2003 Mazda Protege Reviews - Page 2 of 17

2003 Mazda Protege Protege5 2 from North America

Model year2003
Year of manufacture2002
First year of ownership2003
Most recent year of ownership2010
Engine and transmission 2 Manual
Performance marks 10 / 10
Reliability marks 10 / 10
Comfort marks 10 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 10 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
10.0 / 10
Distance when acquired15 miles
Most recent distance173152 miles

Summary:

This car is worth my money

Faults:

Nothing; the car always ran super fine, even though I drove it more than a U-haul.

General Comments:

This car has an excellent pick up, and handles turns like nothing at even high rated speeds.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 6th March, 2010

2003 Mazda Protege Protege5 2.0 from North America

Model year2003
Year of manufacture2002
First year of ownership2006
Most recent year of ownership2010
Engine and transmission 2.0 Automatic
Performance marks 7 / 10
Reliability marks 9 / 10
Comfort marks 7 / 10
Dealer Service marks 9 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 10 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
8.4 / 10
Distance when acquired55000 miles
Most recent distance96200 miles

Summary:

Great blend of reliability, looks, and performance!

General Comments:

I was fortunate enough to stumble across a laser blue, dark tinted window Protege 5 at the dealership after it was just traded in, and not even listed for sale yet. GREAT buy! Perfect condition, and well maintained by the previous owner.

55k when I got it in 2006. Now I have 96K, and have only had to do regular maintenance on it: oil changes every 3-5K, headlights, fluids, tires etc. I've replaced all 4 tires by now (2 of which were a result of punctures).

I am now replacing the drive belts (pretty badly cracked), timing belt, and water pump (as a precaution).

Overall I have to say that I love this car. It's sporty-looking, is fun to drive (handles great), and is very reliable thus far.

My only gripe is the usual one: it needs more power to complete the sporty look and handling.

Headlights tend to go out more often, but it's probably pretty close to your average car as far as that goes.

Also, stiff suspension = great handling at the expense of a comfortable ride. I personally like it, but some people may not. Also, there's a lot of road/wind noise when driving at high speeds. Great mileage though.

I would highly recommend this model to anyone who's looking for a reliable, practical and sporty car that won't break the bank.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 19th February, 2010

2003 Mazda Protege 5 2.0 from North America

Model year2003
Year of manufacture2003
First year of ownership2008
Most recent year of ownership2010
Engine and transmission 2.0 Automatic
Performance marks 9 / 10
Reliability marks 7 / 10
Comfort marks 8 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 7 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
7.8 / 10
Distance when acquired74000 miles
Most recent distance94000 miles
Previous carFord Taurus

Summary:

Fun car, but not as reliable as some would say

Faults:

The biggest problem I've had with the car has been exhaust, after 2 years and 20,000 miles I had the dreaded engine misfire, which led to a new EGR valve and hose cleaning ($400), spark plugs (NGK, had Bosch and they lasted less than a year), and ignition coils ($25 each at AutoZone). The car ran great after that, but all the gunk that was kicked loose royally screwed the cat. converter, or BOTH of them. Who's ever heard of 2 cats in one car??? It doesn't make sense, and I'm sure it's going to cost me a fortune.

Other than that, the car has been fairly reliable with only a transmission switch ($200) and a serpentine belt ($100) replacement.

General Comments:

This car is a ton of fun, but is not without its issues, despite whatever anyone might tell you. It handles great, gets OK gas mileage (I would expect better from a 4 banger, but then again Zoom Zoom), and is versatile with the hatchback configuration. It's a lot of fun to drive, and in my opinion looks great.

My only complaints are the constant change of headlights (at least 3 a year) and the crappy exhaust system (EGR-catalytic converter combo). If you are nimble you can clean your EGR yourself, if you're a klutz like me, expect to shell out some money every few years. I wouldn't complain too much, but one of the reasons I bought this car was the high reliability marks. No offense, but my old cheesy Ford Taurus had less problems and it definitely wasn't known for it's reliability (Found On the Road Dead strike any bells?)

Like I said: Mazda made a fun practical car, but in the end it's still an economy car, with all of the flaws of a cheap car.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 1st February, 2010

2003 Mazda Protege 5 2.0 from North America

Model year2003
Year of manufacture2002
First year of ownership2005
Most recent year of ownership2009
Engine and transmission 2.0 Automatic
Performance marks 9 / 10
Reliability marks 10 / 10
Comfort marks 7 / 10
Dealer Service marks 7 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 4 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
7.4 / 10
Distance when acquired33000 miles
Most recent distance100000 miles
Previous carFord Escort

Summary:

Reliable

Faults:

Just replaced belts and valve cover gasket at 100,000 miles. Other than regular maintenance nothing has gone wrong.

General Comments:

In our experience this car has been practically bulletproof.

It has been in two major wrecks with one completely rebuilt front end. Has gone 5-10k miles between oil changes. It is very easy to work on. I cannot buy my wife a new car if I tried. This car should at least go another 100k.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 16th January, 2009

Average review marks: 7.7 / 10, based on 54 reviews