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Protege5 vs. Matrix XRS vs. 2.5TS Impreza vs. PT Cruiser (hatch/wagon)



  • baggs32baggs32 Posts: 3,229
    Just a little side note about the insurance rates because we've gone over this in detail over on another thread.

    There was a site that listed vehicles, by class, from least expensive to insure to most expensive. We were debating the Ford Escape vs. the Honda CR-V and surprisingly the Escape is cheaper. It was found that the difference is in fact due to average replacement/repair costs of the two. If you compare the IIHS crash test scores of the two you'll find that the CR-V did perform much better in their test (NHTSA's were about even).

    The only IIHS test which the Escape performed better in was the 5 mph bumper bash. The CR-V is loads more expensive to repair after such a minor bump.

    I guess that "little" bumper bash test carries more weight than we all thought. :)
  • baggs32baggs32 Posts: 3,229
    "Our 03 CR-V costs less to insure than our 03 P5."

    Our 96 Civic costs more to insure than our 2002 Escape.

    Not too happy about that either!
  • capitanocapitano Posts: 509
    Insurance cost should be only one of several criteria in the purchase decision.

    Fuel economy should play a role. The P5 gets about the same mileage as the XRS according to the current EPA estimates. But the XRS takes premium fuel.

    And for those that care, the P5 has ULEV status while the XRS only rates TLEV status (pollutes more than LEV).
  • bluong1bluong1 Posts: 1,927
    I just fill out the e-quotation forms from Progressive for both P5 and XRS under the exact same condition. The P5 comes up $26 cheaper for 6 months.
  • capitanocapitano Posts: 509
    because mine was on the order of $40 more per month for the P5 than the XRS. Which was exactly the opposite of what I would have expected.
  • I was unaware that there were structural changes since the 1999 Protege was tested. That's good to hear, considering that the less than stellar crash-test results were the one compromise I felt I had made when I decided to buy my P5. Is there a source I can read to find what specifically was changed/improved? Thanks.
  • 1,500 miles clocked on my P5 so far, and I'm loving it more each day.
  • dinu01dinu01 Posts: 2,586
    On the 01 PRO ES :)

    123.438 miles on the 91 Maxi GXE :)

    Happy Motoring!
  • boggseboggse Posts: 1,048
    Check out this article: _id=3113

    Specifically, I was thinking of this section:

    "We praised the structure of that 2000 Protegé ES -- "as solid as the vault at Wells Fargo" -- but this 2001 update entails extensive suspension pickup-point reinforcements and heavier suspension subframing."

    While there is no empirical evidence that the suspension changes improved crash test performance, I would expect some improvement.
  • bluong1bluong1 Posts: 1,927
    I'm not Boogse but please see Edmunds/Car Reviews/Road Test/First Drive/2001 Mazda Protege

  • bluong1bluong1 Posts: 1,927
    While there is no empirical evidence that the suspension changes improved crash test performance, I would expect some improvement.

    Ted, what make you think of that? I though the crash test performance depends only on how the chassis absorbs the energy from the impact. Both Protege 1999 and 2001 have the same triple-H structural body (excellently rigid) and door reinforcements, they must both perform equally well (or not) in term of the crash test.

    There are some details like how the steering column, pedals, etc... retract during the crash, but I doubt that the new suspension reinforcements enter into the relevant components during the crash.


    PS: may be we should move this topic into appropriate discussion board.
  • From the Edmunds Protege First drive 2001:

    "The Protege has retained what Mazda calls its "Triple-H" structure, featuring reinforcement in the roof, the B-pillars and lower points on the car. This strengthens the passenger compartment, protecting occupants from side impacts or rollovers."

    Unless new crash tests are given, we can only guess if these reinforcements in the roof, the B-pillars, and lower points would be enough to improve the actual test scores.
  • bluong1bluong1 Posts: 1,927
    From my understanding, this sentence is just referred to the general description of the triple-H structural body type, which is already featured from the 1999 Protege Model. I don't believe there is any difference in the chassis/body between 1999 and 2001 model.
  • icvciicvci Posts: 1,031
    There is a HUGE difference between the Element and the CR-V. It would seem there would be some difference between the P4 and P5.

    Doesn't matter though folks. No one is going to waste their time testing a car that's already out of production.
  • The way I read it (in the context of the improvements made from the '99), the sentence was explaining how the Triple-H structure was reinforced. I do see how I may have misread it.

