1997 Dodge Dakota Sport from North America


Fun to look at, Not fun to drive


In little more than half a year I have had to fix the:

- Stereo System Speakers (Wire was crossed and sound quality was horrendous)

- Heater Thermometer (Only got cold air and for a New England Winter Weather, it wasn't fun)

- Exhaust (Loud and let off more fumes than a hippie)

- Odometer Lights (while I was driving they decided to break and I was given the task of driving home and guessing my speed)

- Glove Compartment (Got stuck and never opened)

- Lighter (stopped working.. I don't smoke, but nonetheless it doens't work anymore..)

Door to the Bed of Truck - (While carrying a few cement block as I barely accelerated the slid back and knocked off the door. Thank god there wasnt anyone behind me or there would have been some bad news)

Brake line blew and I got to drive home with brakes that worked by slamming them on 3 miles away from where you wanted to stop.. Great fun there...

Theres probaably more minor things that's gone wrong, but I can't remember them..

General Comments:

It's a flashy sport truck (Best in Red) that has a comfortable interior and smooth controls. It can get some good speed, but If your looking for power, Look elsewhere.

For a truck I must admit you'd have a better shot towing and 4- wheeling with a golf cart.. She slides out of control on a small patches of ice and It can get itself stuck in 1/2 of Mud..

Beats walking though :P.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 13th April, 2004

6th Jul 2004, 15:33

Odometer lights "broke"? "Door" on bed of truck? You had to "slam" on the brakes to stop after the lines "blew"? Sorry, but you sound like a serious "idiot"! The "door" on your bed and "broken" dash lights I can deal with, but if your brake lines "blew", slamming on the brakes would not stop your vehicle in any distance. You truck has 130,000+ miles, deal with it.

2nd Nov 2010, 12:33

Dude, seriously. It's a 97. Common maintenance would have taken care of everything. I have a 97, they have small issues, but they aren't as bad a truck as you make them out to be.

10th Feb 2011, 01:19

I just bought one! Woohoo! 4x4 V8 baby!

13th Jan 2014, 20:48

You obviously didn't have the right tires on the truck if you slide on ice and get stuck in 1/2 inch mud. I've gone through three feet of snow with no problem, and towed an 06 Ram 1500 that was stuck in a foot of mud.

7th Feb 2023, 03:06

You must not know how to drive or take care of a pickup truck. I've owned 2 Dakota's, an '00 V6 2 wheel drive that never let me sit. No problems as long as I had it with only routine recommended maintenance; it was rear ended and totaled at 210k miles or I would still have it. And I have a 97 V8 4×4 that just needed a starter at 230k miles, and it will probably outlast me. I will never get rid of it. PS a rear end 'door'? It's a tailgate.

1997 Dodge Dakota SLT Club Cab 4x4 3.9L V6 Magnum from North America


Excellent Truck!


Front brake pads wore down at around 130,000 miles.

Air conditioning compressor went out at 150,000 miles.

MAP sensors and fuel injectors dirty at around 170,000 miles. Truck would not idle, but could be driven if you reved it to 3,000 and were fast enough to put it in gear, step on the gas and pull out. Dealer cleaned them and runs like new.

Transmission would not shift from 3rd to 4th at about 173,000 miles. Engine would red line at 5200 and still not shift unless you let off the gas. Was two quarts low on transmission fluid. Shifts perfect now.

Lost power steering at 175,350 miles when doing a donut in the snow.

Gas mileage kind of sucks.

General Comments:

This truck has never let me down and runs pretty much just as good as it was new. It can haul from 0-40 and from 55 to 80 without a sweat (a bit slower from 40 to 50) and keeps steadily accelerating from 80 to 100. There has to be more power under the hood than just 175 hp and 225 lb-ft of torque stock. Sounds great at 3000 RPM.

There is some rust on the lower passenger door, but you really have to look close to see it.

The truck can handle pretty good for its size.

The interior is pretty full of plastic and all business, but who cares. It's a truck, not a Mercedes. You don't need a plush and posh interior in a truck and is very easy to clean.

Seats are nice and are pretty supportive.

The Infinity premium sound system has incredible power and clarity. If you have the stock cassette receiver with the Infinity system, get a CD receiver as the sound improves dramatically!

The Dodge can take a beating and keeps going very strong.

The trucks paint does not hint that it is 7 years old. The body and paint look brand new.

I definitely recommend a Dakota.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 3rd February, 2004