really awful
Crashes / Fires:
1 / 2
Injuries / Deaths:
1 / 0
Average Mileage:
91,033 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 2)

problem #21

Mar 102016


  • 160,000 miles


Bought a 2002 Dodge Dakota brakes aren't strong enough to drive on interstate or in city, went to Dodge darcars dealership in Maryland they looked at the truck, said this is fine this is the way Dodge brakes are terribly wrong. Went to repair the emergency brake cables Dodge don't make the parts any more this Dodge don't make the parts anymore is terribly wrong. Dodge, darars are putting consumers life a risk. 2002 4X4 Dodge Dakota should recalled brakes, brake parts upgraded to strong, safe brakes, Dodge needs to keep making the parts for 2002 Dodge Dakota 4X4 or hire somebody who can., Dodge darcars visual brake check is the worst idea yet. Brakes need to be felt look at, bleeded.

- North Brentwood, MD, USA

problem #20

Jun 302015


  • 165,000 miles
The contact owns a 2002 Dodge Dakota. While driving various speeds, the front passenger side brakes seized without the brake pedal being depressed. In addition, the contact noticed smoke coming from the front passenger side where the brake was located. The vehicle was taken to an independent mechanic who diagnosed that the calipers or the brake lines needed to be replaced. The contact independently replaced the brake lines, brake calipers, and brake pads; however, the failure recurred and the contact noticed smoke and fire coming from the front passenger side where the brake was located. The contact was able to extinguish the fire. A police report was not filed. The manufacturer was not notified of the failure. The failure mileage was 165,000.

- Topeka, KS, USA

problem #19

Oct 032014

Dakota 6-cyl

  • 125,000 miles
I had just purchased the car 2 weeks earlier. I was accelerating to merge onto the freeway and the accelerator stuck at 60 mph. No matter what I did to the pedal, it was stuck at 60 mph. The brakes would not work either. I was in a runaway car on a busy freeway. I tried to negotiate the traffic for 2 miles then decided I needed to get off the freeway. I started to smash into the freeway off-ramp retaining wall in the effort to slow the truck down which it did to some degree. Then had to barrel through a red light with flashers and horn going and to stop the truck I deliberately rammed it into a wrought iron fence, 2 landscaping boulders and a light post. The airbag also failed. I was rushed by ambulance to the hospital with head trauma and concussion, broken glasses that cut my eyebrow. I have pictures. The worst part has been the ptsd that I have suffered as a result of the accident -- multiple failure - accelerator, brakes and airbag.

- Phoenix, AZ, USA

problem #18

May 152013


  • 105,000 miles


Stepped on brake on wet road, ABS kicked in on rear axle and truck would not slow down. Almost had a rear end collision. Very dangerous, have seen a lot of other complaints about same thing. Also lose all electrical power with headlights on momentarily leaving you without lights.

- Spanissh Fort, AL, USA

problem #17

Apr 282009

Dakota 8-cyl

  • 23,193 miles
Right front brake stuck, brake got hot, smoke came out of wheel well.

- West Des Moines, IA, USA

problem #16

Aug 192014

Dakota 8-cyl

  • 36,970 miles
Right front brake caliper stuck, brake got hot, smoke came out of the wheel well. Had to have truck tower to dealer.

- West Des Monies, IA, USA

problem #15

Jul 152014

Dakota 8-cyl

  • 35,555 miles


Right front brake caliper stuck, brake got hot, smoke came out of wheel well.

- West Des Moines, IA, USA

problem #14

Aug 012003

Dakota 8-cyl

  • 10,000 miles
My truck only has 60K miles, don't drive a whole bunch, bought it brand new in 2002. 2 times I have had the front passenger wheel and breaks catch on fire due to the brakes/caliper locking up. One incident was only going about 25 mph, the other incident on highway around 55 mph. Between towing and replacing brakes, rotors, caliper, brake lines, around $500-$750 each time. I am on here because my brake line from front to back has eroded away near gas tank, same as everyone's I have read and because my passenger wheel has began to give signs that it will be locking up again. Have also had to replace the front drivers side brake line due to the line being cracked where the banjo bolt is. These seem to all be huge issues and very dangerous that need to be addressed. Thank you

- Ingleside, IL, USA

problem #13

Jul 022013

Dakota 8-cyl

  • 96,480 miles
I was parked in a space. I started the vehicle and pushed the brake pedal to take the vehicle out if park. I felt the pedal go to the floor and heard a noise under the vehicle. I put the vehicle back in park an got out to see what the noise was and saw fluid dripping from my gas tank. After further inspection I realized the brake line next to the fuel tank had burst due to rust and corrosion. The entire brake line from the front of the vehicle to the rear needed to be replaced. The worst damage was the section tucked behind the fuel tank where it was more difficult to get cleaned during normal washing.

- Birdsboro, PA, USA

problem #12

Jun 032014


  • 202,400 miles
16 year old son was driving my truck to a school function, stepped on the brakes to make the turn off the highway into the school and brake pedal went to the floor. I went to get the vehicle and the brake line that runs along the frame rail to the rear axle had corroded through in several places causing him to lose brake fluid. I've had a lot of cars much older than this truck (my family had a car dealership) and this is the first time I've ever seen a hard brake line go bad. Looking online for a replacement part it quickly became apparent that this is a very common problem with the Dodge Dakotas and they all corrode in the same place. Behind the fuel tank. Definitely a safety issue that Chrysler should correct.

