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Discussion Starter #1
That likes the 2010 Element? I test drove it last week and absolutely fell in love with it. The seat belt did not cut into my neck (which I've read here...). I test drove an EX (4WD) and am looking to get as such. (Or LX 4WD).

My family has always been a Ford family, and as long as my parents still buy cars (I'm nearing 30...shhh...don't tell anyone...) they'll buy Ford (they both got their first jobs long ago with Ford and LOVE that company). I was seriously looking at a 2010 Ford Fusion, a 2010 Nissan Cube, and the Insight and Fit (both 2010)...until I got in this car. Wow. I absolutely love it. I test drove the car and loved everything about it...now I'm counting the weeks until I purchase it (Labor Day Weekend - I assume they'll have good deals then!!!)

What prices did you all get on your elements? Who has a 4WD LX? A 4WD EX? Anybody with a SC? I'd love to know...and what monthly payments you ship out. I'm trying to stay under $500...lol.

Either way, I'd love to hear from all of you!

-Skynyrdfan5

"I've Seen A Lot of People Who Thought they were cool; but then again Lord, I've seen a lot of fools"- Ronnie Van Zant


SKYNYRD STILL LIVES ON!!! (Those "Free Bird" "Simple Man" fans out there, check out, "STILL UNBROKEN"


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AqKmWslGiac
 

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Not too many deals come along around Labor Day, for Honda. You may find that there are few or none to choose from. They have scaled back production.

Dom.
 

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I love mine. Never really considered the seat belt an issue until I noticed so many complaints on here. I bought one of those sheep skin fuzzy things and all is good. In all fairness though, I've never driven or ridden in another E besides mine.
 

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Hey SF5...

You know what, I took advantage of the "Cash For Clunkers" deal last year and NEVER test-drove the E...!!! Just went to the dealership, said I got a Jeep with POOR MPGs... Looked at the Pilot, CR-V, and Ridgie... The Honda dealership didn't have an Element on the lot... They had a RBP-LX on another lot and then an EX 4WD AT at a sister store... We filled out the paperwork...

It showed up, it had 31 miles on it, got in and drove off... The guy asked me why I didn't want a test drive...? I told him, I've had 3-months to research this vehicle with the recommendations from several of my buddies in terms of lifestyle, utility, safety, cost and longevity... My Jeep had 360+K miles on it... I figure, I couldn't go wrong with a Honda (my first)...! Element was the perfect fit...! I would "adjust" myself to the quirks of the truck and luckily, it too was a perfect fit...

If you do get the OBP, make sure you take pics of it and post them in the "Greets & Intros" section of the forum so that you can get a proper EOC welcome... You'll find that is the hardest color to find since it came out last year for the first time...! I'm not sure if the LX has the subwoofer included but if you are a Skynyrd fan, you'll DEFINITELY love having it in an EX...!!!

Good luck...!

LBD
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Hey SF5...

You know what, I took advantage of the "Cash For Clunkers" deal last year and NEVER test-drove the E...!!! Just went to the dealership, said I got a Jeep with POOR MPGs... Looked at the Pilot, CR-V, and Ridgie... The Honda dealership didn't have an Element on the lot... They had a RBP-LX on another lot and then an EX 4WD AT at a sister store... We filled out the paperwork...

It showed up, it had 31 miles on it, got in and drove off... The guy asked me why I didn't want a test drive...? I told him, I've had 3-months to research this vehicle with the recommendations from several of my buddies in terms of lifestyle, utility, safety, cost and longevity... My Jeep had 360+K miles on it... I figure, I couldn't go wrong with a Honda (my first)...! Element was the perfect fit...! I would "adjust" myself to the quirks of the truck and luckily, it too was a perfect fit...

If you do get the OBP, make sure you take pics of it and post them in the "Greets & Intros" section of the forum so that you can get a proper EOC welcome... You'll find that is the hardest color to find since it came out last year for the first time...! I'm not sure if the LX has the subwoofer included but if you are a Skynyrd fan, you'll DEFINITELY love having it in an EX...!!!

