I see it's been a while since I've posted anything here. It's not that there isn't anything to post, but that life has been a bit full lately!
One of the big items we had to take care of recently was getting a new car for Corie. She has never driven in the snow in her life, and I felt the need to get her an All Wheel Drive (AWD) vehicle before we get snow that sticks. In addition, the old Explorer was having some issues that would be expensive to correct. The differential was howling, and a damper inside the dash had come loose from its hinge. The damper didn't reliably direct hot air onto the windshield, so the defroster would become a huge issue in the winter.
So we spent a lot of my days off in September and October test-driving new cars. We also spent a great deal of time researching. We test drove a Kia Sportage and Sorento, Ford Edge and Explorer, a Honda CR-V and Pilot, a Mazda CX-9, and a Dodge Durango. We were almost ready to buy a Durango, when Corie spotted a Dodge Journey.
The Durango is a little bigger and taller, and felt a bit beefier. However, it was based on a truck chassis and therefore was heavy and needed a larger engine. We decided on the Journey over the Durango, primarily because of its better mileage and lower price. Otherwise they were quite similar.
The dealership was trying to get rid of their last 2012 models, and so we got a great deal on a loaded R/T model. It has way more gadgetry than any car I've ever owned, and it's the first new vehicle I've ever owned. All the functions are accessed from a touch screen, which I find distracting. On the bright side, it has a slot for a thumb drive, so you can play your own music.
I'ts not a color I would have picked out, given more choices (metal flake black, LOL), but it works. Life is full of compromises :)