2003 Honda Element EX 2.4L from North America


Crap in a square bucket!


Heater blower motor has failed 3 times at a cost of $300 each!

Heater control box failed at 120,000 miles. Replacement cost was $1200!

Many dash lights had failed by 50,000 miles. Dealer said it would cost $1000 to remove the dash and replace the bulbs! They are still out.

Oil pressure sensor has failed 3 times. When this happens, it won't go over 45mph... bad news if you're on the freeway! Cost to repair approx $100 each time.

Shocks and bushings are worn out, but have yet to be replaced.

Numerous other small problems.

General Comments:

Most expensive car to operate that I have ever had! (due to repairs)

Gas mileage is poor for a 4 cylinder... my V8 Camaro gets the same mileage (24mpg hwy)

My daughter bought a 2006 Element, and is having issues already at 50,000 miles.

I wouldn't have another one if they gave it to me!

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 1st January, 2010

21st Apr 2010, 13:07

Sorry to hear about all the trouble you have had with your Element.

I have a 2003 Element with 111,850 miles on it that I have had since new, and have had very little trouble with it.

I did have to have the driver's side door lock fixed at about 80,000 miles, the passenger power motor window and one of the engine mounts at 84,000, but other than that, just routine maintenance. Haven't replaced brake pads yet, and am on only my second set of tyres (replaced at 57K miles).

I was a bit upset at the three problems I had around 80-84K miles, but other than that, I am very pleased and plan to keep my Element for 300K miles. No further or other problems so far (knock on wood!)

My only complaint is the gas mileage, which is rather poor for a 4 cyl, but this is a vehicle that is as heavy as a full sized car, and not very aerodynamic.

31st Jan 2011, 09:26

Wow, amazing. Have you ever heard of the lemon law. Yeah, pretty much states that if you have a specific problem that can't be fixed after the second try, you get a new one. You should have tried that before spending all your money for repairs.

20th Apr 2011, 18:01

I am the one who posted the comment on April 21, 2010.

My 2003 Element now has 129,100 miles on it, and I finally had to replace the front brake pads the first time at 127,500 miles. The rear brake pads are still original. I am still on my second set of tyres that I replaced back at 57K miles, and they still are good.

I did have to have the gas gauge fixed recently. But still, overall I am very happy with my Element. I plan on keeping it until it dies.

2003 Honda Element EX from North America


I've had several issues with my 2003 Honda Element since my 2003 purchase.

I've had the driver/passenger side door locks replaced TWICE due to jamming.

Starter was replaced 7/2/09 for $1007.00 due to starter motor burning out.

Once I picked up my car up from Honda, after getting the starter replaced, I had a problem placing the key in the ignition. It did exactly like my door locks did when they were about to jam. From 7/2/09-7/7/09 I had to force my key into the ignition, and the key finally went in without force on 7/7/09, but it would not turn the cylinder at all. I called Honda and they suggested W-D 40, and the W-D 40 did nothing at all! So I was stranded for the second time in a month that just started.

I had my Element towed back to the dealership and was told my tumblers went out in the cylinder, and it would cost anywhere from $360.00-$865.00 for repairs. After explaining I'd given Honda $1007.00 less than a week ago and could not afford the price quotes, I was told the repair costs could not go lower than $160.00!

After the repairs to the ignition were complete, the key still seems to hesitate before entry. Therefore I am dreading my next trip to Honda, which will occur in the coming week or so I'm sure. And not to mention other minor repairs that have occurred throughout the years. Problems that did not occur on vehicles I previously owned.

If you are going to purchase a Honda Element, please be prepared for ongoing repairs regardless if you buy it NEW or USED. And the repair process will start sooner than one would think!

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Don't Know

Review Date: 10th July, 2009

10th Jul 2009, 22:36

"Starter was replaced 7/2/09 for $1007.00 due to starter motor burning out."

Buy a repair manual. You can change out the starter on the Element yourself. It's not that hard. It appears that you paid roughly $900 for labor. That is ludicrous.

Our Honda Civic was a total nightmare. I'd advise you to consider a far more reliable American car next time. We now own two GM and two Ford cars. The oldest is 9 years old. The only repairs on the 9-year-old GM has been one light bulb and front brake pads at 70,000 miles (at a cost of $17). None of the others have ever had ANY repairs. You've spent more on your Element than we've spent on our last DOZEN domestics COMBINED!!

24th Jan 2010, 23:16

I have a 2003 Honda Element EX with 245,000 miles on it. It has been a very-reliable vehicle, for the most part. I have replaced:

A/C pump and condenser $800.

Starter $400.

Front brakes & rotors $250.