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Dodge Dakota Towing Capacity: Trailer, Boat Or Jet Ski?

What is the maximum towing capacity of a Dodge Dakota? And what kind of trailers, boats, or jet skis can it actually tow? In this article, we explain all the ins and outs of the Dodge Dakota’s towing. First, let us give you a quick answer:

A Dodge Dakota with a 2.5 I-4 has a towing capacity of 2,000 – 2,500 pounds. A Dodge Dakota with a 3.7 V6 can tow 4,600 – 5,300 pounds, whereas a 3.9 V6 can tow 4,650 – 6,200 pounds. A Dakota with a 4.7 V8 can tow 4,800 – 7,250, a 5.2 V8 can tow 6,200 – 6,700 pounds, and a 5.9 V8 can tow 1,800 – 8,500 pounds.

However, that doesn’t tell you the whole story. In the table below, we’ll first explain the maximum towing capacity of this car based on the model year and the available engine types. After that, we also made a list of 22 different trailers and told you when the Dakota can tow that trailer and when not.

Also read: How Many Miles Can A Dodge Dakota Last? (Answered)

Maximum Towing Capacity Per Year

First of all, it’s important to look at the maximum towing capacity of the Dodge Dakota. Because the Dakota has a lot of different variations, this means the table below is very extensive. The easiest way to read it is to determine your car’s model year and engine type and figure out what the cab layout is and whether it’s 2WD or 4WD.

Also, it’s good to know that the table below includes the maximum towing capacity of a specific type of car. In some cases, this means that that specific type of car has a towing package installed. The Dakota towing package means that your car includes a 4 and 7 pin wiring harness located at the rear underbody of the vehicle.

Also read: What Is The Weight Of A 2005 – 2011 Dodge Dakota? (Answered)

