Mike Stevens | Apr 9, 2009

The mantle of ‘man's best friend’ has always been a bitterly-fought competition between canines and cars. Honda has stepped in with an olive branch of sorts, devising a way for the two to co-exist in harmony.

At the 2009 New York Auto Show, Honda has unveiled a ‘Dog Friendly’ edition of its Element SUV. The specially prepared Element comes with a raft of comfort and convenience features designed to make travelling with Fido safer and easier.

dog-friendly-honda-eelement

Inside the Dog Friendly Element, Honda has fitted a padded dog bed, rubber floor mats, dog-print seat covers in the rear and specialised restraints.

There’s also an extendable load ramp, spill-resistant water bowl and ‘Dog Friendly’ badging.

In 2007, dogcars.com awarded the Element its Dog Car Of The Year award.

Honda saw this as an excellent opportunity to tailor the abilities of the Element to be more in tune with the needs of buyers with four-legged travel companions.

dog-friendly-honda-element-5

"In an interesting turn of events, cars are now chasing dogs," Executive Vice President of American Honda John Mendel said.

"Factory integration of a cushioned pet bed, restraint systems and other components are intended to transform the Element into the ultimate dog car."

If your best mate is relegated to the back of a ute, then its probably wise not to mention the comparatively luxurious Element, lest you find yourself in the dog-house.

dog-friendly-honda-element

A production version of the Dog Friendly Element should be available in North America within six months.

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