Three rows of seats typically come with a larger price tag, but the 2017 Dodge Journey does just that on a low budget. It’s also surprisingly roomy and comfortable. There are, however, issues with this older model's performance in crash testing. Is this crossover worth the compromise? Continue reading to find out.

Pricing and Equipment

The Dodge Journey is a value proposition with its $22,240 (destination fees included) starting price for a base SE trim with front-wheel drive. Because of this low cost of entry, we expect the SE to be the most popular version of the 2017 Journey. It comes standard with:

  • Seventeen-inch steel wheels
  • Roof rails
  • Keyless entry and ignition
  • Dual-zone climate control
  • Sliding and reclining second row seats
  • Six-speaker audio system with a 4.3-inch touchscreen
  • 2.4-liter four-cylinder engine with 173 horsepower and 166 pound-feet of torque.

While the Journey comes standard as a five-seat crossover, there is a Flexible Seating Group that adds a split-folding third row, which brings its seating capacity to seven, and upgrades the climate system to a three-zone setup tri-zone to keep third-row passengers comfy. This package runs an extra $1,995.

Performance Pros

Dodge Journey

While its base four-cylinder isn’t anything to write home about, the Journey’s optional V6 engine is a nice fit and includes a more modern transmission.

  • Nice ride quality and confident cornering for a crossover.
  • Optional 283-horsepower V6 engine and six-speed transmission add some life to the Journey.

Performance Cons

  • The base engine struggles, especially with a full load.
  • Its standard four-speed automatic transmission is outdated and sluggish.
  • Even with the four-cylinder engine, fuel economy is disappointing, at 19 miles per gallon city, 25 highway, and 21 combined.

Interior Pros

  • Plenty of small storage areas to catch all those pocket-dwelling items.
  • The flat load floor makes sliding in cargo issue-free.
  • The optional third row is a rarity at this low price point.

Interior Cons

  • The interior is a dated and some may find it too simple.
  • Climbing into the third-row seats can be tough for adults.
  • The third-row seats cut into cargo space, slashing the hold from 39.6 cubic feet to just 10.7 cubes of cargo room with the third-row seats in place. Folding the third-row down regains most of the lost space, but even when the third row isn't in use, it eats up 2.6 cubic feet.

The Most Pleasant Surprise

The Journey’s roomy cabin is a big plus. The second row has plenty of leg room (36.1 inches) and can slide forward or backward to adjust to cargo or leg room needs. Additionally, its 37 cubic feet of cargo room behind the second-row seats is plenty, making this a great all-around crossover for families of five or fewer.

The Least Pleasant Surprise

The 2017 Journey is seriously lacking in the safety department. In IIHS testing, it received a “Poor” rating in the small-overlap crash test, and the institute noted the driver’s area was “seriously compromised” in testing. It also lacks modern safety goodies, like a standard rearview camera or available forward collision warning and automatic emergency braking.

The Bottom Line

The Dodge Journey checks a lot of boxes for families: flexible seating, available V6 engine, roomy cabin, and plenty of cargo room. However, its scary crash-safety tests and lackluster standard powertrain make it difficult to recommend.