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Mazda Protege5



  • Vivid Yellow maybe discontinued this Fall and replaced with the color White?
  • jstandeferjstandefer Posts: 805
    White is already available on the Protege5. More than likely, Mazda will keep Vivid Yellow, albeit in limited numbers. It is the color they advertise and really matches the sport look of the car.
  • iamziamz Posts: 542
    After talking to a former Vivid Yellow Miata owner, he explained that on both the Miata and the RX-7 3rd generation, Yellow was only offered the first year.

    Anyone know otherwise?
  • I called Mazda Canada a week ago asking about various things. I was told that they have requested that dealers stop making commitments on the yellow as it is backorded until March of 2002...

    On another note, I finally got my VIN # yesterday... From what I am told, this means that there is another batch of Protege's that have left port overseas and is on the way. I was told that VIN #'s are assigned sometime during the journey to Vancouver. Typically, a week or so at sea... That puts arrival time somewhere near 3-5 wks.... I have my entire new stereo system sitting on my floor waiting to be installed... I will be creating pages on my website when I do this. They will contain pics and how-to notes based on my experience doing the install... From what I have read, there looks to be some challenges with removing the door panels and getting the head unit out... So far none of my local audio shops have a replacement adapter plate for the DIN sized head unit... May have to get some custom work done...
  • draekdraek Posts: 3
    Have my VIN# now and called Mazda Canada to see if they had an idea where my silver P5 was. They had it listed as still being at sea. Exactly how long does it take to sail from Japan to Vancouver? They told me to phone back at the end of August and see where it's at then. Ordered it last week on June...taking forever.
  • I to ordered a Silver P5 5sp. July 2. I suspect we will get ours at the same time.. I am told 3 -5 weeks from this week... That puts us from Sept1 to Sept 14 ish... Sucks! What area are you in? I am in Burlington ON. I suspect those out west will see theirs closer to the 3 week mark...
  • vocusvocus Posts: 7,777
    Seems like there is alot of trouble getting ordered vehicles in Canada for some reason. I wonder why? I went to a lot here in Maryland the other day, and they had 2 P5s, a silver and a red one. The silver one was loaded with everything but chrome wheels, and the red didn't even have ABS or sunroof. I like the P5 alot, but just bought a 2001 Protege ES sedan that I plan to keep for a good while. Wish I would have waited for the P5 now! :(
  • Hey All,

    Just wondering anyone else has been experiencing a distinct wind rattle (sort of a snap, crackle, pop) form the moonroof at high speeds (65 MPH +) with their P5? Is there anything the dealer can do?


  • Actually I do get the fuel light with 1/5 gas tank left. I always like to drive as close to an empty gas tank as possible before refueling with Sunoco 94 Octane ;-) So if there is 1/5 gas tank, I think it should be safe to go to 325-335 miles.
  • For some reason, the wind rattle doesn't bother me at all and does for everyone else...;-)
  • bluong1bluong1 Posts: 1,927
    My 5-speed P5 has 3000 miles on it, and I systematically fill the gas tank every 370 miles with about 13+ gallons. That's about 28.2-28.4 mpg with 70% Hwy driving at around 80mph, with window wide opened or AC on.

    Here in Houston, Texas, I have seen 2 Silvers, 1 Red, 1 Black, 0 Blue, and 1 Yellow P5 (mine is yellow too).

    P5 is truly the King of curve ramps and sharp corners in Houston road.


  • Hi everyone,
    I don't suppose there's anyone out there who has owned (or driven) both a Protege5 and an Altima? I'm strongly considering buying the P5, but haven't yet driven the Altima. I loved my test drive of the P5, both the automatic and manual. There are a couple of issues guiding my decision. Price: The 01 Altima is attractive because there is a $2000 rebate and they're trying to get rid of them to make way for the newly redesigned '02 model. I can probably get a nicely outfitted GXE for $15,500 or maybe even a little less (if Edmunds is accurate). This is about $1500 less than the P5.

    The other issues are performance, reliability, and space. As I said, I haven't yet driven the Altima (will do so this weekend). From what I know, both cars should be reliable. The wagon is a nice alternative for the extra space, but I'm also considering the Protege ES sedan.

    Any input into the comparison of these two cars would be greatly appreciated!

    Also, any opinion about the difference between the P5 automatic vs. manual? I liked the manual but might end up hating it in DC traffic!
  • jstandeferjstandefer Posts: 805
    94 octane? Where are you finding this? The highest I have seen is 92 octane! If you are, in face, filling you Pro5 with 94 octane, that may be the reason you are getting such terrible mileage. The Protege5 is designed to run on 87 octane. It has a knock sensor that will retard engine timing for low octane, but it will not advance the timing to take advantage of high octane fuel. The higher octane rating fuel has, the more resistant it is to detonation. You Pro5 may not be getting the detonation it is designed for and could very possibly be injecting more fuel to compensate!!
  • jstandeferjstandefer Posts: 805
    Unfortunately, since the Pro5 is so new, discounts are hard to come by and rebates are nonexistant. The Pro5 has much sharper handling and quicker response than the Altima. The Altima probably has a slight advantage in acceleration from it's 2.4L engine. But, the rebate is nice.

