18th Jun 2008, 16:59

I have had a 2000 Protege ES for about 2 and a half years. During that time I have been really satisfied with the car. The only issue I have had was with the check engine light coming on for a supposed "Performance Solenoid stuck in off position" Anyone else had this problem?

27th Jun 2008, 15:34

I previously owned a 1991 Madza Protege LX that provided great performance and ran well with just regular maintenance. The car was then driven by my then teenage son who literally drove it to Hell & back. Even with a few fender benders, and high mileage he put on it, the engine stil seems peppy, even though it was leaking oil at 115K. The only reason we got rid of it was becuase our service repairman found suspension and control arm problems, and it wasn't worth putting the money into it. Tranmission was rebuilt at about 95K.

I bought an 2003 Protege new, and have had great service from that vehicle as well. I recommend Mazdas to anyone. They're tough little cars. Son drives a 2003 Chrysler minivan now.

23rd Jul 2008, 13:10

I have a 2003 Mazda Protege DX with a little over 60K miles. The dealer suggests replacing the timing belt, but local shops say I can wait until 80-90K or even longer. I don't drive in harsh conditions (no prolonged extreme cold, etc.). Any suggestions/advice?

25th Jul 2008, 10:34

I bought a new 2003 MP5 at the end of 2002 and still drive it now. It has around 96,000 miles on it now. For the first 4 years of its life it was in California, and for the past two in Chicago.

The recurring issues that I have had with the car are the constant replacement of the front headlights and all four tires. I have probably gone through 3 sets of front headlights. As for my tires I am on my 4th set. I agree with the other posters that it sucks the tires are so expensive.

A few weeks ago the key less locks on the driver side rear door stopped working. Every time I lock or unlock my doors all I hear is a twitching sound from the rear passenger door. I have to manually lock and unlock it. Anybody have any suggestions on that? Is it expensive to fix?

With all things said and done I absolutely love my car. Folding the seats down in the back have allowed me to move a lot of large items around. I don't get as great gas mileage as the other posters, I get around 27 city and 31 highway. I've got an automatic so the triptronic shift is very fun. I will drive my little car until it dies... after that I don't know what's next...

28th Jul 2008, 08:29

I bought my Mazda Protege 5 in October 2001 with 8 miles on it. At first I was very happy with it, but as time goes on, it has become more and more of a bad purchase in my mind. I traded in a 1994 Corolla Wagon with 120,000 miles (this is my benchmark for performance and reliability).

Within the first year of owning the car the left rear brake caliper seized and they had to replace the rotor and caliper.

Within 4 years of owning, all pads needed to be replaced along with rear rotors and rear calipers where rusted beyond saving (so needed new ones, 2nd left one). Now after 6.5 years of ownership, the rear calipers and rotors where shot again and had to be replaced. That is 3 times in 78,000 miles that the brakes have had issues. My Toyota had ZERO brake issues in 120,000 miles. Also in Fall of 2007 I had to get the front struts replaced, battery died after 2 yeas of ownership (replaced on warranty) and the tires are a strange size and expensive, plus they get maybe 25-30,000 miles before being shot (again, 60,000 plus on the Toyota).

I'd have to say that I am unhappy with my overall ownership a 2002 Mazda Protege 5. When it comes time to buy again, my first stop will be a Toyota or Honda dealership.

31st Jul 2008, 01:01

I just bought an 01 Protege, really like the car and believe it won't be expensive to maintain, but I have 2 little problems to solve if anybody out there can help me with some similar of the kind of issues please do.

1) The headlights won't turn on! Only when I turn on the highbeams only! Checked fuses and bulbs, not the issue!

2) The speedometer (km) stopped working? Anybody has the answer? Please do state your opinion if you do? Zoom zoom!

14th Aug 2008, 00:52

Hi, my Protege 5 2003 is rusting like crazy... The transmission is in bad shape too... help...

27th Aug 2008, 22:15

Is there an answer to the ABS and brake light being on? Mine has been on for about 2 weeks and want to get it fixed. If anyone can tell me I would appreciate it.

I love the car, it handles like it is on rails and has great styling. No other problems.

I have a 2002 Mazda Protege 5.

17th Sep 2008, 13:41

I bought an 2003 P5 brand new and just now traded it in for a RX-8. The little wagon was great with not one issue. Like all cars just do your maintenance and it will run great. I also autocrossed the car for 4 seasons with no issues. I do miss the storage space. Forgot I bought the RX-8 the other day and came out of home depot with some 2x4s Duh!

18th Sep 2008, 12:44

I bought 2 2003 Mazda Protege 5's for my daughter and daughter-in-law. My daughter's went to 100,000 miles trouble free except for repeated headlight failures. Then she had the shaking engine syndrome that the dealer fixed by replacing the spark-plug coils, and the EGR valve ($1,200). She also had the timing belt replaced per recommended maintenance ($600). Then the front wheel bearings needed replacement (work done at a non-dealer garage for $600. She replaced the original equipment Dunlop high-performance summer tires with Kumho all-season at about half the price of new Dunlops and now has high-winter performance (Chicago).

My daughter-in-law has only 45,000 miles and no problems other than tune-up, new brake pads, new Kumho all-season tires and several headlamp failures. Mazda finally admitted they had a problem with bulbs after first denying it. They said to get U.S. mfg. bulbs. Both cars get great gas mileage (33mpg) Both are manual trans.

19th Oct 2008, 00:30

I purchased a new 2003 Mazda Protege5, 5 years ago. I now have 75k miles on it. I would conider it an excellent car overall.

I maintain the car myself (pretty much by the book) and use synthetic oil every 6k miles. I would rank the repair record as very good.... I had to replace the drivers side power door lock motor at 45k miles, the original battery at 49k miles and did the only brake job at 61k miles.

I find it to be an excellent performing car. The steering, suspension and tire profile, give it good road feel at speed, and the tight turning circle, and narrow foot print make it nimble to drive in the city. I espically like the manual/automatic transmission, and use it all the time to match the gear to the driving conditon. Also, living in a snow area, I was impressed by its ability to handle slippery road conditions, especially with the anti-lock brakes and the above-mentioned transmission.

The single,less than positive observation, is that it just has 'adequate' power. To match the performance of the rest of the vehicle, it should have had at least 25% more horsepower.