Relatively pint-sized sport pickups were all the rage some 20 to 30 years ago, and automakers weren’t afraid to embrace their quirkiness. Various special editions, like the Chevy S-10 Baja, wore oddball pride on their sleeves, though none were as out-there as the Dodge Dakota Convertible. With a manual vinyl top that could open completely, they shouted from the roof-tops that they were utterly and completely rad. Of course, they haven’t all held up so well over the years—luckily, this 1990 example heading to Mecum’s Indianapolis sale has.
Rather than building these trucks at the Dodge City/Warren manufacturing plant with a soft top, Chrysler would ship completed Dakota pickups to the American Sunroof Corporation where they would undergo the full conversion. Exactly 909 Dakota Convertibles were built for the 1990 model year and this particular example is respectfully solid, even considering the nearly 60,000 miles it’s traveled over time.
To increase rigidity, ASC fitted a padded roll bar behind the seats, keeping the Dakotas structurally solid. This alteration, along with the vinyl roof and soft-molded boot for storage, bumped the trucks’ asking price up by around $3,000. They could be spec’d in two- or four-wheel-drive with original MSRPs nudging the $18,000 mark, according to Autotrader. That’s nearly $35,625 in today’s money when adjusted for inflation.