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Love my p5 but she’s got issues

Bought my p5 4 years ago and I love it!! People tell me to get rid if it but I just can’t. already had to replace the motor from the previous owners neglect but finally at a point where I can start building her up! Please if anyone has recommendations on what to start first I’m all ears!!
 

BenjiHoggi

OEM+
:
Oregon, USA
:
22v Protege5
Bought my p5 4 years ago and I love it!! People tell me to get rid if it but I just can’t. already had to replace the motor from the previous owners neglect but finally at a point where I can start building her up! Please if anyone has recommendations on what to start first I’m all ears!!
Hey Protege5cam! Welcome to the forum! You are certainly not alone in your love of the P5. Every time I drive mine, I am reminded of all the things that caused me to specifically buy a P5, and pleasing other people was not one of them. Don't bother with what people say, all of us on here know why we love our cars.

What kind of "build" are you going for here? What's the budget? What's your level of experience? Are you just looking to scratch that modding itch, or are you trying to meet a goal for performance/driving experience/condition/aesthetics/etc.?

There are loads of great resources on this forum for you to browse for inspiration. I always enjoy reading through the old build threads. I would encourage you to take a look around and ask more questions when you find something that interests you. I used to spend a ton of time searching and browsing on here, and I made a huge bookmarks folder with everything I thought was useful. I've thrown a spattering of those resources below for you to browse:

Mods:
https://mazdas247.com/forum/t/beginners-guide-to-modifying-a-protege5.123827516/
https://mazdas247.com/forum/t/protege5-mods-on-a-budget.123821547/
https://mazdas247.com/forum/t/mods-on-the-cheap.123696530/
https://mazdas247.com/forum/t/what-...he-community-for-building-your-car.123869679/
https://mazdas247.com/forum/t/you-know-what-needs-to-be-a-sticky.123855397/
https://mazdas247.com/forum/t/official-p5-wheel-thread.79658/
https://mazdas247.com/forum/t/mp3-ecu-swap-questions.123824821/page-3

Resources:
https://mazdas247.com/forum/t/mazda-how-to-quick-links.123715657/
http://www.themazdaforum.com/showthread.php/31-ABC-s-of-3rd-Gen-(-99-03)-Protege-Street-Suspension
http://www.floptical.net/mazda/service_web/
http://www.floptical.net/mazda/
http://www.protegefaq.net/

Build threads (of course also check out some of the more recent ones too!)
https://mazdas247.com/forum/t/defunct-the-college-budget-p5.123863154/
https://mazdas247.com/forum/t/college-student-first-car-build.123864363/

Two more things if you care to hear my opinion (I certainly don't blame you if not 😁):

Unless this is your track toy/weekend car, I think it's always important to deal with maintenance and repairs before mods, so that you are starting with a clean slate. This isn't always feasible in the real world, but it's a good goal to reach for (in my opinion).

It is my personal opinion that with big budget mods, the most financially responsible thing to do is to find a better platform to start with. As an example, from a strictly logical point of view, a $3k P5 with $7k in mods does not necessarily equate to the experience you could get with a $10k sports car. With that said, modifying cars is often an emotional experience, and the P5 is a fantastic car when it comes to raw feel and emotion in the driving experience. I do not fault you in any way for wanting to modify it. My primary advice here would be to keep your eyes open and don't turn down the opportunity to experience other brands/models/platforms if you are given the chance.

Best of luck!
 
Hey Protege5cam! Welcome to the forum! You are certainly not alone in your love of the P5. Every time I drive mine, I am reminded of all the things that caused me to specifically buy a P5, and pleasing other people was not one of them. Don't bother with what people say, all of us on here know why we love our cars.

What kind of "build" are you going for here? What's the budget? What's your level of experience? Are you just looking to scratch that modding itch, or are you trying to meet a goal for performance/driving experience/condition/aesthetics/etc.?

There are loads of great resources on this forum for you to browse for inspiration. I always enjoy reading through the old build threads. I would encourage you to take a look around and ask more questions when you find something that interests you. I used to spend a ton of time searching and browsing on here, and I made a huge bookmarks folder with everything I thought was useful. I've thrown a spattering of those resources below for you to browse:

Mods:
https://mazdas247.com/forum/t/beginners-guide-to-modifying-a-protege5.123827516/
https://mazdas247.com/forum/t/protege5-mods-on-a-budget.123821547/
https://mazdas247.com/forum/t/mods-on-the-cheap.123696530/
https://mazdas247.com/forum/t/what-...he-community-for-building-your-car.123869679/
https://mazdas247.com/forum/t/you-know-what-needs-to-be-a-sticky.123855397/
https://mazdas247.com/forum/t/official-p5-wheel-thread.79658/
https://mazdas247.com/forum/t/mp3-ecu-swap-questions.123824821/page-3

