Archive for the ‘dodge journey’ Tag

Durango vs Wagoneer: making room

Years ago, when word of a new Jeep Wagoneer first reached Allpar’s ears, we were told that it would replace the Dodge Durango, which is essentially a lengthened, street-tuned Grand Cherokee. That was before a surprisingly successful ad campaign starring Will Ferrell in his Ron Burgundy character.

When Durango sales rose, the thought of having the Durango and Wagoneer co-exist inevitably arose, but how would they differentiate the two?

According to long-time source redriderbob, the first step will be dropping the Dodge Durango Citadel, which is covered in luxury trim. Instead, the future Durango will be performance-focused, fitting the Dodge theme and raison d’être. There will be an entry-level Durango with two-row seating for five, to help absorb some Journey buyers when that crossover is replaced by a smaller, sportier rear drive version.

The Jeep Grand Wagoneer itself is likely to take on all the luxury trappings of the Citadel, but might retain the Grand Cherokee’s off-road-capable suspension design.

There is also speculation that the Wagoneer — since a company rep has talked about there being both a Wagoneer and a Grand Wagoneer — would be a higher-end, lengthened Jeep Cherokee. It could also be based on the forthcoming rear-drive Dodge Journey.

Read more at: http://www.allpar.com/news/2016/09/durango-vs-wagoneer-making-room-33314

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2016 Dodge Journey

Two words best sum up the 2016 Dodge Journey’s success: “versatility and value.” With a price starting just under $22,000, the Journey undercuts more expensive rivals like the Kia Sorento, Hyundai Santa Fe and Honda Pilot. Granted, two of the three come standard with a V6 engine, and the 4-cylinder Journey has neither the power nor the features (Bluetooth isn’t even standard) to compete with the above-mentioned group. However, the Journey’s higher trim levels do come well appointed and can be equipped with one of the most powerful V6 engines in this class. Though aging, the 2016 Dodge Journey still has some surprises in store, such as clever in-floor storage and one of the best infotainment systems money can buy.

You’ll Like This Car If…

Those who need 7-passenger accommodations and are on a limited budget will appreciate the 4-cylinder engine offered on four of the five available Journey trims. The family-friendly Journey is extremely versatile with lots of places to hide cargo and precious items.

You May Not Like This Car If…

If you need a large 3rd-row seat, a Chevy Traverse or Honda Pilot makes a better choice. The Journey’s 4-cylinder engine and outdated 4-speed automatic are not the best choice for a 7-passenger SUV. Look to the Kia Sorento for a better 4-cylinder entry model, as well as a better warranty.

2016 sees the entry-level AVP trim dropped and the model lineup reduced to just five trim levels. SE, SXT and Crossroad trims have lower base prices than last year, while a new Crossroad Plus trim builds on the success of the Crossroad by offering standard leather seating and the Uconnect 8.4-inch display.


Driving the Journey

Driving Impressions Those accustomed to older, truck-based SUVs will be quite pleased with the way Dodge’s Journey crossover SUV for 2016 rides and drives. A unit body and advanced suspension setup help the Journey return car-like driving characteristics similar to a tall-riding station wagon, which is essentially what the Journey is. Confident on highway runs and surprisingly agile over narrow, twisting roads, the Journey is devoid of the bobbing and weaving one might experience in a truck-based SUV. Although we found the 173-horsepower 4-cylinder engine adequate with two people aboard, any additional bodies or cargo demands the Pentastar V6, which delivers an additional 100 horsepower and nearly the same fuel economy. We like the Journey’s upright seating position and found the front seats to be remarkably supportive and comfortable, even after driving long distances.

Favorite Features

CARGO FLEXIBILITY


Dodge’s Journey SUV for 2016 has numerous clever storage ideas. Not only does the rear seat fold flush, there are additional storage bins beneath the 2nd-row floor and front-passenger seat cushion. The same seat can fold flat to better accommodate long items such as a surfboard and skis.

3.6-LITER PENTASTAR V6 ENGINE


Dodge’s Pentastar 3.6-liter V6 engine is not only smooth and powerful, it also returns impressive fuel economy on par with the Journey’s smaller 4-cylinder engine.

The 2016 Dodge Journey’s cabin is available in a 2-row, 5-passenger layout or as a 3-row, 7-passenger configuration. Passenger space for adults is commendable up front and good in the second row, but legroom is very tight in the third row, which is best left for kids or occasional use. One of the best features of the Journey is its available Uconnect infotainment system. In addition to a large and easy-to-use 8.4-inch touch screen centered in the dash, there are supplementary buttons for climate and audio that are simple to see and use.


