Mazda Protegé



  • theparallaxtheparallax Member Posts: 361
    Take a good long test drive, make sure everything is working correctly. Inspect for any misaligned body panels, scratches, dents, anything out of the ordinary. Remember, once you sign the paper, it's YOURS. :)
  • pjd58pjd58 Member Posts: 366
    you can wax your new Pro right away. I recommend getting some wax on before the first snow fall. I hand wash my Protege in my driveway , as long as the temp is above 45. Never, I mean never go thru those service station car washes. There are a few no touch car washes in my area that I use when the temp is between 33 and 45. These no touch car washes are usually expensive, around 12 bucks, but worth the investment to remove salt.

    When I picked up my 01 LX 2.0, I test drove the car throughly. Make sure you check for vibration and pulling at all speeds. Make sure all your fluids are full including your gas tank. Your new Protege should be be flawless inside and out. They should set your clock and go over all the controls of the car.

    Do not sign untill the car is perfect!
  • pjd58pjd58 Member Posts: 366
    How was your trip to Columbus? See any Mill Red Proteges around? :)

  • zupsterzupster Member Posts: 20
    I ordered mine from Liberty Mazda in Libertyville, IL. They seem pretty laid back up there, so far they've been good to work with. I got it at the Edmund's base invoice price, although I'm paying the full $800.00 for the AT.

    Thanks for all the input on what to do when it arrives. I'll just have to tell them that I need an hour or so with the car before I sign off. I get so dang nervous when I'm in a car dealership, no matter how much I prep myself beforehand.

    I was wondering because on practically every car review, Consumer Reports invariably finds "2 to 5 minor defects", but they never go into any detail.

    Have you found a good automatic carwash in the area that you use during winter?
  • chicagoprochicagopro Member Posts: 1,009
    hey, there--

    Columbus was, you know--Columbus. Actually, the weather was pretty nice, don't you think? Too bad I had to spend all my days inside listening to people blab away for 8 hours at a time. Did get to go out a couple of nights with friends who live in Upper Arlington.

    Sorry to say I didn't see you, although I was keeping an eye out. Saw a gen 2, as well as a couple of gen 3's, although no red ones.

    re: car washes

    There is a no-touch at a service station in my area, but it's nowhere near 12 bucks. What happens at YOUR car wash? Do they throw rose petals on your Protege? :)
  • chicagoprochicagopro Member Posts: 1,009
    I'm not sure where in the Chicago area you are...some Amoco stations have drive-thru no-touch washes attached. Not that great, but it washes off a couple layers of grime.

    The problem with being an apartment dweller is that I don't really have a driveway and convenient access to water to wash the car myself...wish I could. Although I suppose I could always try the DIY wash near Wrigley Field...that's a few blocks away from me.

    Glad your dealership experience has been good so far. Got mine at Jacobs Twin, and I don't know if I would recommend it highly to anybody. Service dept seems okay so far (actually checked out something for free a couple of weeks ago), but overall I wasn't impressed by the attitude on the sales floor. My guy wasn't TOO bad, though.
  • elec3elec3 Member Posts: 160
    Since you guys are discussing Chicagoland dealerships, I thought I'd throw mine in. I got my Pro5 at Pugi (formerly Downers Grove Imports) on Ogden Ave. They are a Mazda/Hyundai/VW dealership and my family has gotten excellent service there (we've purchased our last 6 vehicles there and currently own 4 Mazdas, if you can believe that). I'd highly recommend them.
  • SporinSporin Member Posts: 1,066
    No-touch car washes in my area are $3-$6 depending on which level you choose.

    $12 for a no-tougch wash is a huge rip-off.
  • shriqueshrique Member Posts: 338
    I actually lament the day when I had underground parking at my apartment complex. They had a hose that you could use year round. (sigh) Well that's what you get when you buy a house.

    What I ususally do in the winter is wax the heck out of it in the fall and then all winter I just rinse it good when the weather is warm at one of those u-spray-it places. Then periodically get the no-touch with all the extras. That seems to help the clear coat stay resonably nice.
  • pjd58pjd58 Member Posts: 366
    the no touch car washes around here are full service. They vac the carpet, wipe the dash, presoak the outside and tires, and towel dry. I just don't trust service station car washes. Can't tell you how many times if seen license plates, trim, antennas around service station car washes.

