Last post on Jul 06, 2012 at 5:27 PM
You are in the Honda Element
What is this discussion about?
Honda Element, Hatchback, SUV
Nov 17, 2003 (6:51 am)
So now we have PB2.0, aka 2004_element. Can we get the new one to use some paragraphs to make the posts a little easier to read? :o)
varmint must have ESP, and I don't mean Electronic Stability Program.
I test drove a 2003 Vue, and also one of the newer CR-Vs, and much preferred the Honda. Saturn did improve the interiors for 2004, plus they now use a Honda 3.5l V6 engine. The Vue Redline looks interesting.
But IIRC you weren't really into earth-crushing power, just a practical ride.
A couple of caveats: the spare is a donut, vs. a full-sizer in the CR-V. And you have to remove your seat belt to open the rear door. Some may find that inconvenient, others won't. Just about everyone would like the wipe-clean interior, though.
Nov 17, 2003 (5:25 pm)
Hey there. I'm looking at an EX Automatic right now for purchase this week or next. I'm 55, and live in upstate NY. I like the quirky outside looks of the E, and think that as a gardener, the insides are great for hauling mulch, bushes, potting soil, and such.
I am being quoted $20,310 and want to trade in my Dodge Dakota '02, which has an awful suspension (yep--rides like a truck, but worse), and do a "SmartBuy" deal--4 years of payments, 15K miles, then trade it in with $11K being applied to my next Honda. I owe $12K on my truck, and it's worth $9K as a trade, so basically I'm financing a $22.5K car. I am hoping to get payments in the $315 a month range.
Like the blue, the silver, and the orange (the green is nice, but Ilike the other colors better).
Glad to be here.
#2788 of 4724 I'd avoid smartbuy like the plague.
Nov 18, 2003 (3:15 am)
It's a balloon payment plan. Almost a lease but worse. That $11,000 isn't being applied to your next Honda, it's the final payment on the current one(the Element).
#2789 of 4724 I would never do that, too.
Nov 18, 2003 (4:48 am)
Best idea is: A savings account which has been all along INTEREST EARNED on said savings and draw and pay cash for the new car deal amount due.
Next best idea is: A home equity loan for the amount due. This is the only way to deduct INTEREST PAID on Schedule A Itemized deductions and get a tax break.
Go to your bank or credit union "I want a new car", and have them explain to you the total financial differences between a home equity loan vs. car loan vs. leasing, and income tax deductions.
Study the total cost, not the monthly payment.
You said "for purchase this week or next", probably your bank is the only way you will do that timing.
Nov 18, 2003 (7:30 am)
Hmm, you're upside down on the Dodge, but you aren't happy with it. Maybe try to sell it privately, you'll get more than the dealer will offer (wholesale, basically).
There's the catch with the huge rebates Dodge offers - values drop like a rock falling off a cliff.
Without interest, $315 per month adds up to $18,900 over 5 years. But subtract the $3000 you still owe and you have about $16 grand to spend (minus interest).
So I would try to stay within that amount, and for that you could get a more basic Element DX.
If you do that, you'll turn your situation around with time. Why? Because Hondas really hold their value well. The Element will still be worth $8 or $9 grand in 5 years, so you'll actually have a lot of equity.
So by 2008 you'll have a solid $9 grand down payment on a 2008 Honda Flying Hydrid Fuel Cell Diesel Spacecraft.
If you lease now, and roll your $3000 debt into that payment, you will have a high payment and nothing to show for it at the end of it all.
From now on, try to stick with brands that have better resale. If you look around, a '98 CR-V, Forester, or RAV4 are worth about the same as a Grand Cherokee of the same age, yet the Jeep cost up to $10 grand more when new. So the Jeep owner took a bath on depreciation.
Option B would be to drive the Dakota until it's paid off, or longer, but you don't like it and I just can't recommend that.
#2791 of 4724 Thanks For The Advice --
Nov 18, 2003 (6:02 pm)
I will look into buying a DX AWD outright with and without trade-in. The only options the EX has that I can't live without have been added by a local dealer. I'll get back to you on the results!
Nov 18, 2003 (6:06 pm)
I'm guessing A/C. Another thing, did someone say the 2004s will offer an LX trim? That may be a good compromise.
Nov 19, 2003 (3:55 pm)
The LX models add an AM/FM/CD audio system with four speakers and air conditioning with micron air filtration.
Seems like I'd be doing without alloy wheels, ABS, cruise control, power mirrors, a 7-speaker 270-watt audio system with auxiliary audio input and the waterproof material on the front and rear bucket seats (front seat only on DX models).
Nov 19, 2003 (4:49 pm)
Alloys are cosmetic, the steelies are still 16", right?
ABS is the one feature I'd miss. You can install cruise after the sale, I did with my Forester (it became standard the next year, figures).
I don't have power mirrors and never needed them. I don't think I've adjusted my mirrors once since I bought it.
If the price is right, you can probably squeeze an LX into your budget, and in 5 years you'd have that equity you want.
Nov 19, 2003 (4:56 pm)
When will the 2004 Elements be available? Anybody know?