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Are you under 40 and think that you might not be able to afford a brand new vehicle when you purchase your next car? If so, a reporter would like to talk to you. Please reach out to [email protected] by 12/16 for more details.
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Mazda Protegé

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Comments

  • newcar31newcar31 Posts: 3,711
    It's not just LA, NYC, and CHI that are expensive. The south is generally cheap, especially the rural south. I've seen brand new 2000 sq ft brick houses in suburban Atlanta go for around $170K. That is UNHEARD OF in the Twin Cities. Of course, on average, people don't make as much money in the south.
  • meinradmeinrad Posts: 820
    They did a study around Pittsburgh a few years back, buying vs. renting. Take out subjective things, like I want a yard so I'd never have an apartment types of things and just looked at money.
    Over a 30 year period most people would break even. While a house appreciates and you get tax adavantages and all that stuff, you also have maintenance. Over a 30 year time, you most likely would replace the roof, the furnace, maybe windows. Mow the lawn, paint the house, pipes burst. Now if your house happens to increase exponentially or doesn't need any major maintenance, well than, you do make out.
    But the study was based on averages, and for pure finances, renting isn't the hole most people make it out to be. It's just a mental block most people can't get over.
  • newcar31newcar31 Posts: 3,711
    You left out one huge benefit of owning a house----equity.
  • dsm6dsm6 Posts: 813
    In the street, or in a parking lot? No way. In the garage, cozy and protected. Next to the Miata project car I'll be getting some day to put in the third slot of my 3 car garage, under the gas heater I'm going to install after I finish off the dry wall.

    Why do I own a house? So I have somewhere safe to put my cars. ;-) Besides, at $55k in two years, I'm guessing I will be able to keep up with maintainance costs.
  • meinradmeinrad Posts: 820
    You can borrow agaisnt the equity, which can be a very good thing for interest rates and such. But I'm really just talking out of pocket expense. It's not the case for every house or every renter, but on average it really works out pretty even. I just tend to dispute what everyone says "renting is throwing your money down the drain". It's really not true.
    So yes you have equity to take our a loan and buy a new boat. Or you rent, don't pay $10K for a new roof and buy a new boat. It's really very interesting to research it.
  • meinradmeinrad Posts: 820
    Yes, but that's subjective. Not everyone cares about a garage to park their car. Remember, I took subjective out of it.

    And $55K in two years is not the norm. Of course there will be examples on each side. The house I live in has appreciated only 25K in the past 15 years. In which time a new roof, furnace and siding has cost more than that.

    I love this debate, but alas it's inappropriate for here so I'll quit now. Fun while it lasted though.

    Hope my wife is washing the P5, it's just so sunny today.
  • protege_fanprotege_fan Posts: 2,405
    Thanks...I'll go check em out now.
  • dsm6dsm6 Posts: 813
    I was just pulling your leg.

    That, and trying to force the issue on topic.

    Speaking of the topic, how come you folks didn't warn me the cup holders on the Pro are so useless? Worse than useless - they look like they might work, then you accelerate, and with the awesome g's this car can create accelerating (;-0), the drink goes a-spillin' all over the shifter boot and console. Between that, and the car wash incident the other day (I don't want to talk about it), now I really feel like chi-pro.
  • protege_fanprotege_fan Posts: 2,405
    Oops...yes they are useless...can't hold a can of coke! What I do, is put a bit of paper in there and wedge it in tight...not a great fix, but it works.
  • gandalf17gandalf17 Posts: 348
    It's not always about size..... :)

    You will have the hubcaps around noon, or before, tomorrow. I hope someone is there at that address to sign off for them.
  • chicagoprochicagopro Posts: 1,009
    I resemble that remark!!!! :)

    True, those cup holders are USELESS. I usually have a bottle of water with me. Most half-litre bottles fly out on the turns, and most litre bottles won't fit. And don't tell me to flip the little flippy thing (I'm sure it has a technical name, like Modulating Container Adjuster)...still not very effective.

    --Dale
  • protege_fanprotege_fan Posts: 2,405
    Nope nobody to sign...doh. I hope they leave a note or something.
  • protege_fanprotege_fan Posts: 2,405
    Interesting article I just found on K&N filters for anybody that has/was looking for one. I was going to install one..but not too sure now:

    http://www.escribe.com/automotive/european/mbmc/m7971.html
  • mdaffronmdaffron Posts: 4,421
    Yep, chalk up another reason I'm glad I've got a 2000. My cup holders WORK! Are the new ones still two different sizes, and fold away for even bigger stuff?