Exterior

Is it a sport-utility vehicle or the reincarnation of a station wagon? With the 2016 Journey from Dodge, its 192.4-inch length exceeds much of the competition, but Dodge’s designers have given it exterior treatments such as the chrome-trimmed cross-hair grille and eye-catching aluminum-alloy wheel choices that keep it from being merely bland. If a more stylish look is important, opt for the R/T version, with its 19-inch wheels, monochromatic treatment and distinctive R/T labels. For a tougher-looking version, there’s the Dodge Journey Crossroad, which features a faux skidplate, standard roof rails and blacked-out wheels.

Notable Equipment


Standard Equipment

The 2016 Dodge Journey 7-passenger crossover SUV is available in a five trims, from the base SE to the top-line R/T. At its most basic, the 2016 Journey includes dual-zone climate control, 4.3-inch touch-screen media center, keyless entry and push-button start, tilt/telescoping steering wheel, and power windows and door locks. Entertainment is provided by a 6-speaker AM/FM/CD system with auxiliary and USB inputs, but no Bluetooth streaming as standard. Safety features include electronic traction and stability control, anti-lock brakes, front-seat side airbags and side-curtain airbags for all rows.

Optional Equipment

Plenty of options can be had on the 2016 Journey. Among the more popular are 3-row seating (Flexible Seating Group), traction-enhancing all-wheel drive in lieu of the standard front-drive setup, an 8.4-inch touch-screen Uconnect infotainment system and navigation. Amenities that bring an upscale feel include leather seating, Infinity speakers, rear-seat video entertainment system with 9-inch screen and two wireless headphones, in-car Wi-Fi hotspot, and heated front seats and heated steering wheel. A Driver Convenience Group adds a rearview camera and distance-alert function when in reverse, but more advanced safety functions like blind-spot monitoring and automatic braking are not available.

Under the Hood

Two engines are available for Dodge’s 2016 Journey crossover SUV. Standard on lower trims is a 2.4-liter 4-cylinder that makes an only-adequate 173 horsepower. The engine we recommend is the 283-horsepower 3.6-liter V6 that is optional on all but base Dodge Journeys and standard in higher trims. The V6 is also your only choice if you require all-wheel drive (AWD) instead of the standard front-wheel drive (FWD) to deal with inclement weather and slippery roads. Both engines run on regular unleaded gasoline. All Dodge Journeys use automatic transmissions, with the 4-cylinder stuck with an older-style 4-speed and the 6-cylinder using a newer 6-speed. The Journey’s towing capacity is on the light end, limited to 1,000 pounds with the 4-cylinder and 2,500 with the V6.

2.4-liter inline-4 (SE, SXT, Crossroad)

173 horsepower @ 6,000 rpm

166 lb-ft of torque @ 4,000 rpm

EPA city/highway fuel economy: 19/26 mpg

3.6-liter V6 (SE, SXT, Crossroad, R/T)

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)

Pricing Notes

The 2016 Dodge Journey has a Manufacturer’s Suggested Retail Price (MSRP) starting just under $22,000, including destination charge. Better-equipped mid-level versions of the Journey such as the SXT and Crossroad are in the mid-$20,000 range, while a top-line R/T version with AWD reaches the mid-$30,000 level. At its base price, the Dodge Journey SE remains the lowest-priced midsize SUV, and even after climbing trims is a good value among midsize SUVs such as the Toyota Highlander, Honda Pilot, Nissan Pathfinder, Mazda CX-9 and Kia Sorento. The Mitsubishi Outlander with seating for seven is also a value leader among 3-row SUVs, but is smaller than the Journey. Before buying, be sure to check the KBB.com Fair Purchase Price to see what others in your area are paying for their new Journey SUV. In the years ahead, the Journey’s residual value is expected to be average, still lagging the Toyota Highlander.

Read more at: http://www.kbb.com/dodge/journey/2016/?r=45198081889915920

More praise for Jeeps and Durango

Car & Driver recently compared SUVs in two categories: Mid-Size Crossovers and SUVs and 3-row Crossovers and SUVs.

The Jeep Grand Cherokee, which has won more awards than any other SUV, bested the Dodge Journey, Volkswagen Touareg, Toyota 4Runner, Nissan XTerra, Kia Sorento, Hyundai Santa Fe Sport, Nissan Murano and Ford Edge in the mid-size SUV class.

Car & Driver’s editors said: “Whether you want to climb a mountain or just move up the ladder of success, the Grand Cherokee has you covered. With a choice of four 4×4 systems plus an optional Quadra-Lift air suspension, there’s no obstacle too difficult to tackle.”

In the 3-row category, the Dodge Durango was judged the best of the bunch. It beat the Mitsubishi Outlander, Nissan Pathfinder (which is being discontinued), Chevrolet Traverse, GMC Acadia, Buick Enclave, Ford Flex, Toyota Highlander, Mazda CX-9, Hyundai Santa Fe, Ford Explorer and Honda Pilot.

