1999 Mazda Protege LX DOHC 1.8L from North America


Great Little Econo-Sedan


3 Check engine lights for problems below.

Fuel Pressure Regulator - 45000km 5 yrs

3rd or 4th set of Brakes

EGR Valve went @ 61,000km 6 yrs causing multiple stalls, replaced by Mazda for $300.00.

2 Batteries 35,000 & 63,000km 4/6 yrs

Rough Idle.

4AT transmission runs rough in cold.

Fuel Economy is poor for a 1.8L.

General Comments:

Great little car, looks good in silver.

Could use more than 120hp, but is fairly good for everyday use.

No major repairs, but very little KMs.

Fully loaded interior.

This is my wife's car, and I prefer if she had a Civic... but so far seems to be a great little car.

Handles great in snow and dry pavement.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 20th February, 2006

26th Oct 2006, 08:33


Now have 76500kms.

- Replaced Brake pads & rotors (caliper pins wore out and caused a horrible banging noise) $320

- Timing belt - $317

- Flushed fluids per manual

- Auto Transmission continues to rev high in first gear, but other gears are smooth especially on the highway.

1999 Mazda Protege ES 1.8L from North America


A wonderful transportation car


My current Protege ES is my second Protege as my first one was a '92 DX manual transmission and a jewel of a car. It was going strong at 200,000 miles on the odometer when I sold it.

I am experiencing my first problem with my ES at 110,000 miles. The CHECK ENGINE LIGHT came on recently with a DTC P0420 (catalyst efficiency below threshold-bank 1). I reset the indicator and the CEL has not come on again, but the engine now, randomly, will "stumble" (my descriptor) at moderate speeds, that is, it will abruptly jerk with a down-shift from 4th to 3rd gear and back to 4th. I have no way of knowing if the engine causes the shifts or the transmission is acting on its own. "7th Apr 2005" also owns an ES and appears to have my exact problem.

Has any Protege owner experiencing this problem resolved it? I'd love to hear that somebody has a fix for it.

General Comments:

Generally, my ES has been another superb transportation car from Mazda. It handles well, gives good gas mileage (30 mpg average) and has been trouble-free until my current problem.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 31st October, 2005

3rd Nov 2005, 10:34

This should be considered an addendum to my review of Nov. 1,2005 which was, for some reason, listed as a 1998 ES vice the correct 1999 ES.

It appears that I have resolved my '99 Mazda Protege's problem of improper shifts. A bit of reading indicated that modern a transmissions can be "adaptive" automatic transmissions, that is, the transmission "learns" and adapts to operating requirements. i.e. the transmission is closely controlled by computer parameters stored by itself.

It seemed logical to assume that this stored info. could become corrupted (as any computerphile can attest to) and cause some strange happenings.

Assuming that my car had this feature, too, I found that if I disconnected my car's battery ground terminal for 10 minutes it "cleared" the stored transmission data. You will have no doubt when this happens as the next time that you drive the car it will make inappropriate shifts galore. In fact, I questioned whether or not I had gone from the frying pan to the fire!

But, then the sun shines! After driving about 100 miles that day, the next day when I drove the car it was magic! The transmission was silky smooth. It appears that I do have the adaptive transmission and that after clearing the transmission memory it takes a while before the adaptive feature takes over again.

This is my experience and use it for what it's worth to you.

1999 Mazda Protege LX 1.8 Gas from North America


Great car if you don't mind getting your hands dirty


- Intake manifold gasket cracked/leaking at 100 000km

- Battery died at 120 000km,

- Mass Airflow Sensor needed cleaning at 100 000km,

- Water leaks into trunk from rear bumper mounts at 80 000km

- Exhaust pipe flange failure at 130 000km

- Front anti-sway bar links failure at 75 000km (passenger) and 100 000km (driver)

- front engine mount failure at 90 000km

- EGR Valve needed lubricating at 120 000km

- Alternator failed at 130 000km

- Cold front strut noise (over bumps) starting at 80 000km.

General Comments:

A few things have failed, but gives me an excuse to replace with upgraded parts (in many cases the Mazda part itself has been strengthened as in the engine mount and intake manifold gasket).

Performs very well, and has never let me down. With the right tires, handles amazingly.

Acceleration isn't great with the A/C on (when it cycles can cause the transmission to shift unexpectedly if you are on the threshold of a shift), but accelerates great when cold.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 10th August, 2005

30th Jul 2009, 22:09

My 225 000km update. Still enjoy driving the car. Solved my occasional 'buck'/shift by replacing the transmission turbine sensor ($40 and about 10 minutes to replace), and EVAP purge solenoid ($90). still getting good mileage, great acceleration, but I still stand by my statement, have to keep your hands dirty, and maintain it right, and it will pay you back with performance and reliability (alternator I replaced went again - but this time due to a bad bearing in the rebuild-not Mazda, replaced EGR valve with the latest Mazda 'fix' for $140, first rust spots (driver side front side of real wheel-well, and under both the front doors).