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Hyundai Elantra GT vs. Mazda Protege5



  • SporinSporin Posts: 1,066
    First off, you should buy the car that works for you, not your friends. But I understand where you're coming from. I would think your frinds would give you more grief for "buying a Hyundai" then buying a sporty wagon, but that's for you to decide.

    Either way, an observation... I am 30, but look much younger (shaved head, chin-beard, etc.) When I drove my '99 Passat, I felt "too young" for that car. Most of the people I caught checking out the Passat where grey-haired men.

    My wife said to me the other day... "Teenage boys LOVE this car." I asked here what she meant by that. She said that every backwards-hat-wearing, Fred Durst look-alike in a slammed Civic gives us the once-over.

    So now I feel "too old" for my car! :-)
  • SporinSporin Posts: 1,066
    The engine loosens up a LOT after 1000-1500 miles. Initially, mine was hesitant to rev and didn't sound terribly great either. Now, at almost 3k, it sings smoothly and easily to redline.

    Engines need to break in.
  • abeaughabeaugh Posts: 10
    yeah a lot of my friends have given me crap about hyundai, but i really think they are great cars. and i have a $12,000 limit to get a car from my parents. Luckily a friend owns a hyundai dealership and promised me a loaded GT for under 12, so i can get a stripped used civic, or a new GT with leather, keyless entry and sun roof and other for the same price. plus, i know i will get great service. i'm glad you like your car though. thats all its about.
  • SporinSporin Posts: 1,066
    That's cool. *I* have no problem with Hyundai either, they have come a long way... but public perception is still pretty crappy.

    $12k for a GT is practically highway robbery! :-) good for you. Enjoy your ride.
  • Let's begin with looks. With respect to aesthetics, there can be no serious debate. The P5 has "love at first sight" looks, while the Hyundai GT has "well, maybe it can grow on me" looks. Now, if you're one of those ppl who loves details, then the Hyundai interior is not for you. Yes, it has leather, but so did a lot of terrible cars from the 80s that you would not dare sit in today. Moreover, all leather isn't created equal, if you know what I mean. And besides the leather, the rest of the interior is bland and relatively cheap looking, even for an inexpensive car. Conversely, though it may seem tacky or too much for some, the interior of the P5 leaves one with a sense of satisfaction and some excitement; cool dials, nice looking sifter, and seats you don't need to apologize to your friends about.
    Performance also needs to be mentioned. Suffice to say neither car is suitable to be a drag racer (but you know that), nor will a lack of acceleration endanger the lives of the occupants in either car. If you really wanted speed, would you pick a low-end sedan based vehicle?
    BTW, I've seen "professional reviewers" pick about small buttons and other such trivialities. Seriously, you are driving a car not playing DJ. A big volume knob and an easy way to change stations should make most people happy. I'm not going to go into detail about the location of the reading lamps and such, just know all the important items are easy to get to (after all, we have been making cars for decades would think designers would know where to place arm rest by now).

    So who "wins"? Well since there is about a 2 to 2.5 grand difference between the two, money and looks (picking up chicks) are more important than any other variables. If you’re in your 20s and care about coolness, go with the p5. If you’re maybe a little more mature and are more concerned with saving a couple of bucks, go with the Hyundai. Remember, both of them are “different”, relatively inexpensive, and comfortable. Go with the one you like better.
  • abeaughabeaugh Posts: 10
    I'm surprised at peoples reactions to the looks of the GT. I saw pictures on the internet, and I thought it was good lokking. Then I went to test drive it, and it is gorgeous. the lines are daring, and the alloy wheels look great. The leather feels as nice as the leather in my best friends volvo, and it screams luxury and style. I guess the original looks throw some people off, the same way people either love or hate pt cruisers. so I guess I'm lucky I love it because its the car for me.
  • I have to agree with you about the looks of the GT. I've had mine for 4 months (4400 miles) and I like it more all the time. I think it has a very stylish look from all angles, especially the front. We have a regular Elantra GLS 2001 as well, and my wife keeps harassing me about how much nicer my car is. That's what she gets for getting the new car first, as I drove around in my 87 Acura Legend. Anyway, you won't be disappointed. I don't know how they could sell it to you that cheap though?? Take it easy.
  • I just bought a 2002 cardinal red GT 5 speed, with moon roof and spoiler. What I love about this car is Hyundai has blended Zen with Euro Style to create a clean efficient automobile that appeals to the European and American markets with one shot. It has taken the clean minimalist approach of the Asian look and combined it with European highlights and Eng, such as the VDO dash. I have had my car less than a week and I love it. I like the lines of this car they really appeal to me; it has a clean sophisticated look with out being to garish. I don’t mind the Pro5, actually looked at it, but could not justify spending the extra doe for an overdressed Prot, just to boy racer for me. Not that I don’t like the car, I love the Prot ES, nice ride allot of room. Well folks I hope you all enjoy your Christmas. Have a great time if you buy the GT or the Pro5.