“The Durango remains big, brawny, and masculine in an era of soft, curvaceous crossovers, but it’s not as trucklike as other large sport-utes…The V-6 models are enough for most, with smooth acceleration, while Hemi models deliver excellent torque, especially handy for towing.”

In Great Britain, the Jeep Renegade was named 4×4 Magazine’s “4×4 of the Year.” The decision by the magazine’s expert judges was unanimous and followed a tough off-road evaluation course. Those doing the testing also said the entire Renegade lineup was worthy of the top award.

“It’s a credit that any manufacturer should consider producing such a capable small off-roader,” says Nigel Fryatt, Editor, 4×4 Magazine. “That it’s so well built, while also fun and funky, is a delight.’

The Renegade also won the magazine’s “Mid-range SUV sub-£30,000 (~$45,600)” category while the Wrangler took the “Hardcore” class for the fourth consecutive year.

Read more at: http://www.allpar.com/news/index.php/2015/12/more-praise-for-jeeps-and-durango-30779

Must-Have Car Features for Expectant Parents

There may be no greater joy in life than knowing a newborn is on the way.

Soon, you’ll get to experience all the excitement and bliss that being a parent brings. But with this wonder comes great responsibility. The entire well-being of another human will rest in your hands. It’s time to evaluate some things in your life and make a few changes.

Remember that car you bought fresh out of school that was some combination of being affordable, cool, unique and youthful? Now it’s deteriorating into a pile of scap metal in your driveway. You gamble with whether you will or will not make it to your destination or not on every trip you take. Getting stranded on the side of the freeway is one thing, but having it happen with an infant aboard will be a nightmare. Looks like it’s time for an upgrade.

So what should a new parent look for in an automobile? Well a lot of things, really. But to help any soon-to-be progenitors, we have broken down the new car checklist into three key areas. First, there are those things that need to be in a vehicle to make transporting a baby safe and easy. Second are things that aren’t quite a necessity, but would make your time behind the wheel as a parent a lot less stressful. Third, there are the items that are icing on the cake; the added perks that parents might not need, but will gladly take if offered.

Must-Haves

The most important thing you can do as a parent is keep your child safe. This is especially true when it comes to cars and driving. Regardless of how skilled you are behind the wheel, there is always the unknown factor of weather, road conditions and other motorists that could result in a crash. Modern vehicles have jumped leaps and bounds in terms of crash worthiness compared to older cars, even within the past five years. A modern car will keep its occupants much safer than models from the past. But some are still safer than others. To check and compare how well prospective new vehicle purchases rate in crash testing, visit the Insurance Institute of Highway Safety database or the one offered by the National Highway Traffic Safety Act.

A newborn is going to spend the next several years in child safety seats, so a vehicle with a rear seat is essential. Although most four- and five-person coupes do come equipped with child seat anchors, accessing them and the child can be a nightmare because there isn’t a door opening directly beside the rear seat. When your child is an infant and in a rear facing child seat this can be quite the struggle.

It’s best to look for a four-door vehicle because the easier accessed rear seat area will be easier to deal with. If your rear facing child seat has already been purchased, take it along when new car shopping so it can be test fitted to the backseat area. Pay attention to a vehicle’s official rear legroom measurement as these safety seats are deceivingly long. Not all smaller cars can accommodate one without forcing the front passenger seat to be placed uncomfortably close to the windshield.

Rear doors are also important when it comes to size and operation. Vehicles like a Range Rover L with the extended wheelbase give parents all the space in the world to secure their bundles of joy to the back seats, but the rear doors also require all the space in the world to open, which is a challenge in parking lots. When looking at new cars, see how far out the doors open in relation to the access they give to the backseat area. As well, the angle in which they swing open is important as the closer to 90 degrees the better. Still, there is one champion when it comes to rear vehicle doors for parents: the sliding door. Not only does it give them full access to their kids, but it also takes up minimal space when opened.

Nice-to-Haves

With the essentials taken care of, many other automotive features can help ease the transition into parenthood. Chances are you’ll become more distracted behind the wheel now that an extra, highly demanding passenger is frequently aboard. Vehicles with the latest active safety systems like lane departure warning, blind spot monitoring and collision detection could be a life saver if you stop paying attention, even for a split second.

Babies call for a lot of stuff like strollers, pack and play cribs, diaper bags and more. A car with a large trunk is good, but one with a lift gate hatchback is better. Not only is it easier to load odd-shaped items into a hatchback, by usually there is more cargo room in a hatchback and items placed back there stay as warm or cool as everything else in the vehicle. Taking things a step further, a power lift gate, power trunk or even power side doors

will further help a new parent whose hands will inevitably be full each time they approach the vehicle.

