2003 Mazda Protege 5 2.0L from North America


Great car to drive... when it wants to!!


A lot of things have gone wrong with this lemon:

Automatic transmission changed at 17000 km (no more 4th gear)

Kept stalling at red lights once every 2 or 3 months. No check engine light. Supposed fixes include twice the EGR valve and the alternator. Hasn't occurred in last 6 months.

Suspension front driver side. Multiple fixes.

Rapid burning head lights (bulb)

Radio CD (even the smallest bump on the road caused it to skip)

IAC valve.

Coil Packs.

Battery only keeps low charge (haven't changed it because only not started once last winter, so far so good this year)

Rear passenger ABS Sensor.

Fast break wear.

General Comments:

This car is fun to drive, but the fact that I got a lemon basically prevents me from fully enjoying it.

I am now selling it as I'm very disappointed with the long term cost to keep it.

Mazda Canada has done nothing to try and help. No more warranty... no help. My dealer was better when they gave me the replacement alternator.

I think Mazda has a nice car design, but it stopped there. Some of the problems occuring should be firing up a check engine light, but don't so end up breaking more pieces and having to bring your car to the dealer twice or more to get it fixed.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 19th February, 2007

22nd Feb 2007, 12:36

Update, a couple of days later, the cat converter just went. Fortunately, this was covered under the engine warranty.

Just one more headache.

23rd Dec 2007, 12:45

If you have bought the car new, it does sound like lemon, every make and model is bound to have one. If you bought it used, I suspect it was in an accident. As to the battery, I replaced mine last year as it wasn't giving out enough juice to crank the engine during cold days in winter. Went to walmart got a new battery, changed it, took the core back. Took 30 min max. Battery is one of the consumable part in cars, so you should really get it tested and replaced. It doesn't cost that much. My mechanic told me that if I do get battery from Walmart (and probably any store brand) stay away from the cheapest, lowest product line (Read: Junk). I got the best I could get, the Maxx line (yellow in color) and it has been good.

2003 Mazda Protege 5 from North America


There seems to be a factory default or problem with the headlights. I have had to replace the lamp bulbs now three times in less than one year. This has been a problem only in the last year or so. I have had the headlight assembly checked for moisture and I was told the assembly appears OK. The after market auto repair shop I take my car too suggested it may be a problem with the wiring harness sending too many volts and blowing the bulb.

I have contacted Mazda Canada and they claim there is no problems with the headlights. They have asked me to take the car into a Mazda dealer to have the problem evaluated. However, they didn't offer to pay for this evaluation. The customer relations person I spoke to would not transfer me to a manager which I think is extremely poor customer service.

General Comments:

The car has been OK now up to 117,000 km, however this summer I pressure washed the car and the paint started to just peel off. I believe there is also problems with the rear brakes which I am looking into further. The Zoom Zoom looks good on all the marketing ads, but I haven't found much Zoom when I drive mine.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 24th October, 2006

19th Jan 2007, 12:27

I have the very same problem. Nine headlamps in three years. What gives?

8th Mar 2007, 17:38

Try using quality parts. if you grab the cheapest bulb, what do you expect? ALSO blue coloured bulbs have significantly shorter lifespans.

1st Apr 2007, 00:27

Hey, do not use a pressure washer on "any" cars paint! Seriously do your research, never pressure wash, "google" it, it's a proven fact. Hand wash or at least drive it through an auto wash, but no no on the pressure wash.