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Discussion Starter #1
Well folks, there’s going to be one more FJ Cruiser out there for one of you to buy. I just couldn’t wait any longer to get a reliable Do-It-All utility vehicle for a daily driver and the fact that the FJ Cruiser doesn’t have a rear tailgate, fold flat seats and flat floor has been really bumming me out, as well as, buying a pre-release first year production model. Honestly, what was Toyota thinking when they didn’t put a tailgate on this thing?

Anyway, I think Honda got the interior and rear hatch right on their Element. The Element is one of the most universal vehicles I have ever seen (much like my International Travelall with a flat floor, folding/removable rear seat and a TAILGATE!). The one thing I never really liked about the Honda Element is the funky gray plastic panels all over it, but in 2006 Honda offers the EX-P (“P”ainted side, front and rear panels) and the remaining plastic rockers, roof rails and bumpers are black. Much better looking!

Now I’d be the first to admit the Element is no “real” 4x4 like the FJC is supposed to be. It does have 4WD that kicks in when the front wheels break loose via a center clutch/transfer case system that transfers power to the rear wheels when needed. This should be helpful in snow, dirt and sand, but clearly not a true 4x4 off-road vehicle by any means. It wasn’t meant to be and I still have my 4x4 Travelall beast for that.

If you haven’t already guessed by now, I bought a 2006 Honda Element EX-P 4WD in Atomic Blue Metallic (new 2006 color). Standard features are top notch and the 6-speaker with sub-woofer stereo CD/MP3/XM is wonderful. It’s not just XM capable, but XM completely installed. That means it’s ready to go when you drive it home and the first three months are free.

Ended up getting about $2k of MSRP. That makes this loaded Element about $10K cheaper than a loaded FJC (if prices come in where we think they will?). Plus the Element has been out for a few years already and that makes me feel better. I may revisit the FJ Cruiser in about 2 ½ -3 years, but for now I am a real happy camper with my new Honda Element EX-P 4WD daily driver!!! :D

If you don’t need a “real” 4x4 vehicle, then I highly recommend taking a serious look at the Honda Element EX-P 4WD for it’s unequaled utility design and economy. But, if you want to do real 4x4ing, then stay the course…

So, there’s one more FJ Cruiser out there for one of you. Hope you get the loaded FJ Cruiser that I was going to buy (whenever they get them out :confused: )

Cheers!
 

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MAN DOWN! WE'VE GOT A MAN DOWN!!!

Sorry to hear that. But, as long as your happy, I am happy for you.
 

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you really cant go wrong with a honda, well maybe if its a ridgeline. Your right about the "P" looks pretty good. now just add some tires and a lift....
 

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I priced out an element after reading all of this and it came to $25K! For a 197 horse 4 cylinder.... NO FREAKIN' WAY. I'll keep waiting, thank you very much.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Percy said:
I priced out an element after reading all of this and it came to $25K! For a 197 horse 4 cylinder.... NO FREAKIN' WAY. I'll keep waiting, thank you very much.
Sticker is $22,875 with shipping for the 06 Honda Element EX-P 4WD (only comes one way) and I paid $23,000 OUT-THE-DOOR! That's about $2,000 below MSRP. If a loaded FJC comes in at $29,999 ($30K), then you're looking at about $33,000 out-the-door compared to the $23,000 I paid for the loaded 2006 Honda Element EX-P 4WD...

THAT'S ABOUT $10,000 CHEAPER!!! (NO JOKE)

It meets my needs, but it's not a 4x4 off-road vehicle like the FJ Cruiser is said to be. Not trying to convert any true 4x4ers.

Price competition is a bitch...
 

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I see exactly what you're saying, really, I do... I went to the Honda site and built the 4x4 Ex-P up with accessories just like I was going to do my FJ and it came to just under $25K. Now, if I can get my 6-spd FJ for $28K, I'm still waiting. Yeah, it'll be more with tax, just means a bigger smile to know that it's....

"Mine, mine all mine you can't have any..." - Daffy Duck.
 