Resources:
https://mazdas247.com/forum/t/mazda-how-to-quick-links.123715657/
http://www.themazdaforum.com/showthread.php/31-ABC-s-of-3rd-Gen-(-99-03)-Protege-Street-Suspension
http://www.floptical.net/mazda/service_web/
http://www.floptical.net/mazda/
http://www.protegefaq.net/

Build threads (of course also check out some of the more recent ones too!)
https://mazdas247.com/forum/t/defunct-the-college-budget-p5.123863154/
https://mazdas247.com/forum/t/college-student-first-car-build.123864363/

Two more things if you care to hear my opinion (I certainly don't blame you if not 😁):

Unless this is your track toy/weekend car, I think it's always important to deal with maintenance and repairs before mods, so that you are starting with a clean slate. This isn't always feasible in the real world, but it's a good goal to reach for (in my opinion).

It is my personal opinion that with big budget mods, the most financially responsible thing to do is to find a better platform to start with. As an example, from a strictly logical point of view, a $3k P5 with $7k in mods does not necessarily equate to the experience you could get with a $10k sports car. With that said, modifying cars is often an emotional experience, and the P5 is a fantastic car when it comes to raw feel and emotion in the driving experience. I do not fault you in any way for wanting to modify it. My primary advice here would be to keep your eyes open and don't turn down the opportunity to experience other brands/models/platforms if you are given the chance.

Best of luck!
Thanks for that man! I am not exactly wanting to be that guy who buys all the eBay bolt ons or completely rice this p5 out. I have read a lot and have seen that the original engine that comes in the p5 has a oil consumption problem with faulty o rings and etc and when I got it that’s exactly what was going on at first so I was ima just run it till it blows and we’ll it did. So got a new engine for it and had a “certified” mechanic put it in and I watched over most of the way through and as I thought I was learning in the beginning was actually not good I got busy so I just let him do his thing. I got it back and was excited. It drove amazing for about 30 miles. Till I found out they didn’t replace the motor mounts that were all shot. It snapped my catalytic converters from jumping around and it sounded like a poorly piped subie and it was gross. I replaced all the motor mounts then realized they used all the old parts from my old engine and well ended up just replacing the exhaust headers injectors spark plugs ignition coils and spark plug wires and it drives great now but I have driven with the new engine for about 35 thousand miles and now I smell burning oil and I am back at like well new engine soon it looks like. Getting it compression tested next week. Hope it’s a easy fix but with my luck…. Yeah, anyways. I don’t know it all but I wanna learn and I’m looking to make it reliable and boost it a little. I have other cars I drive but I just don’t get the satisfaction out of them that I do with the p5 so maybe a track car later down the road but for now just wanna make it a little more fun. Thank you for the links I can’t wait to go through them and get better ideas!!
 
:
2x 2001 SP20 323's
Gidday! welcome along!

Sounds like you've tackled some of the main trouble areas on these cars :D oil consumption and motor mounts are a right pain to get right

I'd recommend starting a build log, even if you're not 'building' the car they're great for recording maintenance and repairs. Plus it's fun to see how far a car can progress over time!

These aren't fast cars, and it's hard to make them fast. But! they go around corners like they're on rails and can surprise much more exotic and expensive cars on twisty back roads. A suspension refresh and a set of tires is a good start to mods.

And of course, this forum is awesome for those tricky questions :)
 
Gidday! welcome along!

Sounds like you've tackled some of the main trouble areas on these cars :D oil consumption and motor mounts are a right pain to get right

I'd recommend starting a build log, even if you're not 'building' the car they're great for recording maintenance and repairs. Plus it's fun to see how far a car can progress over time!

These aren't fast cars, and it's hard to make them fast. But! they go around corners like they're on rails and can surprise much more exotic and expensive cars on twisty back roads. A suspension refresh and a set of tires is a good start to mods.

And of course, this forum is awesome for those tricky questions :)
I actually am getting new tires and have been looking at coil overs for it! And yes omg I move through hills like crazy and have actually had people pull up on me and ask what kind of suspension I have and when I say stock they trip out!! I will start a build log that’s for sure I can’t wait to see what I can do with the p5!
 

BenjiHoggi

OEM+
:
Oregon, USA
:
22v Protege5
Sounds like you've tackled some of the main trouble areas on these cars :D oil consumption and motor mounts are a right pain to get right

These aren't fast cars, and it's hard to make them fast. But! they go around corners like they're on rails and can surprise much more exotic and expensive cars on twisty back roads. A suspension refresh and a set of tires is a good start to mods.

I agree. Tires especially are probably the best place to start. I run A/S g-Force Comp 2s and they have served me well, but there are plenty of other great options. I have also heard that switching to a larger diameter wheel (17") and reducing wheel weight are good ways to improve agility, though often at the loss of wheel durability and ride quality (this is only what I've heard though, haven't done these mods myself).

