2002 Mazda Protege 5 2.0 I4 from North America


A sporty alternative to Honda. Mazda has delivered once again!


Transmission work. No fifth gear when we bought it.

New struts and bushings in the front.

We're fighting the rust. Keep it under control!

General Comments:

We have always been a Mazda family. We have trusted the Protege's with our family for over 20 years, and Mazda has, once again, delivered.

This one is no exception when it comes to reliability. Bought at a repossession auction, we anticipated it would need some work to begin with, although it jumped right into becoming our daily driver after its repairs.

Vacation is ideal in this car. It seats all four of us comfortably, and it is fun on the highway. We thought the gas gauge was broken; it's actually just that good on gas.

Be mindful, it WILL rust if you let it get out of hand. Keep a close eye on the wheel wells, and below the gas cap. That is the only problem with this vehicle.

While was haven't owned it for very long, it has already become one more reliable Mazda for us. Fun to drive, reliable, and easy at the pump.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 13th November, 2011

2002 Mazda Protege LX Base from North America


Great car, rusty, but very reliable


Alternator, shocks, rust.

General Comments:

Rust easily, but for a second hand car, I like it. Has 173,000 on her, alternator had to be changed, twice, shocks in the back are shot, but with that much mileage, what do you expect. (I still drive it, no bad shocks, with no problem)

The manual has good power, but when going over 100, the car does lack power. The engine feels solid and is built to last. Gas mileage is amazing. For a second hand car, I would suggest it. Just look under the car for rust.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 15th July, 2011

2002 Mazda Protege 5 speed from North America


This car is a LEMON... bought the car at 69000 miles on it.. I've had so many problems.

- Transmission bearings going.

- Calipers.

- Brake pads.

- Motor mount.


This car just sucks. I'm selling this car ASAP and getting a Nissan. This car isn't reliable, and I barely ever take it on a trip over an hour, just because I don't trust it.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 4th May, 2011

4th May 2011, 13:38

Good move... have it detailed and clean... and sell it quick... but remember do it as an as is sale only..... beautiful machine... but if you get a lemon or a problem child... best to move on...

23rd Jun 2012, 11:00

Wow! I also purchased a 2002 Protege a few years back. First thing I did was buy some winter tires. The front wheel drive / winter tire combo was excellent! I passed 4wd trucks stuck in 6 inches of slippery snow on a hill (lousy tires = spinning tires). For about 2 weeks of snowstorms, no problems.

The engine now has about 60,000 miles on it. Only problem I have had is the O2 sensor burnt out. Bought a new one and replaced it.

Regular oil/filter changes and keep it clean. That's it for maintenance.

Gets great mileage city or highway. Peppy response off the traffic light "line". I wouldn't hesitate to buy another one.

2002 Mazda Protege 5 from North America


It's a good reliable car


My valve gasket was wearing off, and engine oil was leaking all over the engine.

My coolant reservoir was broken, so I had to replace it.

My front engine mount was changed because my engine was running rough.

My air intake had to be changed because it was ripped.

And right now, when I try to go over 3000 rpm, it doesn't want to go up further. What is the problem with that?

General Comments:

I'm having trouble with my Mazda Protege 5; when I try all my gears and go over 3000 rpm, it slows down. What could be the problem?

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

Review Date: 22nd April, 2011

2002 Mazda Protege 5 2.0 from North America


Skip it. Anything will be better than buying Mazda


Severe body rust.

Valve seals gone - Mazda service department refused to diagnose or fix.

Shocks and struts need to be replaced.

General Comments:

Too many things have gone wrong with this car. Everything from minor surface rust, to major rusting out of the back hatch. Biggest issues have been the rust and engine wear.

First, I discovered that the Protege 5 had a chronic problem with rusting on the back hatch around the logos. Found this out when I took it to the autobody shop for another reason, and they suggested that I should take it in to the dealer for a repair. I discovered that the body warranty had been extended and extra 2 years - 1 month too late, and they refused to help. Now the car is rusting all over - under the wheel wells, inside the engine compartment and at the weld points. It's a shame that regular washing and maintenance couldn't prevent this, and that Mazda refused to even look at it.

Second, the valve seals seem to have gone. Took it in to the dealer, paid $150 for a diagnostic where I was told they couldn't diagnose the problem since they were unable to remove one spark plug (???) and was quoted $13000 for a new engine. Nice.

Finally I have recently been informed that my shocks and struts need to be replaced. I'm all for doing regular maintenance, and I am not a harsh driver by any stretch. Seems to me this goes way beyond what one can expect to deal with in a new car with one driver/owner. I've owned American vehicles that were on the road longer with fewer problems!

I would not recommend the purchase of either a new or used Mazda to anyone under any circumstances, nor would I recommend the Mazda service departments for the work. Complete waste of money. Can't wait to go back to Toyota, or another company intent on taking care of their clientele.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 13th September, 2010

13th Sep 2010, 10:10

If your warranty has expired stay away from the dealers. Find a reasonable independent mechanic. Dealers try to scare you into buying a new car. I am generalizing here, but it is common. The rust with your car is a bummer, but an independent mechanic will be able to proper diagnose and fix your engine issues.

If your warranty is still in force you may want to take it to an other Mazda dealer.