  • elec3elec3 Posts: 160
    And some of my friends do make fun of me for it, but not for very long. They call it a grocery getter and make fun of me for having a wagon (in which case it's better to have something like the Pro5 which is BARELY a wagon). Usually once they've ridden in it they don't give me any more grief. They like that it has 4 real doors (many of my friends' cars don't), they like how much room it has, they like that it's fairly quick and sporty. I imagine if I could afford some deep tint and shiny alloys, they'd even be impressed with the looks. I just like it because it's fun to drive and looks good, but every once in a while, the adult in me appreciates having 4 doors, or having that wagon rear-end, or having a roof rack, or getting 25 to 30 miles per gallon of gas, or any of the other things that make a wagon a practical choice.
  • mazdafunmazdafun Posts: 2,322
    Just going by the number of messages can be misleading. If you actually read the messages on the Protege complaint board, you'll find there are few actual complaints, but lots of responses with tips and general conversation. So far as I've read (over the past year): a couple CD players have problems, someone has a loose heat shield on their catalytic converter, 1 incidence of warped brake rotors and a couple other minor issues. I think one person had a major problem with a gen2 (mid-90s) Protege not starting.
  • joffficerjoffficer Posts: 169
    I looked into the P5, matrix, GT, Focus. The matrix is just plane ugly! For over 20k the bigger engine might help sway me, but I'd hate to look at it while walking up to it ( embarrassed I bought it for that much! ). The focus has been nothing but trouble for the place I work...and I'm not crazy how that looks either.
    So it mainly came down to the P5 and the GT. The P5 is slower, but not by to much. With the seats up it does have the same 'trunk' space of my old festiva. All the extra 'boy racer' plastic trim panels and interior colors are very much pointed at the young ones. It was comfortable to drive. Mazda's name has been around with good reviews for years.
    If you haven't guessed by now I went with the GT. I liked having a bigger engine....smoother and has a nice 'kick' when pushed past 4000rpm. The interior is more traditional without fake metal appointments. I fit better in the seats (5'11", 195lbs), and the leather feels/smells nice. Personally I like the look of the GT.... friends of mine thought I bought a Saab 9-5. I got the car loaded for 15K, and of course that's with the great warranty (and 5 oil changes).
    What, I guess, it comes down to is this... If you want a little station wagon, and plan on selling it in a couple years get the Mazda. If you want a european looking 5 door, and plan on keeping it more than 4 years go with the GT. Bang-for-the-buck it's hard to beat the Hyundai.
  • magicratmagicrat Posts: 5
    I agree that the Matrix is just plain ugly. That car was one I had considered, but just couldn't do it. Plus the 130hp engine is way slow! Looked at the GT based on pictures, reviews and price. Got to the dealership and knew right away that I couldn't buy the car. To me, it was nearly as ugly as the Matrix. Yes, it comes loaded with a low price, but I just couldn't look at it. Took a few other people by the dealership to see if it was just me, but it wasn't. They agreed that it's not a good looking car. To them, anyway. In case you couldn't already tell, I bought the PR5. So far, it's great. And it gets head turns when you drive it. Well, beauty is in the eye of the beholder. As long as you like your car, that's all that matters. If we all liked the same thing, what a boring world this would be.
  • jveliejvelie Posts: 9
    Does any one know how much the extended 5year to bumper to bumper will cost.
  • joffficerjoffficer Posts: 169
    I wasn't even told about an extension... why would you? You can get an extension for the P5, but their base warrenty is much shorter.
  • centarforcentarfor Posts: 22
    The Elantra GT is the winner for me. I like the exterior look better than the P5 and it comes with way more options for the money. It's also more powerful, but not by much. My dealer just can't find one that has all the options and a 5 spd.
  • bri70bri70 Posts: 147
    Add the factory spoiler, 16 or 17 inch wheels, and a roof rack and the Elantra GT looks- smooooking!
  • dagpotterdagpotter Posts: 71
    I have to keep my P5 for ten years...I had to promise to give it to my six year old.
  • compensatecompensate Posts: 212
    I don't quite know what a fastback is, but I thought the Elantra GT seemed like the true hatchback (like the old Honda CRX - sloped more moderately) and the Protege5 seemed more of a station wagon design (like the Vibe/Matrix).

    My battle was between these very two cars . . . and the Elantra GT won! I got my 2001.5 5-speed with sunroof for about $14,300. A similarly equiped Pro5 (WITHOUT leather seats) would have cost about $3500 more at the time I was buying.

    My Elantra GT has about 23,000 miles on it. The only real complaints I have had are (1) cheap wiper blade material (easily replaced) and (2) ome issues with the CD player (skips and freezes some). Plus I enjoy the smoother ride of my Elantra to the stiffer ride of the Pro5.

    However, if pure road-hugging curves are what you like to drive, the Pro5 is obviously the better car. Our 1999 Protege ES 5-speed (65,000 miles) is quite the curve-hugger as well!

    Choose carefully!
  • maltbmaltb Posts: 3,572
    Why anyone would want leather on either of these cars. To me, cheap leather is no better than vinyl and the cloth seats can only be an upgrade. It's amazing how far marketing goes.

    No offense to those who enjoy there leather...I just don't understand why.
  • th003gth003g Posts: 149
    no matter what kind of leather it is... is better than the cloth that comes standard in any compact car or midsize... cars around this price range (anything to 20k) do not come with very quality colth... in fact the hyunda elantra GLS cloth.. which my sister has feels downright thin and flimsy... styling is also another issue... elantra cloth has a pattern on it... to some it may be a plus to others it is not... leather gives it an upscale feel and appearance... also the seats on my GT are softer.. with leather... thicker than the material on my sis' GLS...and btwe... GT leather is not cheapo vinyl type... pretty decent.. i mean not connoly..but leather nonetheless
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