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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
The rated 675 lbs. is unbelievably low for a vehicle of this size - that's not even four adult males.

Sadly, this issue more than anything else is forcing me to reconsider purchasing the E. Am I going to bend/break something if I load my buddies into it... plus "stuff"... for a project day?

:(
 

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Looking at the placement of the 675lb limit on the inside-of-door label both above as well as inside the tire-info box, it occurred to me this limit might be related to tire-failure liability issues (via warnings).

Note also that the standard Element tires seem to be rated for almost *double* the weight of the vehicle, which is odd. Again, pointing towards a coverage of risk/liability issue (via engineering this time).

-brendan
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Tires? That's really doubtful, Brendan. The E is pretty light, and the off-the-rack tires are, well, "just tires" - there's nothing special about 'em. Just because this low spec is on product labelling normally associated with the tires doesn't mean that it's the tires, it means that those are the proper locations to communicate weight ratings. BTW, I saw your postings in the other thread(s).

The too-low max weight rating of the E comes from something else, and given my (yeah, long ago forgotten) engineering education I have a very strong hunch that it's related to the structure.
 

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MikeQBF said:
Tires? That's really doubtful, Brendan.
Ok. It's just a theory. I was surprised that the tires were rated at more than 1700lbs. each (as you mentioned on the earlier threads), which seemed overkill (or...engineering padding...), particularly if the vehicle isn't supposed to have a GVWR of over 4450lbs. It seemed to me that they were attempting to work around a known tire issue.

On the other threads http://www.elementownersclub.com/forums/viewtopic.php?p=33558&highlight=gvwr#33558 ...

As far as I can tell, depending on model, you should be able to carry between 873-1120 lbs., assuming that the GVWR of 4450lbs. applies to all models.

What I don't understand is why the carrying capacity/load limit listed is 675lbs for *all* models, regardless of curb weight/trim line, transmission type, suspension type or drive type!

To me, that indicates a very conservatively derived value. That's the kind of thing you find for both safety reasons as well as *liability* reasons.

-brendan
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
What I don't understand is why the carrying capacity/load limit listed is 675lbs for *all* models, regardless of curb weight/trim line, transmission type, suspension type or drive type!
The answer is hidden in your question. What doesn'tchange? The body.
 

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[quote:5b559c2e35="MikeQBF"]
What I don't understand is why the carrying capacity/load limit listed is 675lbs for *all* models, regardless of curb weight/trim line, transmission type, suspension type or drive type!
The answer is hidden in your question. What doesn'tchange? The body.[/quote:5b559c2e35]

By body you mean "frame", right? Or does "unibody" construction imply they are one and the same?

The trim line differences (e.g. the back sunroof). *do* change the weight of the body (or body/frame). That would indicate to me that body type would have a different carry rating...

-brendan
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
>Or does "unibody" construction imply they are one and the same?

Yes. This is the rub. Unibody design depends of the sides of the "box" to take the place of the old-style frame. And now we've just put two huge holes in the side of this box... in fact, we've removed most of the sides and not put anything in to bridge the gap.

The sunroof is not a large enough opening to make that much difference in either rigidity or strength. There is plenty of opportunity for support structure given the remaining area on either side of the sunroof. If it was an automatic retracting sunroof it might be different (the unsupported area potentially being the opening plus the space to stash the retracted panel), but the current sunroof design shouldn't compromise the structure at all.
 

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MikeQBF said:
but the current sunroof design shouldn't compromise the structure at all.
Actually, the reason I brought that up is that it changes the weight of the "body" itself, so that difference should be shown in the capacity on the door panels of DX vs. EX, but it isn't.

-brendan
 

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I read a post on another forum (Edmunds, I think) from someone who said that they called Honda Customer Service about the payload limit and was told that the 675 lb limit does not include passengers. This figure is supposedly calculated with four average sized adults in the E.

Has anyone else contacted Honda and gotten a similar reply?
 

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Bored at work, I just called and they said the total opposite -- 675 = total weight in the vehicle. I asked the guy if he was sure, and he said yeah, if you get "4 big guys in there, then there's no room". I said 4 kinda small folks @ 150lbs each = 600 .. it doesn't make sense to make a car that hauls four small folks and nothing else, and he said he was sure. :?:
 

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Honda,

Why is so difficult to get this absurd question answered? When I found this out, well after the purchase of the vehicle, it made me regret laying out >$20k for my E! If I, like MikeQBF, were in the market today, and armed with this statistic, I would keep on looking. It might look nice, but all that spaceous interior is wasted if I can't actually put anything in it (besides my passengers - why sell the roof rack?) ...

