Dodge Dakota

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Posted by motoman 03/21/2009 @ 12:19

Tags : dodge dakota, dodge, cars, leisure

News headlines
Stressful day for GM dealers - Minot Daily News
By KIM FUNDINGSLAND Staff Writer Several North Dakota General Motors dealers said they were experiencing stressful times Friday. However, none of the dealerships contacted by The Minot Daily News had received...
North Pole man faces assault, criminal mischief charges - Fairbanks Daily News-Miner
Lanigan, in a white Ford Ranger pickup allegedly tailgated and tried to run the silver Dodge Dakota pickup off the Richardson Highway several times. The Dakota tried to turn into the Gottschalks parking lot when Lanigan finally swerved into it at the...
Claremore woman killed in two-vehicle crash - Tulsa World
Althea Sammons, 64, died just before 7 pm Thursday when her 2000 Buick Century was struck by a westbound 1996 Dodge Dakota on County Road EW48 in Rogers County. According to an Oklahoma Highway Patrol report, Sammons had been attempting to turn out of...
Local briefs: Fatal wreck; Teen Summit; Disaster aid - Jackson Sun
Mildred Fowler, 45, was westbound on US 88 around 3 pm when her 2004 Cadillac was struck by a 1998 Dodge Dakota, driven by James Hill, 29, of Bells, according to the Tennessee Highway Patrol. Authorities said it appears the eastbound truck crossed the...
Border Patrol Stops Pine Valley Drug Smuggling Attempts - Imperial Valley News
The largest seizure took place at about 10:15 am, when Border Patrol agents at the checkpoint stopped a Dodge Dakota pickup truck with Baja California license plates. A Border Patrol canine team was summoned and alerted agents to the presence of...
Thief ends crime spree with visit to casino -
The one-man crime spree began April 23 when a 1998 red Dodge Dakota truck was stolen from Calgary, said High River RCMP Const. Carman Dutz. Later the same day, the truck was ditched on a rural property south of the city where the thief apparently chose...
Man Thrown Off Motorcycle In Crash With Pickup Truck - WKRG-TV
The Florida Highway Patrol says 38 year old Johnny Plant was headed west on State Road 10 in Milton when a Dodge Dakota, driven by 20 year old Anthony Melvin, turned out in front of him. Plant slammed on his brakes, but couldn't stop....
Chrysler's Nagging Quality Issues - Wall Street Journal
In February, Shawn Avants traded his problem-free 10-year-old Dodge Dakota for a 2009 Dodge Ram pickup. "I love the styling of my new Ram," says Mr. Avants, a Kansas telecommunications worker. But at a time when Ford and GM are both seeking -- and...
Early morning crash kills Monticello man - Journal and Courier
According to a release from Indiana State Police, John T. Horn, 21, of Monticello was driving his yellow 1999 Dodge Dakota pickup truck north on Indiana 43 at approximately 3:23 am Tuesday. Police say he went off the road to the left for an unknown...
Montana dealers react to Chrysler news | North Dakota News - Reiten Television KXMB Bismarck
AP BILLINGS, Mont. (AP) Two Billings auto dealerships that are losing their Chrysler-brand cars say they don't plan any layoffs. Bill Underriner, owner of Underriner Motors, says his operation is already pretty lean because they've already cut 100 of...

Dodge Dakota

2nd-gen Dodge Dakota regular cab

The Dakota is a mid-size pickup truck from the Chrysler LLC's Dodge brand. It was introduced in 1987 alongside the redesigned Dodge Ram 50. The Dakota was nominated for the North American Truck of the Year award for 2000.

The Dakota has always been sized above the compact (Ford Ranger, Chevrolet S-10) and below the full-sized (Ford F-150, Chevrolet Silverado) pickups and Dodge's own Ram. It is a conventional design with body-on-frame construction and leaf spring/live axle rear end. The Dakota is the only midsize pickup with an optional V8 engine,save for the Hummer H3T. One notable feature was the Dakota's rack and pinion steering, a first in work trucks.

