The Journey is clearly the best vehicle on Chrysler's mid-size platform, which also includes the dire Chrysler Sebring and Dodge Avenger, which both -- thank heaven! -- are being updated for 2011. The 2010 Journey that we tested isn't as lucky, and it shows some signs of old-Chrysler cheapness (i.e., rock-hard door armrests, exposed seat tracks, tricky access to the third-row seats). Still, the Journey is a pretty respectable entry overall, although certainly not class-leading. Power is decent, handling is OK, ride is comfortable.
Some issues: The center-stack controls for the infotainment system have about as many buttons as an Acura's system. Unfortunately, the Journey has fewer contours and different-sized buttons to help orient your hand without taking your eyes off the road. The rear entertainment system would be nice for older kids, but I hit both my head and my toddler's head on the low-hanging overhead controls and flipped-up screen multiple times over my weekend with this vehicle. I would definitely skip this pricey option unless my kids were old enough to be in booster seats. Speaking of kids and seats, I second Joe's notion that the third-row chairs are for small folks on short durations only.
Rusty Blackwell, Copy Editor