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Mazda Protegé



  • kaiserheadkaiserhead Posts: 166
    I spent the weekend at my parents house driving around in their 2000 ES 1.8 automatic. Although its nice to have the power windows and doors, I think I still prefer my 2000 SE 1.6 manual (mid-grade Pro in Canada for 2000 model year). The suspension isn't as stiff and bumpy, but the soft struts and coils still manage to take the corners fairly well (despite the disappointing Firestones!!) I think Mazda still havsn't worked out all the bugs in the automatic transmission, it was a little jerky and really disappointing off the line. The manual transmission on the other hand, is a work of art and should be displayed in the Mechanical Engineering Hall of Fame. All in all, the perfect Pro in my mind would be a 2000 ES Touring Edition with a manual transmission (sorry everyone who bought a 2001, that styling just doesn't do it for me, not even the sweet 2.0 can pursued me!!)

    On the topic of the CD player, mine has worked flawlessly for well over a year. However, my parents have had some problems with the unit, the transport mechanism constantly makes crunching sounds when a disc is being inserted or ejected. Mabey we can pursuede Mazda to look into this and possibly offer a recall or reimbursement.


  • djmax813djmax813 Posts: 30
    A co-worker of mine had gotten a 2001 Jetta 1.8 turbo and she let me drive it. Nice Car. Real nice. But loaded it would have cost close to 20k and the 2 yr/24k warranty really turned me off, especially after reading about rampant electrical problems. So i jettisoned that idea. Next up was the 2002 Subaru Impreza RS sedan. Beautiful car. Great reputation. But being a new model, they were going for right around sticker 19k+. It came down to the Pro or the Sentra Se. The Pro is better looking and rarer. So that was my choice for which i am glad.

    Speaking of twisties, we have a few here in Monmouth county NJ. I stretch her legs a little bit. It affirms that I made the right choice.
  • I have owned my Pro ES for about ten months now. I really enjoy a spirited ride, wether it'll be the straight-aways or the twisties, but there is still something lacking with an auto trans, Pro ES.
    I'm getting into street racing. I've seen the 170 hp Protege and was really impressed on what those people have attained with bolt-ons and a turbo
    I'm thinking of converting my auto into a standard manual( of course this project would have to wait 'till the end of my warranty). Is this possible, even thought of?
  • rsparrowrsparrow Posts: 60
    I did a little zoom-zooming myself during the past week or so and took my Pro down south into Montana, then Colorado to pick up a friend, and then we took off to go to the Grand Canyon. Had a great time, and the car behaved flawlessly during the enire trip, despite having its AC on probably more in the past week than it's been on before in total!

    I must say, I didn't see too many Proteges during my journey, although the Canadian car in front of me as I crossed the border/customs was a yellow Pro 5... I distinctly heard the border folks talking to the driver..."Is this new?" :-) I was surprised to see a couple of Toyota Priuses and Honda Insights...I think up here they're still basically demo cars for power companies...

    Anyway I just thought I'd post a positive reliability report...It's just a '99 1.6l SE (and auto, to boot) but it's never given me grief. I ended up getting an aftermarket moonroof installed a couple of months back (no problems so far) and I'm still debating the spoiler issue.

  • mdaffronmdaffron Posts: 4,421
    ... on the Daewoo boards? It's been very interesting reading for the past few months. (You newcomers probably don't remember the "Daewoo vs. Protege," "Protege vs. Nubira," and even "Daewoo vs. Lamborghini" (no kidding!) topics of the latter part of 2000. Ah, the times we had ...

    The quibbling between the guys there -- not the newcomers, mind you, but several established posters whom many of you would recognize -- has been incessant and definitely below-the-belt. (Makes this VW guy look like Winnie the Pooh by comparison.) -- er, sorry, just had a baby. Anyway, the host just had to shut down the Leganza topic again for a "cooling off" period.

    Go have a read -- It's a great way to relieve tension and have a laugh when things are dull here!

    I wrote a little verse about it (apologies to Paul Simon and Art Garfunkel) ... er, this is "Bridge over Troubled Water" for all you kids.

    When your warranty
    Is feelin' small,
    When your transmission dies
    We won't let you fall.

