The Dodge Journey is a lot like an aggressive looking soccer mom car and that opens it up to a wider audience. With 5 models on offer, topping out at the $31,000, 283 hp V6, all models have a decent combination of tech, spec and features to make them worthy contenders in the segment. As a people carrier it does a great job, but can it keep buyers in the Dodge fold with such good rivals around?
As a people carrier, the Dodge Journey is one to look out for. The 5-model range doesn’t seem to have too much difference between them, so you’d need to take a bit of a closer look to see which one would be better suited to your needs and your budget. The Dodge Journey is a good-looking car, it has the dimensions of a soccer mom van but it has quite an aggressive look to it making it ideal for dad too. It’s nothing exciting though, but when you need a people mover with practicality, it has all the bases covered.
As you would expect, there’s a lot of space in a Dodge Journey, and with that comes some good features and options along with a lot of versatility. Seating is for five, or seven, depending on your needs for the day. Up front you can have a power 10-way adjustable seat complete with 4-way lumbar support, both front seats can be heated. Access to the interior is great with 90-degree rear-door openings and Tilt ’n Slide second-row seats to make access to the 3rd row easier.
Storage is the name of the game in the Dodge Journey with things like removable Dual In-Floor compartments that can take a dozen cans with ice; Flip ’n Stow that’s ideal for hiding tech goodies like a camera or laptop and a lot more space for more everyday carry items. Fit and finish is good all round, materials used feel sturdy and not cheap.
The Dodge Journey offers up an adequate driving experience, the available powertrains have good power and spec and the optional all-wheel drive system does give those models equipped with it a more planted and safer feel. This is good because the controls don’t really give any feedback and the auto transmission doesn’t exactly change through the gears at any sort of record pace, but do you really want all of those things in a people carrier though? If you’re looking for excitement, you won’t find too much of it in a Journey, but on the other hand the Dodge is a great way to get you and all your sporting equipment to an event that will get your excitement levels up. It’s not quite an SUV, and while it does have more ride height than a sedan, it’s not going to traverse any off-road trails with much flair.
Performance is really a term associated with transport in this category, as a result there really isn’t much to speak of. The lower four models see fitment of a 2.4-liter 4-cylinder motor with 173 hp that can return up to 25 mpg on the highway. This one is mated to a 4-speed automatic transmission that’s responsive enough, but will likely feel underwhelming when you want to get up to speed fast. The top model sees fitment of a much stronger 3.6-liter V6 with a much better 283 hp on tap to move the sizeable body around and oddly returns the same consumption as the smaller 4-cylinder engine. This one comes with a 6-speed auto transmission and is also necessary if you want the aforementioned all-wheel drive system.
The Dodge Journey does have some good tech and features inside. Dual-zone climate control, 12-volt power outlets, optional 115-volt/150-watt two-prong plugs to power gaming devices and there’s even a rear DVD entertainment system available too to keep the passengers in the back quiet. Up front the best setup is the available 8.4-inch touchscreen to head up the infotainment system, and that includes things like Bluetooth and satellite radio and navigation.
Added to the usual array of airbags, there’s some good safety on board. The Dodge Journey features Trailer Sway Damping to keep loads straight and safe, and there’s also rear park assist, rain brake support, blind spot monitoring with cross traffic alert, forward collision warning and ready alert braking among the rest of the modern features that are standard these days.
If your needs dictate that you have to move a few people, or a big family, in a safe and comfortable manner in a car that looks pretty good, then the Dodge Journey is a decent option. If you want all of that with better space and performance, you might want to have a look at class competitors first as a few boast better dimensions and spec. A Dodge Journey starts off with an MSRP of $21,195 (option dependent) and goes up to $31,995 (option dependent).