2002 Mazda Protege5

Change Vehicle

2002 Mazda Protege5

Search Inventory Near You


Available in 1 styles:  2002 Mazda Protege5 4dr Hatchback shown
Print


Asking Price Range
$1,737–$8,857

Estimated MPG

25 city / 31 hwy


See Photos & Videos


Expert Reviews

    Expert Reviews 2 of 8

By 

Hold on to your wood paneling, your car seat and your kids eating ice cream in the back seat, with special thanks to our friends at Mazda, "wagonizing" has become a sport. Zoom, zoom ... huh? The last time we saw something called a "sport" wagon, Clark Griswold was trucking his way to Wally World in the family truckster, Carol Brady was speeding through syndication and, in the real world, wagons weren't all that cool. Wagons are cool again. At least Mazda hopes so. The automaker, which spent most of 2001 telling the world you could "zoom" your way to a better time, has created the better wagon. At least Mazda says so. Is it so? We will say it's a lot closer than the wagons we remember. No funny jokes. No pointing and staring. No need to be embarrassed when you pull up to a light next to a Ferrari. What's more, it's the first in a long line of what's to come: Mom-mobiles gone groovy that are meant to appeal to young drivers who want to haul things. As hard as it may be, Mazda has jumped in where few car companies have dared to go. And the company did it with a simple formula: Take a sedan that already works (the Protege), throw a "backpack" on the back end (rear hatch), and name it something familiar, with a numeric twist (the Protege5). That's Protege5, as in five doors. That's Protege5, as in the sporty little two-box version of the popular Protege sedan with more room yet still some zoom. Uh, check that: Not enough vroom. Where the 2002 Protege5 is a great idea on paper, the wagon on the street is a great deal less powerful than we would have liked. It can still haul more stuff (the real point) than the sedan. All revved up, it still sounds like a real winner, a whiner more than a mover. It just doesn't deliver all the gusto we'd like. Zoom, zoom, cough. All new for 2002, the Protege5 is a five-door ride that Mazda hopes represents the next step as a sporty lifestyle hauler. With an extended roofline and increased cargo space, it is not the lowly wagon you used to make fun of. It is a mix of the Protege's sharp lines, terrific steering and sharp handling - all things we loved about the Protege. All great. And wagonizing the Protege did nothing to blunt a rigid chassis and well-mannered grip. The driver is in command of the road, from start to stop, keeping things nicely centered just the same way the Protege impressed us six months ago when we drove the MP3 sedan. The problem rests in what didn't change. The Protege5 is a heavier ride than the sedan - about 80 pounds in wagon bodywork and a little more in structural changes - and that's a problem when it comes to pull. Under the hood, there's a new ULEV 2.0-liter engine, a stroked version of the previous 1.8-liter that adds eight horsepower from previous models. The problem is the extra paunch. With the added weight, the Protege5 comes with all the revs, but does not come with the results. It's still a fun car to zip around in - precise shifting, high redlines - but it suffer s in all-out zip. At nearly 10 seconds in the 0-to-60-mph range, the Protege feels like it needs more than the 130 horses to get it going. It's adequate, just not exceptional. What's easy to like is the interior and exterior details, a mix of supportive front and rear seats inside, a thick three-spoke steering wheel, dimpled vinyl on the dash and instruments that are tastefully lettered. Outside, the Protege sits on 16-inch alloy wheels, large foglamps and an oversized air dam to put it low to the ground. There also are the sleek, long lines and jewel-like headlight reflectors that spice up the overall look. The tastiest part? The price. At less than $17,000, the Protege rolls in at one of the lower segments in the car universe. Loaded up, you're still less than 19k - a decent ride for all those price-concerned consumers in search of a good bargain. Standard options are also plentiful, something that's not a guarantee in this segment. Standard transmission is a five-speed manual, with the automatic a $800 option. Mileage is downright enjoyable - about 25 mpg in the city, more than 30 on the highway with a manual transmission. Rear seating is also plentiful - two adults fit well - and good head room won't cramp tall passengers. But, first and foremost, this is a cargo hauler - a wagonizer. Along with plenty of storage hooks and a large rear seat, there is a cargo area that nearly triples the sedan's 12.9 cubic-foot trunk when the rear seats are folded down flat. That makes the Protege5 really sing. Cargo? A Protege? Mrs. Brady would have been proud. Now, if only she could get a turbo version. 2002 MAZDA PROTEGE5 -- SPECS Rating: 2.5 High Gear: Mazda takes a direct hit to the masses with a Protege that comes willing to carry the family. With a tight suspension, powerful brakes, superb steering feel and attractive exterior styling, there's plenty to like. Low Gear: The Protege's cargo area is too small to be considered for real station wagon duty, and 130 horses seems to be more whine than zoom, zoom, zoom. Vehicle type: Front-wheel drive, front-engine, five-door, five-passenger compact wagon. Standard equipment: Bucket front seats; height-adjustable driver seat; split-bench rear seat; rear heating ducts; five-speed manual transmission; remote power door locks; power windows; power mirrors; cruise control; speed-proportional power steering; tilt steering; all-season tires; front 12-volt power outlet; air conditioning; roof rack; front disc, solid rear disc brakes; AM/FM CD stereo w/six speakers; front fog lights. Competition: Ford Focus, Honda Civic, Volkswagen Jetta Engine: 130 horsepower, 2.0-liter DOHC four-cylinder Torque: 135 foot-lbs. @ 4,000 rpm Wheelbase: 102.8 inches Length: 170.5 inches MPG rating: 25 mpg city/31 mpg highway Manufactured: Japan Warranty: Basic warranty is three years/50,000 miles; powertrain warranty is three years/50,000 miles; rust perforation warranty is five years/unlimited miles; roadside assistance is three years/50,000 miles. Base price: $16,335 Price as tested (includes options, destination and delivery charges): $18,815


    Expert Reviews 2 of 8

Featured Services for this Mazda Protege5

  • Sell your current car quickly and easily on Cars.com.
  • Not sure what auto repair should cost you? Use our price estimator.
  • Get help with car repair now on Cars.com. Visit Repair & Care

Search Inventory Near You

Calculate Monthly Payment

What will my monthly cost be?

Check Payment

Calculate Affordable Price

What is the most I can afford?

Check Price

More Calculators

Compare finance offers to decide what's right for you.

Certain specifications, prices and equipment data have been provided under license from Chrome Data Solutions ("Chrome Data"). ©2013 Chrome Data Solutions, LP. All Rights Reserved. This information is supplied for personal use only and may not be used for any commercial purpose whatsoever without the express written consent of Chrome Data. Chrome Data makes no guarantee or warranty, either expressed or implied, including without limitation any warranty of merchantability or fitness for particular purpose, with respect to the data presented here. All specifications, prices and equipment are subject to change without notice.