YearEngineMaximum Towing Capacity (lbs)Notes
20113.7 V6                                      4,9502WD Extended Cab
 3.7 V6                                      4,8002WD Crew Cab
 3.7 V6                                      4,7504WD Extended Cab
 3.7 V6                                      4,6504WD Crew Cab
 4.7 V8                                      7,2502WD Extended Cab
 4.7 V8                                      7,0502WD Crew Cab
 4.7 V8                                      7,0504WD Extended Cab
 4.7 V8                                      6,9004WD Crew Cab
20103.7 V6                                      4,9502WD Extended Cab
 3.7 V6                                      4,8002WD Crew Cab
 3.7 V6                                      4,7504WD Extended Cab
 3.7 V6                                      4,6504WD Crew Cab
 4.7 V8                                      7,2502WD Extended Cab
 4.7 V8                                      7,0502WD Crew Cab
 4.7 V8                                      7,0504WD Extended Cab
 4.7 V8                                      6,9004WD Crew Cab
20093.7 V6                                      5,0002WD Extended Cab
 3.7 V6                                      4,8002WD Crew Cab
 3.7 V6                                      4,8004WD Extended Cab
 3.7 V6                                      4,6004WD Crew Cab
 4.7 V8                                      7,2002WD Extended Cab
 4.7 V8                                      7,0502WD Crew Cab
 4.7 V8                                      7,0004WD Extended Cab
 4.7 V8                                      6,8504WD Crew Cab
20083.7 V6                                      4,5802WD Extended Cab
 3.7 V6                                      4,7502WD Crew Cab
 3.7 V6                                      4,6504WD Extended Cab
 3.7 V6                                      4,6004WD Crew Cab
 4.7 V8                                      7,0502WD Extended Cab
 4.7 V8                                      6,8004WD Extended Cab
 4.7 V8                                      5,5504WD Crew Cab
20073.7 V6                                      4,9002WD Club Cab
 3.7 V6                                      4,8002WD Quad Cab
 3.7 V6                                      4,7004WD Club Cab
 3.7 V6                                      4,6004WD Quad Cab
 4.7 V8                                      7,1502WD Club Cab
 4.7 V8                                      7,0502WD Quad Cab
 4.7 V8                                      7,0004WD Club Cab
 4.7 V8                                      6,8504WD Quad Cab
20063.7 V6                                      4,9002WD Club Cab
 3.7 V6                                      4,8002WD Quad Cab
 3.7 V6                                      4,7004WD Club Cab
 3.7 V6                                      4,6004WD Quad Cab
 4.7 V8                                      7,1502WD Club Cab
 4.7 V8                                      7,0502WD Quad Cab
 4.7 V8                                      7,0004WD Club Cab
 4.7 V8                                      6,8504WD Quad Cab
20053.7 V6                                      4,8502WD Club Cab
 3.7 V6                                      4,7502WD Quad Cab
 3.7 V6                                      4,7004WD Club Cab
 3.7 V6                                      4,7004WD Quad Cab
 4.7 V8                                      7,1502WD Club Cab
 4.7 V8                                      7,0002WD Quad Cab
 4.7 V8                                      6,9504WD Club Cab
 4.7 V8                                      6,9504WD Quad Cab
20043.7 V6                                      5,3002WD Regular Cab
 3.7 V6                                      4,0002WD Club Cab
 3.7 V6                                      4,8002WD Quad Cab
 3.7 V6                                      4,6504WD Regular Cab
 3.7 V6                                      4,5004WD Club Cab
 3.7 V6                                      4,5504WD Quad Cab
 4.7 V8                                      6,6002WD Regular Cab
 4.7 V8                                      6,4502WD Club Cab
 4.7 V8                                      6,1002WD Quad Cab
 4.7 V8                                      6,3004WD Regular Cab
 4.7 V8                                      6,1004WD Club Cab
 4.7 V8                                      5,8504WD Quad Cab
20033.9 V6                                      5,3502WD Regular Cab
 3.9 V6                                      5,1002WD Club Cab
 3.9 V6                                      4,8002WD Quad Cab
 3.9 V6                                      5,1004WD Regular Cab
 3.9 V6                                      4,8004WD Club Cab
 3.9 V6                                      4,6004WD Quad Cab
 4.7 V8                                      6,6002WD Regular Cab
 4.7 V8                                      6,3002WD Club Cab
 4.7 V8                                      6,0502WD Quad Cab
 4.7 V8                                      6,3004WD Regular Cab
 4.7 V8                                      6,0504WD Club Cab
 4.7 V8                                      4,8004WD Quad Cab
