2018 Dodge Journey Review& Compare | Sandy, UT

2018 Dodge Journey Review Sandy

The Dodge Journey 3-Row SUV: not just a mini-Durango

Two SUVs: both muscular and tough-looking; both with comfortable and versatile interiors; both with three rows of seating; both with multiple power options. But, don't mistake the new Dodge Journey for an undersized Durango. These two crossovers are entirely different beasts, and the Journey is a lot more likely to make an appearance in the average driveway. Why? It all starts with the price tag.

The Dodge Journey is one of the most affordable SUVs in its class--and unquestionably the most affordable three-row SUV. Its closest rival (in value) was, up until recently, the Nissan Rogue; another seven-seater crossover with a lower starting price. But, as the Rogue quietly deleted its third-row option, Dodge went the opposite direction. If passenger space is your top priority, the Journey's practical rear bench seat--now standard on all four trim levels--really boosts your max seating for the money.

Value has always been a driver of sales for the Journey, and the most recent generation is no different. This versatile SUV hasn't seen a major redesign in years--really, since its first release back in 2009--and it's made little effort to become the biggest, baddest, or boldest midsize crossover in its segment. But that's because it doesn't have to. People continue to flock to models like the Journey SE, SXT, Crossroad, and GT because you get a lot for what you spend.

It's what the people want--and Dodge is all about knowing what the people want.

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A signature, throwback look

The Journey isn't quite as sharp or angular as other modern SUVs--but Dodge is rarely the type to follow any sort of trend, preferring instead to stand firm to their long history of doing whatever they want. It's why, even though the Journey has been on sale for more than a decade, it hasn't strayed far from its original design language of bold, straight character lines, a slight dip in the roofline, and the classic Crosshair grille.

You won't have to look twice to know that this SUV is a Dodge, though, even without some of the more iconic features and dongles. The Journey doesn't get the racing-inspired taillight bar that you'd find on the Charger, the Durango, or the Dart, but it does opt for LED taillamps with a "Ring of Fire" design. It's an interested deviation from the norm, but it looks good with the overall style.

Exterior colors for the Dodge Journey include Vice White, Granite Pearl-Coat, Billet Clear-Coat, Redline, Olive Green, Contusion Blue Pearl-Coat, Pitch Black Clear-Coat, White Noise Tri-Coat, Blood Orange Clear-Coat, and Bruiser Grey Clear-Coat.

Powertrain options: engines and all-wheel drive

Dodge is a brand that's known, especially recently, for gorging on power; for finding every inch of available space and packing in another cylinder, another boost of horsepower, another way to boost torque. The Journey takes a different route--at least for its base models. There's a reason that the Journey is such an affordable three-row SUV, after all. Under the hood, this bulky AWD crossover gives you a 2.4-liter four-cylinder engine paired to a four-speed automatic transmission, together good for about 173 horsepower and 166 pound-feet of torque.

It's not the most in class, but not the least either. This pint-sized powertrain does give the Journey the advantage of good fuel economy and a total driving range of more than more than 500 miles--that's enough to tip the scales in its favor for drivers who are looking for a vehicle that they plan to use for big trips or longer daily travel.

Don't click away just yet, though--there is another option. It adds a bit to the Journey's price tag, but Dodge does give you a second engine option: a legendary and award-winning 3.6-liter Pentastar V6 engine, mated to a six-speed automatic transmission with AutoStick, good for 283 horsepower and 260 pound-feet of torque. AutoStick is Dodge's approach to the manual-mode-automatic system that's become popular lately. In place of flappy paddles, though, the manual mode is controlled through the stick shift, for a more honest feel.

All new Journey models offer an available Dodge All-Wheel-Drive System--when properly equipped with the right gear, this SUV can tow up to 2,500 pounds. That's more than enough for the typical gear.

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Interior: seating, features, and options

For its over-practical base power, the Dodge Journey has a surprisingly plush interior--at every level. The versatile interior features standard third-row seats on every trim level, even the SE. It's one of the few remaining crossovers in its size class to offer seven-passenger seating at all, much less standard, so it's a pretty significant value for shoppers who are really looking to maximize seating space.

Assuming, though, that the majority of buyers will be using the first and second rows most of the time (if you're planning to travel often with six or more passengers, big-brother Durango may be a better option for you), Dodge put a little bit of extra effort into that middle row. Tilt 'n Slide™ second-row seats do just what it sounds like they do, and you can push them back to increase leg room, push forward to make life easier for rear-seat passengers, and easily tilt them forward to access the back row. Integrated second-row child booster seats are a subtle benefit for parents, while soft-touch materials on the armrests and the door panels, and available features like heated front seats and a heated steering wheel add a splash of fancy to an SUV that's otherwise pretty stoic.

Interior material and color options include Strobe and Sedoso Cloth in Black or Light Frost Beige, and Capri Leather Trim in Black with multiple accent options.

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Give the Journey a shot

Don't underestimate the Journey SUV--it's a lot more than just a downsized Durango, and it could just be the perfect fit for what you're looking for.



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