The Dodge Journey: A Spacious Family Cruiser (Discontinued in 2020)
The Dodge Journey was a mid-size crossover SUV that roamed the roads from 2009 to 2020. It carved a niche for itself as a budget-friendly option for families seeking practicality and space. While no longer in production, the Journey remains a popular used car choice, so let's take a closer look at its features, strengths, and weaknesses.
Spacious and Versatile Interior
One of the Journey's biggest selling points was its spacious and versatile interior. It could comfortably seat up to seven passengers in three rows, making it ideal for families with children or those who frequently transport large groups. The second-row seats folded flat, and the third-row could be easily removed, creating a cavernous cargo area for road trips or hauling gear.
Performance and Fuel Economy
The Journey was offered with two engine options: a 2.4-liter four-cylinder and a 3.6-liter V6. The four-cylinder produced 173 horsepower and 166 lb-ft of torque, while the V6 bumped those numbers up to 283 horsepower and 260 lb-ft of torque. Both engines were paired with a four-speed automatic transmission.
Fuel economy wasn't the Journey's strong suit. The four-cylinder averaged around 20 mpg in the city and 25 mpg on the highway, while the V6 dropped to 16 mpg city and 22 mpg highway. However, its fuel efficiency was comparable to other mid-size SUVs of its era.
Features and Technology
The Journey's features and technology varied depending on the trim level. Base models came with basic amenities like cloth seats, manual windows, and a basic audio system. Higher trim levels added features like leather seats, a sunroof, a navigation system, and a touchscreen infotainment system.
Overall, the Journey's technology package was on par with other mid-size SUVs of its time. It wasn't cutting-edge, but it offered the essentials for a comfortable and connected driving experience.
Driving Experience and Safety
The Journey's handling was adequate but not exciting. It wasn't the most agile SUV on the road, but it was comfortable for cruising and commuting. In terms of safety, the Journey received mixed ratings from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). It earned four out of five stars in frontal crash tests but only three stars in side-impact tests.
Discontinuation and Alternatives
Dodge discontinued the Journey in 2020. The reasons for its demise were likely its aging platform and increasing competition in the mid-size SUV segment. If you're looking for a used SUV similar to the Journey, consider options like the Honda CR-V, Toyota RAV4, or Kia Sorento. These SUVs offer similar levels of space and practicality, with more modern features and technology.
The Dodge Journey was a no-frills, budget-friendly SUV that offered a lot of space and practicality for families. While it wasn't the most exciting or fuel-efficient vehicle on the road, it served its purpose well for many drivers. If you're looking for a used SUV with a spacious interior and a low price tag, the Journey is worth considering. However, be aware of its lower fuel economy and safety ratings compared to newer models.
Here are some additional points to consider:
- The Dodge Journey was known for having a relatively reliable engine and transmission.
- The interior could be noisy, especially on the highway.
- The infotainment system in some models was outdated and clunky.
- The Journey was not available with all-wheel drive in its final year of production.
Ultimately, the decision of whether or not to buy a used Dodge Journey is up to you. Weigh the pros and cons carefully and consider your individual needs and budget before making a decision.