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Discussion Starter #1
Great condition inside. Outside a couple dents can be fixed. Mileage 245k, engine seems solid.

Is it worth it for $1800?
 

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2003 Honda Element Sunset Orange Pearl 2WD Automatic 135K Miles I Love It!
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Welcome to the EOC Hansinger! :)

Well, if it starts by itself (battery OK), and will drive reasonably well down the road (transmission) and rides OK (tires & suspension) and will stop OK (brakes usable) and if the A/C works (perhaps the most expensive part to fix), yes, $1800 seems like a good price.

You didn't mention what part of the country the car is from. If it came from a road salt state, it may have some serious rust issues on the under-body. And that would be a deal breaker. Definitely check that out.

But with 245K miles and at that price, it will most likely need repairs somewhere. If you are a DIYer and could fix most of what it will need yourself, overall it could work out to be a good deal for you. But if you have to pay a shop to fix everything; well, you are probably better off paying more for a lower mileage and better condition Element.

Show us some pictures and perhaps we could then be more helpful.

I wish you well on your search! :)
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Welcome to the EOC Hansinger! :)

Well, if it starts by itself (battery OK), and will drive reasonably well down the road (transmission) and rides OK (tires & suspension) and will stop OK (brakes usable) and if the A/C works (perhaps the most expensive part to fix), yes, $1800 seems like a good price.

You didn't mention what part of the country the car is from. If it came from a road salt state, it may have some serious rust issues on the under-body. And that would be a deal breaker. Definitely check that out.

But with 245K miles and at that price, it will most likely need repairs somewhere. If you are a DIYer and could fix most of what it will need yourself, overall it could work out to be a good deal for you. But if you have to pay a shop to fix everything; well, you are probably better off paying more for a lower mileage and better condition Element.

Show us some pictures and perhaps we could then be more helpful.

I wish you well on your search! :)

Thanks for the information!! Much appreciated
 

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Discussion Starter #6
$1800 is a virtually no risk price but check that underside.
Thanks! Rust is very minimal. I think I'm going to jump on it and hopefully find an affordable body shop to take care of the two small dents without spending too much. The high miles are always a leap of faith but my other element has 278K and runs well so i'm not too worried. These engines are beasts.
 

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For the dents, and depending on what they look like, if you find a good, competent PDR (paintless dent removal) guy, they can sometimes get out more than just the usual door dings. The trunk on my kid's car got bashed in pretty good by a pickup, but they were able to get it back to 95% of how it was by PDR method. A lot cheaper than regular bodywork at a body shop.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Do you all have any strong opinions / expertise on a honda pilot vs the element? i'm thinking of it because of the extra space for carrying cargo and people. but i'm partial to the elements of course. should i steer clear of pilots? or certain years or issues to be aware of? or if given the choice should i just stick with another element??
 

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Do you all have any strong opinions / expertise on a honda pilot vs the element? i'm thinking of it because of the extra space for carrying cargo and people. but i'm partial to the elements of course. should i steer clear of pilots? or certain years or issues to be aware of? or if given the choice should i just stick with another element??
I have strong opinion about the Element vs. Pilot.. Element is the last of the no-tech to break, no gimmick, engine without DI (although not great gas mileage), no frills/wearing surfaces, easily mantainable (and cheap when you have to), not to mention the utility abilities. Incredible machine and nothing will be built like it again because of gas mileage mandates and annoying tech nannies.

I also have a 2019 pilot touring and it is the exact opposite - can't image what it will be when the digital dash display/infotainment screen fails and the 9spd ZF, while fairly smooth, has a $400 transmission service. Also a $300 AGM battery. Previously had a 2011 Pilot before the 2019 and it was solid through 190,000 miles, but it died an A/C death at trade-in. Had a VCM issue with the 2011 which fouls the plugs which I think all pretty much have that. I imagine the 2003-2008 pilots are one generation older than my 2011 and hence one generation more reliable.
 

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I recently bought an 08 AWD MT with 236K miles for $1500 CAD. A pre-purchase inspection gave me some peace of mind and a fair idea of what needed fixing.
 

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Discussion Starter #12 (Edited)
I don't have it yet. The seller has been wishy washy, was supposed to deliver it then kept delaying but finally agreed to meet me and I'll pick up tonight. Wish me luck. Will hopefully send some photos later!
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Here are those photos. Mechanically so far seems solid. High miles and a bit of body work, but not horrible. Super excited to get it fixed up and back in its prime. Thanks for the advice everyone.
204338

204337

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204333


204332
 

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2003 Honda Element Sunset Orange Pearl 2WD Automatic 135K Miles I Love It!
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Looks like you did very well. A good value for the money. :)
 

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It's worth more than $1800 in parts, if you were to buy it, strip it and part it out.

Not saying you should... just saying that at 250K no car is perfect, but at $1800 its worth it and then some. Especially if ya don't have an Element.
 
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