    If you are really looking for a great deal, you can get the Protege sedan at 0.0% financing. That will easily put your payments lower than the Altima. If you can get on the S-Plan, you can get 1.5% BELOW invoice on the Protege sedan and possibly the Pro5. I am not sure about the exact details of how to get on the S-Plan, but others out there know and I'm sure they will pipe in.
  • I don't think it is so much a problem getting P5's in Canada. It is getting a model with moonroof / 5sp that is the problem. Every P5 I have seen on the lot in my area is an automatic. I think that Mazda underestimated the popularity of the 5sp Yellow/Silver models w/ moonroof and made more automatics first... or they just tooled the assembly for automatics first... who knows...

    I want my p5!
  • Yes I have been using Sunoco Ultra 94 Octane. I thought the higher the Octane is better. Most cars suggest a minimum of 87 Octane to use. I don't understand.
  • jstandefer! I think you're right!!! I will switch back to 87 octane immediately! Doh! I'm one of those uneducated consumers!

  • vocusvocus Posts: 7,777
    The Altima is definitely roomier inside than the P5 or Protege ES sedan is, but not by that much. The Altima is boring to drive, unless you get the SE trim level. Then, the prices between that and the P5 are comparable. The Altima's rebate is attractive, but the P5 handles alot better than the Altima does and is alot sportier. If you crave that sporty driving feel from the P5 or Protege, you aren't going to be happy with the Altima. Also, I suggest you drive the Altima yourself. That's the only way you will be able to make an accurate decision.

    S-Plan: To get the S-plan, ask your dealer if they take it or not. Then go to the EAA ( and join for one year and $40. Get your PIN# on the Ford/Mazda S-plan and take it to your dealer. They will give the car to you 1.5% below invoice, which is rougly $300 on a loaded Protege ES (what I bought and used the S-plan to get). Definitely worth spending $40 to save a couple hundred.
  • bluong1bluong1 Posts: 1,927
    There is several (at least 2) standards of measuring octane index. The other method will give you 94, 97 (instead of 89 92). When you look at the gas pump, it should precise which method to rate the gas.

    Otherwise I don't you are right about the argument of fuel consumption going up with in octane. Here is why:

    The octane rates the maximum pressure and temperature under which the fuel molecule is not breaking. When it breaks under pressure, it's release extra energy, thus makes the compressed fuel burn BEFORE the spark plugs ignite, and it's not good. It's has nothing to do with "resistant to detonation". The higher compression ratio the engine has, the higher octane index it requires to avoid the uncontrolled burning. But engines with lower compression ratio can use, without any disadvantage, fuel with higher octane index than it needs. The P5 engine has compression ratio of 9.1 to 1, and that's pretty low. Normally one don't have to put 92-fuel (your method) to the engine. The only advantage it can bring is there is a little more additives in the 92-fuel which help to keep the engine cleaner at long run. I think the best way is to use most of the time 89-fuel, and once for a while 92-fuel to flush the engine.

  • vocusvocus Posts: 7,777
    I always heard when you use higher-octane gas and it's not needed, it could cause carbon build-up in the engine. I have a 2001 Protege ES automatic, and I usually throw in mid-grade gas every 10th tank or so, to keep it cleaned out. I just turned 12,000 miles on it (mostly highway driving) and no problems yet.

    Also, had a 1999 Protege DX before this 2001 ES. I used regular in it all the time, prodded it like an animal, and drove it 37K in 20 months. Never a problem at all with the engine, and that car saw one tank of mid-grade its whole life.
  • sunbyrnesunbyrne Posts: 210
    Last year on an extended business trip I rented a 2000 Altima and put over 500 miles on it. My overwhelming reaction: BORING. Probably the least interesting car I've ever driven. If the 2001 SE version is a *LOT* more interesting, it might approach my Pro5. Space is fairly comparable. You probably won't get much of a deal on a Pro5, but you can get 0.0 financing on a Pro ES, and I would certainly do that over getting an Altima. I'd consider it a safety measure--I'd probably get killed in an Altima because I'd fall asleep at the wheel... No, seriously, the Altima isn't a bad car at all, I just found it uninteresting.

    Now, Bruno, where are you seeing all these Pro5's in Houston? I've only ever seen one other one--in my parking lot at work, grr--and it's also silver.
  • bluong1bluong1 Posts: 1,927
    Mike, here are places for sight hunting of P5s in action where you may have better luck:

    - Parking spot of my company in Sugar-Land: red
    - Corporate St, Stafford: yellow
    - 59 feeder road @ Sheaper: silver
    - Westheimer@Hilcroft: silver
    - Border book store in Westheimer: black
    - my complex at Stafford: yellow.

    Are you still following me Mike? Probably not. Oh well... ;-)

    Get out and drive.

  • sunbyrnesunbyrne Posts: 210
    Ahh, mostly on the West side. That makes sense, since Jeff Haas is the only dealer that actually seems to have more than one Pro5 around. My haunts are the Rice/Medcen area, Pearland, and Clear Lake. Maybe I'll see some more when I zoom-zoom around the beltway through your neck of the woods back to Jeff Haas to get my deflector installed and my tint done on Monday...