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Hey Mr Down...I love it when someone is into their recent purchase like your are! I think buying a new car is like christmas morning when we were kids...you feel elated for a while with all the new toys and then you're just driving another used car.
I know you (from your alternate vehicle described) have the ability to experience true "mudslingin" 4Wheelin fun. I just want to ask you this..if you are at a stoplight and a mud covered Fj pulls up next to you, with the subwoofer bumpin and ceiling harmonizing, with its 3 little clean arcs across the windshield....would you rather be driving your IH Travelall or the ELEMENT??
Just curious, I think Elements are kinda neat too but it's not an Fj substitute...are you experiencing buyers remorse...is it the day after christmas?
 

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Discussion Starter #8 (Edited)
Percy -

You're right, it's a 4-banger. 2.5L with a timing "chain", not a belt like most other Honda's (doesn't need to be changed). First maintanence is at 100,000 miles. Oil changes at every 10,000 or one year, which ever occurs first.

Averaged 23.5 MPG the frist two tanks of combined city/highway driving so far!

The price I quoted is for the "Automatic EX-P 4WD" (top-of-the-line). The automatic has a switch similar to my brothers Ford F250 Diesel Crewcab 4x4's tow-haul-mode on the shifter that holds the gears longer and prevents gear searching while driving mountain roads or towing. Nice feature. Manual models are even cheaper...

The sound system has an auxilary plug-in for other devices to play through the 6-speaker/sub-woofer stereo system. I think you can plug in an ipod and similar devices (?).

It's a real nice package that is truly a versatile vehicle.

I still like the FJ Cruiser, but that will have to wait a few years now... Maybe they'll add a tailgate by then. :mad:
 

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Discussion Starter #9
RoverGGM said:
Hey Mr Down...I love it when someone is into their recent purchase like your are! I think buying a new car is like christmas morning when we were kids...you feel elated for a while with all the new toys and then you're just driving another used car.
I know you (from your alternate vehicle described) have the ability to experience true "mudslingin" 4Wheelin fun. I just want to ask you this..if you are at a stoplight and a mud covered Fj pulls up next to you, with the subwoofer bumpin and ceiling harmonizing, with its 3 little clean arcs across the windshield....would you rather be driving your IH Travelall or the ELEMENT??
Just curious, I think Elements are kinda neat too but it's not an Fj substitute...are you experiencing buyers remorse...is it the day after christmas?
No buyers remorse here! I think I've stated my thoughts and needs pretty clearly. Auto purchases are indiviual choices, that's for sure...

The Elelment IS a substitute for the FJC for many that will be considering it. Believe me, most people don't "need" a real 4x4 at all. Many will never even take it off-road. That's sad, but true! At $10,000 dollars cheaper, those people "may" just be better served.

Don't stop dreaming of your FJC though!!!

Just letting everyone know what I decided on in the end. I'll keep my Element clean and let my Travelall get muddy and all scratched up, thank you. ;)
 

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I had a friend with the element, I looked at it. It doesn't work for me, but like I said - I am happy for you. The wait is killing me. I looked at a Tundra today... I don't want one, really, but it was nice... it made me think about waiting another month or two... then I got told I could put my deposit down for my FJ!

Back to calling my friends FJ for another 3 months. SIGH!
 

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is an element really in the same class and function as the fj? heard of the thing but dont really know anything about it. no doubt i will be checkin it out tomorrow when im supposed to be working - in between building my fj for the 50th time in 2 days.
 

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Hunkerdown I think anyone with a brain understands your point but relax a little you dont really need to justify your choice to anyone. In many ways the element is a better ride then the FJ specially if your purpose is less then off roading transcendency. But you have to understand a fraction of the group here off roading is pre-eminent, even if its more pretense then purpose (and many of us are very worried that this inclination is going to cost us more then we really would like). So trying to make camparison is frivolous. Enjoy your ride and when ur done you will get a good resale.
 

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Nice buy, Hunker! I'm almost at 60,000 miles on my '04 Element. It's been a great vehicle. I'm going for an FJ next because of a need for more off-road capability for work. You'll love the element.
 

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it came to $25K! For a 197 horse 4 cylinder....

I looked at the site... 156 horsepower - did I miss an optional engine upgrade? I gotta say the new "P" looks a lot better than it did. I built one and it came out to just less than 25k. Even tho' I dont thik the vehciles are comprable (156 hp to 245?) I am betting that an FJ built with the same options will come out to about 28K unless the dealers tack on some bs supply and demand extra charge. The Element looks better now than it did and seems pretty economical. But, I am getting what I want or I ain't gettin' nothin'. And I still want the FJ. I do salute the gentleman that bought the Element. Based upon his needs, looks like he made a logical decision.
 

