I have owned this truck since new and will not be getting rid of it any time soon. The 1996 Dakota is a true mid size with all the guts of a full size. The v6 I have pulls and hauls as well as any small 8, and wile fuel milage around town is not great (who buys a truck for fuel mileage?) open road mileage is in the 20 mpg range. Over all I am very happy with my '96, both in performance and style. Just try to find a truck with chrome on both ends these days.
The over all look of the truck. It looks like a truck, boxy but not so much that it doesnt have style.
1996 Dodge Dakota Extended Cab Sport 2dr Extended Cab SB
Bought my Dakota new in 1996, has 140,000 on it and still going strong. Uses no oil to speak of and has not given me any problems other then the poor quality interior. Comfort is great considering I'm 6'6". Gas milage could be better, could use a split heat defrost option. Exterior is holding up to Maine winter very well considering the truck was purchased in Arizona. Does very well in the snow for a 2wd, I use a 70 lb sand bag in the bed and good all season tires, so far no problems. Probably the best vehicle I have ever owned.
Comfort, ride and good arrangement of dash and controls.
Interior is falling apart, plastic breaks around screws and trim is cracking and breaking. Dash lights and speedometer short out after about 200 miles of continues travel. Add a split heat/defrost option.
Purchased truck in high school, drove through college, now married and still running. Truck is amazing in all weather. Only minor problems over 110,000 miles, including the standard crap Dodge transmission. I mostly drive unloaded but tow cars probably 1500-2000 miles/yr and it works great. Can't wait to get some money to put some performance stuff in her. I get great mileage, 20 mpg with the 5.2L on straight highway miles, 16-17 on normal driving. Little tip...Firestone Destination LE tires are amazing on this truck.
EVERYTHING. Quick, powerful, reliable, good ride for a truck, easy to manuver...just awesome.
Stronger transmissions but I think Dodge may have finally figured that out. Wish mine had factory fog lights, but thats just a luxury.
This has been a very reliable pickup. it has the most room of any truck in its class. it takes the corners very well and handles great. my first road trip with it (600 miles) rendered me 27 miles to the gallon which was pretty good at 75 mph going up and down hills!!!
The storage space under the back bench seat is very handy. the cruise controls on the steering wheel are very convienent.
For a compact pickup this is darn near perfect!!! I wouldn't change a thing!