1996 Dodge Dakota Base Consumer Reviews | Edmunds
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1996 Dodge Dakota - Consumer Reviews

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1996 Dakota Consumer Reviews

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Unstoppable
Performance
Comfort
Fuel Economy
Fun To Drive
Interior Design
Exterior Design
Build Quality
Reliability
By kile95
on

Vehicle

1996 Dodge Dakota 2dr Regular Cab SB


Review

My dad bought this truck for 500$ in 2004. He daily drove it everyday to Orlando and back loading it with miles. When I got my liscence in 2011 he gave it to me. By the time he gave it to me the truck had 380k miles on it. 380k!!. I daily drove it to school and back until April 2013. When I got rid of it, it had 420k miles on and still going strong. Oh and the whole time me and my dad owned it the only things we did to it was change a clutch and a throttle positioning sensor!! We took great care of the truck though. Oil change every 3k miles. But I gave the truck to my uncle and its his daily driver to this day. He just drove it to Michigan and back twice. Starts right up 1st time every time


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This is the 6th dodge truck ive owned
4 of 4 people found this review helpful
Performance
Comfort
Fuel Economy
Fun To Drive
Interior Design
Exterior Design
Build Quality
Reliability
By javelin
on

Vehicle

1996 Dodge Dakota Sport 2dr Regular Cab SB


Review

I bought this truck 3 months ago for $2500.00 and its the best $2500.00 I've ever spent.Truck has 180,000 and runs like a champ.The 6th dodge I've owned and as you can see it will always be this way. Dodge Dakota best truck on the road.


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Good truck for the $
1 of 1 people found this review helpful
Performance
Comfort
Fuel Economy
Fun To Drive
Interior Design
Exterior Design
Build Quality
Reliability
By jkf
on

Vehicle

1996 Dodge Dakota SLT 2dr Extended Cab SB


Review

All things considered not a bad truck in a 140k miles. Bought used with 30k miles and 2k later transmission went and was repaired under waranty - no problems since. Have the 5.2l V8 with positraction. Used the truck for hauling a 4500lb boat just about every good weather weekend and commuting to work. Replaced dist pickup at 65k and 120K, O2 sensor at 120k due to a "21"error code, and blower resistor at 110k. Aside from normal wear items such as tires, brakes, plugs, fan belt, radiator hoses etc. no other problems - very reliable. Been using Mobil 1 at 7.5k oil changes and does not leak a drop of engine or tranny oil. As with all these dakotas, the headliner fails, and fuel gauge is whacky.


Favorite Features

Great for towing with 3.73 posi rear and 5.2l V8. Easy on tires (lightweight truck). Handles fairly well. AC still works great. Handles a 1/2 ton load easily. Truck feels really solid - little frame twist. ample storage behind seat.


Suggested Improvements

Dash gauges and controls are somewhat fisher price style. Rear jump seat is for looks only. OEM shocks were total crap - but a set of Bilsteins made this truck handle and ride great.


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All in all, a great deal at $8900
Performance
Comfort
Fuel Economy
Fun To Drive
Interior Design
Exterior Design
Build Quality
Reliability
By Darren
on

Vehicle

1996 Dodge Dakota Sport 2dr Regular Cab SB


Review

Bought this truck in 98 for $8900. Paid off in 4 yrs and drove maintenance free (virtually) for another 6 years. Replaced the fuel pump at 100k miles. Replaced engine computer just after that. Engine light still comes on but dealership cannot figure out why. Truck runs great. Air still cold and it always cranks. Needs paint now but I'm debating whether to put anymore money in it. May use it for Cash for Clunkers bill just signed. Best car purchase I've ever made. not sure how to get it to pass inspection now that check engine light keeps coming on but have a few months to figure that out.


Favorite Features

Reliability, no question. For the money, you cannot beat this truck. V6 is strong - has always pulled whatever I have wanted. Two scoops of mulch barely slows it down.


Suggested Improvements

Sure does ride rough when compared with other trucks in it's class.


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Significantly better than I expected.
Performance
Comfort
Fuel Economy
Fun To Drive
Interior Design
Exterior Design
Build Quality
Reliability
By Jack
on

Vehicle

1996 Dodge Dakota SLT 2dr Extended Cab SB


Review

I got this truck for utility functions in addition to going to work and back. The engine purrs like a kitten, which truly amazes me. The tranny (auto) is a little slow to shift in extreme cold, but warm her up and she does just like you'd want. I replaced the brakes in their entirety and all 4 shocks (Rancho). It handles like new... and I got it at a great price. The heat is a little weak when it gets cold, but otherwise, you will have a hard time finding such a wonderful truck at such a great price. I'd drive this thing over a same aged Toyota any day. The engine sounds just like new and I have 113,000 miles on it. It has minor leaks, but, not enough to require servicing between maintenance


Favorite Features

The V-6 Magnum has to be one of the best engines ever made. HEMI sounds cool, but this baby is sweet. The handling is well above average, but as I mentioned, I put Ranchos on & Raybestos rotors (which are now made in China-thanks for nothing) and some US Goodyear Fortera Silent Armor's (love these!)


