Last post on Sep 19, 2013 at 3:03 AM
You are in the Mazda Protege
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Mazda Protege, Sedan
#761 of 3742 3years, 90,000miles later
Jan 27, 2002 (4:25 am)
I bought the 1999 Protege ES [5speed, ABS, moonroof, CDplayer] after reading the reviews and test driving the car, compared to the Civic and Golf. I still love the way the car handles [it is a bit noisy] and appreciate its roomy back seats and trunk. But, I dont think I would buy another Protege [I almost did].
When the car first arrived, it pulled irrationally. I brought it back twice and was told there was nothing wrong with the car. I finally went to another dealer, who removed some blocks that should have been removed by the dealer upon its arrival. Black mark for Grecco Mazda, Gold marks for Wayne Mazda.
Pretty much routine maintenance [brakes, tires], for the next 80,000 miles [save a non-functioning electronic door opener]. At 88,000 miles a ball joint went. As soon as the car came out of the shop, the catalytic converter died. That is very premature and only 8000 miles past the federal warranty expiration. Mazda refused to cover the cost of the part [I offered to pay labor]. Having replaced that item, now the 02 sensor has died as has the other ball joint. That's nearly $2000 over the past month and I am still under 100,000 miles [granted I have put 92,000 miles on in three years].
I miss the reliability of my Honda [CRX] and Toyota [Celica], where nothing went wrong until 120,000 miles when I had to replace a clutch. My wife is looking for a new car and I don't think we will try another Protege.
#762 of 3742 3 Perfect Proteges
Jan 27, 2002 (7:23 am)
I have owned 3 Protege's(91,96 & 01) with a total of 220,000 miles and not one single problem. The Protege is one of the most reliable cars on the road. My 86 Corolla GTS had numerous problems....head gasket,oil leaks, electical failure, not to say all corollas are bad cars.
My point is any car can have issues, including the Protege. Statistically, as far as reliability, the Protege is better than most of the competition.
P.S. Depending how the car was driven over 90,000 miles, ball joints could fail on any car.
#763 of 3742 Transmisson Problems
Jan 28, 2002 (10:09 am)
I have 1993 Mada Protege and I am having a problem with the trasmisson in reverse, the car seems like its in foward and reverse and goes no where. It will only go to 1500 rpms because it seems like there is some kind of a lock up. Its like putting your foot on the gas to go foward with the brake on and goes nowhere. But put it in foward and no problem
#764 of 3742 Wierd smell, 2000 Protege
Jan 28, 2002 (2:31 pm)
I have a foul smell that i get now that it's colder out. Once the temp guage gets past 1/4 of the way up, I sometimes get a foul smell. After the car has fully warmed up, I usually don't get this smell anymore. I get the smell when I have the heater on usually as well...which is most of the time since it's winter. The smell doesn't seem to be comming from the exhuast becuase I've checked that a few times.
I think the engine usually has some vents on the crankcase...maybe it's this? I don't know. Either that or there is a small exhaust leak before the rear cat which might make sense. The only other thing I think it could be related to is the ignition system. The rubber on the plug wires has come off a little on the top by the valve cover. I'm going to change the plugs soon too. I have 34500 kms on the car so far so I think it's due for that. Let me know if you guys have had this problem before and what it was.
Jan 28, 2002 (8:09 pm)
I think you may have a stripped synchro gear in your transmission if you fully engage R and don't hear/feel anything coming from your tranny. The engine may be rpm-limited when the computer senses you've engaged (or tried to engage) reverse to avoid damaging the transmission (sounds like it's too late though).
Better take it in. Quick way to see if there's mechanical damage is to lower the transmission pan and look for metal shavings etc. (not sure about this particular transmission, but most also contain a very strong permanent magnet to capture loose ferromagnetic bits of metal).
#766 of 3742 Burnt rubber?
Jan 28, 2002 (8:12 pm)
This smells quite foul. It's a quite acrid scent. Anyone who's driven through Toledo would know it. Check to make sure no hoses or wires are coming into contact with the engine block or exhaust manifold.
Recently, I've had a brief whiffs of coolant when accelerating hard. I just recently had my dealer replace the engine coolant. Wouldn't surprise me if they spilled a little somewhere and didn't wash it off.
Jan 29, 2002 (4:21 am)
If you've got a 2000 automatic and it's slipping out of fifth gear, you've got a unique transmission indeed!
#768 of 3742 mdaffron
Jan 30, 2002 (5:12 am)
Yeah, its a 2000 ES. As an update it hasn't slipped since that day. Even on the return trip it worked flawlessly. However it wasn't a 1 time thing... over about a 180 mile period, 1 day, it slipped out at least 10 times going about 75mph on an interstate with cruise on and about 20 times on country roads without cruise.
Would you suggest taking it to the dealer? It runs fine now and i assume they willl just laugh at me and my story. As i might do if the roles were reversed.
Jan 30, 2002 (6:01 am)
What I meant by my message was, the automatic transmission doesn't have a fifth gear! It's a four-speed automatic. So if you've got an automatic and it's slipping out of FIFTH, you've got one interesting transmission, LOL!
Are you nuts? I would DEFINITELY and WITHOUT HESITATION take it to the dealer. (I assume you're still under warranty.) That way, even if they can't duplicate the problem in-house, they can document it so you'll have a chance if your transmission goes south after your warranty expires. Don't give in; I had a 1994 B2300 pickup (piece of crap built by Ford for Mazda) that had numerous engine problems. Even though my warranty expired at the normal 3 years/50,000 miles, they continued to monitor and fix these ongoing problems -- at no cost to me -- until I sold the truck with 118,000 miles on it.
Give 'em hell!
#770 of 3742 Torque lock-up converter.
Jan 30, 2002 (9:31 am)
Was this happening on grades? The way the AT works is 1-2-3-OD-Torque Lockup. The TL feels like a fifth gear ratio, but isn't. It just locks the engine output to the transmission input so they don't slip relative to each other and bleed power.
On grades, the AT can couple/decouple the torque lock-up as it senses torque in the transmission approach some limit. The lock-up mechanism activates below this threshold to increase efficiency of power transfer. It decouples to avoid damaging the transmission or engine by allowing the interface to slip (as in drive ratios 1,2,3 and OD). On long moderate grades, this can happen several times as the car's computer tries to maintain speed with the cruise control.
This happens with my AT, especially when transitioning from a flat (or downhill) to an uphill grade, or if I step sufficiently hard on the accelerator (as when coming out of a turn or curve or to pass someone).
Sorry for droning on if that's not the issue.