2010 Honda Element EX 4WD

The Dog-Friendly Element seems a bit silly to me, made slightly obsolete by the fact that the Element is already so dog friendly without the $995 in accessories. With washable floors, durable fabrics, and the flip-up rear seats, the boxy Honda is a great choice if you're frequently traveling with one or two large dogs. The new dog-friendly package, however, seems to cater to those who love to accessorize their pooch, which is really a niche of a niche.

The rear kennel is big, consuming the entire cargo area, and I personally wouldn't want to deal with it every time I ran to the grocery store or needed to pack a suitcase. The ramp is also a bit clumsy, and it's really useful only for a dog that's too large to pick up and too old to get in on its own. The water bowl and the fan seem like gimmicky add-ons that would receive little use. I certainly like dogs, but I wouldn't say dog lover is part of my personality. With that, I think the accessories prove to be more hassle than help in a car that already caters to canines.

Eric Tingwall, Associate Editor

Another major carmaker has made a huge recall due to a defective part that could cause serious injuries to drivers. After the recall made by Toyota, Honda decided to do the same. Honda has to recall almost 400,000 cars due to faulty airbags, made by Takata Corp in the US. Only models made from 2001 to 2002 are affected, but if their airbags are likely to explode, then people who bought these cars should have to shoulder the cost if you pay for a car (they're expensive!) you shouldn't even have to think about payday loans or shouldering any cost at all if they muff it. Detroit has to love the Toyota recall and the Honda recall although it isn't as if GM, Ford, or Chrysler hasn't made defective products either. (The Ford Pinto, Firestone Tires, and so forth.)
I think a truly "dog friendly" car would not have cloth seats. Better break out the pet hair roller.

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