I've heard you won't be getting these for a bit yet. Yes, its mine - had it since last Friday and put on 550k (341.5 miles) so far. Seems to add up quickly :D Can't compare it to an Echo because I've never even ridden in one.
I really like the fit and finish on this car, superior to anything I've seen in its class - that being super econobox - going to the RS version and adding all the bells and whistles brings it into a slightly higher class and comparable to fit and finish of cars like the Golf, Civic, etc. The Tercel I had many years ago was very good but the Yaris is much better. I've heard it refered to as a "baby Lexus." That's not a bad description and close to accurate.
The engine is very peppy, apparently its been set up with more torque in the lower RPM for urban driving. It does rev freely although I haven't really pushed it since I haven't broken it in yet. Only redlined it once so far Definately on par if not slightly better than the early 80's Accord I owned many years ago. There's an odd delay when hitting the gas pedal which is from the electronic control. Not bad and many people don't even notice it, it's just a few milliseconds - but I won't be drag racing this car . The manual transmission is good, solid shifts and nothing bad or awkward feeling. Torque steering is not even noticable. The steering itself is a bit light at slow speed but firms up nicely at higher speeds. Its an electronic power steering rather than the usual hydraulic pump - frees up a couple of horsepower which is nice.
The suspension is pretty good - although the stock tires limit it a bit. I think lowering it and adding sway bars would make this car corner very well indeed. In stock form, the suspension is reasonably stiff without being harsh. However, even though I'm still not pushing it super hard I can feel the stock tires not being up to snuff. The wheels in the pic are aftermarket - they were half the price of the OEM alloy available and better looking too, IMHO.
The Yaris is reasonably quiet on the highway, didn't have to turn up the (stock) radio much, although the bass was starting to lose out to road noise at 110k (70mph). However, my mom was in the car so wasn't at my usual listening level ;) The CE model I have is bare bones, manual everything that can be. The seats are quite comfortable, holds me well through corners and are good for long drives - did a 2 hour trip on the second day I had it. Lots of room front and back, had a 6 foot tall friend sitting in back and he said he was surprised how much head and leg room he had.
Overall, this is one of the better cars I've owned. Not the best, but very close for comfort, as well as fit and finish. And, the performance is still reasonable for the gas economy this car has.
Overall, very good value - would say its worth more than I paid. This probably explains why there's at least a month long waiting list in Canada at pretty much any dealer. My dealer could not keep them on the lot - sold several sight unseen. I took the first available one regardless of trim level and colour (I only wanted 3door manual trans) because my old car was dying most ungracefully - and it was still almost 4 weeks to get my Yaris.