1999 Mazda Protege 1.6L from North America


A reliable slug that will make you loathe winter


This car has not required any work beyond routine servicing and some accident repairs.

General Comments:

This is a six cylinder sized car run on a 4 cylinder engine. It is very roomy and comfortable, but not very responsive for passing or mountain ascents.

The heating system in the car is absolutely worthless at temperatures below -20 C. We have been unable to drive distances more than 50 km in winter because our feet get too cold. The dealer says that nothing can be done about this!

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Don't Know

Review Date: 9th March, 2003

1st Nov 2004, 22:42

Yeah, heat's been a problem with my protege as well...

If you wanted more power, why didn't you get the 1.8L? Yes the 1.6 model is underpowered, but the car isn't big enough for a V6 to be practical.

1999 Mazda Protege DX 1.6L from North America


The car is overall a good car, just not happy with the check engine light thing


I bought the Protege on Jan. 20, 2003. Two days later the check engine light came on. I took the car to the Mazda dealership and they "fixed" the problem. They said the air flow handler was bad. The same day I picked it up from getting fixed the check engine light came back on. I took the car back the next day and they supposedly "fixed" it again. They said it was another problem that was actually on recall. Ok, the next day the light came back on. It has been in the shop six times for the same problem. Each time the light comes on the problem is always the same and it gets "fixed". The last time it came on the dealership kept the car for one week and ordered a new computer for it. The problem has not re-occurred.

General Comments:

The car handles well on tight curves and accommodates me and my family well. The trunk is enormous.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Don't Know

Review Date: 21st February, 2003

2nd Jun 2003, 21:44

Hey man, my name is Kevin and I've looked at buying this car, and I have two 15" subs in a bandpass box, the box is 36 inches across, 19 high, and 18 deep... would this fit in the trunk??? Also, is this car reliable, and how is it on gas??? Please, let me know if this car is worth the buy... I need a car for college commute.. thanks.

14th Nov 2003, 09:54

The check engine light problem is weird in Mazdas. My mom has a '93 Protege. At 30k, the light came on. She was told by an independent shop that they all do that and that there is no problem. 70K now and no problems. I just wonder if those lights are set to come on at different times just to get you in the shop.

Worth a thought...

24th Mar 2007, 14:12

I have a '99 Protege LX. Yes, the check engine light is annoying, but it's most likely the mass air flow sensor. It gets dirty VERY easily. It's a prob that a lot of Fords have. But it doesn't affect the car any; it just annoys you with that stupid light.

1999 Mazda Protege ES 1.8 from North America


Great car.. if yours works from beginning


Hydralic failures in brakes


Air leaks

Windsheild wiper sprayer sprays heavy on one side.

Air conditioner takes forever to cool or heat.

Air conditioner drips into cd player.

My wheels REFUSE to keep an alignment and or balance.

General Comments:

Let me first say, with all these problems, I still love my car. Its been a GREAT car. But.. I am now scared to drive it.

I still own this car, have no yet died, but have almost multiple times becuase of this problem. I lost my job, and had problems paying for my car for awhile, but now that I am caught back up, I will again start to try and get this fixed again.

My car from day 1 has had massive problems. The biggest of these problems was the ABS not EVER WORKING EVER..

I have been told that it works just fine. I have ridden in the car with the LEAD technical engineer from two different Mazda dealerships/garages and was told by both that after we came skidding and sliding to a stop... that it was fine.

Now, I don't look like am total moron, but these guys must think I am. When you hit the brakes hard and your brakes lock and you slide to a stop... that USUALLY means your ANTI-LOCK brakes are not working.

I have almost gotten into many accidents becuase my car loses hydralic pressure. I push my petal down, and the car SLOWLY starts to stop... I have gone into oncoming traffic multiple times waiting for my car to stop... I have gone over parking lot sidewalks with it not stopping. I have actually hit another car... luckily mine was only going 5mph at that time...

Heres the worst part. I am now what will be my 4th attempt to get this fixed. All attemps have been documented with Mazda. Each time they disregard everything and just try to replace my break shoes. They actually have the audacity to tell me that each one of my problems is how my car is SUPPOSED to operate.

Its odd. My girlfreind has a 2001 Protege and funny thing, hers does NOT OPERATE like its supposed to than! Hers actually stops and her brakes don't lock. Her windshield wiper sprayer works! Her car doesn't leak air in! When she takes a sharp corner, her air conditioner doesn't turn off.

All and all, I love my car. No matter what happens, it has got me from point A to point B... but now, with my brakes failing half the time, my ABS not working, my tires getting eaten through becuase alighment will not hold (I am on my THIRD pair of 35,000+ mile tires, quite simply, I am scared to drive it.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 12th December, 2002

27th May 2004, 11:13

With the brakes failing, you must be nuts to want to keep the car.

And if you have been to the dealer to get the same problem fixed 3 times, you can give the car back and ask for full refund. There is something called Lemon law.

19th Jul 2007, 09:24

OK...I understand that maybe you aren't mechanically inclined. Heck, I KNOW you aren't from reading your review. Your problem is your Brake Master Cylinder. You should buy one from Autozone, Advanced Auto, or Napa and get a private mechanic to replace it. They run about $190 for your car. That or just take it to a private mechanic and tell him your "symptoms"... You might also have a fluid leak somewhere further down the line... but that should be obvious when your mechanic goes to check it out.