    As I stated earlier, I wash my car by hand, weather permiting. You can use my driveway next time your in Columbus:)
  • tomcat630tomcat630 Member Posts: 854
    There is a new Mazda franchise in Evanston, IL it's with the Autobarn VW complex on Chicago Av (Clark St.).

    So, for those living along the Chicago lakefront, here is a place to check out.
  • chicagoprochicagopro Member Posts: 1,009
    For a no-touch wash, that sounds like an awful lot of touching! :)

    Seriously, seems like not a bad deal. I probably need to be more diligent about searching out something similar here in this area. I'm afraid I haven't been very good about keeping the Pro clean (and considering it's white, this is kind of a problem!)

    Yes, I will definitely be hitting your driveway next time I'm in Ohio. Maybe you can host a Midwest Protege Picnic/CarWash! :)
  • zupsterzupster Member Posts: 20
    What about the under-car wash. I would think this is a good thing in winter, to get the salt off.

    Any of you gus hear about this. A guy at work here says when washing his cars, he adds regular car soap AND a couple of capfuls of Murphys Oil soap. Says that the oil is an extra protectant agains rust.
  • fowler3fowler3 Member Posts: 1,919
    I'm 5'11" and weigh 162 pounds before breakfast. ;) As for car washes I do that in my driveway. Although I did run my Pro through an AutoBell car wash the first time. No problems, they have big soft straps,but I worry about grit in the straps causing spiderwebbing scratches on the Sand Mica paint. So hand washing is better.

    The guys are right, before taking delivery inspect your car thoroughly, get down and look around the bottom of it. Check for small scratches on the paint. Sometimes they don't get all of the glue off off of the hood, roof, and trunk lid where the white plastic sheets were. You will see it as dark red streaks. Have them clean it again. Listen for squeeks and rattles when you drive it. Check at intersections for the steering wheel pulling to one side or the other when you stop or start out. It may be the pavement, it may be the car.

  • fowler3fowler3 Member Posts: 1,919
    talking tires anymore.....wish I hadn't said that. Now they will. LOL! The truth of the matter is I get confused when you guys talk about tires. I can't remember how long it's been since I bought tires...maybe 30 years or more. Usually traded before the car needed them at about 54K miles. Those big, fat, radial tires on older American cars lasted a long time. In the winter I switched to snow tires.

  • pjd58pjd58 Member Posts: 366
    my Wife has a Sand Mica MPV and it's a good color to hide the dirt:) I really like Sand Mica but didn't want to get the same color for my Protege.
  • boopoppaboopoppa Member Posts: 48
    hey there...first time posting on the sedan board :-)
    i picked up my factory ordered pro5 about three weeks ago and loving it! blue, 5spd, moon

    i was wondering about when i should wash and wax my car as well, before winter hits.

    the thing is, i heard that even no-touch car washes arent good either because they use a harsher cleaning agent to compensate, and/or also they recycle their water, meaning abrasive grit in water?

  • black01coupev6black01coupev6 Member Posts: 195
    I would love to wash my own car but Georgia has a mandatory outdoor watering ban between 10AM-10PM. So I'm left with spending $20 a pop to get it done, freezing my hiney off at a car wash doing it myself, or just letting my car stay dirty.
  • speedyptspeedypt Member Posts: 200
    Roto in Arlington Heights sells Mazda too...not usually much of a selection, very good service department though. I go there for service on both of my cars and I have been pleased. (Roto sells Lincoln/Mercury, Mazda and Subaru)

    I do have to say I've heard from several Chicago Pro owners! Great to know I'm not alone anymore and it gives me some hope for the CAPP in the spring! Lets see if I got them all:

    Speedypt...that's me
    Zupster (about to be a Pro owner)
    Chicago Pro (Hi Dale)
    elec3 (when not at school in NM)

    ...did I miss anyone???

    Car washes...on those rare occasions when I can't take the time to wash it myself, I have used DeltaSonic. Soft cloth, careful attendants for the most part, and have never gotten any damage on my cars going there. $15 for full exterior and interior...includes a 5-day guarantee (2nd exterior wash for free). Like I said though...only when I can't do it myself.