The Dodge Dakota was conceived by Chrysler management as the first "mid-sized pickup" combining the nimble handling and fuel economy of a compact pickup with cargo handling capacity approaching that of full-sized pickups. To keep investment low, many components were shared with existing Chrysler products and the manufacturing plant was shared with the full-sized Dodge D-Model. The name Dakota means "friend or ally" in the Sioux Indian language.

The first generation of the Dakota was produced from 1987 through 1996. Straight-4 and V6 engines were offered along with either a 5-speed manual or 4-speed automatic transmission. Four wheel drive was available only with the V6. Both 6.5 ft (2 m) and 8 ft (2.4 m) beds were offered. Fuel injection was added to the 3.9 L V6 for 1988 but the output remained the same.

The Sport was available only in Black, Bright White and Graphic Red.

The N-body platform was the result of the identification by Harold K. Sperlich, in charge of Chrysler's Product Planning in the early 1980s, that the Japanese-inspired compact pickups of the time lacked the size and features necessary to meet the demands of American buyers. In the late-1970's, Chrysler was still recovering from their near-bankruptcy and resources were in short supply. Sperlich challenged the N-Body team to search for all opportunities to reuse existing components to create the Dakota. The resulting highly investment-efficient program enabled Chrysler to create an all-new market segment at low cost. Key individuals involved in making this product a reality included Glenn Gardner, Glen House, Robert Burnham, Don Sebert, Jim Hackstedde, and Clark Ewing. The basic Dakota vehicle was ultimately used as a foundation to create the Dakota extended cab version and the Dodge Durango SUV.

1989 saw the unusual Dakota convertible. The first American convertible pickup since the Ford Model T, it featured a fixed roll bar and an uncomplicated manual top. Roughly 2,482 were sold that first year. Another important addition that year was Carroll Shelby's V8-powered Shelby Dakota, his first rear-wheel drive vehicle in two decades.

An extended "Club Cab" model was added for 1990, still with two doors. This model allowed the Dakota to boast capacity for six passengers, although the rear seat was best suited for children and shorter adults.

For 1991, the front of the Dakota received a new grille and hood which extended the engine compartment to better fit the optional 5.2 L V8 , which was inspired by the earlier Shelby DakotaV-8 option. By 1992, the standard square sealed beam glass headlamps were phased out for the aerodynamic style molded plastic headlamps attached to the grill surround and equipped with halogen lights making 1991 being the only year for a unique front end for the Dakota. Also debutting in 1991 were the six bolt wheels (replacing the earlier five bolt wheels) based on Dodge's marketing attempting to differentiate the Dakota from competing manufacturers' trucks and the upcoming new Ram introduction.

This engine produced 170 hp (127 kW). Both of the V-configuration engines were updated to Magnum specs the next year, providing a tremendous power boost. Along with the introduction of the Magnum engine came multi-port Electronic Fuel Injection (EFI). The EFI computer ( called a PCM by Chrysler techs ) was partially responsible for the improved performance. The new engine/computer combination produced about 235 hp (175 kW). 1991 was also the last year for the Dakota convertible.

In order to fulfill the Dodge Division's commitment to the American Sunroof Company (who were responsible for the modifications to these trucks), production of the "drop top" Dakota was extended into the 1991 model year. Production was extremely limited, with just 8 produced in total, making them the most rare of all Dakotas. Unlike the previous years, colors and options varied more than before as the manufacturer picked each of these trucks in a somewhat random fashion. No advertising was given to these trucks, and they do not appear in sales literature. This is most likely due to the fact that the majority of them were "pre-sold" before hitting dealer lots.

1994 saw a few minor changes, with the most notable being the addition of a driver's side airbag, located in a new, two spoke design steering wheel (also found in the Ram). Other changes included the discontinuation of the "SE" and "LE" trims. In following with the all new Ram full sized pickups, top end trim was changed to "SLT", with these models (along with select others) wearing the new chrome finished, styled 6 bolt steel wheels styled similar to the 5 bolt type found on the larger Ram. Other changes included revisions to color and overall trim options.

