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Mazda Protegé



  • mdaffronmdaffron Posts: 4,421
    I had an artist's drawing and description of the Protege5 in my dealership's Sales Manager's hand a year ago and he said he'd never seen it and doubted it would ever make it over here. I love going in there now. All I have to do is smile at him and he says, "Aw, shaddup!"

  • scootiscooti Posts: 13
    We had Michelin X-One's on our 97 Protege ES with 14 inch wheels. They were great in the rain and super quiet, great tread life. Before selling the car to my nephew, we put 35,000 mi. on the Michelins and they still had a lot of tread left on them. We live in NE Pa. and the Michelins were ok but not great in snow. Like I said though, they were excellent in the rain. Paid $90 per tire for them almost 4 years ago.

  • Where in NE PA? I lived between Wilkes-Barre and Scranton before moving west.
  • jstandeferjstandefer Posts: 805
    If I listed all of the websites I frequent, I would easily exceed the maximum character limit on this board. Then I would have to do a Larry style multipart post (Hi Larry!).

    The new Protege and Focus will either sit on a modified Mondeo platform or a totally new platform developed for Ford global compacts. Since the 626 is growing slightly in interior room, I'm sure the Focus and Protege will grow in interior room as well. Then, Mazda will introduce a new subcompact hatchback probably based on the Mazda 121 platform. This new vehicle will be powered from engines ranging from 1.3L to 1.6L with direct injection and S-VT (Sequential Valve Timing).

    I forgot to mention in my last post that the new 2.3L will also see duty in the Tribute (replacing the Zetec 2.0) and as the base engine in the new 626 (replacing the 2.0L). It seems Mazda is really pushing their MX Sport Tourer concept and many analysts speculate it will probably see production in a form similar to the concept. It is a technology tour-de-force with Mazda's take on hybrid technology. Mazda's hybrid system uses a small direct injection S-VT engine along with an electric motor. The gasoline engine powers the front wheels during freeway driving, while the electric motor powers the rear wheels during city cruising. There is a "Zoom Zoom" button that will activate the electric motor for extra passing power on the freeway. Also, the vehicle has full all-wheel drive capability which automatically activates when traction has been lost at the drive wheels. It also features Mazda's Toroidal CVT (Continuously Variable Transmission) which allows the engine to stay at a certain rpm (for best efficiency or for best performance) while the transmission continuously changes the gearing ratio to change speed.

  • mazdafunmazdafun Posts: 2,329
    Yeah scooti, I agree about the X-Ones in the snow. They're OK. The sipes that are so great at wicking away water just pack up with snow. Still, they're much better than the Firestone FR680s.

    I'll probably get alloys with my next set of tires so I can put snow tires on my steel wheels if the all-seasons don't work out. I also can use the chains (cables with little sleeves really) I got for driving to Tahoe back when I lived in California.

    The other tires I'm looking at rate comparably in snow traction (at least according to the readers that post their opinions on Tire Rack's site), but cost significantly less (mid 40s or 50s v. high 70s and up) and have been around at least as long. The X-Ones are rated as being quieter though. The 175/75R13s on my '89 323 are probably the best tires I've had on it, but I want to try something different and somewhat sportier on my Pro.
  • <<No. I don't think that would be such a great idea. There are only 1,500 available and we'll get maybe 10 MP3 owners on this site (and that's be drastically liberal, ugh, I hate ever being liberal!). It's a Protege ES with modifications. Does that mean we would have to start a separate board for anyone that has modified their Protege?>>

    Well I would hope the power of the Edmund's name would get more than 10 people, especially since anyone buying one will search for something on the web. But to answer your second question, yes, why not have people who have modified their Proteges join in and have a board of performance minded people, as opposed to the general information on the other boards? I was a member of an Alfa Romeo on line e-mail group, and it was very enjoyable. You get some very knowledgeable people with similar interests.

    We'll try this again later, I guess.
  • The seats are very functional, but what's with the ugly silver inserts? What's that? The Nardi wheel is beautiful and very comfy. The wing is a little big, the tires too low profile for the real streets, and a $2,500 mark up? They must be kidding!!! How about an ES with some real performance? That would be the way to go. >>

    First, I think the car looks great, and the wing, front valence and other tweaks make the car look very good. The seats are also very comfortable, a huge plus for a car in this price range. The tires are not too low, unless you live in Manhattan. The car is also an outstanding value! Figure what it would cost to set up an ES this way, including the sound system, and you'll see what I mean. The car handles like a son of a b*tch, and having owned nothing but sports cars- real ones- for over 20 years, I am damned impressed. The MP3 is one of the truly great values out there, and frankly, I don't believe Mazda made a profit on a single one of them.
  • protege_fanprotege_fan Posts: 2,405
    So you're saying that just because some people bought their cars last year, that they are not the same type of people who would want an MP3? I know that I for one would have loved to have bought one. However it was a)not affordable to me, and b)not out at the time.
    The MP3 is nothing more than a factory tuned Protege sedan! To start a seperate board would be pointless. This board is labelled "Mazda
    Protege (SEDANS Board)."
    MP3=Sedan. No matter how you "mod" it, it is still a Pro Sedan.
    I for one love reading about mods that I could do to my Pro. However, I don't have the cash right now to do what I want to my Pro. But that still doesn't mean I don't like reading about them.


