My wife hounded (no pun intended) me until we bought a new Element. I am a Honda Sales Consultant and knew the one we had in stock would be one of the last new ones we would be getting so we traded our old 4Runner in on it. The Element is a blast to drive (I also own an S2000) and is the perfect vehicle for our 2 Boxers and a Bulldog to ride in. It is also a great car to take to Lowes or Home Depot.
This is my second Element. This car does not appeal to a large base. But once you own one and enjoy the versatility and reliability you can become hooked. If you take the back seats out this baby becomes a van! I did have another car in between but knew I had to have another.
This is my second Element. I traded in my first after losing my dog. Unfortunately I equated the car with the dog. Later I found out I missed the Element so much I had to have another. Traded in my leased MB ML350 early when I found out the Element was going to be discontinued. The versatility is unmatched. You may not think it, but this is a very comfortable car on a long trip. No back ache like I got from some of my other vehicles. On first two fill-ups got 25 MPG. Take the back seat out and you've got quite a hauler. I also like the fact that you can flip up the back seats to the side if you have to and haul a large payload in an emergency.
Bought a used 2011 last yr and had it for a few months. Pros: Easy to clean, esp vinyl flooring, which is a must w/dogs. Able to remove back seats for more room. Consistent 25 mpg. Cons: No telescopic steering wheel, hard, uncomfortable seats, other than power windows/locks, there was nothing updated. Suicide doors were horrible, as were vent windows. How this vehicle was aimed for dogs is beyond me. It should have been 4 doors, all windows could fully open even the back one. Sluggish and the place to charge a phone was also at a inconvenient area.
Our Element is less than two months old. It has failed now to start twice in the morning. The first time the dealer determined that a faulty window switch was the cause. The dealer was unable to identify the cause of the most recent failure and could offer nothing more than a suggestion that we bring the car back in should the problem happen again - although they were unclear what additional steps they could take at that point. We currently regret the purchase. We had hoped to use this vehicle as our main car for out of town trips but now are not confident driving away from town should the vehicle leave us stranded. Not willing to take that chance from a safety perspective.