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For 2004, the Protege will move to the Ford Focus platform. I have no idea where it will be built. The 2004 engines (2.0L DOHC & 2.3L DOHC) are joint Ford/Mazda designs and are built by both companies in Japan, Europe, and the US. A good place to read about it is Motor Trend's website. On the left menu, select Future Vehicles, and then select 2004. Three Mazda's are listed for 2004, the redesigned Protege, redesigned Miata, and the new cross-over vehicle (like the NexTourer and MX Sport Tourer concepts). All of the new Mazda's starting with the 2003 626 and 2003 RX-8 will begin a new design trend for Mazda. Interiors will be significantly different and should begin to resemble the quality and design of the interiors we see now from Audi.
There is a new screensaver available from Mazda. It is a great look at the RX-8 and you can get a good look at the future of Mazda from it. You can get the screensaver here.
You can also check out the RX-8 picture gallery here. Click on the RX-8 link and then View Gallery. This vehicle is very close to production and we should see it in showrooms in a little less than a year.
The second-annual Mid-Atlantic Protege Picnic (MAPP II) will take place Saturday, October 6, 2001, at a park in Northern Virginia. For those of you who attended last year, it's the same place as last year. For security purposes, we're only going to share the location with confirmed attendees via direct e-mail.
I would like to greet our new friends on the Protege5 topic and hope that some of you might come over to the Mazda Protege topic and introduce yourselves as I'm doing here. I own an Emerald Green Metallic 2000 Mazda Protege ES 5-speed. It's the third Protege I've owned; Protege No. 1 was a 1992 LX that was totaled in a hydroplaning accident in August 1992. (I walked away from it!) Protege No. 2 was another 1992 LX that took me for more than 80,000 trouble-free, zoom-zoomin' miles. My 2000 now has just shy of 24,000 miles on the odometer and is zooming happily.
Back to the picnic ... Last year's was attended by nine people in five Proteges. We came from as far south as Richmond, Virginia, and as far north as Lancaster, Pennsylvania. If you'd like to see some pics of last year's premiere event, check out this link:
(Due to some of Edmunds' quirks when it comes to geocities links, you may have to copy the link and paste it into your browser's address window for it to work.)
This year we already have the possibility of a better showing. So far we have 8 possible Proteges and 15 people from as far south as Atlanta, Georgia (believe it or not!) and as far north as Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.
It'll basically be an afternoon's get-together in a beautiful setting (accompanied, I might add, by a beautiful drive in the mountains that you and your Protege will LOVE). Food is a major part of our event, as you undoubtedly noticed when you saw US in the above link! Therefore everyone will be expected to bring something. The park we'll be visiting includes a shelter that will seat several dozen people out of the rain (god forbid), and a pedestal grill. Restrooms are close by.
I organized this picnic last year so some of us on the Mazda Protege topic could get a chance to meet in person and spend an afternoon sharing our common trait ... love for our Proteges. If you're interested in attending or finding out more, please post a message on the Mazda Protege topic or e-mail me directly at the following address:
Let's make "MAPP II: The Sequel" something for the history books!
ZOOM ZOOM ZOOM
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