• 2011 Dodge Dakota V8 on the Gold Mine Hill Off-Road Review: Run What You Brung [Video]

    2011 Dodge dakota v8 off-road review
    2011 Dodge Dakota V8

    When Zach sent us a message about bringing his 2011 Dodge Dakota V8 for us to review, I jumped at the opportunity. This the last generation of the Dakota before it got discontinued, it’s a crew cab V8 4×4, and it has a few modifications that make it a bit more off-road worthy. We decided to run it up the Gold Mine Hill trail.

    The 4.7L V8 was rated at 302 hp and 329 lb-ft of torque. It’s mated to a 5-speed automatic transmission. Zach added a BullyDog tuner to a few more horses our of it. This Dakota sits about 3-inches of lift, a larger tire, and a custom exhaust system.

    Check out all of the fun in the video below.

    Andre Smirnov
    Andre Smirnov
    Andre Smirnov is an Automotive Enthusiast, Producer, Reviewer, Videographer, Writer, Software Engineer, Husband, Father, and Friend.

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    22 thoughts on “2011 Dodge Dakota V8 on the Gold Mine Hill Off-Road Review: Run What You Brung [Video]

    1. That V8 with that exhaust sounded amazing peaking the hill. That sound would embarrass a Raptor. And it’s in a midsize. I wish they still built it. Likely have the new 5.7V8 in it. It would be awesome on mpg runs at highway speeds and hauling or towing.

      1. It’s going to take alot more than sound to embarrass a Raptor Rambro.

        What’s really embarrassing is how bad the old Raptor with an almighty great sounding 6.2 V8 gets embarrassed by the new V6tt Raptor in every aspect (acceleration, mpg, hp, torque, dyno)!

        Actually these old Dakota’s with V8’s were really pretty nice. Its a shame they didn’t sell better.

        The Previous gen Canyon & Colorado were pretty nice as well.

        I remember driving both of these with the V8’s and they ran pretty good, but seemed like they should of been stronger?

        We had a 2005 Tacoma and I remember thinking how the 4.0 V6 felt stronger. Maybe it was the way Toyota geared them and the instant throttle response those first year Tacoma 4.0’s had?

        1. Ya but I don’t agree with the V6 in the Raptor. Sound is a big deal in this aspect and there are currently many turbo and supercharged V8’s in production vehicles that will embarrass the new Raptor Even the old 6.2 with a bolt on Supercharger has great sound in the old Raptor and will walk away all day from the new V6 Raptor.

          1. Sound is a big deal to Thomas, but he is also one of the biggest proponents of electric vehicles, which make no sound. Can’t have it both ways. And regardless of what he says, the current Raptor is the most awesome pickup currently on the market. GM, Ram, Toyota, Nissan, and the rest all agree and are working hard on anything they can build to try and compete.

            1. Sound of a V8 is still a nice sound a V6 is not to the majority of enthusiasts. Electric having no sound has its benefits. The best thing is a cop can’t hear you rev the motor so it will be hard in court to say I was racing just because I accelerated fast at a light and it won’t bother anyone. The second thing is you don’t smoke anyone out including yourself when you want to floor it. So electric has its benefits along with superior traction, better torque and Hp and not rpm laden and not complicated with the BS that comes with torque converters transmissions Diffs and driveshafts. And they will have superior ground clearance. And with the generator on board they won’t be limited to how far they can go before charging. What’s not to like. But until that becomes mainstream a V8 with that beatiful sound is what I want. The new Raptor sounds like Sht compared to this truck. Sorry if that offends Raptor salesman or buyers but my comments are directed at the automaker. But war has its casualties I guess.

          2. That’s ok Rambling Bro,

            You go for sound and something that doesn’t exist and I’ll go for POWER and something that I can actually buy and comes with a WARRANTY!!!

            1. Oh yeah,

              Why don’t you own one of these discontinued Dakota/V8 or Colorado/Canyon???

            2. Drifter these trucks remind how great trucks were back then. A midsize with a V8 ! It sounds amazing. Better than the Raptor. Why I don’t own it? Because I drive new now, hence my complaints about the crap that is offered today. Just a waiting game for me but better is coming soon whether or not the mainstream offers it or not Workhorse is here Bollinger is coming and Tesla is working on the real thing. Complete crap what is being offered now and the discounts are bigger than I’ve ever seen in my life. Every add and commercial seems to be about a 1/2 ton trying to sell the dam things at cost just to try to prolong the inevitable.

    2. love it! Whoever came up with this video concept filming privately owned vehicles deserves a gold star “attaboy”.
      We’ll be looking forward to more of this.

    3. Hey hey try out a V8 Canyon from that year that would be nice to see. i have a 2010 Gmc Canyon Slt V8. it’d be nice to see what it can do.

    4. Dang Andre, is anyone proofreading these articles. Any Joe Blow can write like that. Let’s get someone with a degree in there.

    5. Congratulations to you, Zach!
      Good truck choice; good engine; super sound; nice paint and exhaust tips…and obviously great climbing ability!
      And with Crew Cab, — you got plenty of room.
      60K miles? Zach you got a bargain!


    6. 2015 Manual Tacoma and a 2016-2017 plus there was a guy that won here with a supercharged 2014 Tacoma willing to show up. Be nice to see 0-60 runs and mpg runs with those trucks

      Another great truck to run would be the 2017 regular cab 3.5EB with the 10 speed transmission with the 3:75 rear end

      And I would like to see the 2.7EB F150 with the 3:31 gears in regular cab run that new 50 mile loop. I bet it beats the 4 cylinder Frontier in mpg’s

      1. The 10 speed EcoBoost did not return so great of gas mileage to Car and Driver. About 18 miles to the gallon I remember correctly.

    7. I had a 2007 Dakota SLT with the 4.7 ho engine, which has less power than the 2008.

      I had the same configuration he has and I had the 392 gears that he likely has too.

      The big problem with telling that I had with the Dakota was you had a choice of either first gear, second gear, drive, or tow haul. Tow haul would only lockout the 2nd overdrive, the one that is .67 geared, which would leave me towing in the .75 overdrive. I would have been a lot happier if I could have just put it in the 1 to 1 gear and run it that way, when towing. It just didn’t have enough torque to pull much and it’s first overdrive gear, maybe if you were going higher speeds it could have.

      I had problems with the AC unit leaking water on the passenger floorboard, and water getting in the cargo light, and I thought they could have made the suspension ride a little bit better (my 07 felt like it was porpoising, so I ended up getting a suspension from an 08 and having the Dodge dealership put it on)

      It’s sad to see that they quit making them. One major thing that that line lacked was a strong V6, the 3.7 Dodge engine was poor.

      If they could have done it nowadays with a Durango frame and use 3.6 pentastar power along with a Hemi, maybe even if they would have made the 1.4 liter turbo for the regular cab two wheel drive models they would have a chance.

      1. My ’92 Dakota (5.2 V8) had the AC leak water into the passenger floorboard. Turned out that the AC drain tube on the firewall had simply gotten plugged up with mud (probably from dirt dauber wasps).

        That was a very reliable truck. I could change all 8 spark plugs in less than 12 minutes. When I sold it with 176k miles, it was still in great condition, and burned a half-quart of oil every 7500-8000 miles (I ran Amsoil and changed oil 2x/yr).

        I sold it because the only thing I used it for was hauling other people’s stuff around. Got an ’02 Accord coupe with the 5MT that has been amazing, now have 152k on that car and it still has 1/4″ left on the original brake pads.

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