In 1996, the first generation's final year, the K-based 2.5 L I4 engine was out of production and had been considered vastly underpowered compared to the competition, so Dodge borrowed American Motors' Jeep 2.5 L I4 (rated at 120 hp) and installed it as the base engine in the Dakota. It was the only major change for 1996, and would be also carried over as the base engine in the new, larger 1997 model.

The second-generation Dakota was built from 1997 through 2004. It inherited the semi truck look of the larger Ram but remained largely the same underneath. 1998 saw the introduction of the R/T model with the big 5.9 L 250 hp (186 kW) Magnum V8. At the time of its introduction, it was seen as one of the most radical in its class, not only for its styling, but for the fact it remained the only truck in its class with an available V8 engine that rivalled many V8s found in full size trucks and with payload 1300-1500 pounds.

Four-door "Quad-Cab" models were added for 2000 with a slightly shorter bed, 63.1 in (160.2 cm), but riding on the Club Cab's 130.9 in (332.5 cm) wheelbase. The aging 5.2 L Magnum V8 was replaced by a new high-tech 4.7 L SOHC PowerTech V8.

2001 saw a fairly extensive revision of the Dakota's interior, including a completely redesigned dash, door panels and revised seats. Other minor trim revisions were made, including redesigned aluminium wheels on various models.

2002 was the final year for the four-cylinder engine in the Dakota, as Chrysler was ending production of the former AMC design. Most buyers ordered the V6 or V8 engines, which were considerably more powerful and, in the case of the V6, which was made standard for 2003, nearly as fuel-efficient with a manual transmission.

2004 was the end of the old OHV V6 and the big R/T V8; the 2004 model year vehicles were available with the PowerTech engines, now also used in the third-generation Dakota.

This Generation was also assembled and sold in Brazil from 1998 to 2002.

The redesigned 2005 Dakota still shares its platform with the new Dodge Durango SUV (which is now similar to the Ram platform). This model is 3.7 in (94 mm) longer and 2.7 in (69 mm) wider, and features a new front and rear suspension, and rack-and-pinion steering. This new generation model also reverted the wheels back to five lug wheels from the prior generation's six lug wheels as cost and assembly time saving measures. There are one V6 and two V8 engines available: The standard engine is a 3.7 L PowerTech V6 (specs below); the two 4.7 L V8 engines are the standard PowerTech V8 and the V8 High Output or HO. The Dakota is built at Warren Truck Assembly in Warren, Michigan. The 3.7L V6 produces 210 horsepower (160 kW) and 235 ft·lbf (319 N·m) of torque. The standard output 4.7L V8 produces 230 hp (170 kW) and 295 ft·lbf (400 N·m) of torque. The High Output 4.7L V8 produces 260 horsepower (190 kW) and 310 ft·lbf (420 N·m) of torque. Both the 3.7L and standard output 4.7L V8s were available with the 6 speed manual transmission in 2005 and 2006. For 2007, that option was deleted on the V8 models.

In addition to a refresh of the Dakota's styling, the latest generation is not offered in a regular cab model. Only the club cab and quad cab configurations are available. 2006 saw the Dakota R/T return, however only with cosmetic modifications. Despite the "R/T" moniker which signifies "Road and Track", the newest Dakota R/T is simply an option package, characterized by a non functional hood scoop, exclusive gauge cluster, and hockey-stick style side stripes. The package was available on both 2 and 4 wheel drive models.

The facelifted fourth generation Dakota was unveiled at the 2007 Chicago Auto Show. The Dakota gets another facelift and interior upgrade along with a few other upgrades including built-in cargo-box utility rails, heated bench seats, best-in-class towing (up to 7,050 pounds), the largest and longest standard bed in the class, and the largest mid-size truck cab. Its new 4.7 liter V8 produces 302 hp (225 kW) and 329 lb·ft (446 N·m). of Torque. The standard engine remains the 3.7 liter V6 with 210 horsepower (160 kW) and 235 lb·ft (319 N·m). of torque. Production began in August 2007.

