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definitely annoying
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 1
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
22,665 miles

About These NHTSA Complaints:

This data is from the NHTSA — the US gov't agency tasked with vehicle safety. Complaints are spread across multiple & redundant categories, & are not organized by problem.

So how do you find out what problems are occurring? For this NHTSA complaint data, the only way is to read through the comments below. Any duplicates or errors? It's not us.

2002 Dodge Dakota brakes problems

brakes problem

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2002 Dodge Dakota Owner Comments (Page 1 of 4)

problem #68

Jun 022008


  • 50,000 miles


The contact owns a 2002 Dodge Dakota. While driving approximately 30 mph, the contact noticed smoke rising near the front passenger side wheel and the vehicle began to veer to the right. The contact discovered that the front passenger side brake caliper failed. The failure occurred numerous times. The contact replaced the front passenger side caliper and rotor and remedied the failure. The manufacturer was not notified. The VIN was invalid. The failure mileage was 50,000.

- Coral Springs, FL, USA

problem #67

Aug 172007

Dakota 4WD 8-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 51,819 miles
Continued problems with front brakes. Had to replace the rotors at 35,552 miles (see ODI #10200119), had to turn those rotors at 46,295 miles (see ODI #10200122), had to replace front brakes at 50, 230 miles (see ODI #10200127), had to replace front left calipers at 51,116 miles (see ODI #10200129). Two weeks after replacing the calipers, drove short distance (all highway miles). When I stopped the truck, strong brake smell coming from underneath the front end. I let the car sit for a while and continued on. Now it's intermittent. Calipers appear to be sticking again - intermittently. Vehicle pulls and brakes feel inconsistent like they are coming on way too hard but then pulsing.

- Ashland, MO, USA

problem #66

Mar 022007

Dakota 4WD 8-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 46,295 miles
Front rotors replaced at 35K (see ODI #10200119). Only 8 months later, at 46,295 miles brakes started pulsing again. Took the vehicle back to the same dealer. They indicated the rotors had to be turned. Technician also suggested clean and adjust the rear brakes. Total cost was $137.

- Ashland, MO, USA

problem #65

Jul 262006

Dakota 4WD 8-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 35,552 miles


"pulsing" vibration in front end while braking. Dealer indicated the front rotors were "warped and pitted" and needed to be replaced. Vehicle only had 35,552 miles on it, but it was out of warranty because of time limit. Dealer did not cover under warranty. Cost of replacement $165.

- Ashland, MO, USA

problem #64

May 112006

Dakota 8-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 28,600 miles
: the contact stated while driving 35 mph the front brakes locked up without warning. The road was dry and the braking condition was normal. The contact further stated the brakes felt sluggish, as if riding on a flat tire. The vehicle was taken to the dealer where the master cylinder, rotors and pads were replaced which corrected the problem.

- Dickson, TN, USA

problem #63

Apr 072006

Dakota 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • miles
2002 Dodge Dakota purchased new 10/2001. March 2004 noticed grinding noise when applying brakes. Brakes were metal against metal. Dealer replaced rotors and pads (and charged for service) at 20940 miles. March 2006, noticed pulsing when applying brakes. Different service center said rotors were rusted and replaced; also cleaned and adjusted rear brakes and performed front caliper "slider service." Mileage 40239. I believe brakes should last more than two years and/or 20000 miles.

- Liverpool, NY, USA

problem #62

Nov 222005

Dakota 8-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 90,767 miles


Making a right hand turn when a sudden grinding noise occurred. Upon straightening the wheels, it stopped. Was approx 3 miles from my mechanic so I went there and had him look at it. He found the left side hub bearing assembly had completely failed (bearing exposed and badly damaged). He was unable to separate the brake rotor disk from the hub as it was so badly corroded that it had become one. Upon checking the right side hub assy, it was found to have failed as well with the brake rotor disk in the same condition. Both sides were replaced and a complete brake job done to make the vehicle safe to operate. The vehicle has less than 92000 miles and I am the original owner. I was told that I was lucky that I did not loose the left wheel because of the failure as I had just returned from work (50 miles one way) which is all highway driving.

- East Hampton, CT, USA

problem #61

Nov 152005

Dakota 4WD 8-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 88,500 miles
I have had a warped rotor on the right front side 3 times now. It was turned twice, replaced once, and now it's warped again. I'm facing replacing the calipers and rotors upfront. I have heard several other Dodge Dakota owners complain about this, so obviously, they have a supplier that is not up to par. This shaking is dangerous - with ABS, a wet road, and some clown pulling in front of you, the warpage does very strange things with the ABS - and you really have to stomp on the brakes to override the ABS feature. I've owned mopar products exclusively since 1981; I doubt seriously that I'll ever buy another one.