I actually am getting new tires and have been looking at coil overs for it! And yes omg I move through hills like crazy and have actually had people pull up on me and ask what kind of suspension I have and when I say stock they trip out!! I will start a build log that’s for sure I can’t wait to see what I can do with the p5!

Start a build log! We'd love to see it.

A small word of caution on coilovers.
It seems like the Honda scene is full of cheap coilovers that offer at least a somewhat decent experience. Unfortunately, I don't know that the P5 as a platform has the same kind of support on the cheaper end. In my limited time reading about coilovers, It seems like most of the cheap options are not great, while the actually good ones are very expensive in relation to what the car is realistically worth.

I think its still a good idea to investigate coilover options, but I also believe your money might go further if you spread it out a bit more. A good place to start could be swaybars and springs, and of course all of your standard bushings and ball-joints if they are worn out.
 
I agree. Tires especially are probably the best place to start. I run A/S g-Force Comp 2s and they have served me well, but there are plenty of other great options. I have also heard that switching to a larger diameter wheel (17") and reducing wheel weight are good ways to improve agility, though often at the loss of wheel durability and ride quality (this is only what I've heard though, haven't done these mods myself).



Start a build log! We'd love to see it.

A small word of caution on coilovers.
It seems like the Honda scene is full of cheap coilovers that offer at least a somewhat decent experience. Unfortunately, I don't know that the P5 as a platform has the same kind of support on the cheaper end. In my limited time reading about coilovers, It seems like most of the cheap options are not great, while the actually good ones are very expensive in relation to what the car is realistically worth.

I think its still a good idea to investigate coilover options, but I also believe your money might go further if you spread it out a bit more. A good place to start could be swaybars and springs, and of course all of your standard bushings and ball-joints if they are worn out.
Thank you for that! I got access to a lift this weekend so I’ll write that down on things to check! And my friend gifted me some road huggers and another set he had extra at his shop. I am bummed out that they aren’t the same tire but they were free 😂. And yeah your right about the coilevers I haven’t really been able to find a happy medium between the cheap ones and more expensive so I’ll put that idea aside for now and see what’s up with springs and stabilize bars. I looked some up and that looked like a more reasonable start for me!! Thanks for the input!
 
:
2003 protege 5
You say you smell oil burning, but is it consuming oil? Check the dip stick. Could be as simple as the valve cover gasket starting to seep. Replacing that is easy and good time to do plugs, coils and wires also. Mounts are a toss up. Comfort is stock. The harder urethane you choose for mounts/inserts means less comfort but more durability also. The rear one is the most difficult to work on so just be prepared for that. These are pretty durable and reliable cars and engines for the most part. Hopefully you just need to do some maintenance and it will be around for many years to come.
 
You say you smell oil burning, but is it consuming oil? Check the dip stick. Could be as simple as the valve cover gasket starting to seep. Replacing that is easy and good time to do plugs, coils and wires also. Mounts are a toss up. Comfort is stock. The harder urethane you choose for mounts/inserts means less comfort but more durability also. The rear one is the most difficult to work on so just be prepared for that. These are pretty durable and reliable cars and engines for the most part. Hopefully you just need to do some maintenance and it will be around for many years to come.
It is consuming oil sadly I check the dipstick every week and have to add oil and it’s getting compression tested today so maybe I can see if maybe it’s o rings or maybe just valve seals. Hopefully it’s not o rings but if so guess I’ll just have to learn how to rebuild a motor or look for my third engine 😂 and I did replace the motor mounts and yeah that rear one was the biggest pain!
 
:
2003 protege 5
I daily mine so I chose inserts in the front and sides. For the rear i filled it with 60a liquid urethane. Its fine for me for a daily driver auto. Some guys like solid mounts- and while i agree they last a long time - its not my choice for a daily. Comfort vs durability will be your choice.
Another thing you can try is seafoam in the oil and do several oil changes like every 500 or 1000 miles and see if it slows the consumption any. Keeping your engine going while you build one and perhaps turbo that one makes it easier in the long run. Slapping go fast parts on an old tired motor is asking for problems
 
I daily mine so I chose inserts in the front and sides. For the rear i filled it with 60a liquid urethane. Its fine for me for a daily driver auto. Some guys like solid mounts- and while i agree they last a long time - its not my choice for a daily. Comfort vs durability will be your choice.
Another thing you can try is seafoam in the oil and do several oil changes like every 500 or 1000 miles and see if it slows the consumption any. Keeping your engine going while you build one and perhaps turbo that one makes it easier in the long run. Slapping go fast parts on an old tired motor is asking for
I daily mine too. I’ll see what’s going on after the compression check and get a more extensive check list and parts to fix list and start making this thing even more fun to cruise around and try to get this engine to last for a while longer and start building a turbocharged motor for it with forged internals and all the fun stuff! I really would like to get this car to run quick but also not trying to blow it up lol