1996 Dodge Dakota Overview

Dakota

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1996 Dodge Dakota Overview

1996 was the last year for the first generation of Dodge Dakotas, a mid-size pickup that proved very popular because of its storage capacity, hauling power, engine options (the first mid-size to house a V8 Magnum), and safety record. It proved to be a great compromise for people wanting all the options of a full-size truck without the unwieldiness of trying to maneuver one through city streets and parking lots.

The only major change for the 1996 Dodge Dakota was a revamped base engine, which always seemed too weak for a pickup of this size. Still a 2.5-liter, 4-cylinder, it received a boost in horsepower from 99 to 120. It's not necessarily going to win any races, but for those on a budget, it got the job done (as long as it was a small job). The 3.9-liter V6 and 5.2-liter V8 remained the models of choice.

Not many complaints from drivers. The Dakotas seem to last forever, have great braking, handle well off-road and in the snow (the 4X4s), and have a comfortable cab up front. Downers were the poor gas mileage, a cheap-looking plastic interior, and the difficulty in accessing the rear seat since it is only a 2-door truck.

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