- Muscatine, IA, USA

problem #11

May 192014

Dakota 8-cyl

  • 113,188 miles


Brake line to the left rear tire rusted out and leaked. Lost all brake functions. Location of the leak was next to the gas tank. Repetitive problem with other Dodge trucks. Lucky I was going down the highway or needed a sudden stop.

- Union, KY, USA

problem #10

Mar 122014


  • 138,000 miles
Both caliper bolts on the passenger side front spidle of my 2002 Dodge Dakota 2wd stripped out causing the caliper to move out of place causing stopping difficulty to stop and damage to the caliper, rim and brake pads.

- Endicott, NY, USA

problem #9

Jun 112012


  • 100,000 miles
Have had steering knuckles replaced twice on my truck because the caliper bolts strip out and cause my truck do dive left or right upon braking. Also caused by brake pad rails wearing too muck and not letting the calipers move the brake pads to apply the brakes. Almost caused accidents multiple times but dealer says its not an issue.

- North Fairfield, OH, USA

problem #8

Aug 012004


  • 12,000 miles
The contact owns a 2002 Dodge Dakota. The contact stated that while driving various speeds, the contact attempted to decelerate but the brakes seized. The vehicle was taken to the dealer where the rotors, pads, hoses and the calipers were replaced. The contact also mentioned that the failure recurred multiple times. The manufacturer was contacted about the failure. The failure mileage was 12,000.

- Mandeville, LA, USA

problem #7

Aug 312013

Dakota 4WD 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 88,000 miles
The contact owns a 2002 Dodge Dakota. The contact stated that the front brake overheated and seized while driving. The contact replaced the front rotors and the brake pads however, the failure was not corrected. The manufacturer was made aware of the failure. The vehicle was not repaired. The failure and current mileage was 88,000. Updated 10/17/13

- Toms River , NJ, USA

problem #6

Jul 152004


  • 20,000 miles
The contact owns a 2002 Dodge Dakota. The contact stated while driving approximately 35 mph both front tires locked up and the steering became difficult to maneuver. The vehicle was taken to the dealer for diagnostic testing. The technician replaced the brakes and upper ball joints. The failure continued to occur after the vehicle was repaired. The technician stated that the front calipers had to be replaced. The contact stated the vehicle was repaired four times. The manufacturer was made aware of the failure. The vehicle was not repaired. The VIN was not available. The approximate failure mileage was 20,000.

- Chapel Hill, NC, USA

problem #5

Jun 112013

Dakota 8-cyl

  • 105,000 miles
The contact owns a 2002 Dodge Dakota. The contact stated that while traveling 45 mph, the front brakes seized and smoke was seen from the front of the vehicle. The vehicle was not taken to the dealer for inspection or repairs. The failure and the current mileages were 105,000.

- Marmaduke, AR, USA

problem #4

Nov 172012

Dakota 4WD 8-cyl

  • 107,700 miles
While stopped parking and taking vehicle out of gear, brakes failed and pedal went to the floor. This is a special order vehicle that included 4 wheel ABS. After brakes failed and fluid leaked out of rear brake lines neither the ABS or "brake" warning lights were indicated on the dash control panel. I am concerned that a brake line failed and no indication of failure showed on the control panel. With the failure not under any stopping function (vehicle was already stopped) and there was no report of failure with the control panel this is a very important safety issue if brakes fail while driving and first notice is complete loss of pedal will cause accident or at least loss of confidence and or control of vehicle. I am the original owner of this vehicle and have all records of repair over the history of the truck. I am very concerned that a brake line failure took place at all. I have owned dozens of vehicles over my driving life and have had vehicles with well over 200,000 miles with no brake line failures. If this is not a defect in design or workmanship, then the defect has to be in inferior material quality that should not be allowed in this important function required for operating a vehicle.

- Florence, KY, USA

problem #3

Aug 302012

Dakota 4WD 8-cyl

  • 99,876 miles
Steel brake line to rear wheel rusted and leaked brake fluid out of master cyl.

- Cincinnati, OH, USA

problem #2

Apr 202010


  • 95,000 miles
The contact owns a 2002 Dodge Dakota. The contact stated that while driving approximately 60 mph, the front driver's side brake seized unintendedly and the vehicle began to pull toward the same direction. The contact maneuvered to the side of the road, where the engine was turned off. The vehicle resumed normally after waiting thirty minutes. The failure occurred numerous times. The vehicle was taken to an authorized dealer five three times for the identical failure. The repairs performed on the vehicle consisted of replacing the entire front braking system, such as; both rotors, calipers, and brake lines. Also included in the repair was the replacement of both front brake pads and master cylinder. The failure recurred two weeks after the repair was performed. The vehicle had not been repaired for the most recent failure. The manufacturer was notified of the problem. The approximate failure mileage was 95,000.

- Fairfield, OH, USA

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