2011 Dodge Journey Consumer Review: Poor Head Restraint Design blo

2011 Dodge Journey SUV - Consumer Review

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Poor Head Restraint Design blocks rear window
By joel72 on


2011 Dodge Journey Crew 4dr SUV (3.6L 6cyl 6A)


After delivery of the Journey, I began noticing poor design issues that affected comfort and efficient use of interior space.
However, my main concern was focused on a "safety" issue.
The very large second row 'Head Restraints' prevented a driver from having a good and safe view of traffic from the rear window.
After a week or so, I removed these 'Head Restraints'... and driving immediately became much easier and less stressful.
It was now easier to see other cars in heavy traffic.
It was easier when backing up.
However, people in the second row would not have head protection.

I eventually noticed that similar vehicle designed by other manufactures were designed with a much lower 'Head Restraint'... like the RAVA-4 for example.
An automotive shop here in Charlotte said they could reduce the size of the 10" head restraints to 4"... so they would be similar to those in the other vehicles.
The price for both would be $500.
This absolutely had to be done.

Because this is an important "safety issue", Chrysler Customer Service was contacted for reimbursement of the 'Head Restraint' alteration.
Basically, they told me that I need to contact the Dealer (Keffer Chrysler, Dodge, Jeep)... and then "Keffer" would tell me that "Chrysler" should do this.
This went back and forth a number of times.
Eventually Chrysler Customer Service said that neither the manufacturer nor the dealer can have any part in this alteration for 'legal liability reasons'.
Yet at the same time both Chrysler and Keffer agreed that what I was asking for made a lot of good sense.
And at the same time similar vehicles from other manufactures, such as the RAVA-4, had head restraints similar to what I needed for my Journey.

All this was very frustrating, insensitive, illogical... and very wrong to a loyal Chrysler customer.
To get the 2011 Dodge Journey, I traded in my 1994 Plymouth Grand Voyager which I had kept in great condition.
In many ways, it was a very enjoyable, useful and comfortable car.
I expected the Dodge Journey to be at least as satisfying.
This has not been my experience... and Chrysler does not seem to care much about efficient design, comfort, safety... or satisfying customers anymore.
I am sorry I bought the Journey.
I would not recommend this vehicle to anyone.

Worst Features

1. Second row head restraints that are the same height as the center head restraint. This will allow good rear windo vision. 2. Front row head restraints angle too far forward... verh uncomfortable. 3. Front windshield angles too far forward. Wasted interior space... difficult to clean. 4. No comfortable way for drivers to stretch out their left leg. Point pressure on left foot is very irritating.
Recommend (1) (16)

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Comments (2) Post a Comment
By brian178
on 07/26/11 15:50 PM (PDT)

Silly review. One star for interior design. Really? I have a 2011 Journey and would, for a variety of reasons, recommend it to anyone. Not recommending a car because of headrests? C'mon.

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By commuter11
on 01/25/12 07:10 AM (PST)

Geeze, guy. Didn't you think to look over your shoulder when sitting in the vehicle before buying? The taller restraints probably work better than would shorter ones, and there is no way that Chrysler is going to change them since they had to certify the car to meet government standards with those headrests. You've already got your solution--taking off the headrests when you don't have rear seat passengers since they are bothering you.

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