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Dodge Ram

2009 Dodge Ram 1500 SLT Big Horn Crew Cab

The Dodge Ram is a full-size pickup truck from Chrysler LLC's Dodge brand. The name was first used in 1981 on the redesigned Ram and Power Ram, though it came from the hood ornament used on 1930s and '40s Dodge vehicles.

Dodge Ram trucks have been named Motor Trend magazine's Truck of the Year twice: the second-generation Ram won the award in 1994, and the third-generation Ram Heavy Duty won the award in 2003. The truck is in its fourth generation as of the 2009 model year.

The Ram is built at Saltillo Truck Assembly in Saltillo, Coahuila, Mexico; Saint Louis Assembly North in Fenton, Missouri, United States; and Warren Truck Assembly in Warren, Michigan, United States.

The first-generation Ram trucks, named for the Ram hood ornament that first graced Dodge cars in the 1930s, was introduced in 1981. Dodge kept the previous generation's model designations: "D" or Ram meant two wheel drive while the "W" or Power Ram meant four wheel drive. Like Ford, Dodge used 150 to indicate a half-ton truck, 250 for a three quarter-ton, and 350 for one-tons. Standard cab, "Club" extended cab, and crew cab versions were offered along with 6.5 ft (2.0 m) and 8 ft (2.4 m) bed lengths and "Utiline" and "Sweptline" styled boxes. Externally, the first-generation Rams were facelifted versions of the previous generation Dodge D-Series pickups introduced in 1972. The new model introduced larger wraparound tail lamps, single rectangular headlamps, and squared-off body lines. The interior was updated and included a newer style bench seat, and a completely new dashboard and instrument cluster. Available engines for these trucks were the 225 cu in (3.7 L) slant six, the 318 cu in (5.2 L) V8, and the 360 cu in (5.9 L) V8 with a variety of carburetors available for each engine. Among the other options offered on the Ram were front bumper guards, a sliding rear cab window, power locks & windows, and a plowing package for the 4-wheel drive version (referred to as the Sno Commander).

Base D100 models were added for 1984, replacing the previous "Miser" trim level available on the D150.

A "Ram-Trac" shift-on-the-fly transfer case was added for 1985's Power Rams, and both the crew cab and Utiline flared bed were dropped for 1986, also the first year for a new crossbar grille and slight front end styling changes. Engines were updated for the 1988 model year. The Slant-6 was dropped in favor of a 3.9 L (≈238 cu in) fuel injected V6 with 25% more power. The 5.2 L (318 cu in) engine also received electronic fuel injection in 1988. Because EFI was added, a computer was used to control ignition, fuel, and manage other areas of the engine and in some cases, the automatic transmission lockup function depending on the model. Inside the cab where a small compartment was once located on the dash, a new "message center" contained the check-engine light, brake warning light, and the warning light for the ABS if the truck was so equipped. Diagnostic fault codes were stored in the computer's memory, and cycling the ignition key three times would allow the computer to flash the trouble codes through the check-engine light for diagnosis of some problems.

For 1989, the 5.9 L V8 also received throttle body fuel injection for 20 hp (15 kW) more power. Rear ABS also became standard equipment. Additionally, Dodge introduced a new overdrive automatic transmission for reduced fuel consumption. This light-duty transmission was designated the A500, and was offered with the 3.9 L V6 and 5.2 L V8. An "O/D Off" pushbutton switch to lock out the overdrive 4th gear was added to the message center. The A727 automatic saw continued use for heavy duty applications. The Cummins Turbo Diesel was also added to the engine lineup and for the first time, Dodge saw sales go up. The Cummins could be had with a heavier-duty version of the A727 automatic or a 5 speed manual transmission and was available on 250 and 350 pickups and chassis cabs.

