The Dodge Dakota was a mid-size pickup truck from Chrysler's Ram (formerly Dodge Truck) division. From its introduction through 2009, it was marketed by Dodge. The first Dakota was introduced in 1986 as a 1987 model alongside the redesigned Dodge Ram 50. The Dakota was nominated for the North American Truck of the Year award for 2000. The Dakota has always been sized above the compact Ford Ranger and Chevrolet S-10 but below the full-sized pickups such as Dodge's own Ram. It is a conventional design with body-on-frame construction and a leaf spring/live axle rear end. The Dakota was the first mid-size pickup with an optional V8 engine. Dakotas have been used by police and fire departments, as off-road vehicles, patrol trucks, or even brush trucks. The third-generation Dakota was discontinued in 2011, with the last unit coming off the assembly line on August 23, 2011, ending the truck's 25 year run.