    Thanks for the house comments. It's probably smaller than it looks -- only 3 bedrooms and 1,900 square feet (I don't know what that is in centimeters, Dale). BUT -- they're three BIG bedrooms. I love builders who build "four-bedroom houses" these days and the third and fourth bedrooms can't even hold a full-size bed.

    Our master BR is the entire right-hand side of the upstairs in that photo -- we have a king bed in it, two dressers, a recliner, two nightstands, a small entertainment center and another chair -- and it still isn't crowded. 17x20, I think it is. And our walk-in closet covers that "wing" to the right and it's about 8x12. Even got a window in the closet! But what I like best is our 18x23 "great room," big enough for TWO sofas, TWO recliners, my huge home theatre setup, bookcases, a 55-gallon aquarium, and the usual assortment of end tables, floor lamps, etc. And the kitchen is 23 feet long with an island and a "breakfast nook" at one end surrounded by windows.

    We have dual-zone HVAC (i.e. two heat pumps, one for upstairs and one for downstairs), attached and detached storage sheds, 2-1/2 baths and the good ol' maintenance-free vinyl siding that I'm about to get washed for $80. Talk about a car wash Dale -- when we do this, we've GOT to keep our windows DOWN, LOL!!! Oh yeah -- tilt-in, thermal-pane windows too.

    Bought it in June 1999 for $119,950 -- and with the FHA first-time homebuyers program and low interest rates, we locked in at 6.75%. County just reassessed it at $136,000. The way the housing market is booming in our part of our county right now, we could probably get $145K or $150K for it. (It was built in June 1996 and sold for $102,500 new.) Taking into account the money we put down, we've got about $34,000 equity in it now. I've got a buddy who's still paying rent and the rent on his 2-bedroom, 2-bath apartment is only $75 less a month than our mortgage payment.

    We bought the house when it was only three years old, so now it's only six -- so no roof replacements or anything like that yet. We did have to fix one of the a/c compressors last summer to the tune of $400, but that's about it for the unexpected maintenance so far.

    Meade
  • protege_fanprotege_fan Posts: 2,405
    Read this Re: K&N filters and that article I posted a link too...
    sascuderi "K&N Air Filters, bolt-on power?" Jan 2, 2001 6:49pm
  • gandalf17gandalf17 Posts: 348
    hopefully they leave a note.... if not, you may want to leave one for them with a number they can call to re-route directly to you.
  • protege_fanprotege_fan Posts: 2,405
    Cup holders are just 2 holes....same size. They really really suck. FWIW, you can fold a lid over the top of them though.

    Sounds like you got a great deal on the house....and you've got a big yard....big bonus there!
  • dsm6dsm6 Posts: 813
    According to auto manufacturers, cup holders rank number 1 amongst the concerns of American consumers - we always get softer suspensions and smaller brakes relative to the European market models, but by golly, don't skimp on those cup holders.

    I guess that's why Mazda ain't sellin' too good with us 'Mericns. We all want land yachts with 64 oz cup holders. Heck, that's why I bought the Pro. Now I find out the cup holder in it isn't even 22 oz safe. I want my money back. ;-)

    Maybe I'll just glue that door shut so I'm not tempted with their Siren song luring me to my doom.
  • protege_fanprotege_fan Posts: 2,405
    LOL!! Bring back those '76 Cadillac Eldorado's!! Land Yachts!
  • vocusvocus Posts: 7,777
    I had both 1999 and 2001 models. I liked the cup holders in the 1999 better, because I could actually put a cup with a handle in there, and it would be held. I never had anything fall out of the holders on me. Also, the '99 holder was right there for my cell phone as well. I would have to leave the cover of the 2001 holder open all the time, but it was still pretty good.
  • vocusvocus Posts: 7,777
    My mother used to have a 1976 Cadillac Coupe deVille when I was a kid. That was a CAR! I used to sit up on the amrest next to her and steer it sometimes in the mall parking lot. :) Her friend used to say, "I can come out and wave bye to you and watch the front of the car round the corner, then go into the house and make a pot of coffee, drink a cup, and come back out and watch the back end round the corner". :) She truly deserved a pilot's license for driving that thing. :)

    I was like 5 years old then, and used to call the back seat my "living room". :)
  • dsm6dsm6 Posts: 813
    Light truck sales over took car sales last year. I guess maybe the manufacturers are right, in a way. Evidently most Americans do put size and cruise mobile status over maneuverability. Granted, the light trucks of today aren't as bad as the land yachts of yesterday, but still - given the choice, people are choosing size over handling. Bigger is better?

