2020 Chevrolet Traverse vs. 2019 Dodge Journey

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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Safety

In the past twenty years hundreds of infants and young children have died after being left in vehicles, usually by accident. When turning the vehicle off, drivers of the Traverse are reminded to check the back seat if they opened the rear door before starting out. The Journey doesn’t offer a back seat reminder.

The Traverse has a standard front seat center airbag, which deploys between the driver and front passenger, protecting them from injuries caused by striking each other in serious side impacts. The Journey doesn’t offer front seat center airbags.

The Traverse (except L/LS) offers optional Automatic Emergency Braking, 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 Traverse (except L/LS)’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 Traverse (except L/LS) offers an optional Surround Vision 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 Traverse (except L/LS)’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 Traverse (except L/LS)’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 Traverse has standard OnStar®, which uses a global positioning satellite (GPS) receiver and a cellular system to get turn-by-turn driving directions, 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 Traverse and the Journey have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, side-impact head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, front wheel drive, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, daytime running lights, rearview cameras and available all wheel drive.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration does 35 MPH front crash tests on new vehicles. In this test, results indicate that the Chevrolet Traverse is safer than the Dodge Journey:

Traverse

Journey

Driver

STARS

5 Stars

5 Stars

Neck Injury Risk

15.6%

27%

Neck Stress

198 lbs.

250 lbs.

Leg Forces (l/r)

53/40 lbs.

502/600 lbs.

Passenger

STARS

4 Stars

4 Stars

Neck Injury Risk

35.2%

52%

Neck Stress

128 lbs.

164 lbs.

Leg Forces (l/r)

258/133 lbs.

631/373 lbs.

New test not comparable to pre-2011 test results. More stars = Better. Lower test results = Better.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration does side impact tests on new vehicles. In this test, which crashes the vehicle into a flat barrier at 38.5 MPH and into a post at 20 MPH, results indicate that the Chevrolet Traverse is safer than the Dodge Journey:

Traverse

Journey

Front Seat

STARS

5 Stars

5 Stars

HIC

69

97

Rear Seat

STARS

5 Stars

5 Stars

HIC

134

156

Spine Acceleration

39 G’s

42 G’s

Hip Force

716 lbs.

972 lbs.

Into Pole

STARS

5 Stars

5 Stars

Max Damage Depth

14 inches

16 inches

Spine Acceleration

34 G’s

35 G’s

Hip Force

554 lbs.

712 lbs.

New test not comparable to pre-2011 test results. More stars = Better. Lower test results = Better.

Warranty

The Traverse’s corrosion warranty is 1 year and 40,000 miles longer than the Journey’s (6/100,000 vs. 5/60,000).

There are over 25 percent more Chevrolet dealers than there are Dodge dealers, which makes it easier should you ever need service under the Traverse’s warranty.

Reliability

To reliably power the ignition and other systems and to recharge the battery, the Traverse has a standard 170-amp alternator. The Journey’s 160-amp alternator isn’t as powerful.

To reliably start during all conditions and help handle large electrical loads, the Traverse has a standard 600-amp battery. The Journey’s 525-amp battery isn’t as powerful.

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2019 Initial Quality Study of new car owners surveyed provide the statistics that show that Chevrolet vehicles are better in initial quality than Dodge vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Chevrolet 6th in initial quality, above the industry average. With 5 more problems per 100 vehicles, Dodge is ranked 8th.

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2019 survey of the owners of three-year-old vehicles provides the long-term dependability statistics that show that Chevrolet vehicles are more reliable than Dodge vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Chevrolet fourth in reliability, above the industry average. With 63 more problems per 100 vehicles, Dodge is ranked 28th.

Engine

The Traverse’s 3.6 DOHC V6 produces 137 more horsepower (310 vs. 173) and 100 lbs.-ft. more torque (266 vs. 166) than the Journey’s standard 2.4 DOHC 4 cyl. The Traverse’s 3.6 DOHC V6 produces 27 more horsepower (310 vs. 283) and 6 lbs.-ft. more torque (266 vs. 260) than the Journey’s optional 3.6 DOHC V6.

