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Discussion Starter #1
Hey. I am looking into buying an Element since it comes up consistently as one of the best road trip/camping vehicles. And I would really like some advice. I have been reading thru the forum, there's a ton of information here I hope to assimilate before I make my purchase. I just wanted to know about the common pitfalls of some models. I currently drive a 2 seat car and i really need something to get out there, go surfing and camping. I read reaviews that talked about a moonroof with a mosquito net and full bed on the back, which is something i would be really interested in for camping. Any help would be appreciated. Thanks!
 

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I'm no expert, but I'm on my 3rd Honda ('03 Accord, '05 Civic and now my '06 EX-P) and I don't know your price range. But I would avoid the '03 Elements. I'd venture to say that the only pitfall for Honda's is the first model year for a re-design. A lot of little things went wrong in my Accord (compressor twice within 50k, fan motor within 50k, power window motor 60k). The '01 Civic my buddy had also had some things go wrong with it, that don't seem to go bad in the 2nd-5th year of production.

Just my opinion, but definitely don't buy an '03. I love Honda's, always will, but I'm not buying a new one that's fresh off a redesign, or in this case, fresh off the drawing board.

Honda always thinks their vehicles through very thoroughly before releasing them, but I just wouldn't chance it.

My two cents.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thanks for your reply that was very helpful. I'm looking to stay below 10 grand. I have already seen some 2005s at a dealer at about 12k. The stinking points would be the options. The roof, the radio and the 4WD. That's about it. I'm looking for a wehicle to solve problems at the house.
 

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things to consider:

do you really need the AWD?
can you find one in your price range w/ moderate mileage.

if you can find a 2005 w/ the dealer asking for 12k, who is to say you can't go offering them 10K :D
 

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Also consider if you want that moonroof then don't get an '09 (noticed that you mentioned that as an option)...any other year before that will have them but not the '09.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
I kind of need the AWD because I have some land and I plan to use the wehicle on dirt roads. I plan to do some light farming. The moon roof with mosquito net would be nice since I plan on sleeping in it when i'm out camping. When I started out my search I wanted a Westfalia, but I thought I should get closer to a modern iteration (albeit much smaler) of it for more or less the same money and thousand less problems. I have a very active life style, body boarding, hiking, biking, and I want to vehicle that can be incorporated into that.
 
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