And when it comes to loading a child and their gear into a car, a vehicle’s height is important. Crossovers continue to gain popularity with new parents due partially to their load height. SUVs usually sit too high, requiring some people to have to step up into the vehicle to secure their child in a safety seat. What-to-Look-for-in-a-Car-with-a-Baby-on-the-Way-07.jpgRegular cars, on the other hand, sit too low and force parents to hunch over in backbreaking slouches as they secure the safety belts.

While discussing access, safety anchors that are easy to reach for the child seats are a huge plus. Some vehicles require a lot of work to uncover and use these clips. While you’re at it, try folding the rear seats down to see how easy it is to do when children are not occupying them for added utility.

Finally, keeping the sun out of your child’s eyes is important, especially ones too small to relate any discomfort to you. A vehicle with factory or dealer installed rear window tint is good, but one with built in roll-up sunshades is better. This isn’t as unusual as it once was either as several minivans, crossovers and sedans are now offering this feature.

Icing on the Cake

Of course, there are some other items that will make life even easier on new parents, like extra cup holders for kid’s snacks and food as well as excess storage bins for other random items. Some vehicles now include a secondary wraparound rear view mirror so a driver can take a quick look back on their kids without having to turn all the way around or moving the regular rear view mirror down.

Removable rear headrests are a nice bonus as they make installing child safety seats much easier and built-in rear video screens can help entertain little ones on longer trips.

Ultimately though, it all comes down to what is most important to you and what you can afford. There are many choices out there that are great, child friendly vehicles. As long as all the Must Haves are checked off as well as a good portion of the Nice to Haves, you should be fine. Happy shopping and good luck with the new baby!

Read more at: http://www.autoguide.com/auto-news/2015/01/must-have-car-features-for-expectant-parents.html

Join us tomorrow at Plymouth High School for our Dodge Booster Club Fundraiser

The Dodge brand and Dick Scott Chrysler Dodge Jeep Ram will team up with Plymouth High School Booster Club for a Dodge Booster Club Fundraiser tomorrow, Saturday, August 16th at Plymouth High School from 11:30am – 3:30pm.  Everyone in the community is invited to come out to test drive a 2014 Dodge Durango, Grand Caravan, Dart, or Journey. For each brief test drive taken during the fundraiser, the Dodge brand will donate $20 to The Plymouth High School Booster Club.

Dick Scott Chrysler Dodge Jeep Ram will provide the vehicles, and dealership staff will be on hand to assist with the fundraising test drives.  “We enjoy working with the parents and students in our community and look forward to the opportunity to help the Plymouth High School Booster Club in their fundraising efforts,” said Jason Scott, General Sales Manager at Dick Scott Chrysler Dodge Jeep Ram. “The Dodge school fundraisers are friendly and fun for everyone.  Stop by and spend a few minutes with us to help raise funds for Plymouth High School.”

The Dodge Booster Club Fundraiser will not only help the Plymouth High School Booster club, it’s a fun and friendly opportunity to check out and drive the exciting new 2014 Dodge lineup.

With the cooperation of local dealers like Dick Scott Chrysler Dodge Jeep Ram in Plymouth, the Dodge brand supports local schools and student enrichment programs in communities across the United States, and has helped raise over $5 million since 1993.  Last year alone, Dodge donated $714,360 to local high school booster clubs through the Dodge Booster Club Fundraiser.

 

We hope to see you tomorrow at Plymouth High School!

2014 Dodge Journey – Review

The 2014 Dodge Journey is a much better car than its original version, introduced into the heat of the 2009 recession by a soon-to-be-bankrupt Chrysler, and consequently ignored by at least some of the buyers who should have considered it. The Journey, which has the lines of a tall wagon, offers some of the more engaging handling and roadholding in the segment. And its optional third-row seat is one of its greatest advantages, along with smart packaging and a high level of features.

The Journey faces off against the better-known Chevy Equinox, Ford Edge, Honda CR-V, Hyundai Santa Fe, and Toyota Venza (and perhaps Toyota’s RAV4 as well). It’s larger than a compact crossover, though on the small end of the mid-size utility segment–smaller than Toyota’s now-very-large Highlander, for instance. Its third row offers occasional seating when you need it, without the substantially larger size of a Nissan Pathfinder, for instance.

A couple of years ago, Chrysler gave the Journey a completely new interior, with a more elegant instrument panel, better trim, and soft-touch materials. Under the hood, it got the new 3.6-liter Pentastar V-6 engine, along with a large number of improvements that reduced noise, made the ride smoother, and generally upped the quality level substantially. The original Journey just didn’t have the refinement it should have; today’s Journey is one of the better picks among crossovers, even if that remains largely unknown.