The Ram 100 model designation was dropped and these models folded back into the "150" range for 1990 due to the introduction and sales success of the Dodge Dakota pickup. Additionally, the instrument cluster was slightly revised; the ammeter was replaced by a voltmeter while maintaining the 3-pod arrangement of the speedometer and gauges.

The grille was redesigned for 1991 but kept the large rectangular headlamps and crossbar appearance. The engines were substantially upgraded for 1992 (3.9L and 5.2L) and 1993 (5.9) with multi-port fuel injection, new manifolds and higher compression cylinder heads for noticeably higher output. These newly-revised engines were marketed under the "Magnum" name. A heavier-duty overdrive automatic transmission called the A518 was offered with the 5.2 L and 5.9 L engines. As part of Chrysler's overhaul of corporate transmission nomenclature, the A500 and A518 were redesignated 42RH and 46RH, respectively, in 1992. The initial "4" signified a 4-speed transmission, the second digit identified the transmission's relative torque capacity, the letter "R" in the third position denoted a rear-wheel drive transmission, and the final letter "H" signified hydraulic shift control. The 3-speed automatic remained available; the A727 was redesignated 36RH, and the A904, A998, and A999 became the 30RH, 31RH, and 32RH. During this time, Dodge reintroduced the Club Cab, which was equipped with fold-out jump seats. Although this added cab space, the jump seats were not very comfortable. Entry was made through the passenger or drivers doors as there were no rear doors for this configuration.

These trucks, though popular with fleets, sold poorly compared to the Ford F-Series and the General Motors C/K Trucks, with just under 100,000 units sold most years of their production. Part of this was due to the dated cab and chassis design which had been in production since 1972. Additionally, the interior had been given few updates since 1981.

The Ram line was redesigned for 1994. The exterior styling was the result of design concepts by chief designer Phillip E. Payne, plus extensive customer research that revealed that full-sized pickup buyers were enamored of a strong exterior design that suggested the "look of a big rig truck". Dodge Truck Product Planners recognized that while some customers would not identify with the unique design, it would mandate instant recognition for the new Dodge full-sized pickup. It featured a big rig-looking front end and a large grille and was nothing like Ford or Chevy in design. Engine offerings continued over from the first-generation ram and were the 3.9 L V6, 5.2 L V8, 5.9 L V8, and 5.9 L I6 Cummins Turbo diesel. Added to the line up was a new 488 cubic inch 8.0L V10 engine designed as an alternative to those who wanted superior pulling power but didn't want a diesel. The new V10 and Cummins Turbo diesel could only be had in the 2500 and up trucks. Models were now the 1500 half-ton, 2500 three quarter-ton, and 3500 dual rear wheel one-ton in both 2 and 4 wheel drive in 6 and 8-foot (1.8 x 2.4 m) boxes.

Dodge offered the 2500 series in two different gross-vehicle weight ratings for the first few years but this was dropped in the late 90s. The purpose of the light duty and heavy duty 2500 trucks were for the heavy duty 2500 to take the place of the discontinued one ton single rear wheel trucks.

Transmissions for the Ram were the lower geared A500/42RH-RE for light duty applications found behind the 3.9 L V6, the A518/46RH-RE for more heavy duty applications found behind the 5.2 L and 5.9 L V8 engines, and the A618/47RH-RE for heavy duty use behind the V10 and Cummins engines.

On the inside, special attention was paid to in-cab storage features, with a large glovebox, a center armrest storage area, and extra storage space behind the seat. The dash and gauge cluster were a far cry from the previous model Ram and was far more modern as well. A redesign of the dashboard and instrument cluster was made in 1998 along with the introduction of the quad cab, and rounded black plastic side-view mirrors replaced the previous rectangular design.

A natural gas engine debuted for 1995 but was not popular and was only used in fleet vehicles on a very limited production run. In 1998, Dodge introduced the "Quad Cab", which used smaller suicide doors in the back for a door opening. This was offered as an option on the extended cab for the model year. In mid year 1998, the redesigned Cummins Turbo Diesel was released, a 24 valve version, now controlled electronically and producing more power and torque.

