By KBB.com Editors
Although dubbed a "mid-sized" pickup by Dodge, the Dakota offers so much interior room, power and cargo space it might was well be a full-size truck. With no rival from Ford or GM, and only a handful of Japanese competitors (none of which can best the Dakota's torque, towing capacity or cabin volume), the Dakota continues to play in a league of its own. A bold exterior inspired by the larger Dodge Ram allows even the base Dakota to stand out in a crowd. Although no Regular Cab model is offered, Club Cab models start below $20,000 and provide enough interior room for four people. In this category, no other competitor offers a V8 engine option, while the Dakota offers a choice of two.
If you want or need V8 power, but prefer a pickup with more manageable dimensions than a full-size Ram, the new Dakota is a fine choice. It also just happens to be your only choice.
While the Dakota is definitely a solid truck, it doesn't offer the powertrain refinement and smoothness of the Toyota Tacoma or Nissan Frontier. Also, there is no Regular Cab model available.
For 2007, a dual-position tailgate is made standard on all models, as is a retained-power feature. The 4.7-liter V8 is now Flex-Fuel compatible, meaning it can run on either gasoline or E85, and Remote Start is offered for the first time on SLT and Laramie trims.
Driving Impressions We drove the Dakota equipped with the regular Magnum V8not the high-output versionand while it felt strong enough to tow a trailer, we weren't overwhelmed with its power. Out on...the highway, a nicely tuned suspension delivers a comfortable ride that won't jar any fillings loose nor bounce you into a state of motion sickness.
Delivering 260 horsepower and 310 pound-feet of torque, the Dakota's 4.7-liter high-output MPI V8 engine gives mid-size buyers a full-size engine option.
We're still waiting for the day that MP3 playback capability is standard on every CD system, but for now we're just happy to have it as an option.
The exterior theme of curves and lines carries into the interior of the Dakota, especially the dash. Overall, the passenger area is clean and purposeful and without many surprisesor much color variation. The seats are comfortable, and it's the only truck in its class to offer six-passenger seating with an available bench seat up front. The fold-down rear seats in the Crew Cab model might come in handy in a pinch, but if you ever plan to put people you like back there, you'll definitely want to opt for a Quad Cab model.Exterior
In 1994, the truck segment was pleasantly surprised by the introduction of the most stylized pickup in recent memory: The Dodge Ram. This style was lifted nearly intact from contemporary big-rigs. The 2007 Dakota continues the same theme, although with a sharper edge. And while the mix of soft curves and sharp lines might not appeal to everyone, the Dakota maintains much-needed visibility in what has become a competitive category. For hauling, the Club Cab cargo bed is six feet, six inches long, and the Quad Cab bed is five feet, four inches. Each measures 45.2 inches between the wheel wells, and has a convenient 17.6-inch wall height that lets you load from the side with ease. The Regular Cab and eight-foot bed option are no longer available.
The entry-level two-wheel-drive Dakota Club Cab has a 3.7-liter V6, six-speed manual transmission, air conditioning, cloth bucket seats, dual-position tailgate, front airbags and a four-speaker AM/FM/CD sound system.
Available features include the Quad Cab configuration, 4.7-liter Flex-Fuel Magnum V8, 4.7-liter high-output MPI V8, four-wheel drive (shift-on-the-fly or full-time), leather seating, a six-speaker AM/FM/six-CD/MP3 sound system, SIRIUS Satellite Radio, UConnect hands-free communication, steering wheel-mounted audio controls, front bench seat, heated seats, six-way power driver's seat, power sunroof, side-curtain airbags, power door locks and windows, anti-lock brakes (ABS) and a sliding rear window.
While the Dakota's V6 can certainly handle a loaded cargo bed, those who intend to tow and still merge with freeway traffic are best served by one of the optional V8s.