The design of the 2014 Journey walks the line between boxy sport-utility vehicles and tall wagons. We appreciate that Dodge has shaken off the same-as-the-other-guy sheetmetal that clothes other crossovers, giving the Journey lines that are refreshingly different, even if they’re no longer necessarily fresh. The look isn’t so different that it’s wacky, but different enough to avoid that same-old-family-vehicle styling rut. Inside, the Journey follows a smooth, swoopy look and simple layout, with large dials and knobs and an LCD touchscreen framed by high-quality materials.

There’s a lot for busy parents to like about the 2014 Journey. Dodge and Chrysler clearly applied some of its long-honed expertise with minivans to this interior, as people and cargo really fit well and there are plenty of smaller spaces for personal items, toys, and accessories. Front seats are what we’d best describe as ‘American-sized’—think wider than some other seats. Back-seat accommodations are among the best you’ll find in any vehicle this size, and the seats are contoured to fit adults; the seatback is adjustable for rake, and the whole bench slides fore and aft a few inches, so it’s easy to get comfortable back there. The rear seat folds fully flat, and under the rearward portion of the cargo floor there’s a huge space vast enough for a couple of laptop bags.

The Journey is offered in an extensive lineup, with AVP (American Value Package), SE, SXT, Limited, and R/T models. Several of the models (the Limited and R/T) get more features for the money in 2014. You’ll need to step up to SXT models to get either the V-6 engine or all-wheel drive. But even with the base model you get power windows, locks and mirrors; air conditioning; cruise control; pushbutton start; a cooled glove box; a telescoping steering wheel; and an AM/FM/CD player. Bluetooth isn’t included on the base model, but it is a $395 option. Seven-passenger seating is available even on the base model, while you’ll also need to get the SXT to get the UConnect media center option. That includes an 8.4-inch touch-screen that at the top of the lineup can combine with a Garmin navigation system that isn’t all that intuitive. Sirius Satellite Radio and TravelLink features are available, along with a premium audio system.

Forget about the Journey if you’re set on the idea of a four-cylinder or top-drawer fuel economy. Their loud, coarse 173-hp, 2.4-liter four-cylinder engine and four-speed automatic are dawdling and disappointing in nearly every respect. Otherwise you should head straight to one of the V-6 versions, as they’re excellent and refined. Chrysler’s 3.6-liter ‘Pentastar’ V-6 makes 283 horsepower and is hooked up to a six-speed automatic for much better responsiveness. The six-speed automatic can take some of the polish off the package, though: in some versions we’ve driven, the automatic juddered and hesitated before it downshifted.

The Journey’s handling is reasonably responsive. Chrysler recently reworked the suspension to include stiffer, better-responding shocks and a lower ride height in front, and it’s honed some of the duller responses the Journey had in its initial model years. The ride quality remains a strong point, with the proper damping and roll control for a family vehicle, but the rather quick steering ratio feels a little out of place.

Safety has been another strong point. The NHTSA awards the Journey four stars overall, while the IIHS calls it a Top Safety Pick.

On Styling
We’re still bullish on the Journey’s stance and details–especially its recently redone cabin.

We like the styling on the 2014 Dodge Journey, and that’s because it finds a balance between tall wagons and boxy family SUVs, without looking like every other crossover on the market. It’s different enough to look unique, but it’s mainstream enough to not look out of place in the segment.

Its square shoulders, crosshair grille and smartly embossed fenders make it look at least a little athletic, especially considering its compact size. While its profile may look a slab-sided, the chiseled sheetmetal and  lipped wheelwells feel refreshing and different in an era of crossovers that typically skew to either the very boxy or incredibly curvaceous ends of the spectrum.

Inside, the Journey follows a smooth, swoopy look and simple layout, with large dials and knobs and an LCD touchscreen framed by high-quality materials. Open the Journey’s door, and a bolt of metallic trim directs you quickly across a more softly sculpted dash, with suave finishes and tight fits. The contoured center stack gets mixed in with round cut-tube gauges and a blocky steering wheel, and it all hangs together, along with a big LCD screen (on some versions) and no-fuss climate controls that ride sidesaddle on that strip of bright trim.

On Performance
The V-6 Journey offers good acceleration and reasonably good handling; we’d skip the four-cylinder entirely.

The Journey isn’t the right answer if you’re looking for top-shelf fuel economy or a four-cylinder engine. It’s a rough, 173-horsepower 2.4-liter four-cylinder with a four-speed automatic that disappoints in virtually every way possible.

