2016 Dodge Journey: Car Seat Check

img 411940956 1461616409028 jpg 2016 Dodge Journey | photos by Evan Sears

CARS.COM — Editor’s note: This Car Seat Check was written in May 2015 about the 2015 Dodge Journey. Little of substance has changed with this year’s model. To see what’s new for 2016, click here, or check out a side-by-side comparison of the two model years.

Fiat Chrysler Automobile’s Dodge brand offers several people-movers, from the brawny Durango SUV to the ultra-family-friendly Grand Caravan minivan, but its Journey SUV is the most affordable in the lineup. It’s optional third row and available integrated second-row boosters are likely to impress families, but a lack of top tether anchors in the third row is a big miss.

More Car Seat Checks

How many car seats fit in the second row? Two, but three narrow seats could fit.

How many car seats fit in the third row? Two, but only if they’re boosters.

What We Like

  • We appreciate the Journey’s optional integrated booster seats. They’re easy to operate, though they only work for older children since kids have to weigh at least 48 pounds to use them.
  • In both rear- and forward-facing positions, the convertible fit well in the Journey. We did not have to move the front passenger seat forward to accommodate it in rear-facing mode.
  • In the second row, the booster fit well on the seat and the buckles have elastic bands around the bases to keep them from being too floppy.
  • The second row reclines and slides, which is good because there’s not much legroom in the third row.
  • Third-row access is easy thanks to seats that fold and slide forward to create a decent-sized pathway.

What We Don’t

  • While we appreciate the extra Latch anchor in the middle position of the second row, accessing all the anchors was complicated because they sit tight against the back cushion. Once you muscle past the cushion, connection isn’t a problem, however.   
  • There are no lower Latch anchors or top tether anchors in the third row, which limits the car seats that can be used back there to boosters only.
  • We had to move the front passenger seat forward to make room for the infant car seat.
  • The booster installed easily and fit well in the third row thanks to a flat seat bottom cushion, but the buckles are on floppy bases, so kids might have trouble buckling up independently.
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Grading Scale

A: Plenty of room for the car seat and the child; doesn’t impact driver or front-passenger legroom. Easy to find and connect to Latch and tether anchors. No fit issues involving head restraint or seat contouring. Easy access to the third row.  

B: Plenty of room. One fit or connection issue. Some problems accessing third row when available.

C: Marginal room. Two fit or connection issues. Difficult to access third row when available.

D: Insufficient room. Two or more fit or connection issues.

F: Does not fit or is unsafe.

About’s Car Seat Checks

Editors Jennifer Geiger, Jennifer Newman and Matt Schmitz are certified child safety seat installation technicians.

For the Car Seat Check, we use a Graco SnugRide Classic Connect 30 infant-safety seat, a Britax Marathon convertible seat and Graco TurboBooster seat. The front seats are adjusted for a 6-foot driver and a shorter passenger. The three child seats are installed in the second row. The booster seat sits behind the driver’s seat, and the infant and convertible seats are installed behind the front passenger seat.

We also install the forward-facing convertible in the second row’s middle seat with the booster and infant seat in the outboard seats to see if three car seats will fit; a child sitting in the booster seat must be able to reach the seat belt buckle. If there’s a third row, we install the booster seat and a forward-facing convertible. To learn more about how we conduct our Car Seat Checks, go here.

Parents should also remember that they can use the Latch system or a seat belt to install a car seat, and that Latch anchors have a weight limit of 65 pounds, including the weight of the child and the weight of the seat itself.

Photo of Jennifer Geiger
News Editor Jennifer Geiger joined the automotive industry in 2003, much to the delight of her Corvette-obsessed dad. Jennifer is an expert reviewer, certified car-seat technician and mom of three. She wears a lot of hats — many of them while driving a minivan. Email Jennifer Geiger

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