The Times West Virginian

Community News Network

August 5, 2013

Cargazing: Dodge Journey makes a turnaround

Quiet cabin, third-row seat help crossover SUV stand out

The Dodge Journey had a difficult start to life. It was designed at a time when Chrysler was nearly bankrupt, and it came to market in 2009 as a rough-hewn stone of a crossover.

But now that the new, revitalized Chrysler has had some time to polish it, the Journey has turned into quite a gem.

One of the most obvious improvements is in the cabin, where better sound insulation and suspension refinements make it one of the quietest crossovers I can recall driving. It's a drastic change in a short amount of time.

It also has an unusually smart cabin layout for its class. It's a compact crossover with a starting price around $19,000, which puts in one of the most competitive categories of the automotive world.

Virtually all its competition only offers seating for five, though, while the Journey can seat up to seven. Dodge managed to squeeze an optional third-row seat into the back, which allows for a couple of extra passengers and gives it those bragging rights. 

When equipped with the optional V6, the Journey is surprisingly SUV-like in its capability. The 3.6-liter Pentastar V6 makes a hearty 283 horsepower, which is more than ample for accelerating and passing, while getting a 25-mpg highway fuel economy rating.

Unfortunately, I can't recommend the four-cylinder version of the Journey because it's woefully inefficient. It makes 173 horses — not a bad amount of power — but an outdated design and four-speed transmission mean it only qualifies for a 26-mpg highway rating. That's barely better than the V6 and considerably worse than most of its four-cylinder competitors. 

Other than that, there's not much to complain about in the Journey. The interior packaging is so smart — including a "Flip-N-Stow" in-seat storage system that lets you hide things under the seat cushions — that it almost feels Toyota-like in terms of clever little storage bins.

Text Only
Community News Network
  • 20140729-AMX-GIVHAN292.jpg Spanx stretches into new territory with jeans, but promised magic is elusive

    The Spanx empire of stomach-flattening, thigh-slimming, jiggle-reducing foundation garments has expanded to include what the brand promises is the mother of all body-shaping miracles: Spanx jeans.

    July 29, 2014 1 Photo

  • Medical marijuana opponents' most powerful argument is at odds with a mountain of research

    Opponents of marijuana legalization are rapidly losing the battle for hearts and minds. Simply put, the public understands that however you measure the consequences of marijuana use, the drug is significantly less harmful to users and society than tobacco or alcohol.

    July 29, 2014

  • linda-ronstadt.jpg Obama had crush on First Lady of Rock

    Linda Ronstadt remained composed as she walked up to claim her National Medal of Arts at a White House ceremony Monday afternoon.

    July 29, 2014 1 Photo

  • Can black women have it all?

    In a powerful new essay for the National Journal, my friend Michel Martin makes a compelling case for why we need to continue the having-it-all conversation.

    July 29, 2014

  • Dangerous Darkies Logo.png Redskins not the only nickname to cause a stir

    Daniel Snyder has come under fire for refusing to change the mascot of his NFL team, the Washington Redskins. The Redskins, however, are far from being the only controversial mascot in sports history.  Here is a sampling of athletic teams from all areas of the sports world that were outside the norm.

    July 28, 2014 3 Photos

  • 'Rebel' mascot rising from the dead

    Students and alumni from a Richmond, Va.-area high school are seeking to revive the school's historic mascot, a Confederate soldier known as the "Rebel Man," spurring debate about the appropriateness of public school connections to the Civil War and its icons.

    July 28, 2014

  • Fast food comes to standstill in China

    The shortage of meat is the result of China's latest food scandal, in which a Shanghai supplier allegedly tackled the problem of expired meat by putting it in new packaging and shipping it to fast-food restaurants around the country

    July 28, 2014

  • wd saturday tobias .jpg Stranger’s generosity stuns Ohio veteran

    Vietnam War veteran David A. Tobias was overwhelmed recently when a fellow customer at an OfficeMax store near Ashtabula, Ohio paid for a computer he was purchasing.

    July 28, 2014 1 Photo

  • Screen Shot 2014-07-28 at 1.33.11 PM.png VIDEO: High-dive accident caught on tape

    A woman at a water park in Idaho leaped off a 22-foot high dive platform, then tried to pull herself back up with frightening results. Fortunately, she escaped with only a cut to her finger.

    July 28, 2014 1 Photo

  • CATS-DOGS281.jpg Where cats are more popular than dogs in the U.S.-and all over the world

    We all know there are only two types of people in the world: cat people and dog people. But data from market research firm Euromonitor suggest that these differences extend beyond individual preferences and to the realm of geopolitics: it turns out there are cat countries and dog countries, too.

    July 28, 2014 1 Photo

House Ads
Featured Ads