    Protege_fan <------That's all makes of Pros.
  • jstandeferjstandefer Posts: 805
    I would have to agree that the MP3 is quite the bargain. The suspension upgrades alone are worth the extra price. I was just disappointed in the engine output. The Protege ES will already outhandle just about every comparable vehicle out there. What it really needs is power. When I first heard about it (MPS at that time, and I wish they would have used the MPS moniker rather than MP3) I was thinking a successor to the old late 80's 323GTX. It's 1.6L DOHC B6 series engine cranked out 132hp and 136lb-ft from its turbocharged 4 cylinders and ran it to all 4 wheels with a lockable center differential. 132hp doesn't sound like much, but it was a huge increase from the stock 1.6L engine and combined with its lightweight, propelled the 4WD GTX to 60mph in 7.8 seconds. The 323GT had the same engine but was front wheel drive. Its acceleration time should be quicker due to less drivetrain power loss and less weight.

    However, next year's should be quite interesting. I'm assuming the Protege Accessories and Modifications board doesn't quite cut it for a separate board for modifications? We have discussed all kinds of things in there from sound system upgrades to tires to strut tower braces. Otherwise, I hear is quite the place for MP3 owners. There's a guy on there who has 193hp at the wheels on a lightly modified MP3. All he added was the MazdaSpeed intake and exhaust cam kits, ram air intake, and racing catalytic converter. He still is waiting on a high compression piston set and an ignition computer. Unfortunately, it doesn't sound like a very friendly board.

  • scootiscooti Posts: 13
    My wife and I were both born in Scranton Pa.
    We now live in a town called Mountaintop Pa., just south of Wilkes Barre.

  • drandran Posts: 7
    Do any of the knowledgeable participants in this esteemed board know of any suppliers for computer chips for Japanese cars. I found many links for audis and BMWs but none for Japanese cars. Please post any links.

  • You guys gotta be going for the posting record or something.
  • <<Otherwise, I hear is quite the place for MP3 owners. There's a guy on there who has 193hp at the wheels on a lightly modified MP3. All he added was the MazdaSpeed intake and exhaust cam kits, ram air intake, and racing catalytic converter>>

    This is exactly what I was looking for!! Now I dont have to wade through comments about choosing the right snow tires. Thanks! And stay safe, no matter what you drive.
  • newcar31newcar31 Posts: 3,711
    I believe the computer in the Protoge has some intel components and the emission system computer is Ford's EECV.
  • jstandeferjstandefer Posts: 805
    Unfortunately, newcar31 is correct. The Protege's engine management computer is an Intel processor. I would have preferred a PowerPC chip, but I guess this does the job.

    dran, check out for Asian, European, and domestic performance chip applications. Unfortunately, there is not a chip available for the Protege. I have e-mailed them about two years ago. They replied that there isn't enough demand on the market to create a chip for the Protege, plus the EEC-V emissions computer is hard to get around. They said if enough demand generates, they will consider making a chip for the Protege. If they did make a chip, I would expect the power gain to be about 10-11hp and 15-16lb-ft of torque looking at the gains for the 1992-1995 626/MX-6 2.0L chip. That engine is basically the same as the Protege 1.8L and 2.0L.

  • protegextwoprotegextwo Posts: 1,265
    Joe, Congrats on your new PRO! Trust me, you will like driving your new Mazda more than you can imagine! :-)

  • protegextwoprotegextwo Posts: 1,265
    Sorry, I missed the chats, two weeks in a row. I have been super busy at TGI Friday's, lately. I had my Kitchen Mgr. on vacation this week and my Assoc. General Mgr. on vacation last week, yikes! I'll make the next one!!!

  • fowler3fowler3 Posts: 1,919
    It came back on,but we lost connection again about 10:00PM ET. No problem, protegextwo, the system had errors and we lost some time in the chat room tonight.

    I keep reading about modifications and wonder which ones I would make. Actually, I'm not a speed freak and would go for whatever would maker my Protegé a baby Millennium S. LOL

    Neither am I an audio person since I'm totally deaf in one ear, but I do enjoy the stereo in my Pro and it's one of the reasons I bought it.

    My biggest complaint about the Protegé is the too small door mirrors, which I put on my survey back to Mazda. I'm also going blind in my right eye due to glaucoma and really need large mirrors like the
    ones used on SUV's. But have learned to adapt to the smaller ones.

    Some days I make other drivers' trips exciting. ;)
    No modifications needed.


    The other day, my neighbor noticed me pulling into and backing partly out of my garage several times and asked what was I trying to do? I told her, 'Make a U-turn!'

    They don't make home garages wide enough these days if you use the wall space for storage. I was trying to position the Pro so I could open the door wider. A big bag of dog food, against the side wall, was preventing this.

