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Discussion Starter #1
I was just wondering what is the difference between the SE, ES, R/T, SXT? (dont know if that was all of them) is it just options avalible or totally different?
 

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I was just wondering what is the difference between the SE, ES, R/T, SXT? (dont know if that was all of them) is it just options avalible or totally different?
SE has 2.7, and base interior. ES has (most years) 3.2 or 3.5 engine, upgraded interior, and many more possible options. R/T has performance exhaust, brakes, engine controller, steering, suspension, tires, and autostick. SXT = R/T wannabe, 3.5 engine without the HD parts.
 

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it should be noted that the sxt was offered when the RT wasnt so to say its a wanna be isnt 100% correct.

RT does not have a performance exhaust, no change in steering components, and autostick was offered on the ES as well.

Basically These are the trims

SE = 2.7L with some options available in later years (sunroofs, spoilers, fogs due to overstock).

ES = higher trim 3.2/3.5L (NO HO engines) the 3.2 was offered in the beginning, 3.5L later
basic features included a 3.5L motor in later years but not always an upgraded interior, sometimes it was just an SE with a 3.5L motor.
All upgraded features were available to the ES
most have ABS

02 SXT = ES in registration
all had 3.5L HO engines 250HP
chrome tip on the exhaust (smaller tip than the R/T, same resonator)
basic SE suspension
all stock components
most came with Michelin energy mxv4 tires, some call them bad, some call them worse
none had autostick, some had abs.
came with 17 inch RT chrome crusaders

now the 03+ sxt was a pos by some, a lot of the previous parts were removed.
smaller rims 16 inch chrome
cutback on the interior
free sunroof with most models.

R/T
all had 3.5HO engines (242hp) with less power than the SXT
upgraded brakes (minimal upgrade, not really noticeable by eye, say 300c vs srt8 300c, you can get the rt rotors and slap them on your SE have have upgraded brakes, its the way the rotor is cooled).
upgraded suspension (again minimal change)
thicker swaybar (we are talking mm, even the 300m special sway bar is not a lot thicker than stock)
different pcm
larger exhaust tip, same resonator as SXT
better tires than the es at the time, good year?
all had autostick and ABS
came with 17 inch rims, unlike any other intrepid until then

Overall you should know all intrepids share the same transmission with the difference of the main converter gears. There is very little noticeable difference from the ES-RT-SXT-300m (non special) in terms of gear rations.

P.S. There are tons of threads breaking the trims down in the SXT /RT section.
 

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it should be noted that the sxt was offered when the RT wasnt so to say its a wanna be isnt 100% correct.

RT does not have a performance exhaust, no change in steering components, some R/Ts had p.s. cooler + diff ratioand autostick was offered on the ES as well.

Basically These are the trims

SE = 2.7L with some options available in later years (sunroofs, spoilers, fogs due to overstock).

ES = higher trim 3.2/3.5L (NO HO engines) the 3.2 was offered in the beginning, 3.5L later Early ESs had dual intake runners
basic features included a 3.5L motor in later years but not always an upgraded interior, sometimes it was just an SE with a 3.5L motor.
All upgraded features were available to the ES
most have ABS

02 SXT = ES in registration
all had 3.5L HO engines 250HP
chrome tip on the exhaust (smaller tip than the R/T, same resonator)
basic SE suspension
all stock components
most came with Michelin energy mxv4 tires, some call them bad, some call them worse
none had autostick, some had abs.
came with 17 inch RT chrome crusaders

now the 03+ sxt was a pos by some, a lot of the previous parts were removed.
smaller rims 16 inch chrome
cutback on the interior
free sunroof with most models.

R/T
all had 3.5HO engines (242hp) with less power than the SXT
upgraded brakes (minimal upgrade, not really noticeable by eye, say 300c vs srt8 300c, you can get the rt rotors and slap them on your SE have have upgraded brakes, its the way the rotor is cooled).
upgraded suspension (again minimal change)
thicker swaybar (we are talking mm, even the 300m special sway bar is not a lot thicker than stock)
different pcm
larger exhaust tip, same resonator as SXT
better tires than the es at the time, good year?
all had autostick and ABS
came with 17 inch rims, unlike any other intrepid until then 2002s had no speed restriction, were capabable of 140 +

Overall you should know all intrepids share the same transmission with the difference of the main converter gears. There is very little noticeable difference from the ES-RT-SXT-300m (non special) in terms of gear rations.