With that in mind the V-6 model is both refined and powerful, with the 3.6-liter ‘Pentastar’ V-6 producing 283 hp pushed through a six-speed automatic transmission. That six-speed works well when you’re really pushing the Journey, but we’ve experienced some shuddering in stop-and-go traffic.

The steering is very quick for a family vehicle, and doesn’t deliver the feedback it needs. Ride quality remains a strong point, however, with the proper damping and roll control for a family vehicle; although keep in mind that wheel sizes now range from 17-inch to 19-inchers and those largest wheels don’t soak up the impacts quite as well. In any case, braking is strong, though.

The Journey’s handling is reasonably responsive. The Journey’s suspension loads and unloads confidently, like a lower and leaner vehicle than it is, and there’s none of the excessive bounding or wallowing when you hit a bump mid-corner with some taller crossovers. The ride quality remains a strong point, with the proper damping and roll control for a family vehicle. And while the hydraulic-assist steering system gets it right with weighting, the rather quick steering ratio feels a little out of place.

On Quality
Passengers and cargo will have ample space in the Journey, but it’s the little storage touches that impress us.

Parents will find a lot to like in the 2014 Dodge Journey. There are some obvious minivan-like qualities to the interior–likely pulled from Chrysler’s experience with family hauling vans–and there’s a lot of room for people and cargo. In general, you’ll find the Journey to be an easy-to-drive option for a full-size family.

The cargo hold specs out at a swell 37 cubic feet behind the second row, and a tight 10.7 cubic feet behind the raised third-row seat. Flip everything down behind the front seats, and you can fit a half-dozen flat-screen TVs in the Journey’s 67.6 cubic feet of space.

Front seats are what we’d best describe as ‘American-sized’—think wider than some other seats. Back-seat accommodations are among the best you’ll find in any vehicle this size, and the seats are contoured to fit adults (two of them, or three kids); the seatback is adjustable for rake, and the whole bench slides fore and aft a few inches, so it’s easy to get comfortable back there.

In back, folding the seats forward takes an extra step—you slide the middle portion of the outboard cushions up and forward first—but the reward is that you get a lower, flatter load floor as well as that better contouring. There are also many thoughtful solutions for storing odds and ends, and keeping some of them out of sight. For instance, the cushion of the passenger seat flips up to reveal a bin underneath, while below the rearward portion of the cargo floor there’s a huge space vast enough for a couple of laptop bags.

On Safety
The Journey’s crash-test scores have been good, and it offers a few safety options we like to see.

Every Journey comes standard with dual front, side, and curtain airbags; stability and traction control; active head restraints; and four-wheel disc brakes with anti-lock control. Integrated child booster seats are also offered for the second row. And we recommend the optional rearview camera and parking sensors.

It rates well with both of the agency that crash test cars rate their safety. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) has named the Journey a Top Safety Pick in previous model years, as it’s earned top ‘good’ ratings for frontal, side, and rear impacts as well as roof strength. That designation will likely carry over for the 2014 model year. And the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) gives the Journey an overall rating of four stars, with a five-star individual score for side-impact protection.

On Features
With excellent entertainment and connectivity features, the Journey outpoints some of its newer competition.

There are currently six Journey models available–the American Value Package (AVP), SE, SXT, Crew, RT, and Limited–but you’ll have to look at the SXT or higher if you want all-wheel drive or the V-6.

You’ll also need to get the SXT, at minimum, to get the UConnect media center, an option that we appreciated for its ability to easily control a wide range of devices ranging from iPhones to SD cards (it even quickly indexed one with 16 GB of music). The system includes an 8.4-inch touch-screen that at the top of the lineup can combine with a Garmin navigation system that isn’t all that intuitive. Sirius Satellite Radio and TravelLink features are available, along with the premium audio system, and a DVD entertainment system for backseat passengers is also optional.

Crew and R/T models added features last year, for better value, while prices on the R/T actually dropped by $1,000. The Limited model is new for 2014, and slotted just below the R/T, with standard UConnect, leather, and the 19-inch wheels. But even with the base model you get power windows, locks and mirrors; air conditioning; cruise control; pushbutton start; a cooled glove box; a telescoping steering wheel; and an AM/FM/CD player. A USB port is also included, although it’s tucked away in the center console. Bluetooth isn’t included on the base model, but it is a $395 option. Seven-passenger seating is available on any of the models.

Step into higher-trim Journeys and you’ll add features like premium sound; keyless entry; leather seating; and hide-away cargo bins under the seats. SXT models can be optioned with UConnect and a power sunroof for 2013, but with the Journey Crew you get remote start, automatic climate control, leather steering-wheel trim, and in-seat storage. At the top R/T level you add appearance upgrades like red accent stitching, satin-carbon aluminum wheels, and a six-speaker, 368-watt premium audio system.