Good luck...!

LBD
Nice! I love the response! It made me feel even better about the Element... I really fell in LOVE with that car the first time I drove it...and love the Omni Blue Pearl Color. (OBP).

I had the Cube as my preferred car...until I drove the Element. Wow! Coming from a member of a FORD family, this Ford member is going Honda!
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Hey SF5...

You know what, I took advantage of the "Cash For Clunkers" deal last year and NEVER test-drove the E...!!! Just went to the dealership, said I got a Jeep with POOR MPGs... Looked at the Pilot, CR-V, and Ridgie... The Honda dealership didn't have an Element on the lot... They had a RBP-LX on another lot and then an EX 4WD AT at a sister store... We filled out the paperwork...

It showed up, it had 31 miles on it, got in and drove off... The guy asked me why I didn't want a test drive...? I told him, I've had 3-months to research this vehicle with the recommendations from several of my buddies in terms of lifestyle, utility, safety, cost and longevity... My Jeep had 360+K miles on it... I figure, I couldn't go wrong with a Honda (my first)...! Element was the perfect fit...! I would "adjust" myself to the quirks of the truck and luckily, it too was a perfect fit...

If you do get the OBP, make sure you take pics of it and post them in the "Greets & Intros" section of the forum so that you can get a proper EOC welcome... You'll find that is the hardest color to find since it came out last year for the first time...! I'm not sure if the LX has the subwoofer included but if you are a Skynyrd fan, you'll DEFINITELY love having it in an EX...!!!

Good luck...!

LBD

Sweet!!! I'm also a huge KoRn fan...(albeit not much of their new cd, "KoRn III: Remember Who You Are") want that bass blasting...
 

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Nice! I love the response! It made me feel even better about the Element... I really fell in LOVE with that car the first time I drove it...and love the Omni Blue Pearl Color. (OBP).

I had the Cube as my preferred car...until I drove the Element. Wow! Coming from a member of a FORD family, this Ford member is going Honda!
The OBP color is very very beautiful at night under street lights on the SC. The last E we had was a little to high off the ground for Dad to drive he has trouble getting in and out of the car. Mom isn't any easier so the lower stance she loves!!! :) Even mom likes the white. I guess you can call it white.
 

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The OBP color is very very beautiful at night under street lights on the SC.
Agreed...!

I guess you can call it white.
Many do... Since it is a "pearl", it does have its flecks of blue... My first choice but none available within 500-miles so I got choice #2 instead...

Congrats...!

LBD
 

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I have had my 4wdEX for about a month now and the only thing I don't like are the hard riding truck tires on it. I will change them out soon.

BTW It is a mistake to shop for a monthly payment. It is a license for the dealer to take you to the cleaners. Get a fair price for the car and your trade and then figure out your financing options. It is also meaningless to compare others monthly payments to yours. My payment is $230 for 56 months. What does that mean?
 

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My First Post - First Element

After months of detailed research on every car offered by every company... I have purchased a brand spankin' new 2010 Honda Element EX!! I have a Samoyed who sheds ALOT and this car seems like the right choice for my lifestyle. So far, so good!!

I haven't ever owned or driven another year of the Element, so I wouldn't know much of the differences (seatbelt etc) about the negative things I have heard about. But, no complaints here! I am happy with my purchase and look forward to many years with my E...
 

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Discussion Starter #12
I have had my 4wdEX for about a month now and the only thing I don't like are the hard riding truck tires on it. I will change them out soon.

BTW It is a mistake to shop for a monthly payment. It is a license for the dealer to take you to the cleaners. Get a fair price for the car and your trade and then figure out your financing options. It is also meaningless to compare others monthly payments to yours. My payment is $230 for 56 months. What does that mean?
It means your payment is $230 for 56 months...