P.S. There are tons of threads breaking the trims down in the SXT /RT section.
Good review of the differences
 

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Discussion Starter #5
wow thats sweet thanks for the reply, Does this mean that I could upgrade my SE to have the same preformance as the SXT (if I had a 3.5L)? Ill check around the SXT part and do some research, if I get stuck Ill post about my issues.. lol like I already do. Thanks for the replys, I appreciate it.
 

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wow thats sweet thanks for the reply, Does this mean that I could upgrade my SE to have the same preformance as the SXT (if I had a 3.5L)? Ill check around the SXT part and do some research, if I get stuck Ill post about my issues.. lol like I already do. Thanks for the replys, I appreciate it.
I think you can upgrade to a 300M Special performance if you had the time and money.

You would need the parts, labor, and know how (here at this site) to get it done.
 

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I've noticed in the past couple months that other than R/T and SXT having different engines, brakes, exhaust and handling, there isn't a lot of differences between trims and or engines. ESs with 2.7s, SEs with leather,sunroofs and 3.5s, R/Ts with nothing,, SXTs with everything. It all seemed to depend on just how much money you wanted to spend and which rims you wanted. Rims seem to be the only thing that really vary as far as trim.
 

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I've noticed in the past couple months that other than R/T and SXT having different engines, brakes, exhaust and handling, there isn't a lot of differences between trims and or engines. ESs with 2.7s, SEs with leather,sunroofs and 3.5s, R/Ts with nothing,, SXTs with everything. It all seemed to depend on just how much money you wanted to spend and which rims you wanted. Rims seem to be the only thing that really vary as far as trim.

R/Ts were best overall. 2002 versions were best equipped.

http://www.caranddriver.com/reviews...es_tested_by_c_d/dodge_intrepid_r_t_road_test


 

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From the FAQ
Which model? SE, ES, RT, SXT, Motorsports?
What is the Base or SE model?

The base model and SE are really the same car. The SE name was started in 2000 and had SE badging on either the rear door (2000 & 2001) or trunk (2002-up). The easiest way to recognize this model is the front fascia that has no fog light openings. They feature a 2.7 liter DOHC 24 valve V6 engine. Base models 1998-1999 had 15” steel wheels with straight spoke hubcaps, later models upgraded to 16” steel wheels with a new bent spoke hubcap design used.

What is the ES model?

The ES model cars are designed to have all the comfort/luxury options available such as OTIS, leather, 60/40 split folding rear seats, Automatic climate control, traction control, leather wrapped steering wheel, leather wrapped shifter, polished exhaust tip and premium radios. All 98-2001 models feature either a 2.7 liter DOHC 24 valve engine or the more common 3.2 liter DOHC 24 valve engine with Autostick, 2002-up models feature a 3.5 motor with a slightly lower power output than the RT or SXT models. All ES models have 16” aluminum wheels, chrome wheels were optional starting in 2002.

What is the R/T model?

The R/T stands for Road and Track. It has the 3.5 liter 24 valve highest output engine. Typically R/Ts do not have all of the luxury items as the ES models, as they are intended for performance, not luxury. They were only made 2000-2002. All RT models have 17” wheels, silver in early years, chrome in 2002.

What is the SXT model?

The SXT was introduced in 2002 and featured the same 3.5 high output motor as the R/T. It was designed to be a lower cost alternative to the R/T in 2002 but became the “performance over luxury” model with the high output 3.5 engine and Autostick in 2003.

What is the Motorsports edition?

The Motorsports edition was made in 2001. The Motorsports trim option was available on all models for between $375-$865. Production numbers are: Intrepid SE - 584, Intrepid ES - 242, Intrepid RT - 383. It is a cosmetic enhancement and feature motorsports decals, floor mats, black wheels, and Goodyear Eagle 1 yellow letter tires. Canadian owners had a very similar trim option called the Daytona.

