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Dodge Guys... Dakota Sport info...

Old 12-01-2008, 05:32 AM
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Default Dodge Guys... Dakota Sport info...

...anyone know anthing about this truck? I have an oportunitiy to buy a 2001 DDS with only 40k miles on it, but dont know anything about Dodge trucks as Iam a Ford guy!

the price seems right at only 6k, and iam buying it for my son. Anything I should be aware of for the inspection/road test on Tuesday??? He said there is a exhaust gasket leak near the cad. conv. that needs to be fixed, priced out at $300. Other than that he says its mint!

The truck I believe has the v8 magnum...

Thanks
Old 12-01-2008, 06:19 AM
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Default Re: Dodge Guys... Dakota Sport info...

I know and have known several guys with Dakotas and not one of them were or are dissatisfied.

I get a kick out of my nephew telling me, when he has to take his truck in for service the repair bill always magically comes out to around $300. He doesn't mind because the truck rarely needs any work on it, but how can it be the bill always seems to work it's way out to $300? He'll say, what am I the $300 guy.......glad I'm not the 4-5-$600 guy. It's one of those stories you have to be there to know what I'm talking about. Either way I think Darrel is on his third Dakota.
Old 12-01-2008, 06:41 AM
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Default Re: Dodge Guys... Dakota Sport info...

...any info as to why there would be a ehaust leak? ... are these trucks "prone" to one thing or another that I should look for in the inspection?

Thanks
Old 12-01-2008, 07:08 AM
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Default Re: Dodge Guys... Dakota Sport info...

Some had tranny problems on 4x4 that my brother had this problem 2x4 are ok from this
Old 12-01-2008, 07:11 AM
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Default Re: Dodge Guys... Dakota Sport info...

I had a 1997 Dakota. It was the club cab with the 318 V8 and manual tranny. It was a beast from factory but I had to kick it up a notch. I put Flowmaster mufflers and dual exhaust.

That truck was so fast, and it sounded like it had a big block in it. It was difficult to keep the rear wheels from spinning off the line in the rain. It has posi traction too.

I towed my boat with it a few times, just to the gas station and shop, never launched it. The entire boat and trailer are in the 8000# range. It towed it great, but didn't stop it that great.

I bought the truck used in 2000, it was mint with only 15K miles. I kept it until Sept 2004 and sold it with 100K miles and it ran perfect. I never had one problem with the truck in the time I had it.
Old 12-01-2008, 07:21 AM
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Default RE: Dodge Guys... Dakota Sport info...

Victory 1 - 12/1/2008 8:32 AM
...anyone know anthing about this truck? I have an oportunitiy to buy a 2001 DDS with only 40k miles on it, but dont know anything about Dodge trucks as Iam a Ford guy!

the price seems right at only 6k, and iam buying it for my son. Anything I should be aware of for the inspection/road test on Tuesday??? He said there is a exhaust gasket leak near the cad. conv. that needs to be fixed, priced out at $300. Other than that he says its mint!

The truck I believe has the v8 magnum...
Find out exactly which engine it has, that makes a big difference. There are also some huge dodge truck forums out there, you should be reading there ahead of time. (www.dodgetrucks.org comes to mind)

I had a 2001 Durango with the 5.9. I liked the truck overall, engine was solid but very low tech. Tranny blew up at 50k miles. Overall quality was good, not great. $6k sounds like a decent deal considering the low miles, BUT I would look long and hard and make sure that $8k-10k would not buy you a much better deal overall in one of the newer body style trucks. (IMO american trucks came a long way from 1995-2005)

Poking around under the hood I feel like my 04 Durango with the Hemi is a much much more "modern" and better engineered vehicle than the 01 with the 5.9 was. (although I will admit the 01 was more fun to drive and the 5.9 made lots of power down low)

(oh and to be clear, the durango and dakota are more or less the same platform, although I think the dakota did not pick up the new body style/engines until 05?)

Edit: A quick search of autotrader near me did list some 05 dakotas in the $8k range. Personally I think an 05 with 70k miles would be preferable to an 01 with 40k miles but it all depends on what exactly your needs are.
Old 12-01-2008, 07:50 AM
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Default Re: Dodge Guys... Dakota Sport info...

