Last post on Oct 05, 2003 at 5:08 AM
You are in the Pickups - Archived Discussions
What is this discussion about?
Dodge Dakota, Exterior, Truck
Join other Dakota owners in Edmunds.com Dodge Dakota Owners Club!
#1623 of 1886 bma80 Re: Purchase choice
Dec 05, 2002 (6:36 am)
Brian, initially in 2000 when I was shopping for a four door (conventional doors, not suicide or extended cab) I test drove the Nissan crew cab. I liked the look of the truck, but found it to be lacking in power even pulling my empty 5X8 HD utility
trailer. This was before the truck was available with a turbocharger. Coupled to that, was the very small (for me) area with the clutch and brake pedals being so close, that my size 12EEE shoes were tangling. The rear seating area was smallish, and not too comfortable. When my wife mentioned that she saw an advertisement for a Dodge Dakota, and remembered how happy I had been with my 1995 Dodge Dakota with extended cab, V8 and five speed manual. I really didn't have to test drive the five
speed Dakota (none available on the ground), as it felt and drove like my 1995 Club Cab except for the automatic. In that I always choose an American product if possible, I ordered my Dakota truck and used a $500.00 certificate available from the Farm Bureau. I paid at the time, a little less than $100.00 over invoice less my certificate. I have the 4X4, 4.7 V8, 3.52 LSD, HD everything with skid plates, SLT package, tow package, rear slider and much more. I just love this truck! I am sorry that I cannot offer a true comparison regarding the Nissan turbocharger. version, because I never drove one. Hope that this is of some help. Also, much of the information that I gleaned was a direct benefit of subscribing to this site. There are very many knowledgeable and capable members, who can offer much insight and information. A great bunch.
#1624 of 1886 BMA80: Frontier vs. Dakota
Dec 05, 2002 (9:18 am)
Although I do not own a Quad cab of any type, I can give some comparative opinion based on my test driving and looking at the very two vehicles you're asking about.
I wanted a truck with enough room to carry 4 passengers and a full size ATV. One of the first trucks I looked at was the Frontier 4-door because I owned a Sentra that was the best car I'd ever owned and had a lot of confidence in Nissan products. But I have to echo much of Bookitty's comments. The Frontier, although adequately powered for daily use, was lacking in the pulling power I would ocassionally want. And although it had four doors, the rear seating is exceptionally limiting. I would not have been able to load my ATV onto the bed and have the tailgate up.
(Now, I couldn't load my ATV onto a Dakota Quad and get the tailgate up, either. This and the fact that the Frontier rear seating was not much larger than the Club Cab, is what made me consider the Dakota Club Cab version. Had the Frontier met both of these criteria, it might've been the one I'd be driving today.)
Other than exceptional durability and reliability, in my opinion the Frontier Quad falls way short competitively in most aspects. I did test drive a Dakota Quad. Even with the 3.9 V6 it felt snappier. It was definitely smoother and more comfortable. And from what I can tell the fuel consumption might be the same (check the EPA ratings of the two trucks).
I ended up buying a Dakota Club Cab 4x2 (4.7, auto) which has the room I need for intermittent use (two kids) and performs very nicely for my needs. The Club Cab version met my basic criteria and I just have to say that I liked the ride, handling, and refinement level of the Dakota better. In fact, even some full size trucks don't match the Dakota in this area, in my opinion. The Tacoma probably comes the closest overall.
Good luck on your decision. I know these aren't easy!
#1625 of 1886 NISSAN -vs- DAKOTA
Dec 05, 2002 (6:55 pm)
I went from a Nissan to a Dakota.
The Nissan was EXTREMELY reliable but it always felt like a tin can to me. It also rusted badly.
It then spent about a year beating around the family farm. (again very reliably) and the joke was that the big rust holes in the bed made it self-cleaning. (all crud would fall thru the rust holes.) When it started to lose bales of hay thru the holes... it was traded in for a s10 chebby. The last I heard, my ol' Nissan now has a homemade pressure-treated bed on it and it is STILL RUNNING on the road. (at least 190,000 miles on it now)
My Dakota is a far more refined vehicle than the Nissan ever dreamed of being. It drives like a car, is as quiet as many luxury cars and has loads of power with the V8 with 5SP tranny. Also the bodys on Dakotas stand up to the harsh winter roadsalt much better than Nissan. Only time will tell if it is a RELIABLE as the Nissan was.... (only 43,000 miles at this point... just a baby)
In my book, the Dakota is in a different league than the Nissan when it comes to creature comforts and refinements.
#1626 of 1886 What year Nissan with 190k miles are you
Dec 05, 2002 (8:55 pm)
comparing to what year Dakota? Just so as to be sure on the facts of your unbiased comparison.
#1627 of 1886 Dakota-Nissan
Dec 05, 2002 (9:15 pm)
I have had both and the Nissan was a very good truck. I mirror what Boo said with his snow shoe sized feet (Said with love) and Bruces comments.
I personally need more power for all my goodies so I needed a V8.
If I had to choose between the 2 again, I would get the Dakota especially with the warranty.
#1628 of 1886 Nissan Pick-ups
Dec 06, 2002 (3:58 pm)
I have a neighbor who got rid of an old Nissan pickup about two years ago that was badly rusted. I don't know what year it was but I remember him saying it was 11 or 12 years old, I think. It had 230,000K on the engine, a 4-cyl with eight spark plugs. It was a real workhorse, but finally got too impractical to keep running.
A good friend of mine still drives a 1990 Nissan pickup that's got well over 270,000K on it. It's starting to show its age now, but as far as rust goes it outlasted his son's '92 S10, which rusted so bad the windshields would keep cracking and the doors would'nt close. I think the newer Nissan vehicles are much more rust resistive. The '93 Sentra that i just sold was nearly rust free.
#1629 of 1886 5 speed Gear whine
Dec 10, 2002 (12:56 pm)
Do any of you 5 speed quad owners experience any gear whine in 5th gear? I get quite a bit of it when the engine is under load at 45 mph and 65 mph. Just wondering if this is "normal" as my dealer likes to say, before I bring it in. I know standards all have a fair amount of gear whining in the lower gears but in 4th I do not hear any. It is only when I am in 5th gear. I have a 2001 Quad 5 speed with 3.92 rear end.
Dec 10, 2002 (4:26 pm)
Is it around your tranny or the back of your truck?
If its the rearend, that is not normal. They bought mine back because of it.
If its the tranny, I dont know. I have never had a standard whine except in reverse.
Dec 11, 2002 (12:09 pm)
It is definitely around the tranny and only in 5th gear. I know rear end whine, had that problem with my 98 Ram. It was a bad pinion gear I believe. Guess it is time to do battle with the dealer.
#1632 of 1886 GVW Dakota Quad
Dec 12, 2002 (9:15 am)
What is the GVW of the 2003 Quad Cab SLT Plus 4X4 with the 4.7L and 5-Speed?