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Old 14 Mar 2008, 11:46 am
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Default Honda Element? Opinions? Anyone own one?

Soon I am shopping for a new car. My little Pontiac Vibe just doesn't work well where I live. I need something 4wd or AWD. I have been looking and looking. I do not want something that sucks the gas down. I am a momy of one little guy with another son on the way. I need something basically kid-proof that gets good gass milage and is awd. I have been looking at the Honda Element and it looks like a nice middle ground. No room for more passengers than my family members but it seems to get good gas milage. It looks virtually kid-proof and is roomy for strollers, wagons, sand toys... All the boys stuff I haul around. What are your thoughts? Anyone know much or own one of these vehicles?Thanks ya all.Lyn
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Old 14 Mar 2008, 12:01 pm
gin gin is offline
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I just got mine in October and I LOVE IT.I've had Honda CRVs for the past 10 years, but the dog hair was killing me. These have no carpet! So easy to keep clean.I get about 23 mpg. Its not as good as the CRV, but I love this more. It handles better. Seems to go better in the snow too.The one thing I'd really check is to see how easy/hard it is to get the kids out of the car seats. Those rear seats are pretty far back and its a reach. But you can get up there with them and crouch behind the front seats of you need to.It seems a bit dorky - but you'll love it, really. After an Element - every other car seems claustrophobic. They're just so roomy and perfect!The Element is getting a major re-design this season. If you're really not sure, you may want to wait and see what the new ones look like. I think they'll be like the Dodge Nitros (no clamshell doors, just a blocky SUV).Good Luck!
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Old 14 Mar 2008, 12:16 pm
KJ KJ is offline
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Hi Lyn... =)I'm sooooo happy for you!!! =)and i still think that sis in law of yours blows. (the name stealer)i think i've mentioned before that i sell cars part time at (largest used car chain in the world...i can't name it here). I took in an element (trade in) and I sold an element(not the same one.. it was 07 Element SC) hours apart last saturday. i also worked part time for Honda, few years ago, so i think i'm qualified to answer this question. the guy above pointed out the positives, very well. those cars are very roomy. can't argue with space efficiency of a box. =)again, like the customer above, first thing i'd worry about is the rear door set up. the 'suicide' rear door does not open unless the front is open, and the seats are placed pretty far back from the point of entry. 2nd thing is, because it has no carpet, it lacks some of the sound insulation and tends to be noisy. and compared with some other SUV in its class, it's not as comfortable.. the ride is choppy, the noise, seats, etc etc. the rear seat, again, is placed higher than the fronts. and when you go for test drive, sit in the back to make sure it's okay. it tends to feel very bouncy back there. power is adequate, but gas mileage is bit on the down side. the box doesn't do well in cheating the wind. the guy who sold us his element was not at all happy with his element.. he said it was the most uncomfortable car he's ever owned.. and he traded it in for a lincoln. (talk about going from one extreme to another)i'm not sure what your price range is... but for about the same price, (in used car market, not new) i'd look at Subaru Outback, (or Legacy wagon.. same thing without the big tires.. best kept secret in the industry) Toyota Sienna AWD, (rare, but you can find one.. bit expensive and not that great in gas, but there is no substitute for a minivan) Subaru Forester, toyota Rav-4 (06 and newer ones are much bigger now).if you don't mind bit of noise and bounce, and if the doors work okay with ease of using the back seat, then the Element is a good choice.=)
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Old 14 Mar 2008, 12:31 pm
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Go to http://www.elementownersclub.com and click on the "Forum" button for more information than I could possibly give you here. This a very active and friendly site with threads on a variety of topics, including "Shopping & Test Driving. Just be sure to do a search before posting a new question. Whatever the topic, chances are it's already been discussed in depth.
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Old 14 Mar 2008, 01:01 pm
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Good:Good gas mileage for it's dimensions(we get 29mpg on the highway and average about 25mpg in the city)Very versatile interiorNo carpet to wear outSeat fabric very dense and repeals dog hair/sand/waterBad:Blind spots(convex mirrors help)Need to open front doors to open back doorsSunroof only in four-wheel drive modelOnly seats four
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