Telling people it's a mistake to shop for a monthly payment is ridiculous since about 95% of the WORLD does that. Sorry we don't play professional sports...
 

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It means your payment is $230 for 56 months...

Telling people it's a mistake to shop for a monthly payment is ridiculous since about 95% of the WORLD does that. Sorry we don't play professional sports...
A bit off topic, but Rwortman is making a good point that shouldn't be brushed aside.

Sure it means that you pay $230 for 56 months. The question that rwortman is asking is how would you compare that to other payment options. When we buy a vehicle, we're making two decisions:
* How much to pay
* How to finance the cost

These two things are usually separate (if not, they can be separated easily enough by asking for the cash purchase price), and you want to get a good deal on both of them. The approach suggested by rwortman (knowing the cash purchase price) allows you to shop around for the financing. How would you compare the following options:
* $12,000 cash purchase (if you have the cash)
* $200 per month for 72 months
* $220 per month for 60 months
* $2,000 cash down, a $400 loan fee, and $210 per month for 48 months
* $350 per month for 36 months

"Lowest monthly payment" will lead you to what most people would consider to be the worst decision out of the above choices (and the difference is enough to pay for a few really good meals with someone special). Now... we don't all play professional sports, and we don't all have the ability to do a perfect evaluation of these things, but there are some simple things that we can do to make it possible to compare these things:
* Ask what the interest rate is - they should tell you, somewhere in the fine print. Shop for the lowest interest rate.
* Ignore cash down if you can afford to make the cash down payment, since you're shopping for the lowest interest rate on what you'll actually be paying off.
* Find out if there is a penalty for paying the thing off early. Think about what that might mean for you. Also read the agreement and see if there are any other conditions that can bite you later, like late fees or other fees. If it feels like they're taking advantage of you, shop elsewhere.
* Loan fees (that aren't part of the downpayment) are tricky, but as a simple rule of thumb, you might divide them by the number of years in the loan, divide that into HALF of the amount of the loan, and then add that to the interest rate (so in the above example of $12,000 over 48 months, you'd divide $400 by 4 and get $100 per year, then divide $100 by $6,000 and calculate an equivalence of an additional 1.67% interest).

Financing options that CAN (sometimes) be really good deals:
* Special manufacturer financing (like zero percent or 1.9% financing), provided that you don't have to pay a higher price in the first place to get the special financing (if this happens, the higher price isn't the true purchase price)
* If you're in a credit union, see what they're offering. Your credit union may or may not have the lowest interest rate, but they're less likely to throw in anything really sneaky since credit unions are more answerable to their members.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
A bit off topic, but Rwortman is making a good point that shouldn't be brushed aside.

Sure it means that you pay $230 for 56 months. The question that rwortman is asking is how would you compare that to other payment options. When we buy a vehicle, we're making two decisions:
* How much to pay
* How to finance the cost

These two things are usually separate (if not, they can be separated easily enough by asking for the cash purchase price), and you want to get a good deal on both of them. The approach suggested by rwortman (knowing the cash purchase price) allows you to shop around for the financing. How would you compare the following options:
* $12,000 cash purchase (if you have the cash)
* $200 per month for 72 months
* $220 per month for 60 months
* $2,000 cash down, a $400 loan fee, and $210 per month for 48 months
* $350 per month for 36 months

"Lowest monthly payment" will lead you to what most people would consider to be the worst decision out of the above choices (and the difference is enough to pay for a few really good meals with someone special). Now... we don't all play professional sports, and we don't all have the ability to do a perfect evaluation of these things, but there are some simple things that we can do to make it possible to compare these things:
* Ask what the interest rate is - they should tell you, somewhere in the fine print. Shop for the lowest interest rate.
* Ignore cash down if you can afford to make the cash down payment, since you're shopping for the lowest interest rate on what you'll actually be paying off.
* Find out if there is a penalty for paying the thing off early. Think about what that might mean for you. Also read the agreement and see if there are any other conditions that can bite you later, like late fees or other fees. If it feels like they're taking advantage of you, shop elsewhere.
* Loan fees (that aren't part of the downpayment) are tricky, but as a simple rule of thumb, you might divide them by the number of years in the loan, divide that into HALF of the amount of the loan, and then add that to the interest rate (so in the above example of $12,000 over 48 months, you'd divide $400 by 4 and get $100 per year, then divide $100 by $6,000 and calculate an equivalence of an additional 1.67% interest).

