I love this car, plain and simple. I
bought my 02' Protege ES because I had
to downgrade in order to save money
because of my new son. Its 2.0L motor
is peppy for a 4 banger that allows for
pretty easy passing and decent
acceleration even up steep hill grades
although another 20 horsepower would be
appreciated. The interior is very nice
and well laid out. The ES actually has
a tight and solid feel of a higher
priced car and handles great, although
the supspension is a little stiff.
Handling, exterior and interior, build
quality and general performance.
Shorter shift throw, stiffer rear sway
bar to keep rear better in line under
aggressive cornering, another 20-30
horsepower, deeper drink holders, more
powerful stock stereo with better
speakers (perhaps a subwoofer in back
to help with bass and tweeters up front
for better highs).