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Dave Thomas over at Kicking Tires is the first on the web to post his opinion of the new 2007 Element SC after Honda held a meet and greet for its new models last week. Thomas admittedly didn't get the Element at first when it appeared on the scene in 2003, but gives credit to the toaster on wheels for the market's current crop of box cars. The SC, however, is a new kind of Element that sheds a bit of the original's overtly utilitarian duds for a new front fascia with projector beam headlamps, a lowered ride height thanks to a sport tuned suspension, larger 18-inch wheels and bumpers actually painted to match the rest of the vehicle (a surprisingly new feature for the Element). Thomas tested a $22k example of an Element SC painted in Root Beer Metallic.

The Element's four-cylinder engine received a 10-horsepower bump to 166 hp this year, which moves this enemy of aerodynamics with a little more urgency than before, but not much. Davis, however, falls for the Element SC not for its performance (good thing), but for its practicality. He warns those considering a manual transmission, however, that Honda likes to put the stick up high on the dash, but we've found most people don't mind the odd placement. It looks wierd at first but generally feels comfortable.

To us, the Element and its boxy brethren always seemed like the cardboard boxes of the auto industry -– they're inherently useful and if you use your imagination can be a lot of fun. Looks like Honda used some imagination on the Element SC.

[Source: Kicking Tires]


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  • 21 Comments
      • 8 Years Ago
      Honda followed GM with the grey side moulding. Now GM done away with it now Honda. This should make the Element look nicer. We saw how GM was bashed with the Aztec. Honda has this and Toyota has the Scion essentally the same vehicle as the Aztec and thats ok? Go figure! At least the Aztec din`t look like a box.
      • 8 Years Ago
      "So when did Honda start "rebranding" Scion xB's?"

      The Element dwarfs the xB. I moved from NYC to the burbs after not having a car for about 17 years. I have a 3 year old and I like to haul some stuff around. I personally always thought the Element was a granola cruncher ride. After comparing the Scion and the Element I was amazed at the quality and size difference. I never thought I would buy one (black element ex-p) and I love it. I do wish it had more power but it is so functional. My kid drops stuff and I just hose out the thing (not touching the fron control panel) and when both back seats are up, I can put a ton of stuff in it. I absolutely love this car and I'm so glad I bought it.
      • 8 Years Ago
      i'd rather drive this over the aztec any day, and not just because it's a honda.....
      • 8 Years Ago
      Complain all you want. This vehicle has done well for Honda, ugly or not. I've known people who own it and they love it. So it is really a love/hate car. I also have a friend that purchased the Scion xB. He's crazy about that cube. I'm not a fan. But Honda seems to have a fan base for it in the market. It does look much much better!
      • 8 Years Ago
      The Aztec was a very functional vehicle but that didn't stop all the import lovers from criticizing it. -Whydrive

      What are you smoking and where can I get it?
      • 8 Years Ago
      Comparing the looks of the Aztec to Element? Are you kidding me? Gimme a break.
      • 8 Years Ago
      Is there a VERY large wad of cash being dumped on Autoblog.com to "print" all these stories about the SC Element? I sure hope so. What is this the 4th or 5th story this month about the SC? Are we all so starved for something to read that we need to be told several times that the "new and improved" 4 cylinder engine in the Element will produce 10 more horsepower than the engine in '05 Elements? Or that the headlights will have projector beam type elements? That the wheels will be 18 inches on the SC and the the whole package is painted a nice rootbeer metallic?

      I own a Honda but this story is no longer news...unless it is considered to be NEWS when you report someone else's opinions.
      • 8 Years Ago
      I can forgive the styling, though the SC version certainly looks a bit better at least. What I will continue not to forgive is the pricing.

      Selling a model of the element for more over $22,000 is just stupid and pricing it outside of its market. I don't care what the marketing folks at Honda think, very few people making $70,000 are going to buy it. They should be pricing it so that the top end model comes in at just at $20,000 with the base versions around $15,000 so that they are just upmarket of the Xb.
      • 8 Years Ago
      So when did Honda start "rebranding" Scion xB's?
      • 8 Years Ago
      laserwizard, I wonder how many folks will relize your "Are you being served" satire?

      No hosing out the SC Element, as I believe it also gets carpet.

      2006 was the first model year that painted plastic body panels were added as an option on the EX model, so this isn't the first Element from Honda to sport them, as the EX-P was available this year, 2007 all EX Elements get the Painted plastic body panels and, so there is only one trim level that still gets the non painted body panels.

      It's still one hell of a versatile vehicle and with the front seat belts now integrated into the front seats, Honda corrected one big fault a lot of Element owners complained about. Any additional power is good power, but I'd like to see the Element with at least 200 HP. The manual tranny is in the perfect place, it looks wierd, except to those of us the grew up desiring Alfa Romeo Spiders, but it is the most natural placement for a shifter, after you drive you wonder why all automakers don't put it in the same place.

      I personally think there are some big differences between the Element, the xB and the Aztec. But needless to say go look at your spouse/significant other, beauty is in the eye of the beholder and some times functionality trumps beauty.
      • 8 Years Ago
      They need to give the rocket scientist who thought about dropping the body cladding a raise. Who thinks of this stuff? This person has got to be really, really smart.
      • 8 Years Ago
      I just got my first look at the Element SC. It is what I have been waiting for!!!! I have a problem with the seat in the Element. The SC fixed it. The seat edges are too thinly padded on the standard versions. The SC has thicker padding and it is way more comforatable. I spend about 3-5 hours a day in my car so that kind of detail stuff is important to me. Also, I am very tall and my head hits the roof of just about every car/suv/truck, on the market. The element is the king of headroom and visibility (sans the A pillars). I don't much choice in the car I drive, because I don't fit into that many cars. Maybe someday I will be able to order a triple extra large Miata with a Hemi?
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