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I almost bought an Element. I looked at one, and was amazed at the room and utility. It has the most headroom of any vehicle on the market today, and I loved the folding seats, the rubber interior, and the tailgate. It was the most comfortable vehicle that my 6'6" body could fit in. I saw that I could store my surfboards in the vehicle and go straight to the beach after work. I hated the old plastic exterior panels but the new painted version looks great. I came home from the dealership and told my wife that I found my new car. She patiently listened when I showed her the brochure and then, God bless her, she looked into my eyes and said: "Are you really willing to give up driving on the beach?" One week later I put down my deposit on an FJ. The wait has been killing me, especially the pricing, but I have to think long term and not short term. The Honda Element is a great car if you don't need true four wheel drive-but my wife knew that it wasn't the car for me.
 

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I love honda. And before the FJ I loved the idea of the Element. But seeing it in person and sitting in it. It is a joke. It's a bigger civic and IMHO is not even in the same league as a FJ. As much as I hate Jeeps and Hummers...I can at least see how someone in the market for an FJ could settle on one. If you were truly in the market for an FJ then why an Element over a Xterra? Just curious?
 

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I looked at the Element before I bought my 4Runner. I thought I would save some money on purchase and gas and the car had a lot of utility and practicality. So I brought my wife to see it and she looked in the back seat and said "it only has two seatbelts" I shoved her out of the way and looked and sure enough it was only a 4 seater. With three kids and a wife that won't work.

Oh well, I'm pretty happy with the 4Runner and have no buyer remorse over it.
 

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HunkerDown said:
Well folks, there’s going to be one more FJ Cruiser out there for one of you to buy. I just couldn’t wait any longer to get a reliable Do-It-All utility vehicle for a daily driver and the fact that the FJ Cruiser doesn’t have a rear tailgate, fold flat seats and flat floor has been really bumming me out, as well as, buying a pre-release first year production model. Honestly, what was Toyota thinking when they didn’t put a tailgate on this thing?

Anyway, I think Honda got the interior and rear hatch right on their Element. The Element is one of the most universal vehicles I have ever seen (much like my International Travelall with a flat floor, folding/removable rear seat and a TAILGATE!). The one thing I never really liked about the Honda Element is the funky gray plastic panels all over it, but in 2006 Honda offers the EX-P (“P”ainted side, front and rear panels) and the remaining plastic rockers, roof rails and bumpers are black. Much better looking!

Now I’d be the first to admit the Element is no “real” 4x4 like the FJC is supposed to be. It does have 4WD that kicks in when the front wheels break loose via a center clutch/transfer case system that transfers power to the rear wheels when needed. This should be helpful in snow, dirt and sand, but clearly not a true 4x4 off-road vehicle by any means. It wasn’t meant to be and I still have my 4x4 Travelall beast for that.

If you haven’t already guessed by now, I bought a 2006 Honda Element EX-P 4WD in Atomic Blue Metallic (new 2006 color). Standard features are top notch and the 6-speaker with sub-woofer stereo CD/MP3/XM is wonderful. It’s not just XM capable, but XM completely installed. That means it’s ready to go when you drive it home and the first three months are free.

Ended up getting about $2k of MSRP. That makes this loaded Element about $10K cheaper than a loaded FJC (if prices come in where we think they will?). Plus the Element has been out for a few years already and that makes me feel better. I may revisit the FJ Cruiser in about 2 ½ -3 years, but for now I am a real happy camper with my new Honda Element EX-P 4WD daily driver!!! :D

If you don’t need a “real” 4x4 vehicle, then I highly recommend taking a serious look at the Honda Element EX-P 4WD for it’s unequaled utility design and economy. But, if you want to do real 4x4ing, then stay the course…

So, there’s one more FJ Cruiser out there for one of you. Hope you get the loaded FJ Cruiser that I was going to buy (whenever they get them out :confused: )

Cheers!



Was the Ridgeline even an options for you or was it too pricy ?!?!?
 
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