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Discussion Starter #1
Hello Element Owners Club!

I apologize for the cross-post, I am just now getting used to the site. I have the same inquiry in the Introductions forum...

As I have been shopping for cars, I have been lurking on this site for several weeks. Ya'll seem like a fun and knowledgeable bunch. That is why I am turning to you for help! I am confident the Element will meet my camping/ road trip lifestyle needs. The question is, which one do I get???

I am looking at two:

Option 1:
2008 Element EX / AWD / 5-Speed / Automatic
130K miles
"Maintenance Minder System" - What is this??
Excellent condition. The private owner has recently given it a new starter, new tires, alignment and an oil change, "Ready to drive!"
Roof rack, hitch, and power sunroof :)
asking price: $9125

Option 2:
2003 Element EX / AWD / Automatic

107K miles
Excellent condition!
No roof rack, no hitch, and manual sunroof :(
Used Car Dealership asking price: $6995

Option 1 is definitely my preferred buy, but a bit more than I'd like to spend. I am also not sure if the age of the car matters as much as the number of miles on the odometer? What do you all think?

I am definitely looking forward to bringing home my new Element and chatting more on this forum!

Thank you!!!!

132 Posts
Age does play some role in perishable parts such as rubber hoses and bushings etc., but I'd say more important than age or miles is the vehicle's service history. At the mileage of both candidates you're looking at, they will both need spark plugs and a valve inspection/adjust which you can expect to pay $500 for, more or less. So factor that into your purchase. Also listen carefully for odd suspension noises, clunks, pops, clicks, groans etc. Suspension parts replacement can get expensive pretty quickly...

Oh, as to the 'maintenance minder system' i'm sure that's just the dashboard maintenance reminder thingy the E's come with. It neither adds, nor subtracts, any value to the vehicle. And I think vehicle #1 description must be erroneous as none of the E's came with a 'power' sunroof...

If you can swing it, I would definitely take your leading candidate to a trusted mechanic for a full inspection, and would also run a carfax to learn more about the service history...
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