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I've been browsing this forum while getting ready to pick up my first Element in a day or 2 and I saw some pics of $5000 deer damage on an element. It got me wondering how they hold up to deer since I live in NE Pa and they are everywhere. I have always been a loyal diehard Nissan fan and it took a kiwi E to convert me. I hit a deer with my Altima and my insurance company could not believe how well it took on the deer. I hit it hard too causing it to roll up on my front window and got thrown several feet away. All my Altima suffered was a small dent the size of a baseball. After seeing somebody's Element with $5000 damage I'm concerned. Does the element usually lose battles with the deer? What am I in for? Thanks!
 

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i think that all really depends.

i'm sure the velocity, size, and location of impact has a lot to do with whether a car will "survive" its meeting with a deer.

i will let others chime in, but that's my take.
 

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Its no pick up thats for sure.

I have seen several deer E impacts at my part time job during rut the last couple years. White tails vs E, the E seems to loose in my opinion, but again I did not see the impact only the results. I have seen far worse cars, like nearly every Hyundai Kia and saturns. I ahve seen altimas in accidents only and they seem to fare well, unlike nissian trucks. Since you are aware that deer are present you need to be vigilant at the times that they are most active.
I picked off a doe couple years ago with my F150 and it cracked a piece of plastic, the same impact on my E and I am pretty sure it would have knocked the bumper off.
Chris
 

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also, maybe a front "cow catcher" might not be a bad idea ;) :D

or in your case, deer catcher
 

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That is the car vs SUV dilemma. The front of the E is much taller than the Altima or other cars. The deers body can then impact the front of the E instead of just the legs like a car. This ends up causing a harder impact on the E. If you are lucky and strike the deer when it's jumping you may only hit it's legs.:rolleyes:

Just be extra careful at deer time and be glad that the E is an extremely safe vehicle. Your life is more important than the price to repair the car!
 

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If you are lucky and strike the deer when it's jumping you may only hit it's legs.:rolleyes:
And have it come through the windsheild!!!
 

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That's another downfall of the steep windshield angle. In a car, deer accidents involve hitting the legs and the deer sliding over the hood/windshield/roof.


Maybe you should add some Mad Max windshield guards.;-):lol:
 

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That's another downfall of the steep windshield angle. In a car, deer accidents involve hitting the legs and the deer sliding over the hood/windshield/roof.


Maybe you should add some Mad Max windshield guards.;-):lol:
Or a roof mounted chain gun. A deer is much easier on the E when 80% of it is obliterated by 20mm rounds.
 

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^^^^ sounds like a redneck hunten trip!!! geterdone!!! is that all one word???or is that what they say when they are fixen to breed thier hunten doggs?
 

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I, too, have been concerned about a deer impact. I live in Texas on the edge of the hill country and deer are a sever problem here as well. When I had the front end off to put on the Home Depot grill guard to stop small rocks, large bugs and other small debris I tried to figure out how to mount a bull bar or something similar but I wasn't able to find any mounting points that would be sufficiently strong. I'm not sure exactly how the bull bars that have been mentioned on this forum and listed on Ebay are attached, but it seems to me that they must be more for looks than function. I would love to have a strong guard but I just don't see how to make it happen. To make matters worse, immediately behind the plastic grill work are several expensive components.

I have to conclude that a head on deer strike would be very expensive.
 

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I, too, have been concerned about a deer impact. I live in Texas on the edge of the hill country and deer are a sever problem here as well. When I had the front end off to put on the Home Depot grill guard to stop small rocks, large bugs and other small debris I tried to figure out how to mount a bull bar or something similar but I wasn't able to find any mounting points that would be sufficiently strong. I'm not sure exactly how the bull bars that have been mentioned on this forum and listed on Ebay are attached, but it seems to me that they must be more for looks than function. I would love to have a strong guard but I just don't see how to make it happen. To make matters worse, immediately behind the plastic grill work are several expensive components.

I have to conclude that a head on deer strike would be very expensive.
The problem with something like that is you are then compromising the design of the crumple zones. Several people have been in an >40mph collision and it totals the E because of the crumple zones.

Personally I'd rather have the car crumple than my head.
 

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I've been browsing this forum while getting ready to pick up my first Element in a day or 2 and I saw some pics of $5000 deer damage on an element.
That was mine.

It's been repaired and the list that was replaced was like 4 pages long. It's not prefect but it's functional.

The body shop guy DID put the Home Depot grille guard back on though. :D
 

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not perfect?

That was mine.

It's been repaired and the list that was replaced was like 4 pages long. It's not prefect but it's functional.

The body shop guy DID put the Home Depot grille guard back on though. :D
What do you mean?? Not Perfect? I just smacked a dear doing 80mph dead on. Gonna be about 5K or more and I am afraid of frame damage, and on and on and on. I dont want to get rid of my car, however I also dont want the hassle of what could happen in the aftermath.
 