I put about 100k on a 2001 Dakota Sport Quad Cab, 4x4 with 4.7L V8. Overall, the truck was wonderful given it's size. For light off road use (hunting trails, ect), it was great due to it's good weight distribution. If the truck has the 5 speed auto, you shouldn't expect anything unusual about the transmission life, I've heard from several people that the 4 speed auto's did have some trouble. As far as the tranny goes, servicing it at the factory recomended 40k interval & replacing both internal filters is key. Many of the service centers like to do a "flush" these days rather than a proper service, which typically doesn't address the filter(s). From 2004 (purhcased with 40,004 miles) until July of this year(traded with 138,500) the only thing I had to do to the truck was one brake job in the front, a set of shocks, tires, and one MAP sensor ($38 bucks from dealer, installed in about 10 minutes myself). The 4.7L engine is very fast, but a bit lacking for towing. I regularly towed my 18' McKee (about 4k on the trailer) to the coast & back, and it was sufficient for this task, but nothing really to spare in power or braking ability. The only thing I can say I didn't care for at all was the tiny bed, but that was a trade off for the larger cab. Fuel economy was around 17 MPG on secondary highways, about 15.5 if I did a lot of stop and go driving, and 10 MPG towing on the interstate.

On another note, a friend of mine has one that is identical to my old one, except his is a manual tranny. Uses it daily to cruise timber for his fathers logging outfit. The truck basically catched he!! from sun up to sundown, and has over 300k miles on it, and still running great.
Old 12-01-2008, 09:39 AM
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Default Re: Dodge Guys... Dakota Sport info...

Victory 1 - 11/30/2008 9:41 PM

...any info as to why there would be a ehaust leak?
I know I'm only speaking out of my ass here but.........
crawl underneath the truck to see if the truck ever hit anything very hard, like a stump or something. Do any of the parts look like they've been replaces or dented? "Sometimes" a hard impact can jar the exhaust system to where the energy is transmitted all the way up to the heads.

I know my old Nissan 4x4 V6 used to take me to places where only an ATV should go. I know at times I was hard on the truck (air time included) and therefore hard on the exhaust system, which really isn't supported all that well for off road use. All of the bouncing around I put my truck through did wear on the exhaust manifolds up at the heads.......I had to replace exhaust manifold studs several times....I knew because I had exhaust leaks at the heads.
Old 12-01-2008, 11:22 AM
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Default Re: Dodge Guys... Dakota Sport info...

Thanks for all the info...Flot all i know is the guy said it was the V8 Magnum...
Old 12-01-2008, 02:59 PM
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Default Re: Dodge Guys... Dakota Sport info...

I`d pass on it if it has the 5.9 motor unless I got a real good price. If it has the 4.7 you get a better motor and trans(assuming it`s an auto). The older versions of Dodge auto trans were weak(older version is on the 5.9) but the newer 45rfe and later 545rfe(same trans with added gear through different comp program)are solid. I have an 03 4.7 auto with 102k and a co-worker has an 00 4.7 auto with 239k no major power trane issues. There was a recall that replaced the upper ball joints,a weak point on a Dakota both upper and lower. Also check under the front passenger carpet for water. The drain for the AC is a 5/8 nipple that sticks out of the firewall about a quarter inch and it isn`t sealed around it and water blows back in. Pull the trim on the bottom of the passenger side door jam,should pop out and back in no problem, and reach under to check.Carpet is thick so it might not be wet to touch but still be there. There is a TSB for this that includes an ell fitting to fix the issue.I don`t know if the 5.9 had this issue too,may be plumbed differently.

If it is the 5.9 and you really like the truck pull the air filter and look down the plenum with a flash light and see if theres oil. The 5.9`s were known for "Belly Pan" gasket failures. The motor will suck oil into the combustion chamber through the intake manifold causing poor running,pinging and the loss of oil may cause sludging if you don`t check the oil often and the reduced sump oil gets over worked.

May sound bad but it really isn`t. They are a good truck if you frequent the Dakota boards and know what to look for. It`s minor PITA stuff that all makes have.

Find out what motor it has and post!!
Old 12-01-2008, 04:41 PM
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Default Re: Dodge Guys... Dakota Sport info...

jeremiah2360 - 12/1/2008 2:59 PM

I`d pass on it if it has the 5.9 motor unless I got a real good price. If it has the 4.7 you get a better motor and trans(assuming it`s an auto). The older versions of Dodge auto trans were weak(older version is on the 5.9) but the newer 45rfe and later 545rfe(same trans with added gear through different comp program)are solid.

