Dodge’s Journey model has been in production since 2008, adopting its Fiat Freemont alter-ego in some markets. The next generation, though, will be more European-bred with added Italian flair.
Chrysler re-badged the current Journey that’s manufactured in Mexico beginning with 2011, offering the Freemont with a different suspension tuning and slight cosmetic changes. Now, AutoNews reports that FCA will shift Dodge Journey’s production from Mexico to Italy, after the model gets replaced with the next-gen, 2019 model year – according to supplier sources.
The move will help boost plant utilization in FCA’s European assembly operations, as well as free up capacity in North America to expand output for Jeep SUVs and RAM pickups, while focusing on the development of the future Compass and Patriot.
Moreover, the future Journey will reportedly share a platform with the Alfa Romeo Giulia, which translates into a transition from front-wheel drive to rear-wheel-drive, and possibly all-wheel-drive for the mid-size crossover sport utility vehicle.
Although details about the vehicle’s powertrains are non-existent at this point, we can imagine the model sharing the same engines as the Giulia and Alfa’s future SUV, the Stelvio. Underpinned by the same RWD/AWD architecture, the Journey could make use of Alfa Romeo’s four-cylinder engines and 8 speed automatic gearbox.
Meanwhile, the current Journey will soldier on for at least two more years, and continue to be built at the Toluca Assembly Plant in Mexico.