Used 2004 Honda Element EX AWD 4dr SUV w/Side Airbags (2.4L 4cyl 4A) Consumer Reviews
I've logged less than 1,000 miles but will be driving it across the country in a few days so I should know more soon. My German Shepherd likes it a lot more than my last car a 2dr 1997 Jeep Wrangler. More comfortable and AC! The exterior has its share of scratches and dings but I live on the Navajo reservation so I can expect some exterior wear with no worries. Not a beast but it cruises at a decent speed. RPMs jump when climbing modest grades. Functional vehicle. Covered 30,000 miles in the first year. Car is pretty loud and the gas mileage not very good for a Honda (20-22mpg highway). It has been reliable. Had to change a cracked radiator but that is it besides normal service. At 168,000 miles. Put over 100,000 miles since I purchased the used Element 4 years ago. I was rear-ended. The tail gate absorbed a lot of the blow. Structural damage so the insurance company totaled it. RIP Element. You served your purpose as a good dog car. Poor gas mileage and a small gas tank was its biggest down side. Stopping every 3-3.5 hours to fill up on long road trips was a bummer.
Wrote Honda that backseats do not lock, will not take child car seats, very dangerous, was like this when we bought it but did not know as we did not use the back seats until our granddaughter was born 2rs ago when we tried to install her car seat, discovered locks do not lock, never did since purchase. Local dealer said cost would be over $700. Wrote national Honda. Got uncaring follow-up phone call, they hung up when I explained this was NOT about a part under warranty needing repair, but a life threatening problem existing since purchase. We cannot take passengers/children in backseats ever--a huge flaw. But worse was lack of concern by Honda. Probably my last Honda. Safety matters most.
Hard riding, noisy, lucky to get 19 mpg. Poor visibility, huge pillars block sight, especially pedestrians on a left turn. Owners' manual warns that vehicle is top-heavy and prone to roll over. Ability to pull seats up along sides is a nice feature except that it eliminates rear side visibility Maximum payload of 675 pounds is an absolute joke. Hard floor covering lets stuff slide all over the car; and is slippery when wet or snowy. Cargo carrying of large, light material is excellent. Poor build quality, rattle in dash, paint over dirt, vibration at freeway speeds. This is my first and (probably) last Honda.
Very reliable driving; always starts even when it's -20. Not too aerodynamic because of boxy shape, so when you're driving in high wind, hard to control & you feel it! Rough riding, only fits 4 people because of cup holders between 2 back bucket seats. Terrible MPG; we only got about 20m., hwy. Drivers side airbag deployed while it was parked; no collision or impact, apparently a common problem in Elements that Honda won't fix! Very costly! Seat also are already splitting at seams on Driver's side. On our 3rd windshield.
Hard to find 4WD with manual transmission, Fiji Blue. Shopped around but no discount. Finding the actual vehicle was tough. Highly critisized rear access door is less of a concern as long as you recognize it's not a four door vehicle (think of double cab pick up truck).