Generations Timeline, Specs and Pictures
Honda built the Element for only one generation, and its sales didn’t meet the expectations, and the project was dropped in 2011.
In 2001, Honda showcased the Model X concept car at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit, and the public warmly welcomed it. The production version was introduced at the New York Auto Show in the next year, and the orders started to come. The car was a mix between an MPV and an SUV. On paper, it should have been a big success. But in real life, that didn’t happen.
Maybe it was the arguable design that spoiled the sales chart. Its plastic body panels and the rear’s suicide doors were not the best sales argument on the market. Honda’s U.S. Design Center made the sketches and imagined a vehicle with a rugged appearance, black and scratch-resistant panels, and a pair of squared headlights deep behind the front fascia. The steep A-pillars and flat sides made the car look like a house on wheels, especially due to the back’s rear drop. The 4x4 versions even featured a panoramic roof to admire the stars while camping.
Inside, the Element featured a highly adjustable interior. The rear seats could fold flat on the floor, and they were straightforward to access thanks to the rear-hinged back doors. It’s two bucket seats were high off the base at the front, allowing a roomy interior.
Hond built the Element on the same platform with the CR-V and powered it with a 2.4-liter VTEC engine. The car was available with either front- or all-wheel-drive.