10th Sep 2004, 08:46

Well, glad to see I am not alone with that stupid check engine light.

My 99 Protege LX with the 1.8 engine has had this problem as long as we have had the car. It was in to the dealer several times under warranty with no permanant resolution. We've just ignored it for the last couple of years, but unfortunatly, Illinois has now made it mandatory that you must correct the Check engine light instead of doing the traditional pollution test. So now I must get the problem fixed.

If anyone is looking for a used car, DO NOT buy the Protege. I recently sold my 94 Nissan Altima that had 130k miles, and now I wish I had kept it.


29th Sep 2004, 21:15

To the comment above:

I feel silly in even responding to this, because it's obvious the wall would make a more receptive audience in an automotive discussion.

Of course the car slows down @ 90mph! You have a 1.6 litre 4 cylinder automatic! It's a wonder you can even reach 90mph. Most cars speedometers go higher than the cars actual capabilities, and, more importantly, the protege shares its speedometer with the 1.8 for this year which with a manual tranny, can probably make a run at 120. My 1993 DX automatic would go up to 118mph on a good day (stronger engine), so I have no doubt that a first generation LX manual would surpass that and more, onto 120-130 or so.

To your first comment: the engine gets louder when you floor it because the transmission is downshifting into a lower gear, thus raising the engine rpm's. Floor it at 45 mph, and you'll drop to second gear. Floor it at 80mph, and you'll downshift into 3rd.

To your second comment: 3500rpm @ 65 mph isn't right for a four speed automatic. That would indicate your car is in third gear, not fourth/overdrive. Either you have overdrive manually disabled, or your transmission isn't shifting into fourth.

To your third comment: if you can't tell the difference between tire spin and a slipping transmission, then sell your car immediately and start taking the bus. Note, a 1999 DX AT will not spin the tires anyway, unless on a wet or salted road. You'll be lucky to get a chirp.

To your final comment: are you referring to the short roll you get after releasing the brake while in park? all cars lean a little bit either forward or back, depending on the angle of the street, if the parking brake isn't applied. this is normal, but if you do park on angles, apply the parking brake before taking your foot off of the brake.

30th Oct 2004, 21:37

I've got the check engine light problem as well. I have the 1999 Protege LX. Reading these comments I've decided to just let the engine light RIDE (at least until its time to get my smog check/renew CA tags). Pep Boys took about 5 hours to come up with the problem. The P0171 code. I paid $169 to find out its the EGR Valve. Now they say the parts can only come from the dealership and the price for parts alone is $291 and some change. I've got 142K miles on it and its running fine. I assumed when I took it in this morning it would be something simple as a "fuse". Boy was I wrong! With California Emission laws so strict I have to get this bad baby fixed before its time to renew my tags again. Any one who is able to find a definite solution to making the "Check Engine Light" go away would definitely be a GOD! I'll mark this website as one of my "Favorites" and keep checking for that miracle fix. Wish me luck otherwise cause I'll prob. end up taking it to the dealership.

7th Apr 2005, 16:33

I own a 99 protege se. My car has 86000km on it right now. I've had the check engine and od drive blinking for the past 2 years. I've bought it the dealers when it first started, but they didn't find any problems, so I decided to just ignore those lights. Right now the problem I am having is, the car seems to jerk from one gear to another.. like when I am driving at a normal pace, it seems it would downshift on it's own and back again. This problem occurs once in a while, kinda scary when it does happen. anyone have the same problem.

25th Sep 2005, 22:22

I purchased my 1999 Protege four years ago. So far I like the car pretty well (it beats the clunker I was driving!) It is a five-speed, standard transmission (which is just now needing service at nearly 98,000 miles.)

When my "check engine" light came on about three years ago, I figured it was "preset" by the factory as a ploy to get me to take it to the dealer for an expensive tune-up. I took it to the dealer who charged me $70 to hook it up to the "computer" for a check - nothing was wrong except the gas cap was not tight enough; at least that was the diagnosis.

This happened again several months later with the same result. The third time it happened, I just made sure my gas tank had plenty of gas and the cap was tight. Eventually the light has gone off (and I hope this doesn't jinx it to come back on!)

This week my car has started to "lunge," especially when in 1st and 2nd gears. Took it in and looks like clutch and flywheel work is needed - to the tune of just over $600. Does that seem like the normal cost for this type of work?

Also, has anyone had success in getting a replacement/batter for the key remote? The dealer gave me a quote of almost $100 to replace it. It seems sealed and battery replacement cannot be done easily by the consumer.


18th Oct 2005, 08:56

I own a Protege 1998, and I am experiencing problems with the OD light and deceleration also. The car was taken to the repair shop many times, but the problem has never been fixed. The check engine light is also another recurrent problem, perhaps even more common than the OD light, but certainly much less scary than the deceleration that accompanies the OD light blinking. I don't know, but I sense that this is a very serious problem - one that has the potential of causing very bad car accidents. What can we do about it? Does anyone else experiences the same problem?

25th Oct 2005, 08:53

I have been driving my protege 99 DX since Feb 99 and have 110000 Miles on it.. No problems at all until recently when I got my transmission flushed.. Since than the check engine light comes on almost on monthly basis. I had it in the garage for that and was told to replace the Throttle Position sensor. It would cost me almost $500. Anyone here have done this before? I might want to do it myself. If I remember correctly the TPS is located in a easy to get place and can be replaced without much trouble..

The symptoms of the TPS going bad are the once described above, such as unwanted acceleration and RMP jumping all over the place.. The other thing I have noted is the car does not maintain proper speed when the cruise control is on. I suspect it is related to the bad TPS..

I would appreciate if someone can provide feedback on the TPS issue..