2003 Mazda Protege - Consumer Reviews

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Average Consumer Rating 25 Total Reviews
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Mazdas worst car.
By thejackal86 on 09/07/12 19:27 PM (PDT)

Vehicle

2003 Mazda Protege DX 4dr Sedan (2.0L 4cyl 5M)

Review

The transmission went out early on, which started a chain reaction of other problems months to follow. This car was nothing more than a money pit and certainly not one worth investing in. I've replaced just about everything in the car besides the engine, which I hear is something Mazda actually does fairly well. I ended up finally trading the car in at around 153k miles. It seems like a lot, but not considering maintenance costs. In addition to the reliability issues, the interior was cheap and started to literally fall apart. Poor mpg as well. The only positive thing I can say about the car is that it was kind of fun to drive and had nice acceleration. It felt like a go-kart.
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Best Car I have owned
By mazdafan8 on 05/26/11 18:01 PM (PDT)

Vehicle

2003 Mazda Protege DX 4dr Sedan (2.0L 4cyl 5M)

Review

I love my Mazda. I bought it used in 2004 with 25,000 miles on it. It now has 88,000 miles. I have only replaced brake pads, tires and one hose in addition to oil changes. My engine runs flawlessly. I get better than rated mileage. She handles great for a sub-compact. Has road feel instead of the numb feedback of a Toyota. The stick is smooth with shifts. Seats are comfortable. I will keep it until it dies since it has no resell value. I hope to get at least another two years.
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Sad To See Go...
By tanner on 07/27/09 16:21 PM (PDT)

Vehicle

2003 Mazda Protege DX 4dr Sedan (2.0L 4cyl 5M)

Review

i had a 03 protege dx for about 5 years...would still have it but someone rear ended me and totaled it. pro's- good gas mileage..great head on look...reliable con's- poor seal on windows lets water it...not alot to it so highway and windy driving can create some excitement...lots of whistling and humming noises come from the engine at around 60k miles.... put around 50k on this...not major repairs...replaced brake pads once...tires once...changed the oil...never stranded or failed on me...some minor issues but a solid car for the category.
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Good Car
By Kurt on 07/14/09 17:41 PM (PDT)

Vehicle

2003 Mazda Protege DX 4dr Sedan (2.0L 4cyl 5M)

Review

I have had my 5 speed for 5 years and absolutely love it. Pros: Decent gas mileage, (not as good as a Corola, but more fun to drive) Fun to drive, responsive handling, good road feel comfortable seat. Good shifter. Very reliable, (just brakes and tires are the only parts replaced. Con. Noisy to ride in.
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Reliable as the Sun
By trogglbey on 05/31/09 19:12 PM (PDT)

Vehicle

2003 Mazda Protege DX 4dr Sedan (2.0L 4cyl 5M)

Review

I have a paper route; that is 60 miles a night of continuous stop and go with a heavy load of newspapers. This car never complains. Still has excellent get up and go with almost 150000 miles of hard driving. Never been in the shop for anything aside from a belt replacement and an AC recharge. Most reliable and solid little car I've ever owned. No rattles, clunks, or squeaks to drive one crazy. I love this car.
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Will not be shopping for another Protege
By jenna on 10/12/08 06:42 AM (PDT)

Vehicle

2003 Mazda Protege DX 4dr Sedan (2.0L 4cyl 5M)

Review

A few days ago, my Protege was completely totaled by another driver in a very minor accident. So, its durability is questionable. Within the first year of owning it, I had a reoccurring problem with moisture on the inside of the car. Whenever it would rain, wells in the trunk would fill with water with no drainage route. Windshield took forever to defrost/fog. In the winter ice would form on the inside of the windshield -not a fabulous prerequisite to my morning commute. The weather stripping began to peel from the passenger door, and the door handle became loose one winter. Also, the car would rattle whenever stopped in traffic.
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Good overall car
By jpc477 on 04/06/08 22:19 PM (PDT)

Vehicle

2003 Mazda Protege DX 4dr Sedan (2.0L 4cyl 5M)

Review

My wife & I purchased this brand new off the lot in April of 2003 so we've had the car five years now. It started off as her car, and then became my car after she bought a Honda Fit in August of 2006. Overall, the car has been a good car. The handling is outstanding & very responsive. It runs smoothly, and is comfortable to drive. The only issues we had with it was the alternator going out in it. The alternator went failed right after we bought it, and again about a year ago, but it was replaced at no cost both times. Other than that, it's needed nothing other than routine maintenance.
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Happy owner
By vroom vroom vroom on 02/13/06 21:37 PM (PST)

Vehicle

2003 Mazda Protege DX 4dr Sedan (2.0L 4cyl 5M)

Review

I have had my Protege for almost two years now and it was been a joy to drive to work. It handles well for an economy car and has a surprising amount of room for my wife, two kids and my black lab. The 5-speed is smooth and precise. Steering has nice feel.
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The 2003 Mazda Protege is wonderful
By Steve Ragan on 01/21/06 21:59 PM (PST)

Vehicle

2003 Mazda Protege DX 4dr Sedan (2.0L 4cyl 5M)

Review

The '03 Protege DX is beautifully designed inside and out. There is plenty of space inside for CD's and other things you need within arms reach. Both doors have ample side pockets for ice scrapers, etc. Driving it is pure joy. I have a manual, and there is plenty of get up and go on the highway as well in town. The ride is smooth and quiet. It is very spacious inside.There is plenty of trunk space. It has much more room than a Sentra and other cars that fall into this sedan category. And, it is less expensive than other sedans in this category. I have had it since new, and have not had one problem.The gas mileage is very good.
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Good Car
By grayghost on 12/04/05 12:43 PM (PST)

Vehicle

2003 Mazda Protege DX 4dr Sedan (2.0L 4cyl 5M)

Review

I bought this vehicle used (34K miles). Within one week of purchase, I made a 2000 mile trip with no problems. The only maintenance performed have been oil-filter changes and a front end alignment. The room inside the car is better than my previous vehicle, a 2000 Mercury Sable.
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