really awful
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 5
Injuries / Deaths:
1 / 0
Average Mileage:
75,616 miles

About These NHTSA Complaints:

The NHTSA is the US gov't agency tasked with vehicle safety. Complaints can be spread across multiple & redundant categories, & are not organized by problem. See the Back button — blue bar at the very top of the page — to explore more.

Get notified about new defects, investigations, recalls & lawsuits for the 2005 Dodge Dakota:

Unsubscribe any time. We don't sell/share your email.

problem #29

Apr 012019


  • 80,000 miles
Vehicle goes in and out of 4 wheel drive and 4 wheel lo on it's own, whether the vehicle is running or not and moving or not. There have been times when I open the door, not unlock, just open, and you can hear the transfer case shifting. Sometime "service 4 wheel drive" light comes on, other times just 4 wheel indicator and other times no light at all. Though it is a 2005, I only have 80K on it. This has been going on for about 6 months now

- Wheat Ridge, CO, USA

problem #28

May 302019


  • miles
I received a recall notice for the T80 heated seats in my 2005 Dodge Dakota I called the Chrysler representative schedule a repair service with perkins Dodge Colorado springs he ordered the seats I told the representative that the passenger side had a burn hole in it and had caught fire when the new seats arrived at perkins Dodge I took my truck in to be repaired they told me they will not do the passenger seat because of the burn hole has cut out pieces. I told them I had to remove some of the burnt material to put a seat cover on and still utilize the seat. Seats are still under recall they ordered them knowing that there was a burn hole I don't understand why they will not proceed with the repair the information for the case number and representative I talked to is here.... my name is [xxx] from the fca case management division, I have been assigned as your case manager. Here is some information that will be helpful for you to have: Your case number is [xxx] the Chrysler case management telephone number is: [xxx] my direct extension: [xxx] my work hours are: 8:00 am - 4:30 pm eastern standard time (Monday-Friday). I will contact you within one business day of your appointment by telephone to review your case with you. Information redacted pursuant to the Freedom Of Information Act (FOIA), 5 U.S.C. 552(B)(6).

- Colorado Springs, CO, USA

problem #27

Nov 132018


  • 198,000 miles
Seats almost caught fire. Melted a hole in seats

- Thomasville, AL, USA

problem #26

Sep 092018


  • 179,000 miles
Approximately two weeks ago from this complaint, while driving the aforementioned vehicle (2005 Dodge Dakota) during normal, summer time road conditions, writer noticed that the "svc 4WD" warning indicator light illuminated. Light remained illuminated for approximately 3 miles before turning off. Light didn't illuminate again until Sunday, 09/09/2018. When unlocking the vehicle using the vehicle's remote unlock on the key, writer noticed a sound that sounded like the vehicle engaging the four wheel drive mechanisms. Writer started the vehicle, noted that the vehicle was not in four wheel drive, and the service light was not illuminated. During the course of this week, the service light has intermittently illuminated on occasion, remaining on for a short period of time, then turns off. Today, 09/14/2018, when leaving my work for an errand, I noted that the "svc 4WD" light was illuminated immediately after starting the vehicle. Writer noted that the vehicle was also, in fact, in four wheel drive, as the vehicle was "skipping" the tires while turning and exhibiting signs of a vehicle in 4 wheel drive while driving on dry pavement. Writer noted that the "4WD control knob" was in the 2wd position. Writer parked the vehicle and made several attempts, while both in park and neutral, to engage the 4WD and disengage using the 4WD control knob. None of these actions were able to disengage the transfer case. Writer drove the vehicle to my destination, (approximately 3 miles), noting upon my arrival that the service light was no longer illuminated and the vehicle was not in four wheel drive any longer. Writer also notes electrical symptoms such as vehicle now honks after locking with the remote lock on the key. Complaint is concerning spontaneous engagement of the four wheel drive mechanism, without cause, possibly related to defects associated with the tipm.

- Demotte, IN, USA

problem #25

May 282008


  • 48,000 miles
On the passenger side electric window a noise was heard and the window now does not work.

- Metairie, LA, USA

problem #24

Jan 162018


  • 124,706 miles
Truck tries to engage into 4X4 mode while knob is in 2X4 selection and key is not even in ignition. Also while driving truck engages into 4X4 mode while knob is in 2X4 mode. Dodge dealer said they no longer make tipm part to fix this issue and no other parts company make this part.