As tested in Motor Trend the Chevrolet Traverse is faster than the Dodge Journey V6:

Traverse

Journey

Zero to 60 MPH

6.7 sec

7.7 sec

Quarter Mile

15.2 sec

16 sec

Speed in 1/4 Mile

90.6 MPH

87.2 MPH

Fuel Economy and Range

On the EPA test cycle the Traverse gets better fuel mileage than the Journey:

MPG

Traverse

FWD

3.6 DOHC 6-cyl.

18 city/27 hwy

AWD

3.6 DOHC 6-cyl.

17 city/25 hwy

Journey

FWD

3.6 DOHC 6-cyl.

17 city/25 hwy

AWD

3.6 DOHC 6-cyl.

16 city/24 hwy

In heavy traffic or at stoplights the Traverse’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.

The Traverse has a standard cap-less fueling system. The fuel filler is automatically opened when the fuel nozzle is inserted and automatically closed when it’s removed. This eliminates the need to unscrew and replace the cap and it reduces fuel evaporation, which causes pollution. The Journey doesn’t offer a cap-less fueling system.

Environmental Friendliness

In its Green Vehicle Guide, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) rates the Chevrolet Traverse higher (6 out of 10) than the Dodge Journey (3). This means the Traverse produces up to 23.4 pounds less smog-producing pollutants than the Journey every 15,000 miles.

Transmission

A nine-speed automatic is standard on the Chevrolet Traverse, for better acceleration and lower engine speed on the highway. Only a six-speed automatic is available for the Journey.

Tires and Wheels

For better traction, the Traverse has larger tires than the Journey (255/65R18 vs. 225/65R17).

For better ride, handling and brake cooling the Traverse has standard 18-inch wheels. Smaller 17-inch wheels are standard on the Journey SE. The Traverse’s optional 20-inch wheels are larger than the 19-inch wheels on the Journey Crossroad/GT.

The Chevrolet Traverse’s wheels have 6 lugs for longer wheel bearing life, less chance of rotor warping and greater strength. The Dodge Journey only has 5 wheel lugs per wheel.

The Traverse has a standard easy tire fill system. When inflating the tires, the vehicle’s integrated tire pressure sensors keep track of the pressure as the tires fill and tell the driver when the tires are inflated to the proper pressure. The Journey doesn’t offer vehicle monitored tire inflation.

Suspension and Handling

The Traverse has vehicle 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.

For a smoother ride and more stable handling, the Traverse’s wheelbase is 7.1 inches longer than on the Journey (120.9 inches vs. 113.8 inches).

For better handling and stability, the track (width between the wheels) on the Traverse is 5.5 inches wider in the front and 4.7 inches wider in the rear than on the Journey.

The Traverse RS AWD handles at .81 G’s, while the Journey AWD pulls only .76 G’s of cornering force in a Motor Trend skidpad test.

The Traverse RS AWD executes Motor Trend’s “Figure Eight” maneuver 1.7 seconds quicker than the Journey AWD (27 seconds @ .65 average G’s vs. 28.7 seconds @ .6 average G’s).

Chassis

The front grille of the Traverse uses electronically controlled shutters to close off airflow and reduce drag when less engine cooling is needed. This helps improve highway fuel economy. The Journey doesn’t offer active grille shutters.

The Traverse uses computer-generated active noise cancellation to help remove annoying noise and vibration from the passenger compartment, especially at low frequencies. The Journey doesn’t offer active noise cancellation.

Passenger Space

The Traverse has standard seating for 8 passengers; the Journey can only carry up to 7.

The Traverse has .5 inches more front headroom, .2 inches more front legroom, 4.3 inches more front hip room, 4.6 inches more front shoulder room, .1 inches more rear headroom, 2.3 inches more rear legroom, 2.5 inches more rear hip room, 5.3 inches more rear shoulder room, .5 inches more third row headroom, 10.1 inches more third row legroom, 8.5 inches more third row hip room and 14 inches more third row shoulder room than the Journey.

