By KBB.com Editors
As part of Chrysler Corporation's massive full-line overhaul, the 2011 Dodge Journey has been given a thorough makeover that breathes new life (and respectability) into a vehicle many critics had given up for dead. Like so many Chrysler products of late, the original Dodge Journey was a well thought-out design that suffered from poor execution. Rather than throw the baby out with the bathwater, however, Dodge engineers looked to repair the Journey's weakest links, namely its suspension, interior and engine. In all three areas, the Dodge boys have hit a home run, creating a comfortable, quiet and well-built crossover with all the flair and sportiness we've come to expect from the brand.
If you need a vehicle with three-row seating, but a minivan is definitely out of the question, check out the 2011 Dodge Journey. The Journey has a large and versatile interior, and offers high-tech audio, navigation and connectivity features rarely found in this segment.
The 2011 Dodge Journey receives a new 283-horsepower V6 engine, a completely retuned suspension and steering setup, a gorgeous new interior, and an abundance of high-tech communication and connectivity features.
Driving Impressions The 2011 Dodge Journey doesn't drive like a tall SUV. In fact, it doesn't drive like any SUV or crossover we've been in lately. The new suspension and...steering tuning create a car-like ride that is comparable to some sport sedans. Turn-in is rapid, the steering responsive and body roll and lean are kept well in check. Remarkably, the same stiff suspension that allows for such good handling also returns a smooth and comfortable ride, even over harsh and uneven pavement. We placed people in all three rows for an extended period of time and found that front seat and second-row passengers had nothing but praise for their accommodations. The third-row occupants, however, were not as kind. They roundly agreed that the Journey's rear-most seat is best suited for children, and not for any great length of time. While the 2.4-liter four-cylinder engine doesn't have to strain to move a lightly loaded Journey, Dodge was wise to make its Pentastar V6 standard in all but the base trim. This new Pentastar is one of the best V6 engines ever produced by Dodge, and may even rank as one of the best V6 engines of all time. From its abundant power to its excellent fuel economy, we found the 3.6-liter to be a real gem.
Flip 'n Stow Storage
The 2011 Dodge Journey's front passenger-seat cushion flips forward to expose a big storage bin that can hide valuables from prying eyes, or just keep things in place.
In-Floor Storage Bins
Behind the front seats are two bins in the floor that can accommodate up to twelve 12-ounce cans and ice – or whatever else you can put in there. The bins have locking lids and are removable for easy cleaning.
Comparing last year's interior to the one found in the 2011 Dodge Journey is like comparing night and day. The new interior is every bit as versatile as before, with a flush-folding third-row seat, Tilt 'n Slide second-row seating, and flat-folding front passenger seat. There's also loads of hidden storage space, including storage bins located under the second-row seats and the available Flip 'n Stow front seat. But, it's the new interior's overall execution that has us smiling. There are now five different trims with six different interior color choices. Soft touch material covers just about every touchable surface, and a handsome new three-spoke wheel plays host to controls for the cruise and audio. On upper-end R/T, Crew and LUX trims, an advanced Uconnect suite of communication and connectivity options abound, including Bluetooth and voice activated controls for navigation, audio and iPod. There's even a subscription option to Sirius Travel Link, which can provide updates for traffic, find the cheapest gas prices, plus report on sports scores, weather conditions and even movie times.Exterior
In the world of compact crossovers, the 2011 Dodge Journey is on the larger side of the spectrum. Its long body makes the Journey look like a big station wagon. When placed side-by-side next to the Toyota RAV4 and Ford Escape, the Dodge Journey surpasses both by a good 10 inches. The 2011 Dodge Journey receives some new exterior styling, including a revised crosshair grille, a different lower air intake on V6 models, and a number of aggressive wheel designs that range from 16- to 19-inches in diameter. The Journey also sports new "ring of fire" LED tail lights and a less-angular rear fascia.
A base 2011 Dodge Journey Express comes with a 2.4-liter four-cylinder engine and four-speed automatic transmission, power heated side mirrors, three 12-volt outlets, a 4.3-inch touch screen AM/FM radio with a single CD player, an audio input jack and USB port, second-row in-floor storage, and a rear-cargo area covered storage bin.
