19th Feb 2008, 16:03
I bought my Dak in the winter of 2003. The only problem, I've had with was the ball joints went out, but as this was a factory defect, the local Dodge Dealer fixed them free of charger. Other than that, I had a rough idle which I fixed by replacing the TPS for about 25 bucks at Autozone.
I love this truck!!! I've got the V-8 and it has incredible power. Fuel economy could be better, but if I was concerned with that I would have bought the V-6.
The majority of the problems I've read here (gas cap, O2 sensor, TPS, chipped paint, etc...) are all just minor maintenance issues that are going to pop up regardless of the make or model.
25th Apr 2008, 13:23
After reading all of these comments, it appears there is a lack of Quality control at Dodge.. Some people are lucky and get trucks built on Wednesday. Sounds like a lot of Monday and Friday units out there. Differential issues, ball joints, brakes are not minor issues. If you've got a good one, you're probably lucky and not a superior owner as a lot of you seem to believe. Sounds like the dealerships are pretty poor in general as far as troubleshooting and repair. Not too surprising. The old Internationals were like that. Some were great, some should have been taken from the dealer to the crusher. I was looking at a Dakota, but think I'll pass.
28th Apr 2008, 08:43
I have a comment; my wife has a 2002 Dodge Dakota which she bought new back in 2002, and I have a 2008 Toyota Tacoma 4door extended cab with a 4.0liter v6 engine. We go camping every March near her parents house in Tampa Florida. We tow our camper from NY to Florida every year. To make a long story short, we used the Tacoma since it was new, and should have been less of a worry (since she has 105,000 miles on the Dakota). We got as far as Virgina with the Toyota, and guess what? The transmission blew the front seal. I had thought Toyota was so great; I just didn't understand it. We were left stranded on the side of Rt.95 with smoke poring out from underneath the truck. We had a hard time finding a dealer down there also. I have lost faith in these newer Japanese vehicles, and am frustrated and mad from NY.
12th Jul 2008, 00:46
I have a 2004 Dodge Dakota 4x4 with the 4.7 V8. It is a monster; all the power I could ever want. It has 130500 miles on her and runs like a top; factory everything.
The oil has been changed every 6000-7000 miles. I replaced the front rotors at 126000.
Best truck I have ever owned.
If you don't a use your truck like a truck, then it will never be what you want. Scratches, dents, paint chips are part of driving. All vehicles new come in with paint flaws and the dealer fixes them before sale. Dodge is number 1.
12th Jul 2008, 14:51
I have 181,000 miles on my V8 extended cab Dakota. It's a company vehicle, so I could care less what name is on the front.
It is stop started many times a day, and rides nice, almost car-like with the extended cab.
I'll give credit where credit is due; this is one really nice vehicle.
I'd stay away from 4 and 6 cylinder trucks... the V8 is nice as far as great power, and I recommend the tow package with cooling, suspension upgrades. I carry a lot of equipment and weight climbing steep hills etc, and the V8 is well worth the added fuel.
7th Oct 2008, 01:08
I purchased a 2001 V8 4.7L Dodge Dakota Sport single cab in 2004 when I was 16. I had a 4runner and still have it.
I would rate my 4runner as a 10. It gets decent gas mileage. Little to no cost in repairs. And is comfortable and smooth. I would rate my Dodge as a 9. For the following explanation.
I paid 13000 USD for my Dodge with 42k miles on it.
I paid 18000 USD for my 4runner with 38k miles on it.
Everyone here seems to trash Dodge for the little maintenance issues, when they are really missing the underlying problems.
I offroaded both vehicles (being a 16 year old - 20 year old kid)
The Dodge honestly tore that dirt up. Water, mud, rocks, inclines, no matter what the obstacle, it would overcome it. I did horrific things to that truck that you would only dream of doing after a grand theft auto joyride.
The Dodge at 80k miles had bad ball joints (dealer replaced) and a warped disc and a BAD differential.
The differentials that come stock with the Dodge are not ratio'd for bigger tires, offroading, or having a lift on the truck. BIG mistake as that is what 90% of owners do with it. I drove it 5k miles while stripping that crap differential and laughed about it.
Throwing a new one in as we speak, which is why I have been reading so many reviews.
Then we get into my 4runner. Sure it's reliable also and fun.
But here is the difference.
The 4runner is so top heavy that ANY incline makes the weight shift and starts your adrenaline. It won't mash, smash, shmob, or own the dirt at all. It's merely used to drive in the snow with friends to go boarding.
So in my honest opinion. I rate them both very highly on two different levels.
The Dodge is an awesome, powerful, reliable truck. If you use it how I have, you are bound to run into problems. After every jump, bottom out, water stall, mashing session. I'm 100% surprised it has always started up every time.
It has NEVER had any engine problems. It has never had any mechanical problems besides that crap differential it came with.
Bash it all you want, but I leave my friend's Jeeps, Chevys, and Fords miles down the road on terrain they can't even dream of driving on. And it handles it with ease.
Say what you want about DCX, but in my opinion they went all kinds of right with the design, power, weight, and balance of that truck. But sadly went wrong with some of the parts.
If you are going to buy a Dodge, get an awesome aftermarket differential, shocks, struts, lift, tires, and stereo system, And just have yourself a blast. What's wrong with paying a grand or so to get the best money can buy?
And for gas mileage, mine is lifted 7 inch rear 5 inch front with 38s on it, getting 18mpg on a stripped differential. Can't compare with any other V8 mid sized truck I've ever seen.
8th Dec 2008, 22:33
I have owned a 2005 Dodge Dakota Laramie for the past year and the car has been just about PERFECT!
I love my Dodge. The Alpine CD system sounds almost as good as my house stereo, the leather heated seats and 4wd make the Wisconsin winter (last year was a record snow) no problem.
The only problem I have had with the truck after putting about 14,000 miles on it was that the parking break lever broke. The dealer fixed it under warranty.
Over all I would rate the Dodge Dakota a great truck. That's my story and I'm sticking to it.
By the way, I do own two other cars, just to prove I'm not pro Dodge and anti anyone else. My Other cars are a Chevy Corvette (2006) (lots of fun in the summer) and a Jaguar X type AWD (2004).
Peace out and keep on truckin.
USSA home of the socialist auto industry.