- Lynn Haven, FL, USA

problem #60

Sep 152005

Dakota 8-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 30,000 miles
The brake rotor on my 2002 Dodge Dakota continuously warp. I had them turned at 30,000 by the dealer and now I going to replace them at 42,000. I do not tow anything with my truck or use hard braking. I've read multiple message board with hundreds of people having the same problem. Dodge says it's not an equipment problem, but obviously it is. I would hope the NHTSA would investigate this problem and have Dodge correct it. Dodge has put the wrong material on these truck and thousands of people are affected, but Dodge does not want to take the responsibility.

- Union, KY, USA

problem #59

May 252005

Dakota 8-cyl

  • miles
2002 Dodge Dakota right front wheel bearings and the hub needed to be replaced. The consumer experienced intermittent problems with the air conditioner. Hot spot on the front rotors caused pulsation when braking. The vehicle's transmission made noise and intermittent delayed shifting. The right front hub and bearing were replaced. The right front outer tie rod end was replaced. The left front upper ball joint was replaced.

- Manahawkin, NJ, USA

problem #58

May 052005

Dakota 8-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 20,000 miles


Thought I would "buy american" and get the Dodge Dakota 4 dr crew. Love its style, comforts, more power than I need (4.7L V8) 2wd has no traction in snow or ice. Very easy to drive and comfortable 6ft.2 220lbs.(2 trips NJ to calif.) gas mileage stinks...13-18mpg, no loads. Brake rotors replaced 28K, left top ball joint worn (no recall yet)A/C needed charging, right front hub and bearings replaced 49K, rear leaf spring noisy, transmission hesitation occasionally. Great truck to drive and haul but reliability really in question with only 49K. Probably back to Nissan or Toyota.

- Manahawkin, NJ, USA

problem #57

Apr 052005

Dakota 4WD 8-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 40,000 miles
I too have just had to replace the front rotors on my 02 Dakota. I have never owned any vehicle where the rotors had to be replaced, with far more mileage than this truck(44K). The dealer says "they rotors are overheating" well if the truck is used mostly for freeway use, isnt hauling loads or towing, and its only weight is on the brakes, it would seem to the most ignorant that there is definately defective materials in the brake system.

- Menlo Park, CA, USA

problem #56

Jan 072005


  • 41,000 miles
While braking at any speed vehicle shimmied. Dealership informed the consumer of the front brake rotor wear. The problem was not resolved.

- Ewan, NJ, USA

problem #55

Apr 042003

Dakota 8-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 8,000 miles
Consumer purchased the vehicle at 11,000. 2,000 miles later consumer noticed a pulsation in the brake pedal. The rotors were worn out. Consumer stated the rotors had to be replaced at about every 8,000 miles.

- Tomkins Cove, NY, USA

problem #54

Feb 152005

Dakota 4WD 8-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 39,000 miles
Rusting and pitted brake rotors on 2002 Dodge Dakota. Vehicle has less than 40K miles and is garaged in winter months. Inspection showed brake pads were not worn out but rotors were pitted and had to be replaced. Manufacture defect. I paid $406 to have brake pads and rotors replaced. Could have had a brake failure. Chysler took my complaint and said it was past the warrenty mileage.

- Macomb, MI, USA

problem #53

Dec 292003

Dakota 8-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • miles
The rotors and brakes needed to be replaced when the vehicle was taken for checkup. This defect made it difficult for the vehicle to stop.

- Jena, LA, USA

problem #52

Dec 092004

Dakota 4WD 8-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 51,450 miles
Front brake rotors are warping extremely early.

- Pueblo, CO, USA

problem #51

Jan 042005

Dakota 4WD 8-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 5,000 miles
Regarding the daimler Chrysler recall of my 2002 Dodge Dakota 4 wheel drive truck. One of the reasons they may be having problems with the upper ball joints has to do with the lousy metal used on the front brake rotors. I have had the truck for 3 years and under normal braking there is shuttering, and much worse during heavy braking. This has been a problem developed in the first few months and has only worsened. The local dealer inspected the brakes and said the pads are fine but the rotors are warped.

- Sonora, CA, USA

problem #50

Aug 012003


  • miles
Brake rotors warped at 20,000 miles. Pads ok. Terible pulsing when stopping. Local dealer wanted to charge a fee just to look at it. I believe the anti lock brakes are affected by this. Brakes horrible in wet condition.

- California, MD, USA

problem #49

Nov 092004

Dakota 4WD 8-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 47,000 miles
1. after driving vehicle several miles, audible "groan" comes from front suspension of vehicle during turns. No problem with steering, no excessive play, but makes that moaning sound. Suspect ball joints. This is an ongoing problem. 2. at 46,000 (approx) had to replace 1 rotor, 1 drum on brakes for excessive vibration during stops. Problem cleared for about 18,000 miles, now doing same thing again. Suspect Dodge's supplier of rotor and drums is not very good.

- Kingsport, TN, USA

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