 5.9 V8                                      1,8002WD Regular Cab
 5.9 V8                                      1,8502WD Club Cab
 5.9 V8                                      5,9502WD Quad Cab
 5.9 V8                                      5,9504WD Quad Cab
20022.5 I-4                                      2,2502WD
 2.5 I-4                                      2,3002WD Club Cab
 3.9 V6                                      5,4502WD
 3.9 V6                                      5,2002WD Club Cab
 3.9 V6                                      4,9002WD Quad Cab
 3.9 V6                                      5,2002WD R/T
 3.9 V6                                      5,0004WD R/T
 4.7 V8                                      6,6002WD
 4.7 V8                                      6,5502WD Club Cab
 4.7 V8                                      6,1502WD Quad Cab
 4.7 V8                                      6,4004WD
 4.7 V8                                      6,2004WD Club Cab
 5.9 V8                                      6,3502WD Quad Cab
 5.9 V8                                      2,0002WD R/T
 5.9 V8                                      2,0004WD R/T
 5.9 V8                                      6,1004WD Quad Cab
20012.5 I-4                                      2,2504×2
 2.5 I-4                                      2,3004×2 Club Cab
 3.9 V6                                      5,4504×2
 3.9 V6                                      5,2004×2 Club Cab
 3.9 V6                                      6,1504×2 Quad Cab
 3.9 V6                                      6,4004×4
 3.9 V6                                      6,2004×4 Club Cab
 4.7 V8                                      6,6004×2
 4.7 V8                                      6,5504×2 Club Cab
 4.7 V8                                      6,1504×2 Quad Cab
 4.7 V8                                      6,4004×4
 4.7 V8                                      6,2004×4 Club Cab
 5.9 V8                                      2,0004×2
 5.9 V8                                      2,0004×2 Club Cab
 5.9 V8                                      6,3504×2 Quad Cab
 5.9 V8                                      6,1004×4 Quad Cab
20002.5 I-4                                      2,2504×2
 2.5 I-4                                      2,0504×2 Club Cab
 3.9 V6                                      5,4504×2
 3.9 V6                                      5,2004×2 Club Cab
 3.9 V6                                      4,9004×2 Quad Cab
 3.9 V6                                      4,8004×4
 3.9 V6                                      5,2004×4 Club Cab
 3.9 V6                                      4,6504×4 Quad Cab
 4.7 V8                                      6,6004×2
 4.7 V8                                      6,5004×2 Club Cab
 4.7 V8                                      6,1004×2 Quad Cab
 4.7 V8                                      6,3504×4
 4.7 V8                                      6,2004×4 Club Cab
 4.7 V8                                      5,9004×4 Quad Cab
 5.9 V8                                      2,0004×2
 5.9 V8                                      2,0004×2 Club Cab
 5.9 V8                                      6,3504×2 Quad Cab
19992.5 I-4                                      2,5004×2
 2.5 I-4                                      2,3004×2 Club Cab
 3.9 V6                                      5,5004×2
 3.9 V6                                      5,2004×2 Club Cab
 3.9 V6                                      5,2004×4
 3.9 V6                                      5,0004×4 Club Cab
 5.2 V8                                      6,7004×2
 5.2 V8                                      6,3004×2 Club Cab
 5.2 V8                                      6,4004×4
 5.2 V8                                      6,2004×4 Club Cab
 5.9 V8                                      8,5004×2
 5.9 V8                                      8,3004×2 Club Cab
19982.5 I-4                                      2,5004×2
 2.5 I-4                                      2,3004×2 Club Cab
 3.9 V6                                      5,5004×2
 3.9 V6                                      5,2004×2 Club Cab
 3.9 V6                                      5,2004×4
 3.9 V6                                      5,0004×4 Club Cab
 5.2 V8                                      6,7004×2
 5.2 V8                                      6,3004×2 Club Cab
 5.2 V8                                      6,4004×4
 5.2 V8                                      6,2004×4 Club Cab
 5.9 V8                                      6,8004×2
 5.9 V8                                      6,6004×2 Club Cab
19972.5 I-4                                      2,0004×2
 3.9 V6                                      5,5004×2
 3.9 V6                                      5,2004×2 Club Cab
 3.9 V6                                      5,2004×4
 3.9 V6                                      5,0004×4 Club Cab
 5.2 V8                                      6,7004×2
 5.2 V8                                      5,4004×2 Club Cab
 5.2 V8                                      6,5004×4
 5.2 V8                                      6,2004×4 Club Cab