    We're in your town,
    Oh, if you can find us --
    And used cars can't be found,

    Le-gan-za drives like a used Maverick
    Daewoo's best? I groan,
    Le-gan-za handles like a Pinto
    Daewoo needs a loan!

    Sorry, couldn't resist a little morning humor. My by-gosh wonderful, 5-year-old Rheem air conditioning system quit last night and I'm waiting for the repairman to call. Guess I'll get "Rheemed." So I'm in a crappy mood. Hey, does that make me a commode-ian?

    If only Mazda made heat pumps ...

  • SporinSporin Posts: 1,066
    To be fair, all 2002 VW's have a new warranty package.

    4/50k bumper-to-bumper
    5/60k powertrain

    No more "free" maintenance, but I don't think that's a bad thing, given how generally incompetant and overloaded the dealers are.

    I still think that ANY 2.0 engined VW is a worse buy then a Protege. Now the 1.8T is a different story, but it is also a whole different price catergory ($20k min.). VW just doesn't compete well in the $15k-$17k range IMO.
  • maltbmaltb Posts: 3,572
    You figure if it costs you $2K in used parts, you are better off selling the Pro and buying a manual.

  • majorthomechomajorthomecho Posts: 1,331
    Blue, you would be better off buying a manual transmission car rather than trying to convert an automatic to a manual. It can be done, but takes a lot of time and money. And the reliability of the finished product won't be as high as a car that started out as a manual.
  • mdrivermdriver Posts: 385
    I stand by my claim that there are few twisties in the Midwest. Taking an off-ramp is one of the few ways, but come on, it's over in a matter of seconds. Midwest cities are laid out on a grid pattern - no fun there. Rural midwest roads are also long and straight and frequented by roaming sherrifs waiting for you to do 60 in a 55. There are some exceptions: There's a great twistie in the Hoosier Nat'l Forest that goes on for about 40 miles, full of tight hairpins and not much traffic. It's great driving, but your passengers may not appreciate the wild changes in direction. Now if only I didn't have to drive hundreds of miles to get there.
  • newcar31newcar31 Posts: 3,711
    In northern and southeastern minnesota, the roads are not straight at all. Minnesota must be the exception to your rule. The roads are not straight in north central wisconsin either. At least in the central city, I cannot think of any large city that isn't layed out in a grid pattern.
  • mdaffronmdaffron Posts: 4,421

  • protegextwoprotegextwo Posts: 1,265
    Is "Bluffhose" and "Jabberkobty" still around at the Daewoo discussions, favorably comparing their Korean auto's to BMW's?

  • momgraymomgray Posts: 18
    Okay, I was sooo excited to get my husband to try the Protege last weekend ... and I came down with an inner ear infection where I had vertigo so badly that I had serious trouble walking (and couldn't even contemplate driving).

    We may now try to do our test drive next week in Michigan (on vacation!). Has anyone dealt with Crown in Holland MI or Siemans in St. Jo? If we can't spend an am doing the test drive, we won't have time 'til August 11!

    I'm hoping we test drive it, it's so fantastic that I can get everything lined up to go buy it Aug 11.

    TIA - OH, and thanks for the spoiler info - it helps me a lot!!! We need more moms on the board .

  • jstandeferjstandefer Posts: 805
    I found this on a review of the 2001 Protege on MSN's Carpoint:

    "Satisfaction: Overall, owners are satisfied, but complain of the rapid wear of clutch and brake linings, as well as the poor quality of some rubber pieces."

    It just makes me feel better that I am apparently not the only one complaining about the rapid wear of the brakes and clutch... rubber pieces? I have had no problem with any in mine, unless the tires count!

  • protegextwoprotegextwo Posts: 1,265
    Well, the pair of 2000 Mazda Protege ES's, my wife and I purchased in Feb. 2000 have hit the 25,000 mile mark. After almost 18 months and 25,000 miles what do we have?


    VALUE: We own fuel efficient, inexpensive cars ($15,200 a piece) with up-scale amenities (moon roof, full-power, CD player, alloy wheels, keyless entry, cruise, etc.

    RELIABILITY: We have a well built car. At 25,000 TROUBLE-FREE miles both cars have been completely stainless. Zero, zilch, no problems. Consumer Reports, a nonprofit 2001 Annual Auto Issue rates the Protege as follows; "The Protege is one of our top-rated small sedans. Overall, the Protege is a solid, refined car, with excellent reliability."

