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One of the more curious developments at the Los Angeles Auto Show this week was the return of the Chevrolet Colorado pickup truck. General Motors ended production of the Colorado and its cousin, the GMC Canyon, early last year. At the time, the decision seemed to be the final curtain for small and midsize domestic pickups, as it followed Ford's decision to kill the Ranger and Chrysler's decision to end production of the Dodge Dakota.

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According to a new study by Black Book, the fact that there are fewer mid-sized pickup truck options on the market is driving up the retail cost of used models. During the month of June, used vehicles from model years 2007-2011 depreciated an average of 1.3 percent across the board, but midsize pickups of the same year saw their value decrease by just 0.7 percent on average. Look across the past year, and the market as a whole saw those cars depreciate by 13.7 percent while midsize pickups saw t

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Chrysler has issued a recall of 278,222 light trucks and sport utility vehicles here in the United States. The reason: bad rear axles. Specifically, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, the rear axle pinion nut may lack a necessary adhesive patch, which could cause the nut to loosen. If this happens, the axle can lock up, which could cause all sorts of havoc on the road.

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These days, the Shelby name is synonymous with Ford Mustang performance, but it wasn't always so. Carroll Shelby spent plenty of time decking the halls of Chrysler with quick versions of otherwise plebeian models, including the Dodge Dakota and Lancer. Most of those machines have returned to the earth in spectacular fashion by now, but it looks as if one owner in Pennsville, New Jersey sealed two of the machines away from the world to preserve them for future generations. Behold what could very

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Chrysler is issuing a recall for the 2009 and 2010 Ram 1500 and Dodge Dakota pickup trucks due to improper installation of the rear axle pinion nut. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, a total of 44,300 trucks are affected by the recall, and there have been 12 confirmed incidents including one crash.

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A Kentucky couple face up to 20 years in jail for trading their used pickup for a baby.

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"There is a vacuum left in the small pickup category," says Jesse Toprak, vice president of market intelligence for TrueCar.com in a new Detroit Free Press report. And as we all know, the automotive industry abhors a vacuum.

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Chrysler CEO Sergio Marchionne has big plans for the Ram Dakota. Inside Line spoke with Marchionne at the 2012 Detroit Auto Show, and the besweatered executive said there is a good chance the next-generation Dakota will likely ride on a unibody chassis. That would mark a serious departure from the vehicle's past, as well as the rest of the models in the compact pickup segment (save the at-the-margins Honda Ridgeline), but ditching the frame could give the vehicle a fuel-efficiency edge. If that

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As we prepare to flip our calendars from 2011 to 2012, it's time to say goodbye to a handful of vehicles that are being sent to the Great Parking Lot In The Sky before the 2012 model year completely takes hold. And while we're not exactly upset about having to bid farewell to things like the Mitsubishi Endeavor, Mazda Tribute or Chevrolet HHR, there are a few vehicles that we're truly going to miss.

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Toyota-Ford tie-up, Mazda RX-8 and Dakota cancelled, VW Up!, Cadillac ELR

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We record Episode #244 of the Autoblog Podcast tonight, and you can drop Chris, Dan and Zach your questions via our Q&A module below. Check out our discussion topics or chime in to help determine what else the crew chats about this evening, too. Subscribe to the Autoblog Podcast in iTunes if you haven't already done so, and if you want to take it all in live, tune in to our UStream (audio only) channel at 10:00 PM Eastern tonight.

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Chrysler is officially killing the 2011 Ram Dakota this week, which the UAW fears may lead to nearly 150 hourly positions getting the chop. The move has already spelled the end for 39 temporary positions at Chrysler's Warren Truck Plant.

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2008 Dodge Dakota - Click above for high-res image gallery

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The Dodge Dakota -- as we know it today -- will go away in 2011, but looking at current sales of the mid-size pickup, it may as well be dead already. Chrysler has only sold 10,000 Dakotas this year, with an anemic 663 units cleared in November. But while the Dakota is selling poorly (it's not helped by being too close in price to the much more capable Ram), it doesn't necessarily mean that the enigmatic pickup won't live on in another form.

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