In 1999 Dodge revised the front end for the Sport models with a restyled bumper, quad-beam clear-lens headlamps, and body-color grille.

The redesigned 1994 Ram was a sales success, with sales rocketing from 100,000 units in 1993 to 240,000 in 1994, 280,000 in 1995, and nearly 400,000 in 1996. Sales of this generation peaked at just over 400,000 in 1999 before declining against the redesigned Ford and GM trucks. By 2001 however, the Ram was below Ford and Chevy's sales.

While Dodge introduced a new Ram 1500 for 2002, the old second generation style Ram was still produced for the 2002 model year 2500 and 3500 trucks. It would be another year until the new third generation Ram took over Dodge's heavy duty truck market. Part of this delay was because of the new 5.7 L Hemi engine not being ready. The 5.9 L V8 was offered until the Hemi was ready for mass production.

The third-generation Ram debuted for 2002 on half-ton models and 2003 on the larger trucks. This was a major update including an all new frame, suspension, power trains, interiors, and sheet metal. It included a larger grille, and special models kept interest up as most competitors had adopted the Ram's separate-fender look. The four wheel drive light trucks (1500 series) lost their live axles in favor of an independent front suspension, but the 2500 and 3500 series retained the live axles for maximum longevity and durability. This body style draws heavily from the previous generation.

The redesigned trucks bolstered sales, with 400,000 sold in 2002 and nearly 450,000 sold in 2003, a new high point for the Ram name. At the same time, both Ford and GM trucks were increasing in sales from a 2001 peak over 850,000 to the 900,000 range. But the Ram's sales could not keep up with the eleventh-generation F-150 and the new Nissan Titan in 2004 and 2005, with 400,543 Rams sold that year. With the introduction of the new 2007 Tundra, styled and engineered similarly to the Ram, Dodge was forced to significantly increase the incentives to keep demand up for their vehicle.

The 2006 Dodge Ram is an updated version of the previous generation. One notable addition is the Mega Cab, featuring a 6-foot (2 m) cargo box and 20 inches (510 mm) of extra cab space, allowing seating for six with rear recliners. Also, a full screen mapping in-dash navigation system is now an option. The headlamps have been redesigned for better performance.

Another change for the 2006 model year was the replacement of the first version 5.7 L (345 cu in) Hemi V8 in half-ton models with the newer Multi-Displacement System Hemi V8 engine that is available in Chrysler and Dodge sedans. This engine features the same performance but has a cylinder-deactivating feature enabled under light loads to increase fuel economy by 3 MPG city and 4 MPG hwy. This new Hemi still delivers 345 hp (257 kW) and 375 lb·ft (508 N·m).

In 2007 a 3500 Chassis Cab model was introduced, with industry standard rear frame width and wiring to accommodate outfitters. In addition to the 5.7 L (345 cu in) HEMI V8, a Cummins ISB 6.7 L (408 cu in) diesel rated at 305 hp (227 kW) and 610 lb·ft (827 N·m) was also available.

For 2008, Dodge introduced two more Chassis Cab models, the 4500 and 5500. These are class 4 and 5 trucks with a Gross Weight of 16,500 lb (7,500 kg) and 19,500 lb (8,800 kg), respectively. Both trucks come equipped with a version of the Cummins ISB 6.7 L (6690 cc, 408 cu in) diesel rated at 350 hp (260 kW) and 650 lb·ft (881 N·m). Sterling, who worked with Dodge in development, has their own version called the Sterling Bullet with a unique grille. Sterling is a division of Freightliner LLC which, like Dodge, was owned by the former DaimlerChrysler.

The fourth generation Dodge Ram was introduced at the 2008 North American International Auto Show in Detroit. This latest generation will be sold as the 2009 Dodge Ram 1500 starting in Fall 2008. A light-duty diesel version will be released after 2009 and a two-mode hybrid version will be released in the 2010 model year.

