definitely annoying
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
22,813 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.

1998 Dodge Durango drivetrain problems

drivetrain problem

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1998 Dodge Durango Owner Comments

problem #5

May 152006


  • 74,064 miles


Bought my Durango new in May 1998. The automatic transmission started shifting improperly in July 2000. Took it to a Dodge dealer because it was still under warranty (31,418 miles). They dropped the transmission pan and pronounced it doa (pan was full of metal shavings). Should have seen the writing on the wall but I loved this vehicle. Took it to an inspection station for safety & emissions tests in may of 2006. It failed for bad ball joints. I asked the manager why his mechanics seemed to pay special attention to the front end during inspection and his reply was it was very common to find bad ball joints on approx. 50% of all 1998-2000 Durangos. Had my mechanic replace upper & lower ball joints, both sides, at 74,064 miles, to the tune of $701 plus tax. I then started hearing about other Durango owners with similar ball joint woes. I went online and started researching. Found a site where folks like myself with the same ball joint problems, some with accidents, were trying to get NHTSA to do something. I guess people actually have to die first before NHTSA will step in and tell an auto manufacturer they need to fix their faulty products. I also learned that the 1998-2000 Durangos were built on the Dodge Dakota pickup chassis. A Dakota weighs about 4,600 lbs. While a Durango 4X4 weighs in at 6,400 lbs. It's no wonder the 1998-2000 Durango front-ends were falling apart. Seriously, what kind of idiot engineers does Dodge have working for them. Sometime later I heard that Dodge rushed the Durango into production in 1998 to compete for the SUV market bucks and didn't have time to engineer a new chassis so they just modified the Dakota chassis without beefing it up. When people started to complain about ball joints and such, they built a whole new chassis for Durangos in 2001. I stumbled across this site today while researching another vehicle I'm thinking about buying.

- St. Peters, MO, USA

problem #4

Jan 012014


  • miles
The contact owns a 1998 Dodge Durango. The contact stated that while driving approximately 5 mph, the vehicle failed to accelerate. The contact applied the accelerator pedal to the floorboard but the vehicle would not respond beyond 30 mph. The vehicle was not taken to a dealer or an independent mechanic for diagnosis. The vehicle was not repaired. The manufacturer was not made aware of the problem. The approximate failure mileage was not available.

- Constantine, MI, USA

problem #3

Jun 152000


  • Automatic transmission
  • 40,000 miles
Front brakes (replaced 3X's in one year) keep failing on Dodge Durango causing uneven tire wear and alignment to shift. I've had to replace the front tires 4 times and the rear tires twice since I bought this vehicle January 2,2000. All tires wear at an angle with several bald spots in different places. I also replaced the water pump and radiator February 2003. Now the air conditioner is not working. The transmission went out a couple of months after I purchased the vehicle. It was still under warranty, but I still had to pay $300 out of pocket for whatever reason.

- Fontana, CA, USA

problem #2

May 022002


  • miles
Engine check light has come on, and from time to time light will stay on when getting vehicle checked out. Spark plugs were melted and, head cylinder was cracked.

- Stockton, CA, USA

problem #1

Aug 011999

Durango 4WD

  • Automatic transmission
  • miles
While driving ABS light come on unexpectedly and stayed on. They could not find the problem to fix it correctly. The speedometer jumps to 100mph and falls to 0 mph intermittently. The transmission is slipping and the overdrive harness is stuck. The brake pedal goes to the floor, the dealer replaced the brake components. The interior lights were inoperable, the dealer found a faulty module. The power door locks were inoperable, the dealer found a faulty module. The rear seat wouldn't fold up. The consumer heard a rattling noise coming from the left front wheel area. The right rear panel came loose. Motor oil was found in the master cylinder.

- Vermont, CA, USA

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