Also read:

Can It Tow A Trailer, Boat Or Jet Ski?

Besides knowing how much a Dodge Dakota can tow, it’s also essential to know what practical implications this has for you as the car owner. Therefore, in the table below, we’ve outlined the average empty and loaded weight of 22 different trailers. For each trailer, we’ve identified whether or not the Dodge Dakota is capable of towing it or not. The short conclusion is as follows:

Almost all Dodge Dakota’s will be able to tow a loaded kayak/canoe-, jet ski-, motorcycle-, teardrop-, small/large utility-, a-frame-, fishing boat-, pop-up-, small/large travel-, tow dolly or small horse trailer depending on the specific type of Dakota that you own.

However, let it be clear that this does not tell the whole story. Below the table, you’ll find extra information for each type of trailer that the Dakota can carry. There, we will further elaborate on if the Dakota can carry all types of trailers of that specific kind or if there are certain exceptions that you should take into account.

Trailer TypeAverage Empty
Weight (lbs.)
Average Total
Loaded Weight (lbs.)
Can A Dodge Dakota Tow It?
Canoe / Kayak Trailer200                                                 400Yes
Jet Ski Trailer300                                              1,800Yes
Motorcycle Trailer500                                              2,400Yes, except for 2.5 L I-4
Teardrop Trailer1,700                                              2,400Yes, except for 2.5 L I-4
Small Open Utility Trailer700                                              2,500Yes, except for 2.5 L I-4
A-Frame Camper1,700                                              2,900Yes, except for 2.5 L I-4
Small Enclosed Utility Trailer1,000                                              3,200Yes, except for 2.5 L I-4
Fishing Boat Trailer600                                              3,300Yes, except for 2.5 L I-4
Pop Up Camper2,300                                              3,400Yes, except for 2.5 L I-4
Small Travel Trailer2,800                                              3,600Yes, except for 2.5 L I-4
Tow Dolly600                                              4,000Yes, except for 2.5 L I-4
Large Enclosed Utility Trailer2,700                                              7,100Yes, 4.7 V8 and some 5.9 V8 2WD Ext./Club Cab
Small Horse Trailer2,900                                              7,200Yes, 4.7 V8 and some 5.9 V8 2WD Ext./Club Cab
Large Travel Trailer6,700                                              8,300Yes, but only 1999 5.9 V8 4×2 (Club Cab)
Car Trailer1,900                                              9,000No
Large Flatbed Trailer3,000                                            10,400No
Large Boat Trailer2,200                                            13,600No
Dump Trailer4,500                                            16,900No
Toy Hauler7,600                                            17,900No
Large Livestock Trailer7,300                                            18,700No
5th Wheel Camper12,700                                            18,700No
Gooseneck Flatbed Trailer7,200                                            23,200No
Source
  • Kayak: All Dodge Dakota models will be able to tow a kayak trailer. On average an empty kayak trailer will weigh 200 pounds. A loaded kayak trailer will weigh an average of 400 pound with a maximum of 800 pounds which is well within the range of the Dodge Dakota.
  • Jet Ski Trailer: All Dodge Dakota models will be able to tow a jet ski trailer. On average an empty jet ski trailer will weigh 300 pounds. A loaded jet ski trailer will weigh an average of 1,800 pounds with a maximum of 3,000 pounds which is within the range of the Dodge Dakota.
  • Motorcycle Trailer: All Dodge Dakota models (except for the 2.5 L I-4’s) will be able to tow a motorcycle trailer. On average an empty motorcycle trailer will weigh 500 pounds. A loaded motorcycle trailer will weigh an average of 2,400 pounds with a maximum of 3,500 which is within the range of the Dodge Dakota.
  • Teardrop Trailer: All Dodge Dakota models will be able to tow a teardrop trailer. On average an empty teardrop trailer will weigh 1,700 pounds. A loaded teardrop trailer will weigh an average of 2,400 pounds which is within the range of the Dodge Dakota. These trailers will weigh a maximum of 6,000 pounds which means some Dakota’s won’t be able to pull them.
  • Small Open Utility Trailer: All Dodge Dakota models (except for the 2.5 L I-4’s) will be able to tow a small open utility trailer. On average an empty small open utility trailer er will weigh 700 pounds. A loaded small open utility trailer will weigh an average of 2,500 pounds with a maximum of 3,000 pounds which is within the range of the Dodge Dakota.
  • A-Frame Camper: All Dodge Dakota models (except for the 2.5 L I-4’s) will be able to tow an a-frame camper. On average an empty a-frame camper weighs 1,700 pounds. A loaded a-frame camper will weigh an average of 2,900 pounds with a maximum of 3,600 pounds which is withing the range of the Dodge Dakota.
  • Small Enclosed Utility Trailer: All Dodge Dakota models (except for the 2.5 L I-4’s) will be able to tow a small enclosed utility trailer. On average an empty small enclosed utility trailer weighs 1,000 pounds. A loaded small enclosed utility trailer will weigh an average of 3,200 pounds which is within the range of the Dakota. Some of these trailers will weigh 7,000 pounds which means some Dakota’s won’t be able to tow them.
  • Fishing Boat Trailer: All Dodge Dakota models (except for the 2.5 L I-4’s) will be able to tow a fishing boat trailer. On average an empty fishing boat trailer weighs 600 pounds. A loaded fishing boat trailer will weigh an average of 3,300 pounds which is within the range of the Dakota. Some of these trailers will weight 6,000 pounds which means some Dakota’s won’t be able to pull them.
  • Pop-Up Camper: All Dodge Dakota models (except for the 2.5 L I-4’s) will be able to tow a pop-up camper. On average an empty pop-up camper weighs 2,300 pounds. A loaded pop-up camper will weigh an average of 3,400 pounds with a maximum of 4,000 pounds which is within the range of the Dodge Dakota.
  • Small Travel Trailer: All Dodge Dakota models (except for the 2.5 L I-4’s) will be able to tow a small travel trailer. On average an empty small travel trailer weighs 2,800 pounds. A loaded small travel trailer will weigh an average of 3,600 pounds with a maximum of 4,500 pounds which is within the range of the Dodge Dakota.
  • Tow Dolly: All Dodge Dakota models (except for the 2.5 L I-4’s) will be able to tow a tow dolly. On average an empty tow dolly weighs 600 pounds. A loaded tow dolly will weigh an average of 4,000 pounds which is within the range of the Dakota. Some tow dolly’s weigh 5,000 pounds which means some Dakota’s won’t be able to pull them.  
  • Large Enclosed Utility Trailer: Dodge Dakota models with a 4.7 V8 and some with a 5.9 V8 will be able to tow a large enclosed utility trailer. On average an empty large enclosed utility trailer weighs 2,700 pounds. A loaded large enclosed utility trailer weighs an average of 7,100 pounds which is within the range of these Dodge Dakota’s. Some trailers will weigh 10,000 pounds which is outside the range of the Dakota.  
  • Small Horse Trailer: Dodge Dakota models with a 4.7 V8 and some with a 5.9 V8 will be able to tow a small horse trailer. On average an empty small horse trailer weighs 2,900 pounds. A loaded small horse trailer weighs an average of 7,200 pounds which is within the range of these Dodge Dakota’s. Some trailers will weigh 8,000 pounds which is outside the range of some Dakota’s.
  • Large Travel Trailer: Only the 1999 Dodge Dakota with a 5.9 V8 and 4×2 (Club Cab) is able to tow a large travel trailer. On average an empty large travel trailer weighs 6,700 pounds. A loaded large travel trailer weighs 8,300 pounds which is within the range of this Dakota. Some large travel trailers will weigh 15,000 pounds which is outside the range of the Dakota.