    I guess we Pro owners are in the minority. Maybe the growing crop of young car enthusiasts getting into sport compacts can help turn that trend around. I hope so, so the manufacturers will put more money into designing more nimble, more capable, safer small cars - and maybe they will stop watering them down when they bring them to the US (please!).
  • the_big_hthe_big_h Posts: 1,583
    K&N is too reputable to let a few little rumors (especially that truck one, that one's been out for years) to discredit them. I would rather trust K&N's over 30 years of documented history of making filters for competition, offroad, and street use, than some Internet urban legends :-)

    I have one, sounds great, works great too!
  • protege_fanprotege_fan Posts: 2,405
    The only reason I used that is b/c my friend still drives one around!! Whenever he's parking, I tell him, "initiate docking procedure," and I always make sure to tell him, "did you remember to anchor her down?"
  • protege_fanprotege_fan Posts: 2,405
    Yeah....I jumped on it too quick. Ah well...c'est la vie. Anyway, you should make a recording and play it at chat tonight...I wanna see what the difference is. BTW, do you notice any other gains?
  • the_big_hthe_big_h Posts: 1,583
    I don't have a recorder in my apt, but basically the engine sound is louder (for the better!).

    other gains? hmm, when I first changed it I noticed quicker throttle response (car got a bit jumpier when stepping on the pedal). Nowadays I don't notice it as much, probably because I take it for granted now ;-)

    As for MPGs (a lot of people ask about this), I'm gonna create an excel chart of my fueling records and upload it onto the Yahoo forum and you can decide for yourself if the MPG actually improved after I put the K&N in (I'll mark the date that I put in the filter on the chart).
  • zoomzoom79zoomzoom79 Posts: 272
    vocus: fxashun just bought his 96 Civic for $4500 which he plans to supercharge. He loves that car and I'm sure the guy in the VW forum wants more than $4500 for that SI.

    I had no problems with the cupholders in my Protege. I think the best cupholders were those in my 99 & 01 Accords though. One thing I do remember about VW and BMW is that their cupholders SUCK!!! Especially the 99 and older models.
  • protege_fanprotege_fan Posts: 2,405
    The Jetta my g/f has doesn't have ANY cup holders!! Oh wait...it does...when she's driving, it's ME!

    ZZ79, which MY Pro did you have again?
  • zoomzoom79zoomzoom79 Posts: 272
    lol pf... that's how it was when we were in fxashun's 93 Civic. It had the factory extended center console w/ CD player which took away the cupholders so whenever I was in the car I ended up holding 2 drinks. Not fun on a trip.

    My Protege was a 2001 ES.
  • protege_fanprotege_fan Posts: 2,405
    Lol! Yeah, we don't take her car on trips anymore... :)

    And you liked the cup holders in the 01? They won't hold anything right! Can of pop will fall over. A regular size drink from Rotten Ronnie's scratches the front of the centre console. Arrgghh!! Ah well...just another excuse for me to ban drinks and food from my car :D
  • zoomzoom79zoomzoom79 Posts: 272
    Now that I think about it one time when I was pulling in my driveway (I live on a hill and there's a slight bump as you enter the driveway) my cup fell out and I got soda all over the floorboard .. luckily it was Sprite :) So I guess they weren't that great after all because that's not really happened before. Although the other day I picked up lunch for me and a couple of co-workers in the SI and they gave me 2 20oz drinks and they kept sliding around and eventually I gave up and just put them in the floorboard .. passenger side of course.
  • zoomzoom79zoomzoom79 Posts: 272
    all this talk about cupholders has reminded me of the time that I went to McDonalds and ordered a large coke .. that thing was huge. My 99 Accord's cupholders handled it like a champ though. Maybe fowler can back me up when I say that the 98+ Accords have some awesome cupholders.
  • fowler3fowler3 Posts: 1,919
    Anybody ever seen or heard of an old Mazda 323 hatchback? I think it was a GX or something like that. Really weird looking...almost looked like the end of an MX-3 rammed together with the front of the old 323s.

    I had a 1981 Mazda GLC Hatchback Special Edition. It was the 323 hatchback painted metallic silver with a special interior. The seats were coverd in a houndstooth black and white fabric with side bolsters in black vinyl. Special wheel covers.
    Cost $6250.