Financing options that CAN (sometimes) be really good deals:
* Special manufacturer financing (like zero percent or 1.9% financing), provided that you don't have to pay a higher price in the first place to get the special financing (if this happens, the higher price isn't the true purchase price)
* If you're in a credit union, see what they're offering. Your credit union may or may not have the lowest interest rate, but they're less likely to throw in anything really sneaky since credit unions are more answerable to their members.
There's no way you can get a good car for $230 a month over 48-60 months without a high APR. If they give you it for $230-$250 a month, they'll jack your APR to 6+%

I'd love to have a $250 payment every month, but I don't see how that's possible. Also, the credit union that associates with where I work is at 5.9% APR (which is huge if you ask me)

I will not be putting any cash down regardless (I won't have the money to do as such, but either way)

I'm looking to spend it over $48-$60 months, but when I build it on the website, the MSRP comes out between $25000-26000. I'm hoping they can decrease the total price, and overall the payments. (But as far as I know, you would have to pay monthly payments to pay it off, correct?)
 

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I see that Honda is currently offering at 2.9% for 60 months for new Elements. It's probably a good deal if you qualify. If they tell you that you don't qualify and try to "help you out", you might carefully compare what they're offering to whatever your credit union is offering.

On pricing for a new Element, there are other threads that talk about how to effectively haggle, how much to pay, and no-haggle options (I've seen references to Costco that I'd look into in your situation). AAA also offers a no-haggle buying service that is pricing new Elements in my area for $1,500 under list for an LX and $1,700 under list for an EX.

If you're willing to haggle, you might do even better (or in any case, shouldn't do worse, since you have the no-haggle options as a fall back option). But then there's that pesky destination charge that moves the price back up, and documentation fees, and sales taxes, and suddenly you find that you're actually paying list price or more....

So in your case, a new Element would cost something over $400 a month for 60 months for $24,000. For $25,000 and 3% interest it will be closer to $450 a month. If that's too much, you'd want to look at used cars.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
I've got very high credit...(almost picture perfect), so I need not worry about that.

I went to the dealership again, and unfortunately the guy said it's very hard to find an Omni Pearl Blue (then again a few of you have said as such - including LunchBox), so I'm looking towards Black, Blue, or Slate Grey.

I've decided the LX is the best feature for me, as the dealer told me it has the aux jack and 12v outlet near in front of the passenger as the EX does. I have decided 2WD is best as well because I do 98% of my driving on paved (or nearly all paved roads...lol..potholes like to make a point in that)...it also fits in my budget. I'm no rich man, so the 2WD fits my budget....and its going to be mid-20k to low 21k...so I can't complain.

Either way I get a Element of which I love. The only real differences with the LX and EX are the sound system (the EX gets like 100 more volts), the middle island cooler (not quite sure what id need that for anyway)... (and correct me if im wrong, the sound system isn't that bad with the LX anyway???)

Are there really any other glaring subtractions from the EX with the LX (other than XM radio which isn't a necessity with me)?

I will be buying it in the August 30th time frame (just because with my job i will be starting, first check just doesn't come until the 1st of October...- and apparently with Honda you don't pay anything for the first 45 days.

Can't complain about that...)

Those who have a LX out there, tell me what you think.... those who know the differences between the LX and EX can you elaborate?

Thanks!!!
 