- Colonial Heights, VA, USA

problem #23

Dec 142017


  • 158,580 miles
I was picking up my boys from school when I smelled something burning. Then I saw smoke coming from my drivers side seat. I turned off the heat to the seat. When I got out of the truck, there was a burn mark in the seat and on my jacket.

- Stevens Point, WI, USA

problem #22

Nov 102017


  • 45,000 miles
Seat heater malfunction, causing small fire and hole melted into the seat.

- Coeur D'alene, ID, USA

problem #21

Feb 102016


  • 50,000 miles
The contact owns a 2005 Dodge Dakota. The contact stated that there was a continuous noise that progressed. Also, the motor failed and caused the vehicle to stall several times. The dealer and manufacturer stated that the vehicle was previously repaired under a manufacturer recall. The manufacturer provided no repair solution. The vehicle was also included in NHTSA campaign number: 15V313000 (air bags) and the dealer had not been able to schedule the repair for months due to the manufacturer not being able to confirm when the parts may become available. The vehicle continued to randomly stall. The approximate failure mileage was 50,000.

- Spokane, WA, USA

problem #20

Jul 012015


  • 42,000 miles
Keys partly slip out of ignition causing electrical failures. While in motion, if you bump your keys with your knee or hit a bump in the road, multiple dashboard warning lights appear and gauges, including the speedometer, will give inaccurate or nonexistent readings. Cruise control and other systems may fail. Vehicle must be pulled over and turned off to clear the electrical failures. This failure can occur multiple times in one trip.

- Harbor Beach, MI, USA

problem #19

Oct 172015


  • 140,000 miles
The contact owns a 2005 Dodge Dakota. The contact stated that while driving at 40 mph, the air bag warning light illuminated. The vehicle was taken to the dealer where it was serviced under an air bags manufacturers recall but when the vehicle was driven to the contact's residence, the failure recurred. The vehicle was taken back the dealer where the clock springs in the steering wheel needed to be replaced. The vehicle was not repaired. The manufacturer was made aware of the failure. The failure mileage was approximately 140,000.

- St Louis, MO, USA

problem #18

Nov 172015


  • 120,500 miles
The 4WD transfer case motor sometimes operates while the vehicle is off, after doors are unlocked with the key fob. The 4WD randomly & spontaneously attempts to engage at highway speeds without any 4WD-related indicator lights. There is a moment of resistance - like an extreme headwind, then a violent thud in the drivetrain when it disengages. At times there is a rolling pulsation in the drivetrain, as if the 4WD is attempting to engage over longer distances. Engaging 4WD unexpectedly at highway speed could cause catastrophic failure of the drivetrain, loss of vehicle control, and potentially serious accidents. This complaint is posted literally thousands of times on internet forums and should be investigated.

- Johnstown, PA, USA

problem #17

Aug 032015


  • miles
The contact owns a 2005 Dodge Dakota. The contact received notification of NHTSA campaign numbers: 14V373000 (air bags, electrical system) and 15V313000 (air bags); however, the parts to do the recall repairs were unavailable. The contact stated that the manufacturer had exceeded a reasonable amount of time for the recall repair. The manufacturer was not made aware of the issue. The contact had not experienced a failure. Parts distribution disconnect.

- Harrisonville, MO, USA

problem #16

Jul 012010


  • 35,000 miles
While the vehicle is in the running and operational position, aka driving down the road, the key can be removed, by simply pulling it out of the ignition, and the vehicle will remain running, and then there is no way to shut the vehicle off. The ignition switch has been faulty since I bought the vehicle. I am amazed no one has been injured, and even more surprised no recalls for this issue.

