Bought new in '99, this truck has been great to me so far. It gets up to 26 mpg on the hiway and yet hauls anything I put in the back. I'm easy on vehicles and at 118K I'm still using the original brakes and am on the second set of tires. I went this year to buy another and discovered Dodge doesnt make the 4 cyl in the Dakota anymore. Such a shame! I just have to baby this one some more!
The economy, great radio system. The storage under the back seat. The styling is among the best on the road. The low profile is nice too.
The paint is thin and has lots of spots. The front doorpost is way too thick. Soundproofing could be improved. More tiedowns in back. The throw of the tranny stick could have been smaller.