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My payment is that low because I traded in two cars and put cash down. My point was that you can't compare monthly payments unless you know a lot of other information. My wife used to sell cars and I have been around other car sales people as well as reading extensively on the subject. If you walk into a car dealer and tell them you want to buy a car and you want your monthly payment to be Y, the dollar signs light up in their eyes. You want to work the other way. Get the lowest price, get the best interest rate, eliminate all the extra cost BS and then find out what the resulting payment will be for 5 years or less. Any loan longer than that without a big down payment will have you upside down in the car forever and make it really hard to get rid of it should you get unlucky and either have a bad one, just not like it, or have your ability to pay diminished.
 

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There's no way you can get a good car for $230 a month over 48-60 months without a high APR. If they give you it for $230-$250 a month, they'll jack your APR to 6+%
That makes no sense. How can you get the payment down by jacking up the interest rate? That sort of math hasn't been invented. If you have a lower payment and a higher interest rate that means the price of the car had to be lower. The interest rate is not determined by the monthly payment. That's backwards. The monthly payment is determined by the purchase price, the interest rate, and the length of the loan. That's it. If you want a lower payment, you borrow less money, get a lower rate, or pay longer. The interest rate you get depends on your credit rating, the length of the loan, your ability to pay, the loan to value ratio,available incentives, and your bargaining ability. The dealer does not sell you a car for X dollars a month. They sell you a car for XXX dollars and then sell you financing from a bank or a financing company. You are not going to get the best rate without a down payment because it is riskier for the bank. If you default and they repo the car they are out a bunch of money. IMO if you haven't got a down payment of close to 20% in the form of a trade in or cash, you should be looking for a bargain used car or driving what you have until you can save for one. A new car is not a life necessity. I have bought nearly as many used ones as new. Referring to your statement above: If I put $10,000 down on a $23,000 car, I am going to get a lousy interest rate because the payment is too low? That's crazy. The bank is in a no lose situation so I get the best rate they have.

From carbuyingtips.com

"Don't Be A Payment Buyer!
They love suckers who tell them they are "payment buyers". "Damn it I'm not paying more than $350 a month for this Camry, and that's it!" Well alrighty, then. They'll shave a few dollars off MSRP to make you think you got a good deal. Don't be a payment buyer! If they ask you "What monthly payment are you looking for?", you're being setup for the scam. Tell them that is irrelevant. What matters to you is the cost of the car, not just the monthly payment.

Tell them you negotiate the car based on its value, not a monthly payment."
 

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I've got very high credit...(almost picture perfect), so I need not worry about that.

I went to the dealership again, and unfortunately the guy said it's very hard to find an Omni Pearl Blue (then again a few of you have said as such - including LunchBox), so I'm looking towards Black, Blue, or Slate Grey.

I've decided the LX is the best feature for me, as the dealer told me it has the aux jack and 12v outlet near in front of the passenger as the EX does. I have decided 2WD is best as well because I do 98% of my driving on paved (or nearly all paved roads...lol..potholes like to make a point in that)...it also fits in my budget. I'm no rich man, so the 2WD fits my budget....and its going to be mid-20k to low 21k...so I can't complain.

Either way I get a Element of which I love. The only real differences with the LX and EX are the sound system (the EX gets like 100 more volts), the middle island cooler (not quite sure what id need that for anyway)... (and correct me if im wrong, the sound system isn't that bad with the LX anyway???)

Are there really any other glaring subtractions from the EX with the LX (other than XM radio which isn't a necessity with me)?

I will be buying it in the August 30th time frame (just because with my job i will be starting, first check just doesn't come until the 1st of October...- and apparently with Honda you don't pay anything for the first 45 days.

Can't complain about that...)

Those who have a LX out there, tell me what you think.... those who know the differences between the LX and EX can you elaborate?

