Someday, we predict Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA) will be the subject of countless university Masters' thesis papers by economics students thanks to the company's apparent love of amortized costs: Between its decade-old Grand Caravan and Journey models, the manufacturer has the market cornered on utility vehicles that, relatively speaking, cost nothing to produce.
The Journey is a crossover that, since 2009, has straddled the border between the compact and mid-size segments. That it continues to sell as well as it does (though it's nowhere near a bestseller) is a testament to FCA's preference for moving metal with incentives in the absence of fresh designs.
For the 2019, the Journey is unchanged. Five trims carry over -- Canada Value Package, SE Plus, SXT, Crossroad and GT -- to offer a range of content and a starting price not much more than $20,000.
Journey's carry-over status means it keeps its 2.4L four-cylinder (173 hp/166 lb-ft of torque) and 3.6L (283 hp/260 lb-ft) engines; it also remains one of a handful of cars still offered with a four-speed automatic transmission. That gearbox is paired with the four-cylinder engine, while the V6 gets a six-speed.
Canada Value Package and SE Plus models get the four-cylinder powertrain and FWD; SXT and Crossroad come standard with the V6/FWD and can be optioned with AWD; and GT is standard with the V6/AWD combo.
It's strange to us that Dodge has put more work into its larger Durango (it gained a beastly SRT variant last year) rather than the Journey, which competes in a much high-volume segment of affordable family vehicles. To wit, you still can't get a Journey with advanced safety features like forward collision warning, automatic braking, adaptive cruise or even relatively basic items like blind spot monitoring, while all of those items and more are available and even included as standard kit in some of the Journey's competition.
Canada Value Package models come with manual dual-zone air conditioning, six-speaker stereo with 4.3-inch touchscreen, cruise control, passive keyless entry and aluminum wheels. The SE Plus throws in heated side mirrors, leather-trimmed shifter and steering wheel and LED taillights.
SXT brings an auto-dimming rearview mirror, fog lights and a trip computer. Crossroad is where you'll find automatic climate control, leather seating, 8.4-inch infotainment screen and a 10-way power driver's seat.
Finally, GT is the only trim to include heated front seats and steering wheel, and it also gets an upgraded sound system with subwoofer.
Dodge hasn't published 2019 fuel consumption estimates yet, but they'll be similar to 2018's ratings of 12.7/9.2 L/100 km (city/highway) for the four-cylinder/FWD powertrain, and 14.5/10.0 with V6 and AWD.
This vehicle has not yet been reviewed