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2009 Honda Element vs. Its Competition

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Our expert editors build comparisons like this one to make it easy for you to understand the small handful of cars you should compare to whatever car you are already looking at. You get general thoughts on each car you should consider plus an easy way to compare basic information for yourself.
2009 Honda Element
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TCC Rating
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Browse Used Listings

Scion's xB is a capacious, convenient vehicle, but has recently grown bigger and heavier (some 600 pounds greater than before), diluting its nimbleness; with that extra weight, its more powerful 2.4-liter engine delivers lower fuel economy without much more impressive performance than the former 1.5-liter.

The Mazda5 is probably the Element's fiercest competitor in terms of value and convenience, though its minivan silhouette might make it a no-go for some.

Finally, Kia's upcoming Soul promises a strong dose of fresh style in the mini-crossover market, though initial driving impressions rate it as somewhat less refined than the 2009 Honda Element.

For those who love and need vans—especially small-business owners—the Ford Transit Connect arrives for the 2010 model year with a four-cylinder powertrain and a customizable rear cargo area.

2009 Honda Element2009 Honda Element2010 Ford Transit Connect XLT w/rear door privacy glass Angular Front Exterior View2010 Ford Transit Connect2010 Kia Soul2010 Kia Soul2009 Scion xB 2009 Scion xB2008 Mazda MAZDA5 Sport2008 Mazda MAZDA5
Quick Specs
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TCC Rating
The 2009 Honda Element is a relatively efficient, remarkably convenient small utility vehicle that's easy to drive and configurable for multiple tastes and uses.
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TCC Rating
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TCC Rating
Fun, fun, fun: Kia tries a little Soul on for size, and it fits.
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TCC Rating
The 2009 Scion xB has polarizing looks, a no-haggle dealer experience, and a long safety features list. It provides good value for those on a budget.
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TCC Rating
Provided you don't expect too much of a zoom-zoom feel, the 2008 Mazda Mazda5 is one of the few good choices for buyers looking for minivan spaciousness in a vehicle that's especially fuel-efficient and maneuverable.
MSRP From    
$20,275Browse Used Listings$21,185Browse Used Listings$13,300Browse Used Listings$15,750Browse Used Listings$17,995Browse Used Listings
Gas Mileage    
18 MPG City / 25 MPG Hwy22 MPG City / 25 MPG Hwy24 MPG City / 31 MPG Hwy22 MPG City / 28 MPG Hwy
Gas I4Gas I4Gas I4Gas I4N/A
EPA Class    
2WD Sport UtilityN/ASmall Station WagonSmall Station WagonN/A
Style Name    
2WD 5-Door Automatic LX114.6" XL w/o side or rear door glass5-Door Wagon Manual5-Door Wagon Manual (Natl)4-Door Wagon Manual Sport
Front Wheel DriveFront Wheel DriveFront Wheel DriveFront Wheel DriveN/A
Passenger Capacity    
Passenger Doors    
Body Style    
4 DoorCargo Van5dr Wgn4 Door WagonN/A
Automatic w/ODAutomatic w/ODManualManual w/ODN/A
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