The 2019 Dodge Journey in SE trim is the most affordable brand-new 7-seater midsize SUV. The Crossroad and GT trims are also priced favorably against competition like the Hyundai Santa Fe and Ford Flex. However, more modern rivals offer advanced driver aids. And compared with the Journey, every rival is more modern.
You'll Like The 2019 Dodge Journey If...
…low-cost, multi-person transport is the name of the game and forget about the frills. The 2019 Journey has comfortable seats, a forgiving ride quality, and many stowage areas to help keep trips bearable.
You May Not Like The 2019 Dodge Journey If...
…you realize that initial outlay isn’t the only important figure. For a longer warranty, check out the Kia Sorento. For driver-assistance features, look at the Honda Pilot and Toyota Highlander. For better 3rd-row space, inspect the Chevrolet Traverse. Each of these alternatives also enjoys superior resale values and reliability ratings.
Trim levels are reduced to three: SE, Crossroad and GT. Standard equipment is redistributed, with the SE gaining more, such as fog lights, tri-zone climate control, heated/power-folding side mirrors and (in the all-wheel-drive version) LED rear lights. And 2019 pricing starts lower than 2018 by about $2,000.
Space is generous up front, pretty good in the second row (with seats that slide and recline) and cramped in the third. The midsize 2019 Journey could work as a less expensive and all-wheel-drive alternative to a minivan, or act as a wagon. The seats are supportive and comfortable, with quite an upright driving position, and their durable fabric covering has an easy-to-clean quality. The Uconnect infotainment system with the 8.4-inch touch screen (standard in the top two trims) includes physical buttons for the sound and climate systems that are easy to use. The quality of the cabin’s plastics is actually not as bad as the low pricing might suggest.
Subjectively speaking, the 2019 Journey is saved from being forgettable by a certain charming chunkiness. The Crossroad version in particular exploits this aspect with standard-issue black-finished alloy wheels, plus roof rails and a simulated skidplate. These additions definitely make it look more SUV-like than wagon-ish. The range also benefits from the chrome-trimmed “cross-hair” grille.
The 4-cylinder engine in the 2019 Journey is merely adequate with 173 horsepower and it links up to an automatic transmission with only four forward gears, which gives some idea of how long this drivetrain has been around. The 283-horsepower V6 is much more energetic, allows the option of all-wheel drive and because it connects to a 6-speed automatic transmission, doesn’t incur much of a fuel-consumption penalty. In the ride and handling department, the Journey has a suspension setup tuned for comfort but generally keeps its composure when there’s a bend in the road. The Dodge Journey is one of the few new vehicles to have hydraulic power steering (virtually everyone else has gone over to electric assistance) and this gives the system a pleasant weight and feel.
Add the Manufacturer's Suggested Retail Price (MSRP) of $25,195 to a destination charge of $1,395 and the front-drive 2019 Dodge Journey SE starts at $26,590. That makes it the most affordable new 7-seater midsize SUV on the market. The Crossroad model starts in the higher 20s, while a well-optioned GT with all-wheel drive could reach the mid-30s. Even these higher-spec versions are still keenly competitive against vehicles like the Honda Pilot, Toyota Highlander, Kia Sorento, Mazda CX-9 and Nissan Pathfinder. Look for generous lease deals and check the KBB.com Fair Purchase Price to see what others in your area are paying for their new Journey SUV. Resale values for the Journey are expected to be only average, behind rivals like the Highlander, Pilot and CX-9.
The reduction to three trim levels gives the base 2019 Journey SE more standard equipment. In addition to those items mentioned in the “What’s New” section, the SE has a self-dimming rearview mirror, keyless entry/ignition, 2nd-row in-floor storage bins, 4.3-inch infotainment display, USB port, AM/FM radio, six speakers, and 17-inch steel wheels. That’s somewhat sparse, so consider the Crossroad trim, which adds 19-inch alloy wheels, side rails, fog lights, leather-wrapped steering wheel, power-adjustable driver’s seat, satellite radio, and Bluetooth. The GT version has a dedicated suspension to go with its V6 engine, one-touch front windows and better-quality speakers.
The main options are all-wheel drive and the V6 that bring the 6-speed automatic transmission. The SE is eligible for 17-inch alloy wheels, leather-wrapped shift lever/steering wheel, Bluetooth and satellite radio. The Crossroad trim can be ordered with leather-trimmed/heated front seats and a remote-start function. Other options for both the GT and Crossroad include rear parking sensors, power sunroof, navigation, 2nd-row integrated child booster seats, garage-door opener, and a 2nd-row entertainment system with 9-inch screens and two sets of wireless headphones. A trailer-preparation package is available solely in the GT. Neither forward-collision mitigation nor blind-spot monitoring is available in any version of the 2019 Journey.
The 2nd- and 3rd-row seats fold down to create a flat load-space floor. Even the front-passenger seat gets in on this folding act, bringing some great cargo-carrying flexibility. In addition, that front-passenger seat has a stowage compartment in its base, while there are plenty of cubby holes around the cabin, including some hidden ones.
3.6-LITER PENTASTAR V6 ENGINE
Not only is the 2019 Journey’s V6 option the preferred choice, it’s actually a well-respected unit that powers several Jeep/Dodge vehicles. It’s refined, fuel-efficient and has some useful muscle. It comes as standard in the GT version.
Under the Hood
The standard engine in the SE and Crossroad trims is a 2.4-liter 4-cylinder unit making 173 horsepower and 166 lb-ft of torque, just about enough to not be considered underpowered. Front-wheel drive (FWD) is the default arrangement and average fuel consumption is 21 mpg. The option for those trims and standard in the 2019 Journey GT is the recommended 3.6-liter V6 developing 283 horsepower and 260 lb-ft of torque. All-wheel drive (AWD) is available only with this engine. Despite some slight differences in fuel consumption between the city and highway cycles, both configurations average out at 19 mpg. Regular 87-octane gasoline is acceptable. Towing abilities are unremarkable: 1,000 pounds for the 2.4 engine, 2,500 pounds with the V6.
173 horsepower @ 6,000 rpm
166 lb-ft of torque @ 4,000 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 19/25 mpg
283 horsepower @ 6,350 rpm
260 lb-ft of torque @ 4,400 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 17/25 mpg (FWD), 16/24 mpg (AWD)
The 2019 Dodge Journey is a 7-seater SUV/crossover SUV that’s much less expensive than the usual rivals. In its lowest SE trim with a 4-cylinder engine, it undercuts the Ford Flex, Hyundai Santa Fe and Kia Sorento by thousands of dollars. Admittedly, this engine is far from a hot-rodder’s dream, but such overall keen pricing might tempt a potential buyer to splash out on the 283-horsepower V6 and a few other useful extras like all-wheel drive, heated steering wheel, and the well-regarded Uconnect infotainment system that brings an 8.4-inch touch screen. Before going down that road, though, it should be noted that the Journey has been around since 2009 and therefore does not offer modern driver-assistance features. Nor are there many positive aspects to be found in its resale values.