On Green
Average fuel economy is understandable with the V-6 Journey–but less forgivable with the four-cylinder version.

The 2014 Dodge Journey isn’t the most fuel-efficient way to get into a crossover. However, it lands pretty squarely around average for the segment, and its V-6 option does reasonably well on the highway.

The V-6 versions have somewhat lower numbers, but they’re directly competitive with other V-6 crossovers, and we’ve seen good numbers in real-world driving, with results that meet or beat the Journey’s 17-mpg city, 25 highway EPA ratings. Over about 700 miles of driving—across Michigan, and including a mix of freeway driving, family-hauling, and suburban side trips—we averaged 24 mpg. That’s not far from what we’ve seen in four-cylinder crossovers this size in that kind of driving, and those models’ powertrains aren’t as satisfying as this V-6.

Technically, the base four-cylinder engine and four-speed automatic transmission produce the best mileage ratings in the lineup–an EPA-rated 19/26 mpg. That’s lower than most other four-cylinder crossovers, and not at all impressive.

As read on: http://www.thecarconnection.com/overview/dodge_journey_2014?fbfanpage

Looking for an affordable way to go on vacation this year?

Despite record high fuel costs, RV vacations remain affordable!

The experts are predicting fuel costs will reach $4 a gallon this summer. Don’t let this affect your vacation plans! Even if you factor in higher fuel prices, RV vacations remain the most economical. In fact, A recent study by PKF Consulting found that fuel prices would have to triple for RVing to be more expensive than other forms of travel.

A typical vacation, even with just a family of four, can become quite expensive. There are costs for transportation, lodging, food—and don’t forget the entertainment. Amusement park tickets, museum admission, historic tours, boat rentals and the like all add to vacation expenses. RV family vacations are, on average, 26 to 74 percent less expensive than travel by personal car, airline or cruise ship.

The RV combines your transportation, lodging and restaurant all in one. RVs come fully equipped with state-of-the-art kitchens, bathrooms, central air and heat, king-sized beds, entertainment systems and more, allowing you to bring all the comforts of home when you travel. Here are some tips that will help you save money on fuel while still enjoying all the fun, freedom and flexibility that RVing has to offer.

Camp closer to home. There’s no need to venture outside leave the state! There are over 1,000 campgrounds in Michigan, located near popular destinations, along major tourist routes and even in metropolitan areas. You’re always on vacation at the campsite, even if it’s only an hour drive home.
Stay longer in one place. Many RV parks are vacation destinations in their own right, offering something for everyone—swimming pools, playgrounds, game rooms, boating, fishing, nature trails, planned activities and more!
Eat in. Cook your family favorites in the convenience of an RV to avoid the high costs of eating out. Better yet, cook over your campfire!
Drive 55 instead of 65. AAA reports, for every 1 mph increase over 55 mph, fuel efficiency decreases 2.2 percent.
Adjust home thermostats to save energy when traveling.
Pack light and purchase firewood, water and other camping materials at the campground to keep the RV lightweight while traveling.
Tune up the engine of your motorhome or tow vehicle, inflate tires properly and conduct regular maintenance to maximize fuel efficiency.
Use the grade of fuel recommended by the engine manufacturer to increase miles per gallon.
Travel during off-peak times. Avoid rush hour or travel at night when the weather is cooler and the vehicle air conditioning is needed less.

Veteran RVer, Jayne Kasper travels nearly 2,000 miles in Michigan each year with husband Ted and dog Jasper. Jayne doesn’t let the cost of gas slow her down, “We stay at campgrounds closer to home. I’m on vacation the moment I step into my motor home, whether we’re 20 minutes or 2 hours from home.”

Here are some other facts to remember:

Airfares and hotel rates are rising rapidly as fuel costs increase and fuel surcharges are added. You can avoid those costs in an RV. Fuel prices would need to triple from their current level to make RVing more expensive for a family of four than other forms of travel.
Fuel is typically only the fourth largest expense on a road trip, behind lodging, food and vehicle payment and maintenance.
Save on entertainment costs by bringing along your family’s favorite DVDs and game systems.
Memories made on RV trips will last a lifetime—as will the physical and mental health benefits. With a few simple adjustments for fuel price increases, RVing remains as affordable and as fun as ever.

RVing is still one of the most cost effective ways to explore Michigan. Replace family memories of airport delays, cramped hotel rooms and expensive restaurants with those of scenic drives, comfortable, amenity-filled campgrounds, campfire cookouts and outdoor adventures. There’s so much to see and do right here in your home state! RV owners surveyed by Robert Hilton Associates cited the most important benefits of family camping are bringing the family closer together, having new experiences and teaching a respect of nature.