  • mazdafunmazdafun Member Posts: 2,329
    I prefer to hand-wash my car myself. When I can't (such as now), I use one of those self-serve drive-thru places, but I don't use the brush attachment. It knocks off most dirt, but still leaves a thin layer of dust. I thoroughly spray the underbody.

    I will sometimes go for the no-touch automatic with the under-body spray, but it never seems to spray it enough, even when I drive REALLY slowly over the spray bar.

    So far as waxing before winter, now's a good time while the temperature's mild. The weather's been unusually nice this year, but it can turn nasty very quickly. I'm going to try to hand-wash and wax my car this weekend (then I can put away the hose for the winter too). Hope the weather stays nice.
  • zupsterzupster Member Posts: 20
    Ok, after all thats been said, I think its time to approach the wife, "we NEED a heated garage with drain....and lift".

    Speedypt, I thought it was 'speedypoint', now I know it's 'speedypete'. I was seeing tons of Pro's on the Edens, haven't seen many lately. I think I've seen about 6 Pro 5's, still have to stop and look at them go by.

    This board had alot to do with me picking the Pro. The Pro must be great with so many people extolling its virtues.


    new CR-V: I had to test drive the redesign last night as it was on my list of potential vehicles. Will be a good package for non-tall people. My knees were hitting the center console and dashboard. Lots of exterior plastic though.
  • SporinSporin Member Posts: 1,066
    I think the CRV is a great package, I just don't fit in it. Suprisingly little head room.
  • vocusvocus Member Posts: 7,777
    I am surprised, because the 2000 CR-V was pretty big inside. I fit in that one just fine.
  • black01coupev6black01coupev6 Member Posts: 195
    I'm trying to talk my significant other into taking a look at the CRV. Probably a good idea that we don't though. Test driving vehicles before has been dangerous to my pocketbook.
  • vocusvocus Member Posts: 7,777
    Know how you feel about test driving. :) That's how I ended up trading cars about a week ago. :0
  • black01coupev6black01coupev6 Member Posts: 195
    yeah, my new philosphy is that if I don't drive anything else I won't know what I'm missing. Although I know what I'm missing by not having a CL-S. Big payments.
  • mdaffronmdaffron Member Posts: 4,421
    Those of you who have been following my tire dilemma know that when it comes to deciding on where to purchase my next set of tires, I've been as bad as Paul is with cars (sorry Vocus, but it's true).

    I found the tires I want (Yokohama AVID T4s) at TireRack for only $61 apiece. But then I found out that if I buy the tires from TireRack, I can't get free rotation or any of those other goodies you get when you purchase your tires from a local dealer. So I decided to try to find the Yoko's locally. The only local dealer who has them is Sears, and they have to be special ordered -- at $93 a tire. Ouch. And as many of us who own 2000 ES's know, there ain't much else to choose from unless you want to go with weird-looking Kumhos or mortgage-your-house Michelin XGTs. And I want all-season, quiet, long-lasting tires -- not performance tires -- which sets me apart from many of you. I'm tired of the slip-sliding, noisy-as-hell, short-lived Poortenzas. (And most of you know I hydroplaned a Poortenza-shod 1992 Protege LX to its death with only 28,000 miles on it. Guess how many miles are on my 2000 ES -- with the stock Poortenzas -- right now?)

    Epic continues ...

    I just happened to be in my local Costco (former Price Club) yesterday, and decided to look at their tire department for the first time. Just as I expected, they didn't have 195/55-15's in any brand. I started to tell the guy my story about liking TireRack's prices but being in a quandry about rotation, and he said they rotate members' tires -- no matter where they bought 'em -- for free!

    Problem solved! TireRack, here I come!

  • vocusvocus Member Posts: 7,777
    Well at least you got some tires now, and got the best of both worlds. Isn't it cool when you can get your way? :)

    And you just had to get something in there, didn't you? :) Just kidding. It's all good.
  • nikecarnikecar Member Posts: 460
    I've gotten lifetime balances and rotations from shops where I didn't buy the tires. For example. My wife's neon. Had a flat that need a new tire after about a yr of driving. Went to good year and got a new tire, plus the balance plan on the other tires, even though they were a yr old tires.