Cargo Capacity

The Traverse’s cargo area provides more volume than the Journey.

Traverse

Journey

Behind Third Seat

23 cubic feet

10.7 cubic feet

Third Seat Folded

57.8 cubic feet

37 cubic feet

Second Seat Folded

98.2 cubic feet

67.6 cubic feet

Pressing a switch automatically lowers or raises the Traverse High Country’s third row seats, to make changing between cargo and passengers easier. The Journey doesn’t offer automatic folding seats.

To make loading and unloading groceries and cargo easier, especially for short adults, the Traverse (except L/LS) offers an optional power liftgate, which opens and closes automatically by pressing a button, or on the Traverse Premier/High Country, by just kicking your foot under the back bumper, completely leaving your hands free. The Journey doesn’t offer a power liftgate.

Towing

The Traverse’s standard towing capacity is much higher than the Journey’s (1500 vs. 1000 pounds). Maximum trailer towing in the Dodge Journey is only 2500 pounds. The Traverse offers up to a 5000 lbs. towing capacity.

Servicing Ease

The Traverse 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.

Ergonomics

When two different drivers share the Traverse Premier/High Country, the memory system makes it convenient for both. Each setting activates different, customized memories for the driver’s seat position, steering wheel position (with optional power wheel adjuster) and outside mirror angle. The Journey doesn’t offer a memory system.

The Traverse Premier/High Country’s standard easy entry system raises the steering wheel and glides the driver’s seat back when the door is unlocked or the ignition is switched off, making it easier for the driver to get in and out. The Journey doesn’t offer an easy entry system.

The Traverse’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 Traverse’s standard front power windows lower with one touch of the switches, making it more convenient at drive-up windows and toll booths, or when talking with someone outside of the car. The Journey’s standard power windows’ passenger windows don’t open automatically.

In case you lock your keys in your vehicle, or don’t have them with you, you can let yourself in using the Traverse LS/LT/RS/Premier/High Country’s available exterior PIN entry system. The Journey doesn’t offer an exterior PIN entry system.

The Traverse’s power window, power lock, power mirror and cruise control switches are lit from behind, making them plainly visible and easier to operate at night. The Journey’s power mirror switches are unlit, making them difficult to find at night and operate safely.

To improve rear visibility by keeping the rear window clear, the Traverse 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.

Consumer Reports rated the Traverse’s headlight performance “Very Good,” a higher rating than the Journey’s headlights, which were rated “Good.”

While driving with high beams on, sensitive light sensors available for the Traverse (except L/LS) detect other vehicles which could be blinded and automatically switch to low beams. The Journey doesn’t offer automatic dimming high beams.

When the Traverse Premier/High Country is put in reverse, both rearview mirrors tilt from their original position. This gives the driver a better view of the curb during parallel parking maneuvers. Shifting out of reverse puts the mirrors into their original positions. The Journey’s mirrors don’t automatically adjust for backing.

The Traverse Premier/High Country 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.

Both the Traverse and the Journey offer available heated front seats. The Traverse Premier/High Country also has standard heated second row seats to keep those passengers extremely comfortable in the winter. Heated second row seats aren’t available in the Journey.

Standard air-conditioned seats in the Traverse Premier/High Country keep the driver and front passenger comfortable and take the sting out of hot seats in summer. The Journey doesn’t offer air-conditioned seats.

To keep a safe, consistent following distance, the Traverse High Country has a standard 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 Traverse, 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.

Economic Advantages

Insurance will cost less for the Traverse owner. The Complete Car Cost Guide estimates that insurance for the Traverse will cost $470 less than the Journey over a five-year period.

The Traverse will cost the buyer less in the long run because of its superior resale value. The IntelliChoice estimates that the Traverse will retain 46.83% to 49.78% 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 Traverse is less expensive to operate than the Journey because typical repairs cost much less on the Traverse than the Journey, including $924 less for a muffler, $9 less for a starter, $155 less for a fuel pump and $177 less for front struts.

Recommendations

The Chevrolet Traverse outsold the Dodge Journey by 56% during 2018.

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

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