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Deer usually win

:-( I've only had one vehicle in the last 20 years that deer didn't "attack". The vehicle is usually the loser in my experience. Frame damage should TOTAL the vehicle as it is unlikely to EVER be right again. I was younger and less experienced back in 1989 when 2 deer caused me to wreck my truck. To this day I'm not sure if I hit them or just the tree I careened into. The shaking at 55 thereafter was due to FRAME damage. The dealership that "fixed" it had gone under (shady dealings finally caught up with them) by the time I realized this. They took the insurance company's money even though they HAD to know the frame was bent. State Farm would have totalled the vehicle otherwise. If it's inoperable it may be difficult to get quotes from several shops, but I'd use caution believing a single shop that works closely with the insurance agent.
 

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Deerslayer

My 2006 Element had three mix-ups with deer in the last three years. The Element survived all three. The deer didn't fair so well. On one I hit the deer at roughly sixty miles per hour because it jumped out in front of me on the highway. It peeled the hood up but once again the Element survived the encounter. The front end seems to be sturdy enough that it protected me each time. The front end crumpled but didn't cave in. The last one did deploy the airbags, and I wouldn't want to go through that again. I got a burn from the steering wheel bag. They get pretty hot. My experience says the Element does well when it hits a deer. My Element got fixed each time by my body shop with no noticeable permanent damage.
 

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And think of all the free venison. :D

Deer's are light enough that most times, unless you hit a huge buck, the damage won't be enough to total the vehicle. Now a cow on the other hand :rolleyes:..

Friend hit one with his pickup, and wow - took out the whole front end. Same week, (same rancher's cows getting out and crossing the highway), two got hit by a semi truck haulling re-bar. Really messy - the cows actually exploded on impact. 300 yards of highway looked like a Taliban'd butcher shop. :lol:
 

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I second the notion that caution must be used when choosing a shop. Some of the insurance friendly shops are too friendly with the insurance companies and the work may be sub-par!!! Don't sign off on the work until you really have a chance to examine every little bit of what was done. If anything looks wrong take it back in and make them fix it!!!
 

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What do you mean?? Not Perfect? I just smacked a dear doing 80mph dead on. Gonna be about 5K or more and I am afraid of frame damage, and on and on and on. I dont want to get rid of my car, however I also dont want the hassle of what could happen in the aftermath.
The total for ours came out to about $4,800. What I mean by not perfect is that the you can tell a difference if you're paying attention between the two headlights. The one that was blown to bits by Bambi has a bit more space between the panel and the glass encasing. I'm not sure if this is because the panels are not the exact same size as the originals, if the glass casement is too small, or if in rebuilding the metal both are attached to the body shop wasn't exact.

The horn that was put back in my E looks the same as it did before, but for a while, it sounded a LOT weaker. I've heard complaints of a weak horn, but mine had NEVER sounded weak to me. I'm not sure if this has fixed itself or if I've gotten used to it, but it's still able to frighten my wife when I use the keyless to arm it. :D

There's also a drop of clearcoat on the door that dried and left a bump. This is sloppy, but I'm willing to call it an accident rather than poor craftsmanship because the rest of the paint is flawless and given that my door had chips in it, it's still a signifigant improvement.

Also, my wife claims the panels are now slightly mismatched. You don't notice your panels fade until one is brand new. I don't notice the mismatch, but my wife works in printing and has honed her vision to be as accurate as a spectrophotometer.
 

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- What I mean by not perfect is that the you can tell a difference if you're paying attention between the two headlights.

- The horn that was put back in my E looks the same as it did before, but for a while, it sounded a LOT weaker.

- There's also a drop of clearcoat on the door that dried and left a bump.

- Also, my wife claims the panels are now slightly mismatched. You don't notice your panels fade until one is brand new. I don't notice the mismatch, but my wife works in printing and has honed her vision to be as accurate as a spectrophotometer.
Man, I'd take it back. I used to have a friend who operated a one man body shop and I had watched him strip and repaint doors, hoods and trunks that didn't match to suit him. A good body shop will stand behind their work and should redo it if you are not satisfied.
 

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Man, I'd take it back.
The 272 mile drive each way makes it less-than-important.

My panels are not painted. The only way he could make them match is to replace panels that had no damage. I don't expect, nor would I want my insurance company to pay for, that.

The headlight thing doesn't affect functionality and it doesn't even bug me. It's simply a difference.

I don't plan on selling Bluebeard. I see no reason to fret over something that doesn't bug me and doesn't affect the functionality of the vehicle.

I'm merely laying out differences I noticed. These things MIGHT bug someone else who clips a deer, and in that case, I'd agree.

I'll also note... After NOT driving your Element for weeks, the first thing you notice is "Ohooooh, ooooh, oh! I can drive it, OMG, I've missed you!"

The second thing you notice is that you need gas.

Somewhere WAY down that list is "Oh, there's a drop of clearcoat there".
 
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