Here's a point where owners may or may not be justifiably worried (if the 675# figure is weight in addition to adult passengers). Someone better clear the air or you're going to lose business...

Frederick
 

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675 pound weight limit doesn't bother me at all since it's just my wife and i.

I knew if i needed more cap, i would of got a Pilot.

Maybe if you get bigger struts, you can carry more weight :roll:
 

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I also think this is a major weakness. If it is supposed to be a "dorm room on wheels" how exactly does that work when 3 of your buddies and a full cooler will tip you over the weight limit??

The 675 is *definitely* capacity. Check the GVWR if you aren't sure. Car companies don't list weight capacity minus passengers.

I doubt it has anything to do with the body/frame. Makes no sense to me. It has nothing to do with tires either.

Think guys.

What actually *supports* the weight of the vehicle?

Suspension.

The Element is based on Honda's global compact platform. i.e. it's a Civic guys.

If you take a Civic suspension designed for a 2500 lb car and strap an Element onto it, even with some beefing up, there are going to be limitations.

I do think this needs to be addressed. I am hoping to buy an Element in January and this is of some concern. I am hoping that Honda is just being conservative with the weight rating. No matter what, you can always push a little beyond the number, but if you make a habit or go too far it will result in dangerous handling characteristics or breaking/bending things. :(

It is possible to raise that weight limit somewhat with stronger springs (I doubt anyone makes them for the element) or air suspension or other add-ons designed to add rear suspension support for cars that tow, but you still have to use common sense.

Better yet, Honda needs to beef things up to provide a 800lb capacity and a bit more clearance. :wink:
 

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[quote:edf496b103="hedgeborn"]The 675 is *definitely* capacity. Check the GVWR if you aren't sure. Car companies don't list weight capacity minus passengers.
[/quote:edf496b103]

Heh. We did check the GVWR. If you search the forum for that term, you'll find postings about how the GVWR minus the curbweight gives a higher number. Honda won't explain why. We just have to assume it's at least partially their legal department and ride handling/safety issues.

-brendan
 

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I just got of the phone w/ American Honda who confirms Brendan's comments: the 675# weight capacity is to include passenger weight.

This strikes me as directly opposed to the "...rugged...vehicle..." comments from American Honda's Executive Vice President. His article compares it to a light truck...

In a light truck I could pack up the camping gear and not worry about whether or not my gear, ~2 passengers, and I exceed 675#s... What a farse (the vehicle is NOT built for what they say it is). Wish I'd known this BEFORE I purchased...

ELEMENT: I don't even care for the Pilot - it's not like I settled for the E because my wallet wasn't deep enough...

P0'd
 

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[quote:438c6ecb89="desert_E"]In a light truck I could pack up the camping gear and not worry about whether or not my gear, ~2 passengers, and I exceed 675#s... What a farse (the vehicle is NOT built for what they say it is). Wish I'd known this BEFORE I purchased...[/quote:438c6ecb89]

Remember, this 675# is meant to warn you that the vehicle will begin handling unpredictably in certain situations if you exceed it (according to their engineers, or maybe their lawyers)?

I propose these questions: do they expect the users to drive the vehicle more like a car, or more like a standard truck? do these kinds of numbers typically incorporate the way in which a vehicle type is driven?

Perhaps this number tries to take that into account? Or not?

-brendan
 

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It seems to me that if you sell a car with four seats in it and none of them
are marked "CHILD SEAT ONLY", you're implying that the vehicle can
carry four adults. I'm not a lawyer, but isn't there a legal warranty
about fitness for use, even if a disclaimer is buried in the owner's
manual somewhere? Four adults usually exceed 675 lbs.

BTW when I was shopping for a car, I asked the Honda dealer whether
I could carry two large adults and some 500-lb. equipment in the
Element and he said "Sure, no problem". I wouldn't have bought the
car if I'd known the truth-- even though for everyday driving I love my
Element. Serves me right for trusting a salesman.

Have any of you tried carrying heavier loads? Did it work OK?
 

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I carried myself, my partner, and 970 pounds of kitchen cabinets 180 miles up I-95/I-64 and the Element handled just like it normally does with only me in it.

But, as someone else pointed out in another thread, I have no way of knowing if I caused any body flex/stress on the Element that resulted in any permanent/unseen damage, or if the Element would have handled differently than normal in an emergency situation.



 
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