    The only trouble I had with it the heater broke and nobody could fix it. That was after the warrenty was out. Very smooth engine and quiet. But no sound proofing so the tire noise from the rear wheels at highway speeds wore you out fast. After a five hour trip you felt as if you had been driving for 10 hours.

    I saw a 323 version Tuesday and was surprised it was still running. Very rusty.

    Toyota made a simlar model, you could hardly tell them apart at a distance. When hatches went out of favor Hyundi introduced a copy of the Toyota version.

    bigH: It would be a very smart move on your part to consider buying a townhouse. I bought one five years ago with minimum down, price was $100,000, now worth $115,000. Payments are lower than new, nearby apartments, which rent for $1650 a month, by $750. Now is a good time with interest so low.

    My townhouse has two bedrooms, two full baths, a great room with a cathedral ceiling which covers the living/dining area and kitchen. Two-thirds of the house. It also has a garage, private fenced patio and yard, and gaslog fireplace.

    With a townhouse you do pay a monthly Home Owner's fee which varies from complex to complex, so check on that when looking. The fee covers outside maintenance, landscaping, and upgrades such as sealing the streets. For example, last summer all the townhouses were washed (vinyl siding) and trim painted that wasn't vinyl. Gutters cleaned and roofs repaired where necessary. Those fees paid by many provide maintenance that would be expensive in a single family home.

    And your payments don't go UP like rent does. Increases are usually due to higher property taxes,which usually are small. Your payment would include principal, interest, taxes and insurance.

    It's a lot better than paying high rent for nothing, and you may, as I have found, find neighbors very helpful when you need it. You don't get that in apartments.

    This past winter, when we got two 8-inch snowfalls, one of my neighbors graciously cleaned my driveway, since I didn't have a shovel. The other neighbor changes my furnace filter for me because I am blind in one eye and can't use a ladder safely. The furnace is an odd type mounted in the attic. Most people in apartments won't give you the time of day.

    fowler3
  • fowler3fowler3 Posts: 1,919
    ZZ79: I never used the cup holders in the Accords, sorry, I don't drink and drive. Don't want Dale's problem. ;) I think one time I brought a coke home in the cup holder, but didn't drink it on the way.

    What I do on my annual trip to Virginia is carry a softsided cooler in the floorboard with cold drink cans and ice. I don't smoke in my cars, but stop along the way and have a cola and smoke outside.

    The last one, I stopped at Appomatox Court House National Monument, where the surrender took place ending the Civil War. Had my refreshment and smoke as I read the history and looked across the battle field. Stops like this make otherwise boring trips mini-vacations.

    The year before, I took a side trip to find Thomas Jefferson's Poplar Forest, his summer home, near Lynchburg, VA. Spent some time there taking pictures and watching the archeaologists at work.

    ZZ79: If I delivered cars for CarMax the first thing I would check on maps would be historic places I could stop for an hour, knowing I would never get back there to see them.

    fowler3
  • zoomzoom79zoomzoom79 Posts: 272
    fxashun was usually so time-constrained that he didn't have time to sight see even though he was in the DC, Miami, and Chicago area several times. Mostly he would drive up there, sleep a few hours, head home, and then start all over again. Same thing when I was with him. If we had 2 cars and we were driving 12 hours (sometimes alot more) straight the last thing on our minds was looking at the White House although I did get us lost one time in DC and we got to see the WaterGate Building and the slums of DC ... no not the White House ;)
  • th83th83 Posts: 164
    While we are talking about cupholders, I must say that it sucks not having any!:) My '91 Legend unfortunately doesn't have a single cupholder so I'm forced to use the center console storage compartment for my drink-transporting needs. I have to rig it up just right so that the drink doesn't fall over and spill everywhere. This involves using my cell phone and other items in the compartment as support. I wish I had gotten a '92 Legend which at least had one cupholder. Oh well, maybe my next car will have some.