This latest version of the Ram features a number of major innovations and improvements as the timing of this full redesign puts Dodge against fresh versions of its main competitors in the Ford F-150, Chevrolet Silverado, GMC Sierra, and Toyota Tundra. As such, Chrysler LLC is attempting to keep the Ram competitive in the market through various developments 2009 model, developing a new four-door cab style offering, new suspension, a new hemi engine option, and the Rambox, a new storage system that allows secure storage inside the truck’s bed walls.

The 5.7 L HEMI V8's output has been increased by 45 hp (34 kW) to 390 hp (291 kW) and 407 lb·ft (552 N·m), and fuel efficiency has been slightly increased by 4%. The 4.7 L (287 cu in) H.O. PowerTech V8 produces 310 hp (231 kW) and 330 lb·ft (447 N·m), and the 3.7 L (226 cu in) PowerTech V6 continues with 215 hp (160 kW) and 235 lb·ft (319 N·m). A coil spring rear suspension replaces the leaf-springs, a move to improve ride quality and handling. The payload capacities have not been negatively affected despite the massive change in suspension. The Mega Cab option will be deleted, at least on the 1500 series, replaced by a true four door cab. The 2009 Dodge Ram has also received a 5-star U.S government crash test rating, the highest rating in the program.

A vehicle based on the fourth generation Ram may be built by Nissan to replace the Nissan Titan for the 2010 model year.

The Dodge Ram comes standard with four-wheel disc ABS brakes, side curtain airbags, and electronic stability program or ESP. In IIHS crash tests the RAM received a Good overall score in the frontal crash test, and a Marginal score in the side impact test.

In addition to factory equipment and appearance packages, the Ram pickup has also been offered at times with dealer-installed packages.

Dodge announced a hybrid version of the Ram, dubbed the Contractor's Special, in 2003. However, the schedule for delivery slipped as Dodge backed away from the vehicle. The hybrid Ram was available only for fleet purchasers (if at all) and did not enter mass production. It offered an AC electrical outlet panel for running an entire job site worth of power tools, but the through-the-road method of balancing the gas engine and electric motor reportedly did not work as desired. Dodge has announced that it will use a hybrid transmission developed jointly with General Motors and BMW.

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Dodge Sidewinder

Dodge Sidewinder.jpg

The Dodge Sidewinder is a concept car unveiled by Dodge in 1997 at the SEMA convention in Las Vegas. Officially called the Dodge Dakota Sidewinder, it uses the front-mounted, Viper GTS-R engine to power the rear wheels. The engine is rated at 640 hp (477 kW) and 530 lb·ft (719 N·m) of torque, which allows the car to hit 60 mph (97 km/h) in just under 4 seconds. The top speed of the Sidewinder is 170 mph (274 km/h), and the car has a 4-speed automatic transmission.

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Dodge Durango

2004-2006 Dodge Durango

The Dodge Durango is a full-size SUV from Chrysler's Dodge brand. It was introduced in 1998 as a mid-size SUV, and as a replacement for the Ramcharger discontinued in the North American market in 1993, and was redesigned for 2004. The Durango was produced at the Newark Assembly plant in Newark, Delaware until the end of 2008.

The Durango was launched just after the second generation Dodge Dakota on which it was based. During the late 1980s, Chrysler designers had proposed building an SUV version of the Dakota pickup, but this was shelved when the Jeep division was about to release the Jeep Grand Cherokee as their flagship SUV. The Durango was marketed as a sturdy truck-based SUV designed to hold up to eight passengers and tow up to 6,700 lb (3,039 kg). The 4.7 L PowerTech V8 replaced the 5.2 L engine for 2000. In that same year a special all wheel drive performance version called the R/T was released with a 5.9 L V8 engine.

1998: First model year for Durango, all models only available in 4WD.