    They just looked and inspected the tires to see they were ok.

    Also, my Altima's tires, when they first started feathering, I took it to Tire Kingdom and got the plan on the back tires (had to buy 2 new tires for front so I had to get it then).

    Don't take BS from shops, as they will do it, they just need to inspect the tires. Go to an authorized Yoko dealer and they should do it.
  • protege_fanprotege_fan Member Posts: 2,405
    For those in the Calgary area (ie Duh), I just called my Uncle who works for a Midas. I was calling to ask about oil changes and he told me that they have a deal for new vehicles. For about $129, you get life-time oil changes (4 a year).
    Considering that an oil change is about $30 CDN, this one time cost covers 4 oil changes anyway, then all the rest are free.
    I have to check out the details tomorrow, but will post details when I get em.
    BTW, has anybody heard anything negative about these sorts of deals?

  • fowler3fowler3 Member Posts: 1,919
    pjd58: Sand Mica is really good in not showing dirt, but you have to be careful when cleaning/washing the windshield or you will get dirt on your pants leaning against the car, especially light coloured pants. It looks clean, it isn't. I keep an old butcher's apron in the garage to wear. Also good so as not to drip oil on them when checking that.

    boopopa: Welcome to the Mazda Protegé boards, it's more like a forum here. Know you are enjoying your Pro5. I was at OfficeMax today and saw a silver Pro5 polished to perfection, couldn't take my eyes off of it. Other patrons coming out stopped to see what I was so interested in. LOL Those 16-inch alloys look like 17's with so much space between the spokes. It had a moonroof, also.

    I waited to see who the proud owner was. Shucks, she was pretty and blond and way too young for me. I've been out of high school a long time. ;)

    Wish Mazda would make an LX version with the Beige interior trim. No immitation aluminum stuff and black guages.

    But hey! At least I could drive home in a Protegé! Zoom Zoom!

  • pintopkppintopkp Member Posts: 2
    Hey there. I'm currently looking around for a new car to purchase in a couple of months and came across the Protege while looking around at various dealers. I was just curious about a couple of things:
    1. How is the long term reliability? By the way you all talk about this car, I can't imagine it's anything but good, but just asking.
    2. How is the stock sound system, and will aftermarket speakers be necessary for nice, clear audio?
    3. I take it none of the exterior colors on ES Proteges are available with a black interior, or is their website just out-of-date and a little crappy?
    4. I have moderate winters up here. Does it handle ok in snow with its current tires, or will I have to get me some of them there snow tires? :)

    Any help would be appreciated. Thanks!
  • black01coupev6black01coupev6 Member Posts: 195
    My significant other can't wait to get a P5 although now he's talking 300ZX (again).

    pinto: I can't talk about long term reliability but given the history of "most" Proteges it's probably a good bet.

    The stock speakers are fine if you don't go above midway on the volume control. Needless to say my speakers will get replaced soon because of the distortion at higher volumes.

    All Protege ES models come with a black cloth interior. Maybe I misunderstood your question though.

    In Georgia it never snows (or rains for the matter anymore)worth anything but I'm pretty sure
    a few of the other posters in here can help you with that.

    As a Honda lover though I am happy with this car and that says alot.
  • mdaffronmdaffron Member Posts: 4,421
    Believe it or not, there is no licensed Yokohama dealer in Richmond. If only we had NTB here ...

  • mazdafunmazdafun Member Posts: 2,329
    The Protege's reliability is ranked amongst the top (comparable to Civic, Corolla, better than Sentra, Impreza)...according to the statistical data gathered by CU. It's probably Mazda's most reliable model currently.

    Mine is a '99LX with about 25000 miles on it. No big problems to date (steering wheel was misaligned when I got it, but my dealership fixed it under warranty). Very pleased so far.

    I replaced the stock speakers because I wanted clearer highs. Lows and mid-range were OK on the stock speakers. Current audio system is different from what was in the 99/00 version though.