    Hey, speaking of tints, what tint have folks been getting? The darkest we can get in Texas is 35%, but do I really need to go that dark? Bruno, what'd you get? I seem to recall you saying you had the dealer do it, and we have the same dealer...
  • vocusvocus Posts: 7,777
    Someone on the Protege sedans board owns both a 2000 Altima GXE and a 2000 Protege ES sedan. You might wanna come over and talk to them about the difference between the two cars. That person's screen name is Nikecar.
  • What octane do you use?

    Also...does it hurt if I refill with 92 Octane EVERY time?

    Plus do you recommend Iridium spark plugs in additional to a high flow air filter.

    Share some of you Mod Knowledge!!
  • Thanks for all of your timely replies! The info about the S-plan is very helpful, I didn't even realize it existed. I posted my message on the Protege sedan board and hopefully will get some good input there as well. I'll drive the Altima, but I definitely enjoyed the sporty feel of the P5. Thanks again.
  • jstandeferjstandefer Posts: 805
    Funny, but I don't see any difference between your explanation of octane and "resistance to detonation." The higher the octane, the higher resistance to detonation there is. If you put lower octane fuel in a high compression engine, you will get pinging, which is basically predetonation of the fuel before the piston has reach TDC of its compression stroke. If you have fuel that is more resistant to detonation (i.e., higher octane), it won't detonate from the compression and heat, rather by the spark. Either way, the only engine Mazda builds that requires premium fuel is the 2.3L Miller-Cycle V6 from the Millenia S. Funny thing is that the high-performance rotary engine requires an octane rating much lower than what is available, but that is whole different story.

    After driving my '99 Protege ES for 2.5 years now, I have found no difference between premium, midgrade, and regular fuel. Premium fuel produces a slightly (and I mean slightly) smoother idle. Fuel mileage remains the same as regular. Premium is probably better if you keep your engine in the 6,000rpm range, otherwise it is a waste of money. The bottom line is that Mazda engineers designed the engine to run on 87 octane [(R+M)/2 method], and you should stick with that. It runs just fine.

    The owner's manual recommends a minimum octane rating of 91 RON. This is not what is posted on most United States gas pumps. What we see is octane calculated using the (RON + MON)/2 method, or Anti-Knock Index as it is called. Research Octane Number (RON) is a measurement of octane under regular driving (i.e., light engine load). Motor Octane (MON) is a measurement of octane under extreme driving (i.e., heavy engine load). We use the Anti-Knock Index, which is the average between RON and MON. 91 RON is equivalent to 87 Anti-Knock Index. 94 octane, whether it is MON, RON, of Anti-Knock Index, is much higher than what Mazda recommends.
  • bluong1bluong1 Posts: 1,927

    There is no harm using 92 every-time, believe me, accept for your pocket. I use 89-fuel with occasionally (1 over 5 times) 92-fuel. If you live in high altitude, high flow air filter is a must, otherwise I don't think you need them. Spark plugs are important. When you change them, try to replace with the best, since it doesn't cost much more and it warrant the smoothness of your engine. It just one person opinion.


    you are right, if your definition of "detonation" includes the molecules breaking phenomenon, than "resistance to detonation" is the right word. The manual recomended MINIMUM 91 RON, that means any fuel having more than 91 will do fine, including the regular fuel and the premium one that Jon are using. My point is the low mpg Jon get may not due to the fuel, as you also pointed out above. It must due to something else. IMHO, the criminal is probably not spark plugs, but a dirty air filter, defected computer, leak of fuel, or simply Jon has a heavy right foot! As I said, I average about 28mpg with my P5, without managing much at red light. The rotary engine has very very low compression ratio by design, that's why you can use regular fuel.

    I don't remember what is the degree of tints of my car. I'll figure it out tomorrow.

  • jstandeferjstandefer Posts: 805
    In the Protege, it is quite easy to get terrible mileage. I've been through tanks where I've only managed about 19-20mpg. Of course, that's taking the engine near redline with every shift and driving up to the speed limiter (very disappointing 119mph!). But, I have also found that tire pressure can greatly affect fuel mileage. Everytime I take the car into the dealership for maintenance, they reset the tire pressure back to the factory recommended 32psi. However, I don't have factory tires on the car (those awful Potenza's don't last, you guys are lucky with your Dunlop's), I have 205/50R15 Nitto NT450 "Extreme Performance" tires and 32psi is entirely too low for them. With them set at 32psi, I can't achieve anything higher than 25mpg!! I can't imagine his air filer would be that dirty with such a new vehicle, but it wouldn't hurt to check. Something large sucked onto the filter can really block air flow.

    BTW, I have 100% fully metallized titanium tint on my ES. They are 33% on the front windows, and 25% on the rears. They really cut down on the heat and glare. I have a full lifetime warranty on them against fading, discoloration, and delamination. It was a bit expensive at $260, but I have been extremely happy with them; I've had the tint for over two years now.
  • iamziamz Posts: 542
    119 mph!

    I am sure you did this on a test track? ;-)
This discussion has been closed.