was when I was replacing a tyre that had got a deep and long puncture that cost Shs160,000. Other than that, it is only minor service.

A passo is very economical with fuel consumption. The distance from my home to the children’s school is approximately four kilometres. A full tank, which costs Shs210,000, lasts between one to two months. A Passo is one of the most affordable cars to maintain, unless you have poor car maintenance discipline.