It's more than just decals though. There was an entire package shipped to the new owner after purchase. Here's is in the "Track Pack"

-Soft-sided beverage cooler
-gift-boxed 1/24th scale model race car
-custom Tasco binoculars
-46-inch by 57-inch three-color Afghan
-insulated water bottle
-vented umbrella
-lapel pin
-professional stopwatch in a commemorative tin
-barrel can cooler
-red twill cap with "Dodge Returns 2001" on it
-an autograph pen
-red adult-sized poncho
-"Different to the 10th" poster
-fabric pit-pass/credential holder
-windshield band decal
-history of Dodge decal
-Dodge NASCAR history videotape
-Dodge Motorsports window decal
 

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I noticed that there was a general decontenting from the 1998 to 2002 and later years. Things such as the trunk lid insulation, front door speakers, seat fabrics, etc were downgraded or deleted to cut costs. 1998 seemed to have the best parts /content of .the 2nd generation cars
 

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From what I have been told the 2002 R/T (1st ones) were the best 2nd gen to own. After that they started cutting things like crazy.
 

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1998 seemed to have the best parts /content of .the 2nd generation cars
As someone constantly climbing through Intrepids in the yards, I slightly dissagree. Also a lot of it is a matter of taste, I personally don't like fabric on the tops of the door panels, or the carpet on the bottom, although yes it is a more " expensive " option. The earlier years of the 2nd gens were also lacking in things that later ones had such as the sunsensors and/or at least wiring for them along with some other harnesses that were installed in later models and not in early ones unless the option was included in the car. I recently inventoried a 2000 ES and there was very little in it that was useful other than autostick, and nicer 2 tone cloth seats ( although I didn't like the fabric ) and it was a 2.7..who the heck buys a high end model with the 2.7?
 

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As someone constantly climbing through Intrepids in the yards, I slightly dissagree. Also a lot of it is a matter of taste, I personally don't like fabric on the tops of the door panels, or the carpet on the bottom, although yes it is a more " expensive " option. The earlier years of the 2nd gens were also lacking in things that later ones had such as the sunsensors and/or at least wiring for them along with some other harnesses that were installed in later models and not in early ones unless the option was included in the car. I recently inventoried a 2000 ES and there was very little in it that was useful other than autostick, and nicer 2 tone cloth seats ( although I didn't like the fabric ) and it was a 2.7..who the heck buys a high end model with the 2.7?
I bought a new candy apple red 98 ES loaded, with all options save leather seats. The seat fabric was nicer texture (thicker and nicer fabric) than the 99s. It had a sun sensor and the auto climate control, 3.2 with dual intake runners, traction control, alarm system, nicer window (forward front window position) speakers (black kenwood grills if memory serves) than the 2002 R/T, autostick, etc, though later years did have nicer radio options. The 2002 R/T had a chrysler navi system added, though it wasn't a factory option until 2003, the factory stock one fit perfectly.

The downside of the materials in the 98 . . . it had a cheap autostick shifter cover (hard plastic pieces vs the leather boot on the R/T) and the wiring and function for the alarm was different.
 

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Good review of the differences
If a somewhat inaccurate but lengthy post qualifies as a "good review", I've never posted any good reviews in my life.

There's a lot of stuff about the R/T that he's wrong about.

Also, the FAQ has facts wrong as well such as the AutoStick in the SXT.


The most premium Intrepid EVER made was early model year 2002 R/T's. Had the most standard equipment, and when loaded up with all 5 available options, it was more loaded than any ES ever was. True, it was missing the trunk lid liner, but the major decontenting didn't start until mid model year 2002.

R/T
all had 3.5HO engines (242hp) with less power than the SXT
upgraded brakes (minimal upgrade, not really noticeable by eye, say 300c vs srt8 300c, you can get the rt rotors and slap them on your SE have have upgraded brakes, its the way the rotor is cooled).
upgraded suspension (again minimal change)
thicker swaybar (we are talking mm, even the 300m special sway bar is not a lot thicker than stock)
different pcm
larger exhaust tip, same resonator as SXT
better tires than the es at the time, good year?
all had autostick and ABS
came with 17 inch rims, unlike any other intrepid until then 2002s had no speed restriction, were capabable of 140 +
-Disagree, there's an exception...the '02 R/T got an extra 2HP for a total of 244HP (less power than the 250HP SXT)
-Disagree, Not that minimal, When buying brake rotors, you'd be silly not to opt for R/T / PHP rotors
-Disagree, Performance suspension - LARGE improvement. If you've ever owned an R/t and driven an SXT, they are quite a bit different. NOT minimal difference.
-Agree, PCM differences are minimal........probably only the limiter is different.
-Disagree, exhaust systems from the '02 R/T and SXT may not differ by anything except the tip......HOWEVER '00 and '01 R/T's had different exhaust systems.
-Wrong, Michelin Pilot MMX4's........they sucked anyways!
-All had AutoStick and ABS, but some had traction control ('02 R/T)
-Agree, tested out the speed restriction........never hit a top speed........goes 140+, confirmed!