- Galesburg, IL, USA

problem #15

Mar 232015

Dakota 4WD 6-cyl

  • 97,120 miles
I'm left with a dilemma. I own a 2005 Dodge Dakota 4X4. This vehicle has a problem where the transmission electronically switches from 2 wheel drive to 4 wheel drive without the driver's consent. This is a well documented problem across the internet with other owners of this vehicle. We've known the transmission has had issues for a while, but (warranty company) has a theory of can't replicate it, won't fix it.and that is what occurred. On 3/23 while driving at 70mph, the vehicle attempted to electronically shift into 4lo from 2wd, a system that should only function under 20mph. It failed to engage, causing grinding noises from the transaxle case and a slow stop on side of interstate. Upon later inspection by a in network repair facility, the vehicle failed to produce a PCM code and mechanically could not be replicated in the 2 hrs at the shop. We were charged a $112.51 and sent on our way. Today 3/28, it happened again but in worse format, the transmission did engage 4lo at 70mph and it caused rear wheels to lock up and freeze. We were forced to swerve under control to a stop in the median of the interstate again. We immediately had a local automotive parts store drive to us where he was once again unable to pull any PCM codes. He tested the vehicle in the median and was able to immediately replicate the problem.

- Smyrna, TN, USA

problem #14

Feb 202015


  • 74,381 miles
From about November 2010 until I delivered the truck to thornton road Chrysler Dodge to install recall P40, the airbag off and seat belt warnings, with or without a passenger, chimed and the warning lights lit up. Thornton road Chrysler installed recall P40 and recalibrated front seat sensors. After I left the dealer, before I was 100 yards from the parking lot, the warning chime and lights came on and they have not gone out since. I am too angry to call the dealer.

- Marietta, GA, USA

problem #13

Oct 012014

Dakota 4WD 6-cyl

  • 128,000 miles
Vehicle while on highway would flash 4lo on dash or illuminate svc 4WD. Vehicle at highway speeds would attempt to engage 4lo as well. While engaging, vehicle would lose acceleration and rpms would immediately increase. This would cause loss of control of the vehicle. With vehicle off and key removed, transfer case motor would try to change transfer case position. None of these symptoms occurred while 4WD was engaged using selector switch. Vehicle was taken to dealer for service. Codes recorded in computer were for transfer case position sensor being out of range. (both high and low values were recorded simultaneously) dealer originally found leads on FCM connector between wiring harness and pcb had corroded due to faulty sealant and were possibly shorting out. Manufacturer was made aware of fault. Manufacturer replaced FCM at no cost. After FCM was replaced vehicle would still exhibit symptoms. Vehicle was taken back to same dealer. After several days of testing, tech was able to get vehicle to exhibit symptoms in shop. Tech found that the range position sensor was failing. It was found that vibration would cause the sensor to short out or go open. Manufacturer was made aware but would not cover repair. Transfer case motor assembly was replaced at cost to customer. Vehicle has since been driven over 2000 miles without further issues.

- Rochester, NY, USA

problem #12

Oct 132014

Dakota 4WD 8-cyl

  • 51,902 miles
Passenger airbag lights keep going on and off while driving the vehicle, and the airbag indicator next to the speedometer also goes on and off at the same time.

- Oakville, CT, USA

problem #11

Mar 032014


  • 40,000 miles
The contact owns a 2005 Dodge Dakota. While driving approximately 10 mph, the vehicle stalled without warning. The vehicle was maneuvered to the side of the road and able to be restarted. The failure occurred on several occasions. The dealer stated that the key fob connection failed and a new key fob was needed. The vehicle was not repaired and the manufacturer was not notified. The approximate failure mileage was 40,000.

- Mooresville, NC, USA

problem #10

Jun 112014

Dakota 6-cyl

  • 98,000 miles
I am a tall driver standing 6'9" even with the seat all the way down and all the way back. After inheriting the 2005 Dodge Dakota SXT quad cab pickup truck from my step father that pasted away in October of 2013. I was driving along and my right knee hit the key while in the on position knocking into the auxiliary position turning the truck almost completely off. All the check engine lights came on the ac shut off turned over to heat and started getting very hot inside the truck. We when to the local Dodge dealer they hooked up of a machine that gave them a code that said our computer was out of factory spec's. the guy said if we wanted it to be looked at to be diagnost.we would have to pay $198 to have them Sep up an appointment for us to bring it in and put it on the "big computer" and if the computer in the truck can be restored to factory spec's that would be done with T the $198. The same guy said if they can't get it back to factory spec's and we need a new brain computer for our truck which my step father purchased new in 2005 from a different dealer. The guy said the new computer would cost us $2000 since this first incident it has happened four other times with the same thing happening each time. I am disabled and can't afford this headache off these issues.

- Lafayette, GA, USA

Read the next 9 complaints »