95-98 Protege Seats in a ZX2...

Hey, I just tried this out this weekend with a set of 6 way adjustable front driver seat, passenger seat, and rear seat from a 1998 Protege LX…

So far I’ve trial fitted the seats in a j/y zx2 and other than replacing the inboard rear seat bracket mount (bolted on under the carpet) the seats just bolt right in.

I hope to have them installed with pics in a week, once I put them into their new final resting place…

This brings the list of available cars with bolt-in seats to:

1991-2002 Escort Sedan/Hatch/Wagon (seat backs do not latch from wagon or hatch)
1990-1994 Mazda Protege (the LX model has a cool rear seat armrest)
1991-1994 Mazda 323 (rear seat backs have the same problem as the escort hatch…)
1992-1995 Mazda MX-3 (front seats sit lower, rear seat a solid seatback)
1995-1998 Mazda Protege LX (SE models use a seat back thats too wide for the ZX2, make sure it’s a LX)
1993-1996 Kia Sephia (the seats are crap but for full discosure I’ll list them)

Hope that helps you interior upgraders…


once i get them in and all looking pretty, i’ll post sum pics.

oh, and a correction to my first post… i wrote about the rear inner bracket needing replacement - to clarify thats the FRONT SEAT rear inboard bracket (by the console).

the rear seat brackets from the protege have to be used because they have a taller pivot point than the zx2 seats.

update - the rear seats bolt into the car but the mounting brackets are taller to the point of causing the seat latches to miss the striker loops on the body. This has me removing the fabric and foam from the protege seat backs and attaching it over the zx2 backs.

car installation starts later this afternoon…

so the protege lx with the rear seat armrest bolts right in and is fully functional?
if so I know where a few 94 lx’s are:)

But how do they squat? The seats in my 2 are abysmal for a 6’1" Texan and torture me on anything more than a half hour ride. I have owned several Fords through the years and the seating has always been a sore point for me.

^the mx3’s will probably drop you a good 2", it feels like im in a minivan when i ride in a zx2 with stock seats afterwards

QFT. You don’t realize how low they sit until you go back and forth. I feel like the MX-3’s sit at a better height than stock ZX2 seats, especially since my head doesn’t hit the roof.

I’ll have to look around and see if I can score a left seat to try out. My wife loves the OE seats . . . . but then again she is only 5’ tall . . . lol.

mx3’s are indeed way lower, if you’re 6’1", you’ll like the position. The seats themself are firmer and offer more support too.


Donor seats - 1998 Protege LX




1998 Protege upholstery and foam applied to the ZX2 seatback boards. I used #10 x 3/4" wood screws and finishing washers to secure the fabric to the plastic seatbacks. As for the seat latch release, i dismantled the protege’s plastic buttons (behind the headrest) and discarded the center button to leave a pull thru hole for the zx2’s stock fabric latch pull.

seatbacks and the stock protege seat bottom installed in the zx2…


nice clean and comfortable…

Job Finished… complete with black mx3 carpet and black leather steering wheel (done after picture was taken)







After install observations…

The front seats are very supportive and comfortable, with the six way adjustment making it possible to adjust the seat just right. Except… the seats do sit a bit taller than stock zx2 seats (1/2-1" is my guess) so if your body type is of the long torso/short legs variety, this may not be for you. I am 6’0" tall with a 34" leg inseam, and once the seat is adjusted to my liking I have about an 3 finger clearance between my head and the sunroof edge.

I do have uber legroom now, so if you are of the long legged variety you’ll have plenty of stretch out room. I am going to enjoy this car on long trips now, since it’s also quieter inside as well thanks to the thicker seat padding as well as the more ample use of insulation on the mx3 carpets I added.

And doesn’t it look great now too? It definately takes the interior style up a notch.

more pics…


Mazda MX3 Carpet - notice left foot dead pedal :slight_smile:

Protege Seat bracket installed


other photos…








Great information Rob. Thanks for figuring out more choices for the interior.