2019 Mazda CX-3 vs. 2019 Dodge Journey

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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Safety

The CX-3 has standard Smart City Brake Support, 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 CX-3’s optional lane departure warning system alerts a temporarily inattentive driver when the vehicle begins to leave its lane. The Journey doesn’t offer a lane departure warning system.

The CX-3’s 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 CX-3’s 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 CX-3 has standard E911 Automatic Emergency Notification, which uses a global positioning satellite (GPS) receiver and a cellular system to 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 CX-3 and the Journey have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, side-impact head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, front wheel drive, height adjustable front shoulder belts, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, daytime running lights, rearview cameras and available all wheel drive.

A significantly tougher test than their original offset frontal crash test, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety does 40 MPH small overlap frontal offset crash tests. In this test, where only 25% of the total width of the vehicle is struck, results indicate that the Mazda CX-3 is safer than the Journey:

 

CX-3

Journey

Overall Evaluation

GOOD

POOR

Restraints

GOOD

MARGINAL

Head Neck Evaluation

GOOD

GOOD

Peak Head Forces

0 G’s

0 G’s

Steering Column Movement Rearward

0 cm

12 cm

Chest Evaluation

GOOD

GOOD

Max Chest Compression

22 cm

24 cm

Hip & Thigh Evaluation

GOOD

MARGINAL

Femur Force R/L

.5/.3 kN

6.3/2.9 kN

Hip & Thigh Injury Risk R/L

0%/0%

22%/0%

Lower Leg Evaluation

GOOD

MARGINAL

Tibia index R/L

.44/.49

.8/.83

For its top level performance in all IIHS frontal, side, rear impact and roof-crush tests, with its optional front crash prevention system, and its available headlight’s “Acceptable” rating, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety grants the CX-3 the rating of “Top Pick” for 2018, a rating granted to only 85 vehicles tested by the IIHS. The Journey was not even a standard “Top Pick” for 2018.

Warranty

The CX-3’s 5-year corrosion warranty has no mileage limitations, but the corrosion warranty on the Journey runs out after 60,000 miles.

Reliability

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2018 survey of the owners of three-year-old vehicles provides the long-term dependability statistics that show that Mazda vehicles are more reliable than Dodge vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Mazda 14th in reliability. With 22 more problems per 100 vehicles, Dodge is ranked 23rd.

From surveys of all its subscribers, Consumer Reports’ December 2018 Auto Issue reports that Mazda vehicles are more reliable than Dodge vehicles. Consumer Reports ranks Mazda third in reliability. Dodge is ranked 21st.

Fuel Economy and Range

On the EPA test cycle the CX-3 gets better fuel mileage than the Journey:

 

 

 

MPG

CX-3

 

 

 

 

FWD

2.0 DOHC 4 cyl.

29 city/34 hwy

 

AWD

2.0 DOHC 4 cyl.

27 city/32 hwy

Journey

 

 

 

 

FWD

2.4 DOHC 4 cyl.

19 city/25 hwy

 

 

3.6 DOHC V6

17 city/25 hwy

 

AWD

3.6 DOHC V6

16 city/24 hwy

Tires and Wheels

The CX-3 Sport’s standard tires provide better handling because they have a lower 60 series profile (height to width ratio) that provides a stiffer sidewall than the Journey SE’s standard 65 series tires. The CX-3 Grand Touring/Touring’s tires have a lower 50 series profile than the Journey Crossroad/GT’s 55 series tires.

Suspension and Handling

The CX-3 has engine speed sensitive variable-assist power steering, for low-effort parking, better control at highway speeds and during hard cornering, and a better feel of the road. The Journey doesn’t offer variable-assist power steering.

The CX-3 Grand Touring AWD handles at .85 G’s, while the Journey AWD pulls only .76 G’s of cornering force in a Motor Trend skidpad test.

The CX-3 Grand Touring AWD executes Motor Trend’s “Figure Eight” maneuver 1.1 seconds quicker than the Journey AWD (27.6 seconds @ .66 average G’s vs. 28.7 seconds @ .6 average G’s).

For better maneuverability, the CX-3’s turning circle is 3.7 feet tighter than the Journey SE’s (34.8 feet vs. 38.5 feet). The CX-3’s turning circle is 4.2 feet tighter than the Journey GT/Crossroad’s (34.8 feet vs. 39 feet).

Chassis

The Mazda CX-3 may be more efficient, handle and accelerate better because it weighs about 1000 to 1300 pounds less than the Dodge Journey.

The CX-3 is 2 feet shorter than the Journey, making the CX-3 easier to handle, maneuver and park in tight spaces.

Ergonomics

When two different drivers share the CX-3 Grand Touring, the optional memory seats make it convenient for both. Each setting activates different, customized memories for the driver’s seat position. The Journey doesn’t offer memory seats.

The CX-3 Grand Touring has a standard heads-up display that projects speed and other key instrumentation readouts in front of the driver’s line of sight, allowing drivers to view information without diverting their eyes from the road. The Journey doesn’t offer a heads-up display.

The CX-3’s driver’s power window opens or closes with one touch of the window control, making it more convenient at drive-up windows and toll booths. The Journey’s standard driver’s power window switch has to be held the entire time to close it fully.

The CX-3 has a standard locking fuel door with a remote release located convenient to the driver. A locking fuel door helps prevent vandalism, such as sugar in the tank and fuel theft. The Journey doesn’t offer a locking fuel door.

The CX-3’s optional wipers adjust their speed and turn on and off automatically according to the amount of rainfall on the windshield. The Journey’s manually variable intermittent wipers have to be constantly adjusted.

To improve rear visibility by keeping the rear window clear, the CX-3 has a standard rear fixed intermittent wiper with a full on position. The rear wiper standard on the Journey only has an intermittent setting, so in a hard rain visibility isn’t as good.

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) conducts detailed tests on headlights for their range both straight ahead and in curves and to be certain they don’t exceed acceptable amounts of glare to oncoming drivers. The CX-3’s available headlights were rated “Acceptable” by the IIHS, while the Journey’s headlights are rated “Poor.”

While driving with high beams on, sensitive light sensors available for the CX-3 detect other vehicles which could be blinded and automatically switch to low beams. The Journey doesn’t offer automatic dimming high beams.

To help drivers see further while navigating curves, the CX-3 Grand Touring has standard adaptive headlights to illuminate around corners automatically by reading vehicle speed and steering wheel angle. The Journey doesn’t offer cornering lights.

To keep a safe, consistent following distance, the CX-3 offers an optional Radar 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.

Economic Advantages

The CX-3 will cost the buyer less in the long run because of its superior resale value. The IntelliChoice estimates that the CX-3 will retain 45.65% to 46.16% of its original price after five years, while the Journey only retains 36.8% to 42.12%.

According to The Car Book by Jack Gillis, the CX-3 is less expensive to operate than the Journey because typical repairs cost much less on the CX-3 than the Journey, including $168 less for a water pump, $1009 less for a muffler, $41 less for front brake pads, $40 less for a starter, $407 less for a fuel pump, $104 less for front struts and $505 less for a timing belt/chain.

IntelliChoice estimates that five-year ownership costs (depreciation, financing, insurance, fuel, fees, repairs and maintenance) for the Mazda CX-3 will be $5335 to $10415 less than for the Dodge Journey.

Recommendations

The Car Book by Jack Gillis recommends the Mazda CX-3, based on economy, maintenance, safety and complaint levels.

© 1991-2018 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved.

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