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The Q3’s pre-crash front seatbelts will tighten automatically in the event the vehicle detects an impending crash, improving protection against injury significantly. The Journey doesn’t offer pre-crash pretensioners.
Both the Q3 and Journey have child safety locks to prevent children from opening the rear doors. The Q3 has power child safety locks, allowing the driver to activate and deactivate them from the driver's seat and to know when they're engaged. The Journey’s child locks have to be individually engaged at each rear door with a manual switch. The driver can’t know the status of the locks without opening the doors and checking them.
The Q3 has standard Pre Sense Front, which use forward mounted sensors to warn the driver of a possible collision ahead. If the driver doesn’t react and the system determines a collision is imminent, it automatically applies the brakes at full-force in order to reduce the force of the crash or avoid it altogether. The Journey doesn't offer collision warning or crash mitigation brakes.
The Q3 has standard Secondary Collision Brake Assist, which automatically apply the brakes in the event of a crash to help prevent secondary collisions and prevent further injuries. The Journey doesn’t offer a post collision braking system: in the event of a collision that triggers the airbags, more collisions are possible without the protection of airbags that may have already deployed.
To provide maximum traction and stability on all roads, All-Wheel Drive is standard on the Q3. But it costs extra on the Journey.
When descending a steep, off-road slope, the Q3’s standard Hill Descent Control allows you to creep down safely. The Journey doesn’t offer Hill Descent Control.
The Q3’s optional lane departure warning system alerts a temporarily inattentive driver when the vehicle begins to leave its lane and gently nudges the vehicle back towards its lane. The Journey doesn’t offer a lane departure warning system.
The Q3 Prestige has a standard Top View Camera System to allow the driver to see objects all around the vehicle on a screen. The Journey only offers a rear monitor and rear parking sensors that beep or flash a light. That doesn’t help with obstacles to the front or sides.
The Q3’s optional blind spot warning system uses digital cameras monitored by computer to alert the driver to moving objects in the vehicle’s blind spots where the side view mirrors don’t reveal them. The Journey doesn’t offer a system to reveal objects in the driver’s blind spots.
To help make backing safer, the Q3’s optional cross-path warning system uses wide-angle radar in the rear bumper to alert the driver to vehicles approaching from the side, helping the driver avoid collisions. The Journey doesn’t offer a cross-path warning system.
The Q3 (except Premium) offers an optional Audi Connect CARE, which uses a global positioning satellite (GPS) receiver and a cellular system to remotely unlock your doors if you lock your keys in, help track down your vehicle if it’s stolen or send emergency personnel to the scene if any airbags deploy. The Journey doesn’t offer a GPS response system, only a navigation computer with no live response for emergencies, so if you’re involved in an accident and you’re incapacitated help may not come as quickly.
Both the Q3 and the Journey have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, driver knee airbags, side-impact head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, height adjustable front shoulder belts, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, daytime running lights and rearview cameras.
The Q3 comes with a full 4-year/50,000-mile basic warranty, which covers the entire truck and includes 24-hour roadside assistance. The Journey’s 3-year/36,000-mile basic warranty expires 1 year and 14,000 miles sooner.
The Q3’s corrosion warranty is 7 years and unlimited miles longer than the Journey’s (12/unlimited vs. 5/60,000).
The Audi Q3’s engine uses a cast iron block for durability, while the Journey’s engines use an aluminum block. Aluminum engine blocks are much more prone to warp and crack at high temperatures than cast iron.
A reliable vehicle saves its owner time, money and trouble. Nobody wants to be stranded or have to be without a vehicle while it’s being repaired. Consumer Reports rates the Q3’s reliability 51 points higher than the Journey.
J.D. Power and Associates’ 2019 survey of the owners of three-year-old vehicles provides the long-term dependability statistics that show that Audi vehicles are more reliable than Dodge vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Audi 8th in reliability, above the industry average. With 54 more problems per 100 vehicles, Dodge is ranked 28th.
From surveys of all its subscribers, Consumer Reports’ December 2018 Auto Issue reports that Audi vehicles are more reliable than Dodge vehicles. Consumer Reports ranks Audi 14 places higher in reliability than Dodge.
The Q3’s 2.0 turbo 4 cyl. produces 55 more horsepower (228 vs. 173) and 92 lbs.-ft. more torque (258 vs. 166) than the Journey’s standard 2.4 DOHC 4 cyl.
On the EPA test cycle the Q3 gets better fuel mileage than the Journey:
2.0 Turbo 4 cyl.
19 city/27 hwy
3.6 DOHC V6
16 city/24 hwy
In heavy traffic or at stoplights the Q3’s engine automatically turns off when the vehicle is stopped, saving fuel and reducing pollution. The engine is automatically restarted when the driver gets ready to move again. (Start/Stop isn’t accounted in present EPA fuel mileage tests.) The Journey doesn’t offer an automatic engine start/stop system.