Also read: The Oil Type, Weight, And Capacity Of A Dodge Dakota

How Well Can It Tow Compared To Its Competitors

Besides knowing how much a Dodge Dakota can tow and what this means in real life, it’s also important to compare the towing capacity of the Dakota to its main competitors. The reason for this is that this is essential information if you’re in the market for a Dakota.

For this, we took several different competitors and compared the 2011 models, given that this was the last year Dakota was on the market. The results are displayed in the table below.

We found that the minimum towing capacity of a 2011 Dakota is a lot higher than most of its competitors. The Colorado and the Canyon don’t even come close here. The Frontier has a good shot, and the Avalanche is clearly the best option.

Basically, the same thing can be said about the maximum towing capacity. The Avalanche is on top, with the Dakota as a close second. The Colorado, Frontier, and Canyon all end up in the 6,000-range, which is good but not as good as the Dakota or Avalanche.

Overall we would say that the Dakota does really well compared to its competitors, and it does seem to be a good pick if you’re looking to tow a lot of medium- or some larger-sized trailers.

Year / Make / ModelMin. Towing Capacity (lbs.)Max. Towing Capacity (lbs.)
2011 Dodge Dakota                               4,650                                7,250
2011 Chevrolet Colorado                               1,900                                6,000
2011 Nissan Frontier                               3,500                                6,500
2011 GMC Canyon                               1,900                                6,000
2011 Chevrolet Avalanche                               5,000                                8,100