    ROOM TO ZOOM: We have room! Great seat travel, cabin space, and leg room. We have the largest interior of any 2000 model year auto in the small sedan segment. With Mazda's "OptiSpace" interior design process, we have 95 cubic feet of interior room.

  • vocusvocus Posts: 7,777
    It says the premiums on the Protege are high for the class. Maybe that's why I am paying $195 a month for insurance on my 2001 ES then...
  • mdaffronmdaffron Posts: 4,421
    Good to hear from you, my friend! Sean's now 2 whole months old, and he smiled at me yesterday! (Of course, it's a natural reaction for ANYONE who looks at me to break out in hysterics -- more on that some other time.)

    First, let me answer your first question: Yes, bluff and jake are still there, along with some other cheerleaders and doomsayers. Of course, most of the really funny stuff can be found in the topic, "Daewoo Bankruptcy." But why am I telling you this? You won't get damned for going and taking a look for yourself.

    Second, I'll semi-ditto your comment on your Proteges. I have 23,500 on my 2000 Emerald Mica ES 5-speed. I have taken it in twice for warranty work, but to be honest (forgive me Father, I have sinned) -- I think I was to blame for breaking the plastic clip that holds the trunk springs up under the parcel shelf (er -- snagged it with a tall box). I did encounter the early virus known as Squeakydooritis, but it was fixed painlessly and permanently while I waited.

    Larry, have you noticed the wear on your Bridgestone Poortenzas? Mine are wearing thin -- getting close to replacement time, and you know I have a good reason -- unless I need to post the pic of my hydroplaned-and-totaled former Poortenza-clad Protege. I've been doing some research -- actually went to the brand-new Merchant's Tire & Auto about a mile from my house last week and checked out the Kumho Ecsta Supra 712. It comes in our 195/55VR15 size, looks really awesome, and rates pretty darn well considering the Michelin version (which admittedly is a superior tire) was twice the price. (The Kumho is $84 out-the-door, including valve stem, mounting & balancing, etc.) The tire almost looks like a Goodyear Aquatred when it comes to water displacement, with a huge groove running down the middle. And I'm, understandably I hope, VERY CONCERNED about wet-weather traction -- something our beloved Poortenzas DON'T have. Oh -- and the Kumhos have a treadwear rating of 340 -- more than twice that of our Poortenzas -- AND they have a traction rating of AA, highest in the business.

    I'll probably buy a set by the end of the year -- certainly before bad weather arrives -- and give a report.

  • maltbmaltb Posts: 3,572
    Isn't it funny what we'll do for our kids? When I went to tire the wife's old Jetta some years back, I asked the guy for a set of Michelin MXV4s. His comment was, "nobody puts those on a car like this". Well, I was thankful I did on more than one occasion.

  • protegextwoprotegextwo Posts: 1,265
    A great source for ownership costs is Intellichoice Car Center.

    I checked their 5 year ownership insurance projections on several different small sedans.

    2001 Mazda Protege ES $9,240

    2001 Ford Focus SE $8,390

    2001 Dodge Neon Highline $9,240

    2001 Hyundai Elantra GLS $10,034

    2001 Honda Civic EX $9,005

    2001 Toyota Corolla LE $9,240

    My 2 cents, insurance cost for the PRO-ES's is not out of line with other small sedans.


  • protegextwoprotegextwo Posts: 1,265
    To be honest, the OME Bridgestones tires are holding up fine. However, I do a lot of straight line highway driving. I commute 64 miles round trip five days a week on Route #283 from Lancaster to Harrisburg, PA. I have rotated the tires every 5,000 miles and I think they will safely go another 10,000 miles or more. Nonetheless, I will slap snow tires, on my "twins" this winter. Last year, it got a little dicey driving home from work during a couple of different snow storms, late at night!

    Meade, please tell Tammy; The Kline's said hi! Give the baby a hug and kiss for me.

    God Bless,
  • mdaffronmdaffron Posts: 4,421
    I'm not sure whether you're being a tad sarcastic there -- me choosing Kumhos over Michelins? Well, I thought Bridgestone Potenza RE92s were good tires until I learned better in a very personal way. Sure, the Kumhos aren't Michelins ... but they'll hold up a lot better than the Potenzas.