Suggested Improvements

The bench seats were a mistake. The dash looks a little 70's like... but it's a '96, but it's a reliable instrument panel. The people who designed the second row of seats did not love their children. I just use that area for cargo as a kid would crack their head every speed bump.


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Great Truck
Performance
Comfort
Fuel Economy
Fun To Drive
Interior Design
Exterior Design
Build Quality
Reliability
By laxman84
on

Vehicle

1996 Dodge Dakota SLT 2dr Extended Cab 4WD SB


Review

Awesome truck. Got it for an extremely low price five years ago. Has lasted 13 years of Wisconsin winters and only has a bit of rust under the passenger side door, which is quite an accomplishment. Made it to Colorado and back, and almost kept up with the Wranglers on the Jeep trails. Starts every time I need it to, no matter the temperature. Two weeks ago, -17, -15, -27, -2, and -19, and it started each morning. Little things have been going wrong, 4X4 light doesn't come on (but 4X4 stills works), cigarette lighter is busted, parking brake cable needs a replacement, and AC is out, but that is to be expected with a old truck. All in all, my next vehicle will be a Dakota


Favorite Features

Power, reliability, extremely well built


Suggested Improvements

Turning radius is a joke, cup holders are in a bad spot, acceleration is lacking above 50 MPH


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Best truck ever made
Performance
Comfort
Fuel Economy
Fun To Drive
Interior Design
Exterior Design
Build Quality
Reliability
By BlAcK wIdOw
on

Vehicle

1996 Dodge Dakota SLT 2dr Extended Cab SB


Review

My father bought this truck in 2002, my uncle got it after he died, and I recieved it almost 2 years ago. This truck has been put through its paces. It was an escort truck, hauling truck, towing people, wrecked twice (haven't had the money to fix it yet), it has 200,000 on her and still going strong. The only things replaced is the regular maintanance. Other than the headlight which happens to be a tin can since that area is caved in. The most durable and reliable truck ever.


Favorite Features

Power, handling, everything


Suggested Improvements

A little more MPGs wouln't hurt.


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the best first truck
Performance
Comfort
Fuel Economy
Fun To Drive
Interior Design
Exterior Design
Build Quality
Reliability
By james tucker
on

Vehicle

1996 Dodge Dakota Sport 2dr Regular Cab 4WD SB


Review

I enjoyed my dodge Dakota truck and driving it where every I need to go. It has been dedicated to me and my family for 12 years. I want to restore it back to first look and more. Thank dodge for making a great truck.


Favorite Features

The output of the motor


Suggested Improvements

interior need sum improvement


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DODGE Dakota
Performance
Comfort
Fuel Economy
Fun To Drive
Interior Design
Exterior Design
Build Quality
Reliability
By Ford lover
on

Vehicle

1996 Dodge Dakota SLT 2dr Extended Cab 4WD SB


Review

Owned the truck 6 months, first dodge I ever bought. My dad talked me into buying it. I learned 2 things from this truck. 1. I will never buy a dodge and 2. when the check engine light comes on, it's junk. Get rid of it. I have put more money into this truck than i did my 300.00 1988 ranger that has 300,000 Miles. I really do hate this truck.


Suggested Improvements

Everything


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Amazing after 12 Years
Performance
Comfort
Fuel Economy
Fun To Drive
Interior Design
Exterior Design
Build Quality
Reliability
By brasky98
on

Vehicle

1996 Dodge Dakota Sport 2dr Regular Cab SB


Review

Received this truck after wrapping a Toyota around a telephone pole... This truck is amazing with its reliability. Turn the key and it starts right up. Gets me to work 5 days a week and hauls drywall, mulch or gravel the other 2. The worst I have had to do is complete brakes 3 years ago. Engine is strong, tranny tight, gets me where I need to be. Only dings, dents or rust is what I've caused. I'll drive this baby until the wheels fall of. Probably will subsidize her with a new sedan here in a month or two but its about time. 12 years and still running strong!


Favorite Features

Reliability, Payload, did I mention the reliability? Cost of ownership is negligible at worst...


Suggested Improvements

Headliner failed, cup holders can be a kneebanger (if that's the worst, who cares..)


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