There are three engine choices available for the Dakota Quad Cab, including the base 3.9-liter Magnum V6 and the optional 5.9-liter Magnum V8. The big news, however, is the introduction of the Next-Generation 4.7-liter Magnum V8.

This new Magnum represents a start-from-scratch attempt to engineer a more efficient powertrain to meet the needs of the 21st century. Specifically, the goal was to increase power and driveability under all conditions using the lowest possible displacement in order to maximize fuel efficiency.

Two factors which go a long way toward meeting those objectives are the compact and lightweight design of the block (cast iron), heads (cast aluminum), pistons (aluminum), hollow single overhead cams, composite intake manifold, and a concentrated effort to maximize air flow from the intake to the tailpipe. Additional attributes include variable fuel injection timing, an inlet-side thermostat, and the increasingly popular coil-on-plug ignition system. The result is a tight and responsive powertrain that delivers a healthy 235 horsepower and 295 lb/ft of torque. Maximum tow weights, depending on the transmission, transfer case (if equipped), and rear axle combination can climb to 6,100 pounds maximum. And as a testament to the Next-Generation 4.7's durability, Dodge claims that its newest V8 can operate for up to 150,000 miles without a part replacement beyond normal maintenance items. Even the new automatic serpentine belt tensioner is designed to keep the belt going strong for up to 100,000 miles.

Four transmissions are available: NV3500 manual five-speed overdrive, 42RE automatic four-speed overdrive, 45RFE automatic multi-speed overdrive, and the 46RE automatic four-speed overdrive. New Venture 231 and 242 part-time and full-time transfer cases round out the four-wheel drive equipment options.

In all, the 2000 Dakota Quad Cab represents a completely new approach to the utilitarian vehicle market. Some might consider it a hybrid between a standard Dakota and a Durango, yet while there are elements of both, the Quad Cab is really a brand new critter in its own right. It's a pickup truck, but one designed as a no-holds-barred people and payload mover...with a little "punch" built in.

Engine3.9L V6 (175hp @ 4800rpm/225 lb/ft @ 3200 rpm)
4.7L V8 (235hp @ 4800rpm/295 lb/ft @ 3200 rpm)
5.9L V8 (245hp @ 4000rpm/335 lb/ft @ 3200 rpm)
TransmissionNV3500 manual 5-speed OD
42RE auto 4-speed OD
45RFE auto multi-speed OD
46RE auto four-speed OD
Transfer CaseNV231 HD part-time
NV242 full-time
Wheelbase131.0 inches
Overall Length215.1 inches
Overall Width71.6 inches
Overall Height66.3 inches
Ground Clearance8.4 inches (front axle)
9.3 inches (rear axle)
Fuel Tank Capacity24 gal.
Payload1450 lbs. (2WD & 4WD)
Cargo Box Volume38 cubic feet
Cab Cargo Volume26 cubic feet
Frameladder type
Suspension (front, 2WD)upper/lower A-arms, coil springs
Suspension (front, 4WD)upper/lower A-arms, torsion bars
Suspension (rear, 2WD)live axle, 4-leaf longitudinal springs
Suspension (rear, 4WD)live axle, 4-leaf/2-stage longitudinal springs
Steeringrack & pinion
Brakesfront 11.3-inch disc (standard)
rear 11.0-inch drum (standard