2016 Dodge Journey Review


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2016 Dodge Journey Overview

Face it: the market for affordable, well-equipped midsize crossovers is (to put it politely) a bit crowded. So the 2016 Dodge Journey will face some serious competition when it goes on sale this fall. And yet it will sport few changes from its current edition, slated like many of its Chrysler/Fiat brand-mates to undergo a significant redesign for the 2017 model year.

One of the 2016 Journey's more noteworthy changes will be the deletion of the American Value Package (AVP) and Limited trims, with the quasi-luxury Crossroad Plus debuting in their stead. The new lineup is therefore slated to start with the SE, move into the up-featured SXT, then into the Crossroad, the new Crossroad Plus, and the flagship R/T (Road & Track). Some of the Journey's features will obviously move around to accompany these changes, but expect all trims to return with standard front-wheel-drive (FWD) and optional full-time all-wheel drive (AWD). All trims are also slated to return with a hefty 67.6 cubic feet of total cargo area with the rear seatbacks folded.

Look for the Journey to return with two engine choices for the upcoming model year. The base engine in all FWD-equipped variants other than the R/T will again be a 2.4-liter inline 4-cylinder (I4) powerplant that pairs with the standard 4-speed shiftable automatic transmission for 173 hp and 166 lb-ft of torque. Expect the I4’s mileage to remain estimated at 19 mpg city/26 highway/21 combined--noticeably lower than most competitors. Towing capacity maxes out at 1,000 pounds with the proper equipment.

Standard in the both the R/T and in AWD variations of all other trims is a 3.6-liter V6 powerplant that boasts a 6-speed shiftable automatic transmission. This decently potent mill throws down 283 hp and 260 lb-ft of torque, with mileage estimates of 17/25/19 in the FWD R/T and 16/24/19 in all AWD editions. Towing capacity climbs to 2,500 pounds when properly equipped. The V6 is also optional for all non-R/T trims equipped with FWD.

Standard appearance features are again slated to include 17-inch steel or alloy wheels, 19-inch alloy wheels, a roof rack (optional aboard the R/T), and LED taillights. The R/T also returns with sport-tuned suspension and standard distinct monochrome exterior trim pieces.

Inside, look for cloth or leather upholstery, full power accessories, keyless entry and ignition, cruise control, and telescoping tilt-wheel steering. All 2016 Journey editions are also scheduled to return with sliding and reclining second-row seats. The SE and SXT again sport manual air conditioning, while the Crossroad and higher trims offer dual-zone automatic climate control, a fold-flat front passenger seat, remote engine start, and an auto-dimming rear-view mirror. Look for the new Crossroad Plus to offer a power-adjustable driver’s seat and for the R/T to add standard heated front seats and a heated steering wheel.

Technology in the 2016 Journey begins with a standard CD player, 6-speakers, a 4.3-inch touchscreen display, and an auxiliary audio input, while the R/T adds a 368-watt sound system with 6 premium speakers. Higher trims also come with standard Bluetooth-integrated Uconnect Voice Command infotainment, satellite radio, a video monitor, and an 8.4-inch screen.

Options, aside from the possible tweaks, will doubtless include the popular Blacktop package, which features a gloss-black grille, outside trim pieces, and 19-inch wheels. Further trim-specific available equipment slated to return includes a power sunroof, rear-seat DVD entertainment, a tow-hitch and wiring, rear parking sensors, a rear-view camera, tri-zone automatic climate control, and GPS navigation and WiFi hotspot capability. The GPS and WiFi capabilities are interfaced with the Uconnect 8.4 display. All 2016 Journey trims will again sport available third-row seating for a total passenger capacity of 7.

Standard safety equipment aboard the 2016 Journey is expected to include 4-wheel antilock brakes (ABS), traction and stability control, front side-mounted airbags, front and rear (and available third-row) head-protection airbags, and a post-collision safety system. Higher trims, starting with the SXT, also boast standard front fog/driving lights, while the Crossroad Plus and the R/T throw in a standard remote antitheft alarm.

Currently, the Journey gets 4 out of 5 stars overall in government crash tests, while the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety gives this handsome crossover its best score of Good in all tests.

The Journey's dismal fuel-economy numbers continue to disappoint owners, and its available AWD system has struck a few owners as somewhat less than traction-friendly during bad weather. On the plus side, however, virtually all owners laud this people-hauler’s ideal dimensions, pleasant ride characteristics, and long list of standard and available equipment. Look for the 2016 Journey to challenge rivals such as Honda’s touring-oriented CR-V, Mazda’s engaging CX-5, Ford’s techno-laden Escape, Kia’s slick Sorento, and Hyundai’s roomy Santa Fe.


Have Laptop. Will Travel. I'm retired and travelling the country in a 34' motor home. I'm really digging meeting people . . and sometimes their cars . . . getting a sense of what makes this nation tick. The plan is to visit all the national parks in the continental US, then cruise to Alaska to visit Denali, and to Hawaii to check out Haleakala and the Hawaii Volcano's national parks. Anyhow, when I'm not horsing the motor home around the roadways, I'm tooting around in the 2012 Ford Focus that we tow behind, or making runs to Home Depot and various malls with the 2004 F-150 that just won't die.

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