1988 dakota acceleration and speed - DODGE DAKOTA FORUM - FORUM AND OWNERS CLUB!
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Driveline Transmissions, Differentials, Axles, Bearings, etc. This forum covers the entire driveline from the Transmission to the wheel bearings!

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  #1  
Old 03-21-2018, 02:52 PM
dakota4x4giy dakota4x4giy is offline
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Vehicle: 1988 Dodge Dakota 4x4
Trim Level: LE
Color: black
Engine: 1987-1991 - 3.9 L (238 cu in) LA V6, 125 hp (93 kW)
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Default 1988 dakota acceleration and speed

I just got everything on my dakota fixed and I took it on the road for the first time and the acceleration on it was very slow. Also it was whining hard when I had it at 55 mph. I have the 3.9 v6 with a three speed tranny with the 4x4 option. is there something I can do to help with acceleration or the speed? Would it be worth it to install different rear end gears in the rear end to help with the speed or would I be screwed if I tried to tow something with it? Thanks for your advice.
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Old 03-21-2018, 03:56 PM
RalphP RalphP is offline
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Vehicle: 1988 Dodge Dakota SE
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Engine: 1987-1991 - 3.9 L (238 cu in) LA V6, 125 hp (93 kW)
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1988 ... acceleration.

I see the words, I'm not sure how they can relate to each other. :P

Yah, the accel sucks on the LA 3.9.

And if you change gears, you'll have to change front and back both since it's 4x4.

But stiffer gears; but then it'll whine MORE at speed.

Upgrade to a 4 speed auto (with overdrive) or the 5 speed manual (again with OD) and stiffen the gears up a couple of steps, that'll help and also reduce the whine on the highway.

Make sure the cats aren't plugged and the tune is good.

Finally, plan on sooner or later rebuilding a Magnum 3.9, the 4 speed auto / 5 speed manual that came with it, and rewiring to use the Magnum ECU then swap into the Magnum (the 3.9 Magnum gives a nice kick over the LA). Or upgrade to a Magnum block 5.2 or 5.9 (which has its own problems, due to the flat nose on our 1988s)

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Old 03-21-2018, 10:33 PM
volaredon volaredon is offline
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Vehicle: A 92 2wd and a 96 4WD club cab
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I cant see the truck from here but a lot of things can cause a whine. Wheel bearings, rear end issue, seized pulley, chopped tires, bad alternator, etc,,,, could be multiple issues there.
I had a 90 with a 3.9, I didn't think that its acceleration was all that bad for what it was...
and how I used (abused) that truck, I hauled loads heavier than I would trust to some 3/4 tonners. with the 3 speed trans, you probably have gearing in the 2's, MAYBE 3.23 at the lowest (highest numerically) with the OD you could have had the 3.23s or 3.55s (most likely) or the 3.91s.....
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