    And I may be doing this for my baby, but I'm doing it for me as well. I don't want to experience that August day in 1992 all over again.

    Want some visual proof of how 28,000-mile Potenza RE92s perform at 40 mph in the rain? Take a look at:

    As I've said before, I *LOVE* going ZOOM ZOOM ZOOM!!!! But I equally enjoy going STOP STOP STOP!!!


  • mdaffronmdaffron Posts: 4,421
    I saw MaltB post it on the 626 topic earlier this month. It may have been here and I missed it; if that's the case, sorry for the repetition.


  • snagy1snagy1 Posts: 55
    on my 2001 lx 2.0 there are 4 speakers installed and appear to have two areas ready for install in the rear passenger doors, is it possible that two more could be installed ? thanks, 1,500 miles and average about 32 mpg, mainly highway, little a/c. paid 15,050 without tax on s-plan (little info for those of you who need it.)
  • maltbmaltb Posts: 3,572
    I was serious make a big difference and I subscribe to Michelin's tag line, "because so much so riding on your tires." If you've ever had to make a sudden lane change at 60 mph due to a clueless cell phone user, you'll know what I mean.

  • protegextwoprotegextwo Posts: 1,265
    Well, I have got to say, after 25,000 miles; I still love my Mazda's! I can't sing the praises high enough for this vehicle, it's build quality, drivability, economy and reliability are top-box. I'm not a Mazda salesman, BTW.


    STYLING: My wife and I wanted a new car that looked great, pleasing styling. The Mazda PRO-ES has the handsome Euro-looking style. A fresh look, we didn't want to see two or three cars just like ours at every traffic light.

    HANDLING:The Mazda "Kaansai engineering"(oneness of design and function), results in a nice little econo-performance sedan. The twin-trapezoidal link rear and stiff stabilizer bars keep my PRO-Es's on rails during hard cornering. BTW at 25,000 miles the car still feels nice and tight. No squeaks, groans or rattles yet.

    Ok, I'm forty two years old and my wife is 6 years younger, however we truly love our "good little cars". IMHO, the Protege is a well thought out, comfortable, fun-to-drive car even at 25,000 miles.

  • mazdafunmazdafun Posts: 2,329
    Hey, they're worth it. I put Michelin X-Ones on my '89 323 at $75 each! :)
  • vocusvocus Posts: 7,777
    That GeoCities link doesn't work for some reason.
  • rukeitharukeitha Posts: 3
    Hello, All! I'm seeking to purchase a Nissan Sentra 2001 GXE, a Honda Civic 2001 LX, OR a Mazda Protege 2001 LX 2.0 within two weeks but I haven't quite narrowed it down. I'll take all the advice you can muster.

    Thanks in advance for your help.
  • protege_fanprotege_fan Posts: 2,405
    I bought a 2001 Pro LX 2.0. Mine is manual. I love my car. Period. It is great on gas, fun to drive, and it has great styling. If I were you, I would opt for the Sunsport package because it is not a whole lot more than buying the ABS, A/C, and keyless (like I did...shoulda got the sunsport...oh well!). Definitely get the 2.0 L engine. I test drove both back to back. There is an incredible difference between the two engines.
    In terms of color, choose wisely! I love the look of my black Pro, but it is a pain to keep clean! But when it is clean, man does it look good!
    Before I bought my Pro I looked at Civics and Corollas. In the end I chose the Pro because after the test drive I fell in love with it! I think that it's all a matter of personal preference, because the 3 cars you mentioned are all very similar in terms of preformance, etc. Of course there are areas where one car will shine over another, but that is why I say it is personal preference. Good luck with your decision.
    If you have any particular questions ask away. It is much easier to respond when people have an idea of what kind of information you're looking for. :)
    BTW, If you do pick a Pro, get ready to Zoom Zoom!!

  • vocusvocus Posts: 7,777
    I will do the liberty of breaking it down for you. The Sentra is small inside, the Civic is slow and boring, and the Protege is great! :) At least consider the Protege hard, because it's cheaper than the other two while being more fun to drive and just as reliable.
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