Thanks!!!
Not a bad choice at all. You might be able to get a deal on a 2010 as it's late in the model year. Honda's 2.9% financing is part of their incentive to move out the 2010's and the savings on financing over the life of the loan would be substantial (the equivalent of paying $1,000 - $2,000 less with a higher interest rate).

Be careful about the dealer adding on BS like undercoating. I'd pass on things like floor mats that you can install yourself - you can get those third party or order them from handa-accessories.com (one of the forum sponsors) at a lower cost.

You can see a detailed list of differences between the EX and LX at

http://automobiles.honda.com/element/specifications.aspx

Personally, I don't think the difference in price between the EX and LX is justified. I don't need some of the options on the EX, others I can install myself, and I'm not crazy about the stereo in the EX. I do like the EX, but ...

... You can install your own stereo in the LX in a couple hours for a couple hundred dollars. I preferred this option as I was able to snake a USB cable from the stereo into the glove compartment and just play my stereo from a thumb drive with thousands of songs on it. The EX has 7 speakers vs. 4 speakers in the LX, but there's enough cabin noise in any Element that the difference in sound quality would be meaningless to me while driving. The EX does NOT provide a USB connector for the stereo unless you get the navigation package.

... The EX has alloy wheels. I found a set of used Pilot alloy rims on eBay for a little over $300 delivered.

... The EX has "premium fabric" in the back seat. If you have dogs or very small children, this might be an advantage, although the premium fabric in the front seat doesn't really excite me.

... The EX has an overhead compartment that's kind of nice. Others have installed this themselves for a couple hundred dollars or so. I've thought about doing this as well.

... The EX has driver and passenger armrests. Definitely nice to have, although they can be installed in the LX if desired.

... The EX also has seatback pockets, a rear 12V outlet, vanity mirrors on the visor, sound controls on the steering wheel, a removable cooler built into the center console

If you wanted all or most of the options in the EX, it would be worth a second look.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
Not a bad choice at all. You might be able to get a deal on a 2010 as it's late in the model year. Honda's 2.9% financing is part of their incentive to move out the 2010's and the savings on financing over the life of the loan would be substantial (the equivalent of paying $1,000 - $2,000 less with a higher interest rate).

Be careful about the dealer adding on BS like undercoating. I'd pass on things like floor mats that you can install yourself - you can get those third party or order them from handa-accessories.com (one of the forum sponsors) at a lower cost.

You can see a detailed list of differences between the EX and LX at

http://automobiles.honda.com/element/specifications.aspx

Personally, I don't think the difference in price between the EX and LX is justified. I don't need some of the options on the EX, others I can install myself, and I'm not crazy about the stereo in the EX. I do like the EX, but ...

... You can install your own stereo in the LX in a couple hours for a couple hundred dollars. I preferred this option as I was able to snake a USB cable from the stereo into the glove compartment and just play my stereo from a thumb drive with thousands of songs on it. The EX has 7 speakers vs. 4 speakers in the LX, but there's enough cabin noise in any Element that the difference in sound quality would be meaningless to me while driving. The EX does NOT provide a USB connector for the stereo unless you get the navigation package.

... The EX has alloy wheels. I found a set of used Pilot alloy rims on eBay for a little over $300 delivered.

... The EX has "premium fabric" in the back seat. If you have dogs or very small children, this might be an advantage, although the premium fabric in the front seat doesn't really excite me.

... The EX has an overhead compartment that's kind of nice. Others have installed this themselves for a couple hundred dollars or so. I've thought about doing this as well.

... The EX has driver and passenger armrests. Definitely nice to have, although they can be installed in the LX if desired.

... The EX also has seatback pockets, a rear 12V outlet, vanity mirrors on the visor, sound controls on the steering wheel, a removable cooler built into the center console

If you wanted all or most of the options in the EX, it would be worth a second look.
The main concern I am asking about is does the LX have the same outlet thingy that the EX does in front of the passenger seat (it has an 12v outlet and an aux jack)...

did you say the LX has a usb port in the middle island?
 
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