The 2010 Dodge Dakota gains revised suspension tuning for an improved ride and better handling. Other changes for 2010 include the discontinuation of the six-speed manual transmission and the reduced availability of the TRX4 and Laramie models to just the crew cab body style.
When the Dodge Dakota debuted in 1987, it bridged the gap between compact and full-size pickups. The midsize pickup was born, and since then, other car companies have followed suit. Over time, consumer tastes have become more refined, with shoppers expecting more from pickup trucks than just pure utility. In recent years, however, the Dakota has lagged behind the competition in that regard.
Dodge hopes to remedy some of that with the 2010 Dakota. Previous models suffered from a harsh highway ride that transmitted every road imperfection to the passengers' posteriors. This year, refinement comes in the form of revised shock absorbers and springs to deliver a more compliant ride.
Fortunately for the Dakota, some of its best attributes return unchanged. Topping that list is the Dakota's class-leading towing capacity, which tops out at 7,200 pounds thanks to a brawny V8. Also receiving high marks are the pickup's innovative rear under-seat storage bins and comfortable seating. But there are still some downsides to the Dakota, notably its cut-rate interior. Even by pickup truck standards, the cabin is woefully behind the times and saddled with plenty of cheap plastics and flimsy switchgear.