In its Green Vehicle Guide, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) rates the Audi Q3 higher (7 out of 10) than the Dodge Journey (3). This means the Q3 produces up to 24.5 pounds less smog-producing pollutants than the Journey every 15,000 miles.
An eight-speed automatic is standard on the Audi Q3, for better acceleration and lower engine speed on the highway. Only a six-speed automatic is available for the Journey.
The Q3 has Electronic Differential Lock, a true all-wheel-drive system, which uses a four wheel traction control system to redirect engine power to the axle and wheel that still has traction to keep the Q3 moving if even only one wheel still has traction. The Journey doesn’t offer a true all-wheel drive system; it could get stuck while one or more wheels still have traction.
For better stopping power the Q3’s front brake rotors are larger than those on the Journey:
The Q3’s standard front and rear disc brakes are vented to help dissipate heat for shorter stops with less fading. The rear discs on the Journey are solid, not vented.
For better traction, the Q3 has larger standard tires than the Journey (235/55R18 vs. 225/65R17). The Q3’s optional tires are larger than the largest tires available on the Journey (255/40R20 vs. 225/65R17).
The Q3’s standard tires provide better handling because they have a lower 55 series profile (height to width ratio) that provides a stiffer sidewall than the Journey SE’s standard 65 series tires. The Q3’s optional tires have a lower 40 series profile than the Journey Crossroad/GT’s 55 series tires.
For better ride, handling and brake cooling the Q3 has standard 18-inch wheels. Smaller 17-inch wheels are standard on the Journey SE. The Q3’s optional 20-inch wheels are larger than the 19-inch wheels on the Journey Crossroad/GT.
For better maneuverability, the Q3’s turning circle is .1 feet tighter than the Journey SE’s (38.4 feet vs. 38.5 feet). The Q3’s turning circle is .6 feet tighter than the Journey GT/Crossroad’s (38.4 feet vs. 39 feet).
The Q3 is 1 foot, 3.8 inches shorter than the Journey, making the Q3 easier to handle, maneuver and park in tight spaces.
The Q3 has a much larger cargo volume than the Journey with its rear seat up (23.7 vs. 10.7 cubic feet).
To make loading and unloading groceries and cargo easier, especially for short adults, the Q3 has a standard power liftgate, which opens and closes automatically by pressing a button, or optionally by just kicking your foot under the back bumper, completely leaving your hands free. The Journey doesn’t offer a power liftgate.
The Q3’s standard towing capacity is much higher than the Journey’s (1500 vs. 1000 pounds).
The Q3 uses gas struts to support the hood for easier service access. The Journey uses a prop rod to support its heavy hood. It takes two hands to open the hood and set the prop rod, the prop rod gets in the way during maintenance and service, and the prop rod could be knocked out, causing the heavy hood to fall on the person maintaining or servicing the car.
J.D. Power and Associates surveys of service recipients show that Audi service is better than Dodge. J.D. Power ranks Audi 8th in service department satisfaction (above the industry average). With a 53% lower rating, Dodge is ranked 27th.
The Q3’s power parking brake sets with one touch and releases with one touch or automatically. The Journey’s parking brake has to released manually.
The Q3’s front and rear power windows all open or close fully with one touch of the switches, making it more convenient at drive-up windows and toll booths, or when talking with someone outside the car. The Journey’s standard power window switches have to be held the entire time to close them fully. Only its driver’s window opens automatically. With the Journey GT’s power windows, only the front windows open or close automatically.
The Q3’s rain-sensitive wipers adjust their speed and turn on and off automatically based on the amount of rainfall on the windshield. This allows the driver to concentrate on driving without constantly adjusting the wipers. The Journey’s manually variable intermittent wipers have to be constantly adjusted.
While driving with high beams on, sensitive light sensors standard on the Q3 detect other vehicles which could be blinded and automatically switch to low beams. The Journey doesn’t offer automatic dimming high beams.
The Q3 Prestige has standard automatic dimming rear and side view mirrors which automatically darken quickly when headlights shine on them, keeping following vehicles from blinding or distracting the driver. The Journey has an automatic rear view mirror, but its side mirrors don’t dim.
To keep a safe, consistent following distance, the Q3 (except Premium) offers an optional Adaptive Cruise Control, which alters the speed of the vehicle without driver intervention. This allows the driver to use cruise control more safely without constantly having to disengage it when approaching slower traffic. The Journey doesn’t offer an adaptive cruise control.
Bluetooth wireless connectivity is standard on the Q3, connecting the driver and passenger’s cell phones to the vehicle systems. This allows them to use the vehicle’s stereo and hand controls to place calls safely and easily. Bluetooth costs extra on the Journey.
The Q3 Prestige’s Park Steering Assist can parallel park or back into a parking spot by itself, with the driver only controlling speed with the brake pedal. The Journey doesn’t offer an automated parking system.
Consumer Reports® recommends the Audi Q3, based on reliability, safety and performance. The Dodge Journey isn't recommended.
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