3.7-liter V6 Magnum
210 horsepower @ 5200 rpm
235 lb.-ft. of torque @ 4000 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 16/22 (2WD manual), 16/22 (2WD automatic), 16/20 (4WD manual), 15/19 (4WD automatic)
4.7-liter V8 Magnum
230 horsepower @ 4600 rpm
290 lb.-ft. of torque @ 3600 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 15/20 (2WD manual, Gasoline), 15/20 (2WD automatic, Gasoline), 15/19 (4WD manual, Gasoline), 15/20 (4WD automatic, Gasoline), N/A (2WD manual, E85), N/A (2WD automatic, E85), N/A (4WD automatic, E85).
4.7-liter V8 High-Output MPI
260 horsepower @ 5200 rpm
310 lb.-ft. of torque @ 3600 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 14/18 (2WD), 14/18 (4WD)
By ryan on Friday, July 25, 2014
I own this car - My approximate mileage is 48,000overall rating 4 of 10rating details
Pros: "Drives well. That's about it."
Cons: "HORRIBLE gas mileage. Cramped interior."
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 2
"I have owned this truck for about 5 months now. The best I have been able to get is 12.7 combined MPG. Horrible. I traded in my 2007 F-150 V8 4x4 for this hoping for better mileage. Worst decision of my life. My F-150 was getting 16 combined MPG. I will be going back to Ford as soon as I can afford to trade back in."
By Elf on Tuesday, July 15, 2014
I own this car - My approximate mileage is 109,000overall rating 10 of 10rating details
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 9
"I get many compliments on my truck. It has held up well esthetically and it runs awesome. The only gripes that I have is it is not sure footed in the winter and it sucks gas."
3 people out of 5 found this review helpful
By Jughead on Friday, June 27, 2014
I own this car - My approximate mileage is 185,000overall rating 9 of 10rating details
Pros: "Very sound and good looking truck. (blk/grey int.)"
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 8
"The tires are Nitto Terra Grabbers with less than 500 miles on them. Dual exhaust with 3" chrome tips. Interior is custom made leather and carpet is new 14 months ago. Local Dodge dealer replaced brakes, rotors, and drums. also new upper/lower front ball joints with new struts. Truck has a 3" lift kit. Also has Dodge chrome side bars. Mileage is high due to going to Louisiana monthly while my dad was ill. Truck has never been stuck or off road driven except for logging roads to deer hunt. Need to down size auto number."
5 people out of 8 found this review helpful
By LCF on Saturday, June 14, 2014
I own this car - My approximate mileage is 35,000overall rating 10 of 10rating details
Pros: "Very comfortable, easy driving and reliable Truck!"
Cons: "I should have got PWR locks & windows!"
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 8
"Truck is in Excellant Condition, in one minor accident (less than 5MPH) replaced parts with NEW, R/F fender, Grill, & hood. Less than 5 mile per hour impact, did not deploy airbags. I have 8 80% tread tires, 4 street n alloy wheels, & 4 mud & snow on steel wheels. There is a fiberglass ASE Canopy with a lined & carpetted Bed, a Trailer Towing Package, Stainless Rolled Foot Rails. All miles were 5 cross country trips fron Seattle, Wa. to Johnson City, Tn. area. The best riding vehicle I have owned. Not the best mileage with 15 city & 18 highway."
5 people out of 9 found this review helpful
By greywolf on Friday, June 06, 2014
I own this car - My approximate mileage is 110,000overall rating 10 of 10rating details
Pros: "body style, size, comfort, reliability"
Cons: "gas mileage"
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10
"This truck is extremely comfortable and reliable. The 4.7 liter V8 has lots of power, and the truck steers very well. The body is very sturdy yet beautiful. I would buy it again in a heartbeat. The only downside is the gas mileage, about 18 miles per gallon all around."
By bigdogmac on Sunday, May 04, 2014
I own this car - My approximate mileage is 113,000overall rating 9 of 10rating details
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10
"My Dakota quad-cab is the best truck I've ever owned. Very reliable and with 113000 miles, still very solid. No squeaks or rattles. Even on non-surfaced roads!"
6 people out of 9 found this review helpful