Beyond the base 2011 Dodge Journey Express, there are four other Dodge Journey trims: Mainstreet, Crew, R/T and LUX. All feature a 283-horsepower, 3.6-liter V6 engine and six-speed automatic transmission. Options vary by trim and include all-wheel drive, UConnect Hands-free Communication network, leather seating surfaces, ParkView rear back-up camera, ParkSense parking assist, navigation, power moonroof, six premium speakers with subwoofer and 368-watt amplifier, third-row seating, 17- and 19-inch wheels, three-zone automatic air conditioning, Tilt 'n Slide second-row seats, Flip 'n Stow compartment, and heated front seats.
Engineered for commuting and good gas mileage, the 173-horsepower, 2.4-liter, four-cylinder provides a sufficient amount of power for the weight of this crossover, but the potent 3.6-liter Pentastar V6, which pumps out 283 horsepower, is really the engine you'll want. Coupled to a six-speed automatic transmission, the 3.6-liter never fails to deliver power when asked, and once up to speed, requires only minimal fuel to keep the Journey cruising. The Journey's V6 is also E85 compatible.
2.4-liter in-line 4
173 horsepower @ 6000 rpm
166 lb.-ft. of torque @ 4400 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 19/26
283 horsepower @ 6350 rpm
260 lb.-ft. of torque @ 4300 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 17/25 (FWD), 13/18 (FWD, E85)
By Greg on Thursday, September 25, 2014
I own this car - My approximate mileage is 8,800overall rating 10 of 10rating details
Pros: "great power in the Penastar V6"
Cons: "Given its a Dodge, i'm worried about reliability"
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10
"This car has been great so far, we avoided the underwhelming Honda CRV and couldn't be happier with our choice."
6 people out of 12 found this review helpful
By Golden lock on Tuesday, September 23, 2014
I own this car - My approximate mileage is 7,239overall rating 9 of 10rating details
Pros: "$ 17500.00 lots of storage good family car"
Cons: "It has cup holders / cooling compartment for sodas"
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10
"bought it for long distance driving , but seldom drove it so it sat in the drive way for about 4 years hence total milage on the vehicle is 7232 miles , drives better then my 1999 Cadillac Seville and gets very good miles per gallon . can't afford to keep it so I am trying to sell it or have some one assume the payments if they qualify"
3 people out of 9 found this review helpful
By Islandman on Sunday, September 21, 2014
I own this car - My approximate mileage is 51,000overall rating 8 of 10rating details
Pros: "Great for long road trips"
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 8
"We have had this car since 2011 ...its first road trip was to Alaska on a 4 week road trip and as you know many hours spent in the seats,This car handles very well and is super comfortable.The functions in the car are easy to control which makes the car safer to drive with less distractions trying to use controls like DVD/CD/TEMP/CRUISE/RADIO Very happy with this car"
4 people out of 5 found this review helpful
By JC on Wednesday, September 10, 2014
I own this car - My approximate mileage is 82,000overall rating 7 of 10rating details
Pros: "Very nice riding car"
Cons: "too expensive to repair"
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 5
"I've owned car since 2010 and I've replaced 5 air sensor valve stems at way to much money. Also, have had a lot of trouble with air conditioning, with having to replace almost the whole unit front and back. To me not a smart way to have the back unit. Way to much money to repair."
18 people out of 34 found this review helpful
By mikie on Wednesday, September 03, 2014
I own this car - My approximate mileage is 108,000overall rating 9 of 10rating details
Pros: "For a wagon, fun to drive"
Cons: "Transmission - Mopar USED to have industries' best"
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 9
"I liked everything about this car from the beginning, with the possible exception of the 6-speed transmission; it has a tendency to shift lazily into first gear after a stop, causing the car to jump slightly like being tapped lightly from behind. It moves swiftly thru the gears and shifts smoothly. It gets aprx 19-22 mpg in town and 23-25 mpg on the road at 70 mph. In mts of Colorado, at 65mph, she can get 28 mph. II will definitely buy another Dodge product!"
5 people out of 7 found this review helpful
By lq on Thursday, August 21, 2014
I own this car - My approximate mileage is 1,250overall rating 8 of 10rating details
Pros: "Pros:Excellent Ride Quality, Storage Options"
Cons: "Cons:Third row seating cramped, city mpg subpar"
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 8
"Have had my 2014 Journey for a month and am very pleased so far. Auto critics have groused about the 2.4L engine, but it suits the needs of average drivers fine. Love all the storage options and the dashboard layout. Those who are looking for adult third row seating need to look elsewhere, however. and city mileage is not great ( I drive 65/35 highway however, so my mpg experience has been fine-25.0 combined)."
9 people out of 13 found this review helpful