The 2018 Dodge Journey carries on unchanged from 2017. This is testament to the fact that this crossover will undergo a complete redesign in 2019. Needless to say, the Dodge is way behind the times. Its competitors are making huge strides in-car technology and more importantly safety. The Dodge Journey is still lagging at the back of the pack like a snail racing against grasshoppers, for instance, it comes standard with a 4-speed automatic transmission whereas its rivals including some from Dodge now sport twice as many gears.
Which trim levels are available for the new Dodge Journey?
The Journey is available in four trim levels???SE, SXT, Crossroad, and GT. Most models come standard with a 2.4-liter inline-4, while the 3.6-liter V-6 is optional. If you want the all-wheel drive, however, the V-6 engine is the only viable option.
Is there anything to look forward to?
Not really. I don't want to burst your bubble, but it is hard to imagine that a crossover could be entering its ninth year without any significant changes while car makers are constantly flooding the market with new or completely redesigned crossovers. This car hasn't quite caught the attention of Chrysler in the way that its siblings Durango and Jeep have.
However, it is not all bad news for the Journey since the ride quality, and seats are comfortable all around. This crossover has also got an 8.4-inch infotainment system on the upper trims, but sadly it still hasn't been upgraded to incorporate modern features like Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. Worth noting is the now standard third-row seat that is available on all trim levels.
How is the Journey's driving experience?
The 2018 Journey takes slightly longer to stop in a panic braking test. The brake pedal sure feels comfortingly firm but taking 124 feet to stop from a speed of 60 mph is a bit too long. The Journey also shows some signs of a nosedive and squirming. You should expect the steering to feel slower, which makes the wheel turn a lot. The lack of feedback on the Journey's steering means that it will really struggle against its competition.
Through the corners, the car feels more like a highway hauler with its body roll which does not quite instill any confidence. You get the feeling that you are driving a bigger car than it really is. The 4-speed automatic transmission feels like it's a tad bit too quick to shift upwards and in many situations slow to downshift on steep climbs. Other than that, it is a pleasant ride, but it could definitely do with some tuning.
Why would I consider the 2018 Journey?
Because you wouldn't be caught dead driving a minivan. If you are in need of a minivan, but you just do not want to buy one, the Dodge Journey is the vehicle you do not want to miss. It has been hailed as the most inexpensive seven-seat crossover in the market with a mileage of 19/25 mpg in the city and on the highway respectively.
There is not much to write home about in the 2018 Journey, but it offers you affordability and utility which most people look for. The likes of Toyota Highlander and Honda Pilot are certainly better options, but the price tag might throw your bank account off balance if you've got a modest budget.
Should I buy a 2017 model instead?
We have no intentions whatsoever of discouraging you from having the 2018 Journey on your shopping list, but there simply isn't much of a change from the 2017 car except for slightly higher prices. You will find the 2017 model an intriguing choice if you are a crossover shopper who has an appetite for cutting deals. A good option would be the Journey GT with AWD and every desirable factory option, read blackout trim, 2,500-pound tow package, embedded navigation, power sunroof, rear-seat DVD entertainment and integrated second-row child-booster seats which goes for a price just under $40,000.