2003 Mazda Protege Reviews

2003 Mazda Protege Mazda Speed 2.0 turbo from North America

Model year2003
Year of manufacture2003
First year of ownership2014
Most recent year of ownership2014
Engine and transmission 2.0 turbo Manual
Performance marks 8 / 10
Reliability marks 8 / 10
Comfort marks 9 / 10
Dealer Service marks 8 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 8 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
8.2 / 10
Distance when acquired160000 miles
Most recent distance170000 miles
Previous carHyundai Elantra

Summary:

Reliable, cheap sports car

Faults:

- Oxygen sensor.

- Power steering pump.

- CD player.

General Comments:

Very good performance.

Good handling.

Cheap on gas (highway).

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 13th July, 2014

14th Jul 2014, 11:53

There was a time when the term "sports car" actually signified something.

15th Jul 2014, 22:44

The Protege is NOT a sports car, not even close.

2003 Mazda Protege SE 1.6 from North America

Model year2003
Year of manufacture2003
First year of ownership2011
Most recent year of ownership2011
Engine and transmission 1.6 Automatic
Performance marks 10 / 10
Reliability marks 9 / 10
Comfort marks 7 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 10 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
9.0 / 10
Distance when acquired175000 kilometres

Summary:

1.6 great car

Faults:

Just had the car for two months. I really can't say anything bad about it. My former car was a haunted Pontiac Montana.

The only bad reference I hear about the car are the link kits, but if it's only that, no problem there.

General Comments:

For now it's great. It's not hard on gas.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 12th September, 2011

21st Nov 2011, 20:44

If ever you buy a Protege, make sure to check the link kits front and rear, and also check the oil pan. They start leaking because they rust.

2003 Mazda Protege from North America

Model year2003
Year of manufacture2003
First year of ownership2004
Most recent year of ownership2011
Engine and transmission Automatic
Performance marks 10 / 10
Reliability marks 10 / 10
Comfort marks 9 / 10
Dealer Service marks 8 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 9 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
9.2 / 10
Distance when acquired7000 miles
Most recent distance255954 miles
Previous carMazda Protege

Summary:

The Mazda Protege is dependable

Faults:

My head gasket blew at 255,954 miles.

Motor for the window on the driver's side worn out.

Head light on the driver's side is out.

Door handle on driver's side broke off, door handles on passenger side and back right side are loose.

Water residue build up in the head lights.

Carpet on the driver's side is started to wear badly.

Trunk of the car will not open with key or with the trunk latch inside.

General Comments:

This car handles the road well.

This car is made for long rides.

The dash board is not very bright, makes the inside of the car dark.

The silver color of the car is very nice.

There is a blind spot on the driver's side.

The jack for the car doesn't last very long before breaking.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 12th January, 2011

2003 Mazda Protege ES 2.0 from North America

Model year2003
Year of manufacture2003
First year of ownership2003
Most recent year of ownership2010
Engine and transmission 2.0 Manual
Performance marks 7 / 10
Reliability marks 3 / 10
Comfort marks 6 / 10
Dealer Service marks 2 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 4 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
4.4 / 10
Distance when acquired30 miles
Most recent distance141000 miles
Previous carDodge Ram Pickup

Summary:

Not refined for a modern car

Faults:

Started using oil within six months of new. Dealer claimed 1 qt per 700 miles was within limits of this particular engine. As a result of the oil consumption, the spark plugs need replaced every two months, the catalytic converters have each been replaced twice, and now the secondary is gone. The 02 sensor has been replaced at five times. Each day's drive is 73.3 miles each way, and it now uses 1 to 1 1/2 quarts per day, and smokes for the first five miles.

The car has always been noisier than most cars. The engine and drive train are quiet, but the tires and suspension are noisy, and it has very little insulation or isolation.

Now it is popping out of third gear when under load.

General Comments:

This car was bought to save money on gas. It gobbles up parts and oil faster than gas mileage savings allow.

It is however a comfortable car, even for 5'11" 230 lb. man driving two hours per day.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 26th November, 2010

2003 Mazda Protege 5 2.0 from North America

Model year2003
Year of manufacture2003
First year of ownership2003
Most recent year of ownership2010
Engine and transmission 2.0 Automatic
Performance marks 9 / 10
Reliability marks 7 / 10
Comfort marks 8 / 10
Dealer Service marks 6 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 4 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
6.8 / 10
Distance when acquired0 kilometres
Most recent distance175000 kilometres
Previous carHonda Civic

Summary:

The P5 is fun and practical, but expect high cost of ownership due to average mechanicals

Faults:

In the first year, the car would stall in traffic for no reason.

The auto-transmission had to been changed at 17000 km (rare manufacturing defect).

Rust at door trim, hood, inside door.

At 145 000 km, ABS would engage on dry surface in normal braking, dealer could not diagnose the problem.

At 150 000 km, rear shock started leaking.

At 165 000 km ABS Light always on.

Front right wheel bearing had to be changed at 105 000 km, 145 000 km 175 000 km.

General Comments:

Excellent handling. Super fun to drive.

Plenty of cargo room. Very practical car.

Seat are comfortable.

Interior has a nice graphite finish, which is very nice.

This car is well built, the chassis is rigid.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 15th May, 2010

18th Oct 2011, 09:27

Hi there, I am having the same problem. Did you ever get your ABS fixed? Can you tell me what you did? Thanks, Andrew.

4th Mar 2013, 13:54

I have three Proteges - an '03 with 13k miles, an '01 with 21k, and a 2000 with 145k.

The 2000 has been run mercilessly since new, and has only needed a serpentine belt. I only get about 12k on tires because of driving style, but that's not the car. I put the belt on myself, so the car has never been back to the dealer. I warped the pressure plate or flywheel with hard starts at about 70k, so I must ride the clutch for about 15 seconds on every cold start, until they mate. I can't believe it takes it for 75k.

I bought the newer two because of the incredible reliability of the 2000.

Average review marks: 7.7 / 10, based on 55 reviews