1999: The Durango was now available in a 2WD model. Minor changes were made for the 2nd year, two new paint colors and notable options available including 6"X9" heated rear view mirrors and steering wheel mounted radio controls. Leather seats now standard on SLT Plus models, and body color wheel flares on SLT Plus and 4WD Models.

2000: The new 4.7L V8 Engine replaced the 5.2L V8 as the standard engine for 4WD models, along with a new 5 speed automatic transmission. The high performance Durango R/T came standard equipped with a 5.9L V8 and All Wheel Drive.

2001: Dodge focused on interior upgrades as Durango's interior trim panels, dash mounted controls, instrument panel, overhead console, and steering wheel were all redesigned. For improved rear passenger comfort, a dual-zone climate control system was now standard. Sound systems were improved on all models and now came standard with 6 speakers. Other minor changes include door panels, and revised seats, aluminium wheels, and minor changes to trim options. The larger 5.9L engine was made available in other trim levels besides the R/T package.

2002: The new SXT version of the Durango was offered as the entry-level trim package. Side curtain airbags were were added for safety.

2003: Durango featured minor mechanical changes, most notable was the addition of 4 wheel disc brakes.

The second generation Durango debuted shortly before the companion Dakota. Like the Dakota, it has much in common with the large Dodge Ram pickup, including a fully-boxed frame. And like the first generation model, its front grille resembles the Dakota's. It is 7 in (177.8 mm). longer, 2 in (50.8 mm). wider, and 3 in (76.2 mm). taller than the previous model. For this model year, it offered a full third row with three seats, making the Durango an 8 Passenger SUV. The design has also has taken styling cues from the Dodge Powerbox concept as the design look similar except that the front fascia is more normal while the Powerbox had a different look. Chrysler introduced its own version of the Durango, the Chrysler Aspen, for the 2007 model year. The Durango became nearly a full-size SUV this time — although technically it is still classified as mid-size, and the upcoming Dodge Journey on the Avenger platform filled Dodge's mid-size SUV gap as a 2009 model.

The 2007 model was reworked to halt a sales decline, debuting at the Dallas Auto Show in April 2006. It includes a reworked front clip with a new fascia, grille, hood, and headlamps as well as updated fenders and wheels. New features include electronic stability program, tire pressure monitoring system, rear park assist, and a one-touch turn signal. The 2007 model also has a reworked floor, third-row seats, and electrical system in preparation for the 2009 hybrid version.

Chrysler started to build the Dodge Durango Hybrid 2009 in fall 2008, featuring the 340 hp (254 kW) 5.7 L (≈348 cu in) Hemi engine with MDS as well as the new Two-Mode Hybrid system developed with General Motors and BMW. The manufacturer claimed an almost 25% gain overall fuel fuel economy and an almost 40% gain in the city. EPA testing on the Hybrid Durango with the Hemi V8 engine indicates fuel mileage to be about 20 miles per US gallon (12 L/100 km; 24 mpg-imp) (city) and 22 miles per US gallon (11 L/100 km; 26 mpg-imp) (highway) for 2009 model. The normal (non-hybrid) Durango with the 5.7L Hemi and 4WD gets 13 miles per US gallon (18 L/100 km; 16 mpg-imp) (city) and 19 miles per US gallon (12 L/100 km; 23 mpg-imp) (highway).

The 2009 Dodge Durango Hybrid has a starting MSRP of $45,340. Production of the hybrid models (this included Chrysler Aspen Hybrid as well) began on August 22 2008. Chrysler received approximately 3000 pre-orders from dealers. By early November 2008, 400 of the hybrid S.U.V.’s, including Chrysler Aspen, had already been built.

On October 23, 2008, Chrysler announced that the shutdown of the Newark Assembly facility producing the Dodge Durango and Chrysler Aspen would be moved up to the end of 2008, effectively ending production of the Durango and Durango Hybrid for the 2009 model year.

Chrysler will eventually reintroduce the Durango on a car based platform that will be shared with the 2010 Jeep Grand Cherokee and the next Mercedes-Benz M-Class for the 2010 model year.

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Source : Wikipedia