    I'm not sure what tires are stock on the current Pros. Mine were Firestone FR680s, which are OK on dry pavement, but are really bad on wet pavement and snow and ice. I drove VERY carefully during the winter months. I've replaced them with Dunlop SP Sport A2s. They're noticeably more responsive on dry, but I don't have experience on wet, snow or icy surfaces. They're ranked better on Tire Rack's consumer surveys, but I'll let you know what I think when I drive under (or is it over?) those conditions.

    I think the Bridgestone Potenza RE92s exhibit similar behavior to the Firestone FR680s on non-dry pavement. That's what I gather from the comments on the Protege boards here. The Dunlops stock on the P5s seem to be more satisfactory.
  • groharlemgroharlem Member Posts: 59
    DO NOT buy those crappy yokie t4's. They suck!!!! I have them on my car, and they aren't nearly as "performance" oriented as tirerack says (i bought them from there too). They don't grip worth anything on dry pavement, but they are allright in the rain and snow.

    Get something other than yokohama...the tire grip ratings tehy get are too optimistic for my tastes.

    Get pirellis or falkens or something
  • vocusvocus Member Posts: 7,777
    I had Dunlop SP5000s (I think they were 5000) on my 2001 ES. They gripped well, and showed virtually no wear (never drove in snow though, but in rain many times) in 20,000 miles that I had the car.
  • maltbmaltb Member Posts: 3,572
    free life-time oil changes on all Proteges sold in May/June?

    See this post on the P5 board: onboost91 "Mazda Protege5 (Hatchbacks & Station Wagons Boards)" Nov 14, 2001 8:05am
  • protege_fanprotege_fan Member Posts: 2,405
    NEVER heard of that. I bought my car June 27th....would certainly like to know if this is true or not. If it is true, is this something that the dealer can hide from you?

  • SporinSporin Member Posts: 1,066
    That sounds like a dealership-thing, not a corporate thing to me.
  • dinu01dinu01 Member Posts: 2,586

    Welcome to our board.

    The sound system on the 2001s is acceptable. It's not your $3000 home stereo sytem, but will do for the car (for me personally). I don't think changing the stock speakers and systems for a mid-range package is worth the difference in sound quality for this car. Overall I would say the current system is ok. But if you have $, you can always tweak it a little.

    Tires-wise, depends where you drive. What area? If you don't get too much snow the Potenzas will do just fine. Some of us here on the board have been discussing tires (much to Fowler's chagrin), b/c we live in cooler climates. I am in Toronto, and I'm seriously considering buying a 2nd set of winter tires with rims. For about 750-800 Canadian, it's worth every penny, considering insurance deductible is usually $500 (that's what I have).

    The black interior is standard on all ES models as far as I know, both US and CAN.

    Reliability-wise, I too had to have an allignment done after I picked mine up. Free of charge. Otherwise, no complaints. I think it might even be more reliable that the New Civic (they've been having some problems with it). Corollas and Sentras don't HANDLE like the PRO does, so I can't compare them.

    Hope you'll chose to ZOOM-ZOOM.

  • dinu01dinu01 Member Posts: 2,586
    Haven't heard anything about it here in T.O. Maybe it's just in the States. Seems a little too cheap for it. After 5-6 oil changes they will be loosing $. I doubt Midas would go for something like that.
  • black01coupev6black01coupev6 Member Posts: 195
    The new Civic is taking somewhat of a beating. Hope it's just first year issues and not an indication of what's to come.
  • nikecarnikecar Member Posts: 460

    If you are comfortable going to that shop, do it... they will end up getting you to buy something that makes it up since they are spedning pennies on the dollar for that service.


    My wife's grandparents have a 95 DX that has about 26K on it... still runs and sounds great.
    also, the sound is fine.. if yyou want booming base or super clear sound, then buy aftermarket stuff. but its good for everyday normal listening too.


    wow... no Yoko dealer... last option... Move!!! heh


    I take it no one has ever used the Mobil 1 Oil Filter that I was asking about?
  • protege_fanprotege_fan Member Posts: 2,405
    I'm going to check out the Midas because that's where my Uncle works. I'm gonna try to make sure that he's the ONLY one working on the car.

    Oil filter

    I've only had one oil change thus far, and it was done at the dealership, so I'm assuming they used a Mazda oem filter.

