1989 Dodge Dakota Overview

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1989 Dodge Dakota Overview

Ever curious to know how the cargo sitting out in your pickup bed feels as it's cruising along the highway? Well, in 1989 you could could find out, with the introduction of the Dodge Dakota convertible. That's right, realizing that the mid-size truck was being used just as much for fun and adventure as it was for hauling, Dodge produced the first convertible pickup since the Model T. Most buyers loved the addition of the manually operated top and roll bar, although it was difficult to see out of the murky plastic rear window when the top was up. Added to a Sports Package that included fog and offroading lights and a sports suspension, the convertible was purely a pleasure-oriented truck.

Amid criticims of underpowered engines, the 1989 Dodge Dakota got another new addition, the unique Shelby Dakota, built on the shorter 112-foot wheelbase and Sport suspension. This high-performance pickup got its extra zip from the same 5.2-liter, 175-hp V8 engine that sat in the Ram. It was paired with a new 4-speed automatic, that was also available in the other Dakotas, replacing the 3-speed automatic. The Shelby sported the Shelby badging and supposedly hit 0-60 in 8.7 seconds, solving the labored acceleration problems from previous years.

Another change in the 1989 Dakota was a base model upgrade to a 2.5-liter, 4-cylinder, 99-hp engine. The 3.9, 125-hp V6 was still offered, and all models came as standard 2WD, with a 4WD option in V6 or higher engines. All Dakotas received rear-wheel ABS brakes in 1989.

The convertible was a big hit with those who bought it, saying it added an adventurous and fun spirit to the mid-size pickup. 4WD Dakotas were highly valued for their ability to conquer rough road and weather conditions. The fact that the 1989 Dakota handled like a smaller truck but had a large cargo bed was also a plus, as was the hard-to-kill engine. Drivers still complained of a lack of power, the sluggishness of the 4-speed, and problems with paint decay.

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Dodge Dakota Questions

Will The 3.9 Magnum Fit Into An 89 Dodge Dakota Sport?

I have an old 89 dodge dakota that just blew a head gasket, was just going to go ahead and replace the engine. Would it be possible to put the 3.9 magnum that Dodge made into the truck? or maybe even ...

I'm Thinking Of Buying A 1989 Dodge Dakota Convertible Pick Up Truck...how ...

does not have air....130,000 miles...looks like it is in good condition

1989 Dakota

engine will not start --- turns over OK --- ASD relay pulls in for 1 second when key is turned on but will not pull in when engine is cranking --- what tells the ASD relay to pull in ??

Truck Doors

What yr doors will fit 1989 dodge dakota truck

Hard To Start

I have to spray starter fluid to start. Or pump gas pedal repidly