    BTW, I finally test drove a Pro last week and I must say that I'm impressed with the little car. It handles well, feels solid, and accelerates well enough for anybody not trying to get a ticket. The seats are very comfortable as well and I have plenty of space in all directions around me(I'm 6'2"). I haven't tried out the back seat yet but that's not that important to me since I normally drive solo. I drove an ES which is probably the model I'd buy since it doesn't cost much more than the LX yet it comes with the appearance and suspension upgrades. My only real(but minor)complaints about the car are the tiny sunroof and the relative lack of convenience features. The sunroof isn't that bad when it's open but when shut, the window is tiny and it only tilts up like half-an-inch. Variable-intermittent wipers, lighted vanity mirrors, overhead sunglass storage, dual power points and rear cupholders are the convenience features the Pro lacks. They aren't major but it's irritating that they come on other cars in this class like the Civic and the Sentra SE-R. Overall, I found the Pro to be a good car and a lot less boring than the Civic. The only other car on my list now is the SE-R. If only they'd let me test drive one...
  • sunbyrnesunbyrne Posts: 210
    I much prefer the cupholders on my wife's 1999 Pro LX to the marginally useful holes in my P5. Cupholders are certainly not the strength of the P5, yeesh. Oh, and yes, the lack of variable intermittent wipers is also irritating.

    I also have a K&N drop-in in my P5--but not in the LX--and I must agree with previous posts. I put it in not long after getting the car so it's hard to compare because I'm used to anything that might have done. My recollection is consistent, though: sounds a bit lower and louder, and throttle response seems even more touchy, in a good way. I don't recall any real change in mileage.
  • vocusvocus Posts: 7,777
    If you want convenience features galore, try a VW Jetta. They are loaded with small but thoughtful things.
  • rbrooks3rbrooks3 Posts: 174
    Things in NY always seem to be so exaggerated compared to the rest of the country. My sister-in-law just rented a nice one bedrrom apartment that, while in a complex that was just built, is not in a greatneighborhood and she's paying $1450 a month plus utilities with $4,000 down. Housing costs have gotten so high that I literally could not afford to buy a house in my own neighborhood and I bought in only 3 years ago this summer! the price on my home has gone from the $210,000 I paid to just under $525,000 today. It's just crazy.

    With these jumps, I guess the equally crazy pricing on new cars seems almost normal in comparisson.
  • protege_fanprotege_fan Posts: 2,405
    Not all of us can afford $8000 more for the Jetta's "convenience" features.
  • the_big_hthe_big_h Posts: 1,583
    I guess everyone finally got a REAL job....
  • rbrooks3rbrooks3 Posts: 174
    It seems not all of us are here today. I feel like Charleton Heston in The Omega Man.
  • protege_fanprotege_fan Posts: 2,405
    I hope I don't get quoted on that figure....I was just throwing that out as an approximate...Actually, for the 1.8T with all options, I'm sure it's much more than $8000 in Canada...But I must digress....please let's not have another J vs. P debate!!

    Peace, Free love...whatever.
  • mdaffronmdaffron Posts: 4,421
    No, we're all trying to do the work TODAY that we should've been doing ALL WEEK, LOL!!!

    Meade the Guilty
  • newcar31newcar31 Posts: 3,711
    IMO, the Jetta would be the perfect car IF it had Mazda/Nissan/Toyota/Honda levels of reliability. I almost bought one, but it didn't offer the option that I really wanted.....piece of mind.
  • fowler3fowler3 Posts: 1,919
    Just reading the posts and those 42 e-mails you guys sent overnight.

    A year ago, this board had a little more than 1400 posts...now look at it...11,566! Way to go Pro owners!

    Now if Edmunds would just pay us a penny a word we'd all be driving $23,000 cars. LOL!

    fowler3
  • fowler3fowler3 Posts: 1,919
    Peace of mind beats the hell out of cup holders and variable intermittant wipers! LOL!

    With the Pro's big glove box why not keep sunglasses in there or the console storage?

    For those testing a Nissan Sentra, open the glove box! You will see the poorest excuse for a door in the automobile industry. Wonder what else was short-cut that badly?

    fowler3
  • gandalf17gandalf17 Posts: 348
    Glad to hear it! Just have to hope Dinu has his too.

    Cupholders, I have the 2000 Pro and the cupholders aren't great, but they will actually hold a coffee or drink provided you don't gun it at start or brake too hard. Either way, I never use it since I don't allow anyone, including myself, to eat and drink in the car. Water bottles are okay...anything with a secure lid.

    The nissan sentra interior, in general, is a poor excuse for a car. The interior just smacks of hard plastic everywhere and cheap, cheap, cheap...didn't like it at all.
  • chicagoprochicagopro Posts: 1,009
    Yes, I'm here...was kicked out of my office all morning...roaming around the school trying to keep up with my e-mail from various other machines.

    I know it's been said before, but DANG my car likes the warmer weather!

    --Dale
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