Honda eliminating boxy Element
December 4th, 2010
09:34 AM ET

Honda eliminating boxy Element

The Honda Element, popular with dog owners and some types of businesses, will be discontinued after the 2011 model year, American Honda Motor Co. announced Friday.

Introduced in December 2002, the Element started a trend of box-on-wheels design reflected in Toyota's Scion xB and Mitsubishi's Outlander, among others.

"The Element proved that ultimate functionality can often come from thinking inside the box," John Mendel, executive vice president of American Honda, said in a press release. "It made boxy vehicle designs cool." gave the short-but-tall utility vehicle generally positive reviews.

"Behind that cubist philosophy is a level of versatility that sets it apart from many other small wagons and compact SUVs," the editors wrote of the 2011 model.

The Element was the subject of several recalls: 2003/04, ignition switch mechanism; 2007/08, braking system and stability module; and 2010, transmission shift cable.

Honda said it has sold about 325,000 Elements, but customers are increasingly attracted to crossover SUVs.

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Filed under: Auto Industry • Honda
soundoff (361 Responses)
  1. Bob

    "Introduced in December 2002, the Element started a trend of box-on-wheels design reflected in Toyota's Scion xB... "

    So you think the xB copied the Element? The xB/bB is 3 years older than the Element. /fuzzymath

    December 4, 2010 at 11:52 pm | Report abuse |
    • j

      do your research before you post.. the xb was designed in 2003/04... the element in 2002..... oh and by the way, i own both an xb and and element (had 2 elements, traded 1 for xb).. the element without a shadow of doubt had the highest resale value of any vehicle i have ever owned... bought a 03 in 2004, 35k, 4wd for 14,000... traded it in on a new scion in 2007 (08 xb).. got 13,200 in trade with 70k

      December 5, 2010 at 5:48 am | Report abuse |
  2. cb in Austin

    I like the "Elderment" (I'm 52) but it's fatal flaw is that it only seats FOUR. My minivan seats 7 and I need at least 6...

    December 5, 2010 at 12:13 am | Report abuse |
  3. KRG

    Bought a 2008 Honda Accord EX and it is the last HONDA I will ever buy. Terrible car and HONDA customer service SUCKS. I will buy a BMW, VW, Volvo, or MERCEDES next time.

    December 5, 2010 at 12:15 am | Report abuse |
    • john

      2008 Accord = BUILT IN THE USA

      December 5, 2010 at 5:36 am | Report abuse |
    • ybs

      Ask any mechanic that fixes both Honda & these European cars, and you'll know why Honda is the best car to own!

      You must have gotten a rare "Honda" lemon! The good news... getting two "Honda" lemons in a row is extremely rare! 🙂

      December 5, 2010 at 5:50 am | Report abuse |
  4. mmi16

    Nowhere near as UGLY as the Pontiac Aztec

    December 5, 2010 at 1:09 am | Report abuse |
  5. JR

    I am completely depressed! I was looking forward to the new improved Element to be developed. I have a 2006 AWD and absolutely no problems with it! I planned to drive an Element for the rest of my life, now what do I do? the CRV does not meet my needs! HONDA – CHANGE YOUR MINDS!!! KEEP THE ELEMENT!!!!!!!!

    December 5, 2010 at 1:31 am | Report abuse |
  6. EB

    Beauty is in the eyes of the beholder. I own a 2008 and I bought it because it was "me". I love the styel of it. I test drove the CR-V too, but everything about it just felt average- like any other car. The Element is unique. There are things about it I love and some that I don't. The carpet-less interior is awesome with kids. The trunk is great for dogs. I hate the position of the cup holder and I was disappointed that it only has 4 seats, but in the end I chose the 4 seats in the funky, unique package over the 5 seats in the average mom CR-V. I love Honda's, but since the CR-V isn't for me, they better come out with a comperable replacement in the next ten years or there might be a Scion with my name on it.

    December 5, 2010 at 2:42 am | Report abuse |
  7. Bobik

    Enough big cars from honda: Element, CRV, Pilot.Ridgeline

    December 5, 2010 at 6:06 am | Report abuse |
    • Robin Bray

      It is not big at all compared to the monster USVs out there that are so big that the hood is taller than their owners.

      December 5, 2010 at 7:33 am | Report abuse |
  8. Robin Bray

    Just bought one and love it. Had a 2001 CRV that was great for hauling supplies around in, but the new CRV is now a mommy car with a single piece tail gate that makes it as useless as others out there. As far as the comment ugly goes I guess you haven't seen the products of Ford of GM. Same old, same old, same old zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz. Give me form and function every time. And speaking of Ford and GM. I know my Honda will last past it's warranties, not so for the other cars. I know from years of previous American car ownership and disappointment.

    December 5, 2010 at 7:40 am | Report abuse |
  9. mike

    Used to drive one: TERRIBLE blind spots and the ignition defect was a SERIOUS problem.

    December 5, 2010 at 7:45 am | Report abuse |
  10. AC

    I own a 2004 Element It is the best car I've ever had. I was hoping to get a hybrid or electric model in a few years. It's cool and the ladies love it. I find so may good things about it I could have been their spokesman. It is a beautiful and unique car. The first time I saw it I knew I would get one. The Element has probably the smartest interior design on the road today. Some needed the 5th seat and I understand that was a deal breaker for many. Apart from that, practicality is the most important thing for me. I love that it does not have rugs that get smelly over time and don't hold dust. That floor is so easy to clean. My car still smells like new. The cargo space is awesome and the car turns on a dime. The handling is great for a car this tall, Good, reliable transpiration and so flexible. A smart car for smart people. I urge Honda to reconsider.

    December 5, 2010 at 7:55 am | Report abuse |
  11. Joe Nap

    We love our 2003 Element. I thought the "boxy look" was a bit much when my wife said she wanted one.
    Now I look for any excuse to drive it. I have kids, dogs, go-karts, a drum set, Guitars, amps, etc... The element was made for me, and no other vehicle can replace it's versatility. My friends call it a toaster! lol...Tailgating at concerts, camping, hauling, cruising, it's like my Playstation 3, it only does everything!
    Without the Element, I have no desire to consider another Honda. None of them have the "character" of the Element!

    December 5, 2010 at 7:56 am | Report abuse |
  12. bugboy

    Well, I guess my 2003 just became an instant collector!

    December 5, 2010 at 7:56 am | Report abuse |
  13. ray

    Hungry? out of work? house foreclosed on? Eat that Foreign vehicle.

    December 5, 2010 at 8:15 am | Report abuse |
    • Kim

      Built in East Liberty, Ohio.

      December 5, 2010 at 6:46 pm | Report abuse |
  14. Skinny Bill

    Honda getting rid of "boxy element". At first I thought this story was about Honda Motor Corporation firing all the fat people that work there. Maybe one day...

    December 5, 2010 at 8:17 am | Report abuse |
  15. EN

    Will Honda make a follow on SUV like the "E"?. Have a 2005 E and we love it. You can mop the floor to clean it!. The vehicle is really pet, baby, and child proof. 4-Cyl, No gas guzzler. Great turning radius!. CR-V does not match up to the versatility of the E. Accord Crosstour and the Pilot are way expensive replacements for the E. The "E" set the standard for the other cube models such as Toyota FJ-Cruiser, the Scion, and Nissan Cube. If Honda wants to keep the E owners in their customer base, they should design a suitable replacement for the "E".

    December 5, 2010 at 8:47 am | Report abuse |
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