Last post on Jun 09, 2012 at 11:01 PM
You are in the Mazda Protege
What is this discussion about?
Mazda Protege, Sedan
#23614 of 24043 Re: Why a Mazda Protege? [janslor]
Nov 14, 2004 (6:30 pm)
I researched many, many cars and decided on a 2001 ES because of its high Japanese parts content and past reliability records. I also put my mother in a 2003 ES (brand new in summer of 2003).
I avoided the Honda because some of my friends had transmission problems (Accords and Civics)...unheard of for Honda until recently. Toyota had some engine sludging problems, and from some previous research, some of the newer Corollas are needing entire engine replacements at very low miles...again, unheard of until recently. News like this sends shivers up my spine!
All in all, I am very pleased with the reliability of both cars. I find myself fixing things on the 2001 that were poorly taken care of by the last neglectful owner...certainly not the fault of the car. The 2003 has 30,000 miles on it and has never been back to the dealer to correct anything...not even a minor squeak or rattle. My mother came from Chevrolets, Buicks and Cadillacs and vows to never "go back"!
Good luck with your purchase and keep in touch on the Mazda boards.
Nov 15, 2004 (2:12 am)
I bought a Protege in 07/01 because it looked good on paper and in person. It was a good deal ($15,000 and 0.0% for a ES 5-speed) and it looked good. It also drove greaat until you got to speeds over 70. Then the engine just got to buzzy for me. I traded the Protege and went back to Hondas. It was reliable in the 10,000 miles I owned it and if you never drive on the highway or above 70 then the engine would probably never bother you.
I don't like the Corolla because of the driving position and the rear axle.
#23616 of 24043 Re: Why a Mazda Protege? [janslor]
Nov 15, 2004 (10:24 am)
For the ZOOM ZOOM factor! These cars are fun to drive. They handle like they're on rails around corners. They aren't the fastest in their class and don't get the best fuel mileage either, but they are FUN to drive. And they are extremely reliable and down right cheap to buy. They are more like a little sports car than a cheap econo box.
Nov 15, 2004 (11:10 am)
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#23618 of 24043 Falken Ziex ZE-512 tires doing well so far.
Nov 17, 2004 (9:46 am)
I took it easy on them for the first couple hundred miles after having them installed a few weeks ago. Now I'm starting to take turns a bit faster.
Compared to my last set of tires (Dunlop SP Sport A2), they seem to:
roll a bit more quietly
dampen road impacts better
hydroplane at a slightly lower speed (when new)
respond a little less quickly to lateral inputs
hold on just as well in dry turns, a bit less in wet turns
roll over onto sidewalls a little more gradually, but more easily
I've not pushed them hard enough to elicit 4-wheel drifts yet (not recommended if long tire wear is important to you), as I did a few times with the Dunlops. I'll wait for next spring for that. The roads are a bit too slick to attempt something like that these days. Although, it is easier to do.
I'd say overall they are a little more "touring" than the Dunlops were, but are still plenty "performance" for me. I'll see how they hold up long-term. I put on over 37k miles on the Dunlops (more than most have reported here); they could have gone another 3-5k miles until the tread wore down to the wear bands, but I'm not risking that little tread with winter coming up. I've not put on enough miles to judge impact on fuel economy, but I was getting a long-term average of 31-32mpg on the Dunlops.
#23619 of 24043 Why'd I buy a Protege?
Nov 17, 2004 (10:45 am)
No brainer. I'd owned two 1992 LXs, one of which saved my life in a hydroplaning accident. And both (the first one up until its demise at 28,000 miles, and the second until I traded it at 83,000 miles) were completely and totally trouble-free.
My current Protege, a 2000 ES 5-speed, just crossed 85,000 miles this morning. My wife drives a 2002 Protege5 with just over 40,000 miles on it.
Mazda makes small cars that buck the "appliance car" trend. They're a blast to drive, and my little Zoomster still makes me smile all the time.
They also fit us "big and tall" guys much better than Civics and Corollas, at least from my large butt's point of view.
My next car? No brainer there as well. Ol' Zoomster's going out to pasture next May, when he'll be replaced (well, he can never really be REPLACED) by a 2005 Mazda3.
Nov 17, 2004 (10:48 am)
A word of advice ...
Most of us usually check all the Protege discussions when we look at the Town Hall ... so there'll be no need to cross-post future questions on three discussions!
Posting on just one discussion not only makes it easier for us to answer you; it also makes it easier for you to find all the responses when you come back!
#23621 of 24043 Re: Why'd I buy a Protege? [mdaffron]
Nov 17, 2004 (6:20 pm)
Hey Meade...Long time, no read...your posts that is!
I went and looked at the new Mazda3 hatch last week and really liked it. I also sat in the new Kia Spectra5 and absolutely hated it! (This dealership does Mazdas, Kias and Lexuses) If you're looking for leg room, AVOID the Spectra5. With the seat all the way back, my knees were hitting the steering wheel! (I'm approximately 5'11'')
Anyway, my only initial complaint with the M3 is the arduous process of removing the back "shelf" to fully utilize the hatch cargo room. The piece seemed cheap and prone to breakage. Also, I'm still a little concerned with the A/C performance issues...they appear to have been worked out, but it's difficult to say.
So, needless to say, I may keep the 2001 ES a little bit longer. I'm rather frustrated with myself that I didn't pursue a P5 near the end of their run when they were doing their cash back incentives. Finding a good used one, or even a bad used one, is next to impossible!
Keep us posted as to your future purchase thoughts.
#23622 of 24043 Re: Falken Ziex ZE-512 tires doing well so far. [mazdafun]
Nov 18, 2004 (7:42 am)
The Falkens should be great in the rain. They were amazingly good for the first 15k miles. In the last 5k wear has increased exponetionally and I'll be replacing them this weekend.
Looks like I'm going the Meade endorsed BF Goodrich route. I need something that will get me through winter and wear a little better.
#23623 of 24043 All in the family
Nov 18, 2004 (2:26 pm)
According to Consumer Reports, the M6 has poor reliablity. I wonder if the M3 will suffer the same weakness. That would be sad. My '99 pro es has done quite well.
Good to see some old-timers around.