Test Drive: 2010 Dodge Journey R/T AWD car test drives dodge
2010 Dodge Journey R/T AWD. Click image to enlarge

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Dodge Canada

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Review and photos by Greg Wilson

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2010 Dodge Journey

When it was introduced in 2008 as a 2009 model, the Dodge Journey was essentially a replacement for the discontinued short wheelbase Caravan minivan, which for many years was the most popular vehicle sold in Canada. The Journey isn’t quite as roomy as the Caravan and doesn’t have rear sliding side doors, but it is available with seven seats, and has a long list of “family-friendly” features such as stain-resistant cloth seats, fold-flat second and third-row seatbacks, optional fold-flat front passenger seatback, optional pop-up booster seats in the second row, convex “conversation mirror” so that parents can see their children in the rear seats, pop-can cooler in the glovebox, a hidden storage compartment under the front passenger seat, second-row in-floor storage bins, optional rear heating and air conditioning controls, optional UConnect hands-free phone, iPod control, Sirius satellite radio, DVD player and rear video screen, navigation system, 12-volt power outlets and 115-volt power outlet.

Journeys with the standard five passenger configuration have a handy underfloor storage compartment at the rear where the third row seats would be, and a folding floor panel that can be converted into a “grocery bag” position.

Test Drive: 2010 Dodge Journey R/T AWD car test drives dodge
2010 Dodge Journey R/T AWD. Click image to enlarge

Compared to other crossovers on the market, the Journey is well-priced: the base four-cylinder, front-wheel drive Journey “Canada Value Package”, new for 2010, has an MSRP of just $18,745 plus $1,400 Freight charge. And while many of its “family-friendly” features are optional, their option prices are reasonable. For example, the popular Flexible Seating Group ($1,375) includes the second row 40/60 split tilt & slide seats with centre folding armrest and easy entry seat system, third row 50/50 folding seatbacks, air conditioning with dual-zone front temperature controls and separate rear air conditioning/heater controls and vents. Dual second-row booster seats ($250) are great for kids who’ve outgrown child seats and this option also includes a manual driver’s lumbar adjuster. The Safe and Sound Group ($775) includes a 6.5-inch colour dash screen, 30-GB hard drive with 6,700-song capacity, CD/DVD/HDD player, and rear back-up camera; and UConnect Phone with Voice Command ($350) includes Bluetooth hands-free phone, audio voice activation of audio controls, iPod control, and auto-dimming rear-view mirror.

The Journey R/T model is also available with all-wheel drive for improved winter traction and stability.

It’s clear that the Journey is designed for families, particularly those with children under 18 – and with pricing that is more affordable than most competitors. Let’s take a closer look at what the Journey offers.

Pricing and standard equipment
Test Drive: 2010 Dodge Journey R/T AWD car test drives dodge
Test Drive: 2010 Dodge Journey R/T AWD car test drives dodge
Test Drive: 2010 Dodge Journey R/T AWD car test drives dodge
2010 Dodge Journey R/T AWD. Click image to enlarge

2010 Dodge Journeys come in four trim levels: SE Canada Value ($18,745), SE Plus ($20,745), SXT ($23,295), and R/T ($27,395). SE Canada Value and SE Plus models have a 173-hp 2.4-litre four-cylinder engine and four-speed automatic transmission, while SXT and R/T models come with a 235-hp 3.5-litre V6 and six-speed automatic with manual shift mode. The SE Canada Value, SE Plus and SXT models are front-wheel drive while the R/T is all-wheel drive only.

Standard stuff in the SE Canada Value model includes seating for five, 16-inch tires and steel wheels, air conditioning, “Stain Repel” cloth seats, 60/40 split-folding second-row seatbacks, AM/FM/6-CD/DVD/MP3 stereo with auxiliary input and six speakers, tilt and telescopic steering wheel, power windows and locks, keyless entry, heated mirrors, variable intermittent wipers, rear washer/wiper, front active head restraints, “Chill Zone” cooled upper glovebox, illuminated entry, and second-row in-floor storage bins.

The base model is also well equipped with safety features: six airbags (front, side, curtain), front active head restraints, traction and stability control, rollover sensors, four disc brakes with ABS and brake assist, child locks, and rear child seat anchors and tether hooks.

However, some features are not available in the Canada Value model, including Sirius satellite radio, premium speakers with subwoofer, and Rear Seat Video group.

The Journey SE Plus adds a roof rack with crossbars, leather-wrapped steering wheel with audio controls, leather shift knob, alarm, privacy glass, illuminated vanity mirrors, overhead console, front and rear floor mats, conversation mirror, cruise control, Sirius satellite radio with one-year subscription, and sliding cargo cover.

The SXT adds the V6 engine and six-speed automatic transmission, 17-inch tires and alloy wheels, fog lights, automatic headlamps, body-coloured heated mirrors, six-way power driver’s seat, fold-flat front passenger seat, auto-dimming rear-view mirror, 115-volt power outlet, and cargo net.




About Greg Wilson

Greg Wilson is a Vancouver-based automotive journalist and contributor to Autos.ca. He is a member of the Automobile Journalists Association of Canada (AJAC).