As read on: http://www.marvac.org/rv-fuel-costs-affordable.htm

Drive a Dodge Today and Help Northville High Turf Club

COME OUT
TONIGHT, THURSDAY, APRIL 19TH FROM 4PM -7PM
TO NORTHVILLE HIGH SCHOOL
(in the Center Parking Lot)
AND TEST DRIVE A DODGE CARAVAN, CHARGER,
DURANGO OR TO SUPPORT THE
NHS TURF CLUB!!!

$20 Will be donated by Dick Scott Chrysler Dodge Jeep Ram for Each Test Drive to the Turf Clubs Fundraising Efforts!


Sue Putman of Northville might be in the market for a new car, and by test driving one today, she’ll make a donation toward Northville High School’s efforts to get artificial turf on its football field.

Participants will be able to test drive the new Dodge Grand Caravan, Journey, Durango, and Charger in the East Parking Lot of Northville High School. Dick Scott, Chrysler, Dodge, Jeep & Ram will be donating $20 to the project for each person who comes by to test drive one of the cars on site at Northville High today from 4 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. The goal is to raise $5,000. Participants must be 18 or older, with a valid driver’s license.

“It sounds like a great opportunity to support a great cause. It’s an awesome fundraiser and it will benefit the turf project they are working on,” said Putman, a mother of three, including a senior at the school.

There will be no selling at the event, said Nichole Scott, director of dealership operations, though she does see the event as a great way to promote her business and highlight the increase in quality and design of the vehicles.

“It’s a time to help the high school, but also make people aware of our dealership and the Dodge product,” she said.

Last year, Dodge donated nearly $467,000 to local high school booster clubs through the Dodge Booster Club Fundraiser.

The entire Northville High School turf project will cost about $1 million, said Bryan Masi, Northville’s athletic director.

He said the turf and new scoreboard will be paid for by fundraised money. So far, the TurfClub has raised $835,000. Of that, $500,000 came from an anonymous donation followed by a $100,000 donation from the Friends of Northville Parks & Recreation. Construction on the turf begins May 1.

Masi said the rest of the stadium will be renovated over the next couple of years. Those renovations will be paid for through the school district’s sinking bond approved last May. About $1.3 million is designated for the stadium, which will pay for a variety of improvements, including a new pressbox, lights, new entrances and ticket booths.

“The test drive for turf will be a great way for the community to get involved in raising money for the stadium project,” Masi said. “We are thankful to Dick Scott Dodge to give us this opportunity to host this event. Hopefully, we will have a big crowd.”

As read on: http://northville.patch.com/articles/dick-dodge?ncid=newsltuspatc00000001

Chrysler has three of the “Ten most improved cars of 2011” spots!

The Dodge Durango, Dodge Journey and Jeep Grand Cherokee are three of the “Ten most improved cars of 2011.” Among the crop of new cars out for 2011 it’s worth singling out those vehicles that have shown significant improvement.

2011 Dodge Durango

The original Durango was a monstrous, thirsty body-on-frame truck that had worse handling and fuel economy than the larger Chevy Suburban, but with less space inside than the Tahoe. The new Durango is built on a new unibody chassis shared with the Mercedes-Benz M-Class and R-Class crossover SUVs and it is outfitted with either the company’s new 3.6-liter Pentastar V6 engine or the latest version of the company’s heralded Hemi V8, with cylinder deactivation for better gas mileage when cruising on the highway. Mercedes’ ride and Hemi power? That’s a tough-to-beat combination.

2011 Dodge Journey

Dodge briefly ran tongue-in-cheek television commercials touting the Journey mid-sized crossover as the best car in the world. It was a joke because the old Journey obviously wasn’t, with its appalling cabin materials and thirsty V6 engine.

But the 2011 Journey was the recipient of the company’s most lavish makeover, with a positively opulent interior that welcomes customers inside. Under the hood it also gets the new 3.6-liter Pentastar V6, with its accompanying improvements in power, smoothness and efficiency.

2011 Jeep Grand Cherokee

Jeep The Jeep Grand Cherokee suffered during the years when the Jeep brand was controlled by then-DaimlerChrysler. Now that the company has split from the Germans and aligned itself with Fiat, the result has been, incredible as it may seem, a gigantic improvement. The old Grand Cherokee was as capable off-road as ever, but budget pressures robbed its once-luxurious cabin of premium materials.

Today’s Grand Cherokee returns the premium materials to the cabin, while revving up the styling and installing the company’s efficient new Pentastar 3.6-liter V6 engine or the latest version of the powerful Hemi V8. For off-road enthusiasts it is a restoration of the Grand Cherokee to its deserved position as a premium off-road wagon.

We are excited to have several vehicles make this list!

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/43045141/ns/business-autos/