2000 Dodge Dakota Sport 4.7 V8 from North America


Great all around truck!


Front brake rotors were warped from day one. Dealer said the bounce I was feeling was the heavy duty suspension, I believed them. Wrong, replaced the rotors recently and wallah, no more bounce.

Transmission relay went bad- covered under warranty.

General Comments:

This has been one of the best vehicles I have owned. Brake rotors were no big deal compared to the other positives to this truck.

I have changed the oil, filled it with fuel, and washed it. Not much other maintenence has been required.

The 4.7L V-8 performs great, plenty of power. Do not get the V-6, very sluggish.

Still have original tires, will need new ones within a year more than likely.

Overall, a great truck!

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 26th July, 2004

6th May 2005, 07:31

I was just wondering if these trucks are good on the highway? Do they pass really good or do you need a fair bit of clear road? Thank you for any comments.

2000 Dodge Dakota Sport 3.9L V6 from North America


A Durable, Fun Truck


The thermostat gasket was leaking when I bought it.

The A/C relay went out at 34,000 miles.

A small rust spot started on the left rear fender around 38,000 miles.

The foam in the driver's seat is flattening out (but then again, I weigh 240lbs).

After coming to a stop, I usually have to put the trans in 2nd gear before it will go into 1st. I remember hearing something about a recall for shift linkage problems preventing first-gear engagement. But, it doesn't really bother me, so I haven't taken it in yet.

Aside from those problems, it's only had normal wear & tear (brake pads & shoes, tune-ups, etc.)

General Comments:

I've heard tons of horror stories about lemon Dakotas, but mine really hasn't been bad at all. I've had no major problems with anything. No breakdowns, no leaks, no squeaks or rattles - this is a solid truck. Considering that I drive it HARD (frequent "exercise"), it's holding up very well, although I do maintain it obsessively.

The only thing I don't like is that it's a regular cab, and the interior is kind of small for me (6'2", 240lbs). I can't really find a comfortable seat position. It's also uncomfortable for long drives - anything more than 2 hours is definitely not enjoyable. Plus, it loves gas. With a light foot, and keeping rpm's way down, I never do better than 16 city/20 highway (the way I usually drive, I get about 13 city/17 highway, same as the V8). For anyone considering a Dakota, I highly suggest the V8 - you get more power, and the fuel economy is essentially the same as the V6.

This handles pretty well for a truck. I've driven Rangers & S10's, and this handles much better. The ride is also not nearly as rough as you might expect, but with the short wheelbase, it can get bouncy. The steering is the most responsive I've experienced in a pickup. It doesn't lean much in turns, but the tires give up early. I'm sure wider tires would help out that out, though. One thing... like any other 2-wheel drive pickup, when it's wet or snowy outside, it really likes to oversteer (that's why I keep 300lbs of tube sand in the bed during the winter).

I wasn't happy with the stock braking performance - too much fade in hard stops, and stopping distance weren't the best (these trucks are heavier than they look). If you're considering a Dakota, I definitely suggest spending the time and money to upgrade your brakes. In my case, at least, it was worth it: nice, firm pedal with great stopping power, and no fade.

I'd have to say the same thing about the acceleration. Stock, the 3.9L has plenty of torque, and it's happy to lug around in any gear from 1000rpm on up. But, it really runs out of breath past 4000rpm. I made some changes (without getting into detail), and again, I find it's been worth the work. My truck may not run with a Dakota R/T, but it now spins happily to 5000rpm. I've taken it past 110mph with little effort, and off the line, it definitely knocks you back in the seat.

I have no complaints about the styling (I care more about "go" than "show" anyway), but I'd really like to replace the dinky 15" rims... wheels that small really look wrong on a truck.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Don't Know

Review Date: 14th June, 2004

29th Apr 2007, 06:58

Update from original poster -

Front crank seal began leaking (and was replaced) at 56,000mi

Multiple air conditioning system failures by 59,000mi (being repaired as I type this)

The original shocks are now almost worn out (current vehicle mileage is 59,896)

Other current stuff -

Control arm bushings are starting to dry-rot

Clutch slips a little at full throttle in 1st, but otherwise is OK

#2 fuel injector is still ticking

Exhaust leak (either manifold or y-pipe) began around 45,000mi; it's been getting worse and I have yet to find a shop with the patience to chase it down... to be continued, eventually...

19th Jan 2008, 21:32

Update from original poster -

Right rear wheel cylinder began leaking & was replaced right after my previous update.

Clutch slippage getting worse at an exponential rate.

A/C Evaporator core blew at ~61000mi.

Ball joints, steering rack bushings, & inner tie rods starting to let go at ~64kmi.

Not so durable a truck, after all. No more updates. At just over 65000mi, I traded it for a Toyota. Reviews to come once I've owned it for awhile...