definitely annoying
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
32,000 miles

About These NHTSA Complaints:

This data is from the NHTSA — the US gov't agency tasked with vehicle safety. Complaints are spread across multiple & redundant categories, & are not organized by problem.

So how do you find out what problems are occurring? For this NHTSA complaint data, the only way is to read through the comments below. Any duplicates or errors? It's not us.

2003 Mazda Protege fuel system problems

fuel system problem

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2003 Mazda Protege Owner Comments

problem #1

Jul 212005

Protege 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 32,000 miles


I have had two occurrences of screws from the butterfly valves on the vtcs system from the intake of my 2003 Mazda Protege 5 coming loose and being sucked into the combustion chamber of the vehicle. Each instance has caused the piston to knock the screw into the spark plug, thereby causing failure of a spark plug, which causes the engine to misfire to the point where it is undrivable, thereby leaving me stranded on the side of the road. The first incident was misdiagnosed (spark plug replaced). The second was diagnosed correctly and the intake manifold assembly was replaced. This is a widespread problem with the 2.0L fs-ze Mazda engine. Many other owners have had the problem. For more information to demonstrate the prevalence of the problem, please visit www.msprotege.com and search using the keywords "vcts" and "screw". you will see many threads where people are discussing this problem.

- Clinton, MS, USA

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