I will be moving from the Midwest to Massachusetts this summer, and I want to replace my VW Beetle for a small SUV. I’m considering pre-owned cars only and I would like to get an AWD or 4WD due to winter driving to and from work (I will have to commute 35-38 miles everyday). Although the design of the Honda Element is not my favorite, I do like the safety ratings, cargo space, and pre-owned Elements are within my budget. However, what I’m not crazy about is the fuel economy (~19-20 MPG).
So here’s my main question: is a 4WD Honda Element worth the 19MPG during MA winters or is it overkill?
Also, if you were considering to buy a used Honda Element (year 2006 and newer) what kind of questions would you ask the dealer, and what kind of issues would you have the mechanic pay special attention to while inspecting it?
Thanks for your input!