  • the_big_hthe_big_h Posts: 1,583
    go to I think it will serve you very well. The boards here at Edmunds are more or less for folks that are more interested purchasing and the daily operation/maintenance of stock Pro's than doing serious performance mods. I read both boards so I can keep an eye out for things that might interest me.

    hope this helps.

  • protegextwoprotegextwo Posts: 1,265
    Hank, thank you for posting that link! I'm going to check out, if only; to see what others are doing with their PRO's.

    Hey Fowler, glad your project is completed. Nice to have you "back"!

  • protegextwoprotegextwo Posts: 1,265
    You to behave today, hehe!

  • mdaffronmdaffron Posts: 4,421
    I have no intention of behaving. My, Larry, you're up awful early! I just got to work and rummaged through the 20-odd emails since I left work yesterday afternoon. BTW, it's 7:35 a.m. here and we had one hell of a thunderstorm last night -- tore the flag on the front of our house all to pieces. I was hunkering down, cringing at every lightning flash -- I don't need another direct hit like we had back in June! TWO home theatre systems, FOUR phones, SIX GFI outlets and TWO $1,400 ham rigs in one year are quite enough!

    Bill ... Hi there. I don't remember talking with you before; then again, my brain is aging like a bottle of fine milk. :) I see you live in PA. We've already got two Pennsylvania folks who'll be hitching up their horses to their Proteges and putting that little orange triangle on the back and coming to the second-annual Mid-Atlantic Protege Picnic on October 6! Why don't you come too? If you're interested, e-mail me at:

    and I'll send you all the details. By the way Larry, Paul and other attendees, I'm getting mad at you. You're not talking up the picnic!

  • scootiscooti Posts: 13
    Thanks for the invite. I am scheduled to be in my nephew's wedding on 10-6-01. Thanks for extending the invite though. We bought our 01 ES 5 speed on 8-3-01 and my wife has almost 1300 mi. on it already. The rare times I have been able to drive it (like when it needs gas), it sure seems like a fun car. It shifts so smoothly, and is much quieter on the highway than a 97 Protege ES 5sp we had at one time. Actually I like the way the 01 Protege 5sp shifts better than our other car-
    2000 Mazda 626 ES V-6, 5 sp.

  • sfratsfrat Posts: 205
    Morning all,

    I just checked out Racing Beat at, and they have updated their information for the Protege parts that they are going to be producing. Check it out, I'm really tempted by the exhaust. Maybe I can get it on by MAPP II.

  • chikoochikoo Posts: 3,008
    Meade: The O-ring size, thread and external diameter are the same. Only that it is 1.5inches longer.

    Why I want a bigger filter? 'cause the small filter is useful only for 3000 miles. After that it stops filtering. Mazda's owner manual call for oil changes at 7500 miles which is a dream with this american spec filter. I remember and so does somebody else on the board that the filter on the new cars from japan is a longer one...which would last atleast 5000 miles of filtering.

    I rightly believe that they reduced the size of the filter in USA so that it can cope up with the hype of 3000 miles oil change....not so in Europe where the trend is for extended drain with the new synthetic oils and longer lasting filters.

    I use synthetic oils and I observe that after 3000 miles, while the car still runs as smooth, the soot from the combustion is not filtered out from the oil ..and that is a concern for me.

    Why should I change oils just because of a smaller filter?

    So, will the length of the filter cause any problems? will it interfere when the engine turns on it's mount due to torque?

    Jerry, Matlb..I am waiting for your inputs
  • chikoochikoo Posts: 3,008
    One quick question for you:

    During the @50,000 miles of ownership, how many times have you had to get your steering aligned?

    Is it sill in alignment?
  • maltbmaltb Posts: 3,572
    I don't think anyone here has the exact specs on the oil filter. I am sure that whatever engineers picked that filter took into account the change intervals that Mazda specified. I am not an engineer, so I couldn't tell you if it's safe to use another filter.

    If you think the filter will work, try it. However, you also assume liability for your your decision. If you can find a filter maker that specifies a longer filter, then they assume the liability for their product.

    Having taken engines from stock to wild and then back again, I have a real appreciation for the engineering that goes into OEM parts and what they are specified for.
  • laurakatlaurakat Posts: 69
    I can relate to comparing the Pro and 626. I used to own a 1999 626 ES V6 5spd. I feel my 2001 Pro LX 2.0 shifts better. It's more fun to drive, looks better, and has more personality than my 626. However, I do miss the Bose audio system and 2.5 V6 sometimes!

  • yooper53yooper53 Posts: 286
    I just had my initial oil change @ 5400 miles and used Mobil 1. Where are you getting your info regarding the oem filter not being able to filter beyond 3K miles??
    Open question re: '01 Pro ES. Twice now I've topped off fuel after low fuel warning light came on. In both cases it took only 12 gallons,leaving 2.5 gallons when light illuminates. Is this in line with other owners of "01 Pro ES?
    Thanks in advance.
  • sfratsfrat Posts: 205
    Sounds pretty close to mine as well, although I rarely let it get that low, usually fill up when there is 1/4 tank left.
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