2018 Dodge Journey
The mid-size crossover SUV category is a competitive one with many manufacturers selling highly popular models. Dodge’s offering for this category is the Journey, a straightforward SUV that offers many standard and optional features while retaining one of the lowest prices for a crossover SUV of this size. With trims to meet the needs of anyone wanting a vehicle for their family or to haul some cargo around on the inside, the 2018 Dodge Journey is particularly suited for urban, rural, and off-road use.
The baseline option starts at an affordable $22,795. In combination with its low starting price tag, you can reasonably expect a fuel efficiency of around 16-19 city and 24-25 highway. With forward wheel and all-wheel drivetrain options, the Journey fits comfortably with other SUVs in its class in terms of specifications and overall performance. For 2018, the GT model continues to offer more options to potential buyers interested in the possibilities the Journey may have to offer.
25 MPG Highway
The 2018 Dodge Journey has a standard interior with two front seats, a second-row split bench with room for three people, and an optional third row with smaller legroom and headroom. If pressed, seven people can fit in the interior with little room to spare, but an average size family of four or five people will have plenty of room. The second-row seats lean forward to allow access to the third-row seating. Without the third row seating, the SUV gains more rear cargo space that is suitable for daily errands or the occasional road trip.
Inside, the Journey takes a minimal approach to its interior design. The dashboard contains centrally located controls for the climate system, radio, and large infotainment system via an 8-inch display. The transmission shifter is easy to reach for the driver as it sits between the two front seats. Secondary controls for the climate system, radio, and other options are located on the wheel for easy access while driving. For kids in the back, a folding rear-seat entertainment system with a large LCD screen mounted to the roof is optional.
Safety features on the inside include many front and side airbags located around the whole interior. For driver assistance, a rear backup camera is available on some models to get better visuals while throwing the SUV into reverse. Gridlines appear in the backup camera screen to outline the width of the car if you are trying to reverse park into a space. A rear parking sensor is also available for parking lot situations where it can be difficult to see around other vehicles.
Other interior perks include a spacious rear cargo area without the third-row option. Optional powered, heated front seats will add an extra level of adjustability and comfort while driving in the front row. Finally, the infotainment system comes with a variety of apps to connect to smart devices and has optional navigation, mobile wifi, and voice control options.
The design of the 2018 Dodge Journey has remained largely unchanged since the mid-cycle refresh of the line in 2011. Its size is right in the middle of the SUV pack, making it neither too small or large to feel comfortable driving on a daily basis. It also occupies the middle space between two and three-row SUVs with enough room for 5-7 people.
With a length of around 192 inches, the Journey has a respectable turning radius and overall maneuverability out on the road. The 7-inch ground clearance leaves a little extra room under the car should you decide to go off-road as well. All of the trims have the same dimensions with minor differences in the basic exterior features and overall look of the vehicle.
Common with most SUVs, the Journey has a large, boxy presence on the road with just enough aerodynamic lines to move it away from the minivan look. The front has a standard appearance with an understated front grille, large headlights for good night coverage, and a swept back hood. The roofline of the main cabin gently slides back towards the rear of the vehicle without decreasing dramatically the headroom of each row.
For people wanting a more rugged appearance, the Crossroad Plus trim has accents and touches along the front grille, bumper, and sides that bulk up the exterior. The GT trim also provides a beefier look with larger wheels and front fascia. The optional sunroof is a standard size over the front row and will open or vent at the touch of a button located on the inside of the vehicle between the driver and front passenger.
As a standard crossover SUV, the 2018 Dodge Journey is geared towards on-road performance and everyday driving. In other words, you can think of it as a bigger version of the family sedan or station wagon. While it does sport all-wheel drive and a decent suspension system, it is more at home in the city than off the road. Still, that hasn’t stopped some more spirited Journey owners from taking it off the beaten path for the occasional adventure.
The Journey lineup includes two primary engine options for people wanting either more fuel efficiency or more power under the hood. The base option is an I-4 2.4L four-cylinder engine that averages around 19/25 MPG in fuel efficiency. With 173 horsepower and 166 pound-feet of torque, the engine offers average performance and is best used for the daily commute or traveling around to do some errands.
For more performance, the Journey’s 3.6L V6 comes with 283 horsepower and 260 pound-feet of torque at the expense of fuel efficiency. With more power, the SUV is more suited for hauling more cargo or trailering should the need arise. Fuel economy is around 16/24 MPG depending on the drivetrain the model has.
Like most SUVs in this category, the Journey comes with either forward wheel or all wheel drive options. All five of the trim lines can be equipped with either option, so the primary choice ought to come down to fuel efficiency or wheel traction. For anyone living in an area with poor weather or tough driving conditions, the all-wheel drive combined with the vehicle’s traction system will help to keep the SUV on the road while preventing major accidents.