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Rumor: Dodge Dakota to be based on minivans?

by David Zatz on

The upcoming “lifestyle truck” version of the slow-selling Dodge Dakota will be based on the next generation Chrysler minivans, according to a source. The same engineers are being hired to work on both projects, and the vehicles are both expected to be built at the flexible Windsor manufacturing plant, much as the minivans were built alongside the Chrysler Pacifica crossover. The Dakota would likely have features from the Rampage concept shown in 2006.

The Dodge Dakota was launched in the 1980s, filling the space between the small Ram 50 (from Mitsubishi) and the full-sized Ram pickups. It initially had a four-cylinder engine and a 3.9 liter V6 created for the Dakota’s relatively small engine bay. The Dakota sold fairly slowly compared with the Chevrolet and Ford small pickups; it grew with each new generation, reaching a peak of critical acclaim in the mid-1990s. The current generation has been critiqued for being too close in size and cost to the full sized Ram 1500.

If the Dakota were to be based on the minivan platform, it would likely be similar in size to the Honda Ridgeline, and considerably larger than the Dodge Rampage, Ford Ranchero, and the iconic Chevrolet El Camino. It could be sold as a Dodge rather than as a Ram.

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