2001/02 Mazda Protege or Honda Civic?

05-11-2009, 11:28 AM
I am interested in buying a car from a Japanese make.
My budget is no more than US $5,000 .

I know that ideally, Honda Civic 2001 would be a very good option - it is constantly one of the best affordable compacts on the market. Still, after doing some checking, I found that for my price range, I could only go with a base DX model and even more, the mileage would be close to 175,000 km (100,000-110,000 miles) on most cars I've seen advertised. It is not a lot for a Japanese car but still looks like a lot, even if it is normal mileage for 8 yr old car I presume.

On the other hand, there is the Mazda Protege. For the same money, I would be able to afford a 2002 model and quite likely the mid range LX model with all the extras. The mileage is generally better, which is around 140,000 km
(80,000-90,000 miles). The Protege looks nice as well, even though not as nice as the Civic. From general reviews I found on the net it looks like a good car.

Is the Civic a much better car? If I can't afford the 2001 LX model with a good mileage , should I instead opt for the 99-2000 LX model which could be found with good mileage but for same price. How come the price difference between the Civic and the Protege for the same year and similar mileage can be as much as US $1,000?
Is the Protege 2002 much worse than the Civic 99/2001?

Recommendations would be welcomed..

05-11-2009, 12:54 PM
01-03 Civics with automatics have had some tranny issues reported. Please be aware.

05-12-2009, 08:38 AM
When buying used, previous maintenance makes all the difference. New, the civic is better, but a used protege with regular maintenance is a better choice over a civic with unknown history.

05-12-2009, 10:57 AM
01-03 Civics with automatics have had some tranny issues reported. Please be aware.

Weird, I have not heard anything about that but googled it and found that there are apparently complains about the automatic transmission. I wonder if the problem is with all Civics of that year? Need to take this into account if I decide to get a Civic because I'm pretty sure I will get an automatic transmission.

good advice. It just seems that the Civics are overpriced and the fact that they have good resale value does not mean they are always better than other cars. This is why I'm skeptical when I find cheap Civics, while there might be a reason that they are so cheap. Guess it goes for all used cars.
That's why I feel I will eventually buy a car from an owner and not a dealer. But even thats not a 100% assurance.

05-12-2009, 03:42 PM
It seems to be mostly the early models of this generation 01-02 or 01-03. Not all are affected though.

These trannies allso will only work well with OEM Honda ATF-Z1 fluid.

As with any car purchase buyer beware.

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