Exclusive: 1990 Dodge Dakota Convertible

Josh MortensenBy Josh Mortensen

I’ve seen quite a few compact trucks with their roofs chopped off to make them into convertibles, but none of them were “factory” conversions like this Dakota. While these trucks didn’t leave the Dodge factory this way, the idea came from Chrysler and the conversion was handled by ASC. While you could chop the roof off of a truck yourself, you’d have a hard time getting it to look and work this nicely. This one looks to be in great shape, but you will want to contact Rick about having a closer look! You can message him via the form below.

What Makes It Special? Dodge made just over 3,300 of these trucks from 1989 to 1991. Production was discontinued in early 1991. All original down to the original window sticker. One owner and garaged its whole life.

Body Condition: No damage nor has it been wrecked and repaired. A few small scratches from use. Paint is in good shape

Mechanical Condition: Runs great. Recently put in cap/rotor plugs and wires. V6

  • Asking Price: $7,900
  • Location: St. George, Utah
  • Mileage: 55,056
  • Title Status: Clean
  • VIN: 1B7FL29X0LS614696

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Comments

  1. Chuck

    Not exactly a new idea in 1989, since International Harvester had a convertible pickup in 1976. The Suntanner was a convertible version of the Scout II Terra pickup. This was actually a factory option. It could also be had as a dealer installed option.




    4
    • Jett

      Here’s a flashback for you—Ford Model T roadster pickup. It’s a real thing…




      1
      • GearHead Engineer

        Jeff,

        I saw one today on my way home from work. Dark green, black fenders. It’s always in the same driveway but does seem to get used – it parks in different parts of the driveway every few days.

        I think you could get a model A roadster pickup too.

        These Dakotas are cool. I remember seeing them around when I lived in Phoenix. Early ’90s.

        – John




        1
  2. Big Mike

    Sure would be nice to have a few pictures with the top down, so to speak!




    4
  3. Poptheclutch

    I agree….c’mon man!




    2
  4. Dave Mika

    My Gawd, those rims were on EVERYTHING back in the early-mid 90s.




    8
    • redwagon

      and nothing since!




      8
  5. Peter R

    I’m surprised to see Josh accepted a lisitng with only one picture and no details about engine, tranny, equipment such as air, etc. I expect more when I look at this site. I think you really dropped the ball here.




    5
    • Josh Mortensen Josh Mortensen Staff

      That seems rather harsh Peter. We try to get seller’s to provide us with as much info and photos as possible, but unfortunately, not everyone can provide us the level of detail that we all would prefer. I suppose I could have told the seller they were just plain out of luck since they couldn’t get us an adequate number of photos, but this seemed like an interesting enough find to run as is.




      6
      • TriPowerVette

        @John Mortensen – You weren’t wrong, Josh. Some people…




        5
  6. TriPowerVette

    I owned one of these from 1994, until about 5 years ago. Mine was a 4X4, 5-Speed manual, bucket seats, console, electric windows, pdl, factory A/C and radio/Cassette Tape Deck. I even had the (very difficult to find) convertible top boot (and the bag it came in ;).

    The good: Almost everything. They are a BALL to drive – especially with the top down. I put more than 140K miles on mine, and got 17.5 MPG doing it. The factory padded roll bar almost made it feel Shelby-like. They are very comfortable (for a truck).

    The bad: They have decent torque, but NO horsepower! They run out of breath almost immediately. The Chrysler 3.9 liter engine should never have been put into anything.

    I consulted with a lot of people, and read a lot of information on the web, with the idea of replacing that anemic 6 with a 340-360, for a bit more fizz.

    The consensus was that (unlike the 2WD version) the 4X4 cannot be so upgraded. One would suspect it had something to do with the transfer case… but NOOOOO. Apparently, it is the steering box placement.

    Most shops are loathe to screw with a production vehicle’s steering, for liability considerations. Mike Landy – Dick’s surviving brother, said they would have a look at it, but by that time (a few months before I sold it), I was running out of interest.

    Besides, there was plenty of information that said that all of the driveline components were ‘light duty’ and some wouldn’t take the increased gaff w/o substantial improvement or replacement with heavier duty components.

    The ugly: The center console is entirely plastic. If you put 3 people up, one will be occupying that space. Bad plan. CRAAAaaack! Hell, I’ve even gotten 4 people in one of my Corvettes, with no damage to either car or occupants! Don’t get me started on the console lid – plastic, too; with a spring that is uber stiff – yes, screwed into plastic and foam. Aaaannnndd, it is non-serviced. So you have an open hole.

    I’ve often wished to get the engineer (or bean counter) responsible for that, in a dark alley for 10 minutes.

    It went down the road with lots of good memories of what was and bitter of what might have been.




    5
  7. TriPowerVette

    The Interior




    3
  8. moorevisual

    the roll bar uglies up the topless look IMO, but that was required on a factory sanctioned conversion like this. someone really needs to start reproducing these DIY conversion kits from the 90’s, minitrucking is making a comeback and 90’s ‘yotas, nissans, mazdas and S10s owners are in search of them.




    0
  9. TriPowerVette

    I still have the plate. Couldn’t believe it was available.




    3
  10. Howard A Member

    Classic swing and a miss. The answer to the question few people asked. Dakotas were great trucks, but clearly, 2 different markets here.




    1
  11. Peter R

    Josh,
    I don’t think it was harsh. I can understand some people don’t take great pictures as I’m one of them. However would you buy a vehicle not knowing the engine or transmission in it? Also what equipment it has. Anyone can tell you if it is an automatic or a manual shift and so forth. I think you should have a mnimum standard before listing a car that includued at least the basic things you would want to know before responding to an ad. Usually you do great descriptions and commentary. This time in my opinion you messed up. When I do that, I just admit it, try to correct it, and move on. Instead you complain I’m harsh. I suggest that a minimum of information should be the basis of you giving a listing. I don’t believe I’ve ever seen you list a car with so little information. Usually you do a great job – much better then I could in your place. Enough said.




    0
    • Josh Mortensen Josh Mortensen Staff

      Peter, if you feel I messed up, then I apologize for it. I like constructive criticism, so help me out. How do I fix it? But rather than taking up this seller’s discussion thread, email your ideas to me. Any time there’s something readers think we can be doing better at, we want to hear it. So send your ideas and suggestions to mail@barnfinds.com and I’ll do my best to put your thoughts to good use.




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  12. SoSo in Texas

    These are my favorite. This one is my third one. Love these trucks.




    2
    • TriPowerVette

      @SoSo in Texas – You, sir, are clearly a connoisseur of fine truckage.




      0
  13. stillrunners

    Looked at one that came up for sale out of Florida as I’ve looked for a descent one since they came out…..sad rust out on frame so had to pass. This one although nice is on the high side for the demand.




    0

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