  • duh_sterduh_ster Member Posts: 102
    thanx for the oil change info! keep me posted...sounds like a good deal...

    everybody else: omg, i just got back from an extended long weekend, and i see 105 mssgs! wow!

    norcan: i saw your post about gas. here's how i calculated it...($0.569 / L) * (1L / 0.264 gal) * ($1US/$1.60Cdn) = $1.35US / gal

  • kbettskbetts Member Posts: 1
    I've enjoyed reading your posts. I've had my LX 2.0 since July and it still puts smiles on my face. I think I'm going to have to buy snow tires before the snow flys as the ones on there are pretty slick in the wet. Has anyone tried Has anyone out there ordered the spring/shock/swaybar kit like the MP3 has at I really enjoy the performance of this car but there is always room for improvement. Things I've learned are; 1) It's very sensitive to tire pressure. Make sure the tire pressure matches the door label recommendation. 2) It will not get better than 32 mpg. I don't know why but it won't. 3) Under hood temps seemed excessive last summer. Things cooled off before I could get a handle on it. It is possibly the close-coupled catalytic converter located between the engine and the radiator. This also has something to do with why Racing Beat was only able to get 10HP more for the MP3 but I'm still investigating. Look forward to more of your comments.
  • peregrine_11peregrine_11 Member Posts: 27
    Hi all, it's been a while since I posted on here, but I've been lurking occasionally and spending the rest of the time enjoying my silver 2001 ES!

    In the interest of safety (primarily) and preserving those lovely alloy wheels (secondary), I'm thinking I may break down and buy a set of winter tires. I've got a quote of $530 for tires, wheels, wheel covers and shipping from Tire Rack. It's a bite on the ol' credit card, but I'm guessing the tires should last me a few winters, so I'm thinking of it as an INVESTMENT.

    And, in the interest of protecting that investment, I'm looking for advice (either direct, or referring to previous posts) that discuss how to store tires when they're not in use. In one place, I hear they should be stored horizontally (stacked), in another, I hear vertically (on their treads). One thing I read said you should store them in garbage bags if possible...any advice from the ever-dependable Edmunds Townhall Protege Group?
  • theparallaxtheparallax Member Posts: 361
    My 99LX is Sand Mica. It does hide dirt very well, but then again, after spending 3-4 hours washing/waxing it, it doesn't look too much different either. I guess it's the 'no maintenance' color for the Protege. Next time I will go with maybe a dark blue or black, since I love washing cars!

    I think the sound systems in the 99-00 Pro's were better sounding than the new ones. When I test drove the Protege5, I tested out the stereo. It was not as powerful, didn't have any bass, and lacked that deepness feeling that my 99LX stereo gives. They may have upgraded the stereo faceplate, but the speakers are definitely worse!

    I have the stock Firestone FR680s on my car. I currently have 26K on the car, and I think it's gonna be time for new tires soon. The outer edges are kinda worn, but thats from taking corners pretty fast due to 'spirited driving'. :) I don't know what I should replace them with, I haven't really shopped around yet. Any suggestions?
  • mdaffronmdaffron Member Posts: 4,421
    I'm not a lead-footed, corner-squealing driver ... well, at least not MOST of the time anyway. I don't need a high-performance tire. Besides, this isn't a high-performance car ... it's an upgraded economy car. (Sorry if that hurts anyone's feelings here, but let's get real.) A NICELY REFINED economy car, but still an economy car. I have a hard time justifying $600 worth of tires on this car, and that's about all I'm left with (Michelin Pilot XGTs) unless I want to try those Kumho Ecsta 712s -- which I asked TWO separate local Merchant's dealers about, and both said independently that the Kumhos aren't all that great. (And they're $105 each at Merchants too.)

    I don't think I can go wrong with the Yokohamas. They've got a very high treadwear rating, which means they should last a while, and they're rated well in wet conditions. (By the way Wil, I don't put much faith in the "specs" -- I read the reviews customers give the tires. And if you compare the customer reviews between the Yoko Avid T4s and the Michelin Pilot XGTs, which cost twice as much, you'll be amazed at what you read.)

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