Also, the R/T has performance rack and pinion steering.
 

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If a somewhat inaccurate but lengthy post qualifies as a "good review", I've never posted any good reviews in my life.good, not great

There's a lot of stuff about the R/T that he's wrong about.

Also, the FAQ has facts wrong as well such as the AutoStick in the SXT.


The most premium Intrepid EVER made was early model year 2002 R/T's. Had the most standard equipment, and when loaded up with all 5 available options, it was more loaded than any ES ever was. True, it was missing the trunk lid liner, but the major decontenting didn't start until mid model year 2002.


-Disagree, there's an exception...the '02 R/T got an extra 2HP for a total of 244HP (less power than the 250HP SXT)
-Disagree, Not that minimal, When buying brake rotors, you'd be silly not to opt for R/T / PHP rotors
-Disagree, Performance suspension - LARGE improvement. If you've ever owned an R/t and driven an SXT, they are quite a bit different. NOT minimal difference. agreed, opinion of difference is subjective
-Agree, PCM differences are minimal........probably only the limiter is different.
-Disagree, exhaust systems from the '02 R/T and SXT may not differ by anything except the tip......HOWEVER '00 and '01 R/T's had different exhaust systems.
-Wrong, Michelin Pilot MMX4's........they sucked anyways!
-All had AutoStick and ABS, but some had traction control ('02 R/T)
-Agree, tested out the speed restriction........never hit a top speed........goes 140+, confirmed!



Also, the R/T has performance rack and pinion steering.
Early 2002 R/Ts probably best. Still had deleted underhood, door, and glove box lights, trunk lid liner, etc.

Real shame Chrysler sold to rental fleets and switched car to gas hog RWD, the FWD cab forward platform could still be a real winner, especially with gas so high in price . . . a good 5 or 6 spd automatic coupled with cylinder deactivation and the great aerodynamics could pull stronger performance and fuel economy for a large car . . . they killed a winner
 

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Early 2002 R/Ts probably best.
What though is defining it as " THE BEST " ( and who ) If you're talking as a four door " sporty " family sedan then ok, but not everybody wants to feel every pebble on the road or have to stop in the middle of the freeway because there's a " bump ahead " sign on the shoulder. I'm not trying to run a slolam course in record times. Compare pricing on the models too, see if having the R/T logo vs the SXT logo on the car is worth it. All these models were available with the same options for most of the years. So what did the sticker say on an 02 R/T loaded ( nothing left to buy ) vs an 03 SXT, or 02 ES with all available options.
 

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What though is defining it as " THE BEST " ( and who ) If you're talking as a four door " sporty " family sedan then ok, but not everybody wants to feel every pebble on the road without aftermarket 20" wheels, and 32 PSI R/Ts ride is firm, not harshor have to stop in the middle of the freeway because there's a " bump ahead " sign on the shoulder. I'm not trying to run a slolam course in record times. Good handling is not a vice if ride is still goodCompare pricing on the models too, see if having the R/T logo vs the SXT logo on the car is worth it. All these models were available with the same options for most of the years. So what did the sticker say on an 02 R/T loaded ( nothing left to buy ) vs an 03 SXT, or 02 ES with all available options.
Sticker was probably about 3000 higher. If you like the stronger parts, its worth it. All of the 3.5 cars ran strong, especially with the dual intake runners and 244 or 250 Hp (my opinion it was a marketing bump as acceleration was the same), so if you like the handling, braking, and high speed capability, and a rare breed, R/Ts are best . . . just like the premium version of most cars. Of course, if your opinion is an ES is better or best, ok.
 

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Of course, if your opinion is an ES is better or best, ok.
Don't get me wrong, I'm not saying an ES is a better car, it's a different car, and it's more of what I want. If an 02 R/T and an 04 ES with the options I wanted were side by side with the same mileage and the R/T was $3000 more, I'd take the ES.
 

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Well, my '02 R/T had an MSRP of $34500. Probably more than 99% of Intrepids on the road.
 
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