Find out what motor it has and post!!
its the Magnum 4.7...automatic trans... got him down to $5,850 for the truck ('01 with43k miles), seems like a pretty good deal

any answer to why it would have an exhaust leak? thanks for the informative reply...

Old 12-01-2008, 05:03 PM
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Default Re: Dodge Guys... Dakota Sport info...

The 4.7 is a newer engine than the 5.2 and 5.9... it's used in a number of different applications so probably not a bad choice overall.

You ran a carfax on it, right?? www.carfax.com
Old 12-01-2008, 05:30 PM
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Default Re: Dodge Guys... Dakota Sport info...

150K miles on 2003 4.7 4x4 and still running strong.
Old 12-01-2008, 06:41 PM
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Default Re: Dodge Guys... Dakota Sport info...

I've got an '02 dakota 4 door 4x4 with the 4.7 V-8 auto trans. 65k miles. It is a very fun truck to drive, very smooth ride for a 4 wheel drive and LOTS of power. It's only rated at 235hp but it must have loads of torque too, very good throttle response. Only negatives I can think of are gas mileage (15mpg highway doing 75-80) and 15 around town. It probably gets better mileage at a 60mph cruise but I've never done that . The other issue is the front rotors need to be replaced every 30k or so, terrible for warping.
Old 12-01-2008, 07:04 PM
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Default Re: Dodge Guys... Dakota Sport info...

baypro21 - 12/1/2008 9:41 PM
The other issue is the front rotors need to be replaced every 30k or so, terrible for warping.
Upgrade to commercial service bendix rotors, and be sure to torque your lugs when doing tire rotations. The factory rotors are a bit lacking, uneven torque on the rotors from the lugs can multiply this problem.
Old 12-01-2008, 07:24 PM
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Default Re: Dodge Guys... Dakota Sport info...

I am a contractor and have a fleet of these trucks. They all are loaded to the max weight and used daily. We get 150k out of them all the time without any major issues. The 4.7 is a great motor but it is a bit thisty, we get about 13.5 mpg loaded down. we have had issues with broken exhaust manifold bolts ( which could lead to head removal to fix- but so far not for us), the wet carpet, steering u joint gets sloppy, the rear sway bar (if it has one) drop link bushing gets sloppy. Other than that the routine tires at 60k, front brakes at 30k. We change all fluids at every 30k. The only complaint I have is the dealer charges close to 1k evrytime he does a 30k service with fluids. All these problems are spread over a fleet of 15 or so trucks, so some have no problems at all and some may have 1 or 2 over thier life. Great truck otherwise. BTW, that 4.7 felt a lot peppier than my hemi with hot rod parts. Loved my 2001 4.7 club cab sport more than my 5.0 F150, 5.4 F150, 7.3 F250, Gmc , Dodge 360 or my 3.7 Isuzu.
Old 12-02-2008, 03:04 AM
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Default Re: Dodge Guys... Dakota Sport info...

Had 3 Dakotas, Ok vehicle with decent ride and towing. Every one of them had squeaky front brakes that would grab if wet when backing. To say it differently, if you went through a puddle and parked the truck, when you get back in to go somewhere else and back up, as soon as you tap the breaks they would grab. Not sure if it is a rotor problem or bad antilock feature, but it got annoying.

Other than that they are not bad and usually nicely laid out in the cab.
Old 12-02-2008, 01:45 PM
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Default Re: Dodge Guys... Dakota Sport info...

ScarabChris - 12/1/2008 8:11 AM

I had a 1997 Dakota. It was the club cab with the 318 V8 and manual tranny. It was a beast from factory but I had to kick it up a notch. I put Flowmaster mufflers and dual exhaust.

That truck was so fast, and it sounded like it had a big block in it. It was difficult to keep the rear wheels from spinning off the line in the rain. It has posi traction too.

I towed my boat with it a few times, just to the gas station and shop, never launched it. The entire boat and trailer are in the 8000# range. It towed it great, but didn't stop it that great.

I bought the truck used in 2000, it was mint with only 15K miles. I kept it until Sept 2004 and sold it with 100K miles and it ran perfect. I never had one problem with the truck in the time I had it.

I'm still driving my 1997 Dakota Extended Cab 4X2. Got 250K on it and to date the only major repairs are a water pump and ball joints, both in the last 12 months. Will probably end up doing a heater core sonetime in the next 12 months or so. Not looking forward to that one...

Took it up to eastern North Carolina last week (600mi round trip) and averaged 19.2 mpg with the 318cid/auto tranny. About what I was getting when it was new.

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