    If so... d'oh!
  • capitanocapitano Posts: 509
    How many shoppers look this closely at crash tests?

    I know I didn't before my insurance shocker.

    At one point I was looking at getting one of the new Altimas. I didn't know what its crash test results were until after someone posted in the Mazda6 board about the low side-impact scores of the 6.
  • boggseboggse Posts: 1,048
    If the front subframing was stronger, it should take more energy to deform which would reduce the likelihood of footwell intrusion. Since that was the place the Protege scored worst, it seemed significant.
  • bluong1bluong1 Posts: 1,927
    But then I could as well say that the front is too rigid to absorb energy, resulting an intrusion in the footwell area. In this case thicker metal sheet will make it's even worse.

    Alas, only a crashtest can tell us the true story.
  • capitanocapitano Posts: 509
    This thread seems to have died.

    I made my decision, but things did not go as planned.

    I bought the Matrix XRS. I didn't even test drive the other vehicles because my old car died on me and I had to buy something now.

    I did go to dealer lots and looked at the 2.5TS and Protege5 and I would have test driven them if the dealers had been open. But I had this realization when I was looking at the cars on the lot. Nearly all new cars are desireable. They are so new and clean. I would probably be happy with anything I got. I would adapt to the quirks of any of the cars and go on my merry way. So in a time crunch I went for what I had already driven and had something I have wanted for several years: a six-speed manual tranny.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    Congrats! :o)

  • icvciicvci Posts: 1,031
    Why'd you go with the Matrix over the Vibe? Just curious. Around here the Vibe is a much better deal money-wise.
  • capitanocapitano Posts: 509
    Combination of things. Styling mostly. Neither car is available in my market. If the GT had been available here I might have been swayed. But since I had to travel to get either one, I let my preference for the Matrix styling be the deciding factor.

    Also, from reading here and on some enthusiast forums, it appears that Toyota was doing a little better with fixing some problems in the early 2003s. One thing that comes to mind is the twilight sensor on the dash that was causing problems with DRLs and headlights.

    There is also my bias against GM. We've owned a few GM products that have been dogs and I am leery of their products. While I understand that the Vibe and Matrix are practically identical where it counts, my bias tells me that the Vibe is a rebadged Toyota and not vice versa. Same as with the old Prizm and Corolla. This is apparently a fairly common bias as the Vibe is rated much lower in resale value.
  • icvciicvci Posts: 1,031
    I think the Vibe's hit in resale can be attributed to the incentives being offered on it not consumer preference.

    I considered the Vibe but, there wasn't a 5 speed available in my area. So that sealed it for the P5. I was sold on the utility of the Vibe, not it's driving characteristics. I liked the stereo in the Vibe/Matrix much better than that in the P5. Bottom line, I'm glad I ended up with the P5, it's a pretty fun car.

    What color did you get?
  • capitanocapitano Posts: 509
    I got the cosmic blue. I would have been Ok with red, or indigo ink as well. If truly desperate I would have even accepted "ticket me" yellow.

    I went and looked at P5s on the Sunday before I made my deal. It is an attractive car. I like the interior it has better than the vibe/trix one. If I had driven one, I might have bought one.

    Before this acquisition I had deluded myself into thinking I was a supremely rational buyer. Read all the reviews. Research them to death and make a selection. I bought my first two new vehicles that way.

    Since my process was so drawn out and yet compressed it was very odd.

    I was determined to get a new car when we moved back to the states 2 years ago. Finances simply would not allow it. I wanted an RSX type S. A trip to my parent's house showed me that I couldn't justify a coupe when we could barely fit in our civic.

    I started looking at the Altima. Then the Matrix came out. I went to test drive the matrix in both XR 5speed and XRS 6 speed models. No dice. All the dealer had was base and XR autos. I drove the Altima SE. I liked the power and the handling, but the interior was lacking.

    I started looking at the P5 as a surrogate Matrix, because at least it was really available as a 5 speed locally. Then the 6 came out and I was very interested. If the 6 wagon was out now, I would have given it a very close look.

    I had still planned on testing the P5 and the 6, but when my 12-year old car gave out on me, I needed to get something quick. For a while it looked like the XRS wasn't even going to be available in my region at all. So the P5 was looking like a shoe in for a bit.
This discussion has been closed.