1996 Dodge Intrepid
Dodge Intrepid
Chrysler Corporation
Production 1993-1997
Class Intermediate
Body Style 4-Door Sedan
Length 201.7"
Width 74.4"
Height 56.3"
Wheelbase 113"
Weight 3300-3500 lbs
Transmission 4-Speed Automatic, FWD
Engine 3.3L (201 cid) V6
3.5L (215 cid) V6
Power 153-214 hp
Similar Chrysler Concorde
Eagle Vision
Platform LH

The Dodge Intrepid is a full-size 4-door sedan introduced in 1993, replacing the Dynasty. The Intrepid (and its other LH corprate mates, the Chrysler Concorde and Eagle Vision), were Chrysler's first "cab-forward" designs that had two major elements: pushing the wheels out to the corners of the car and making the engine compartment large enough for the larger engine. A point of distinction of the LH models was, and remains, the north-south/longitudinal mounting of the engines, as opposed to the usual east-west/transverse installation typical with front wheel drive cars. The longitudinal mounting allowed Chrysler to lower the hoodline for aerodynamics and looks, made maintenance/servicing simpler, and tightened the car's turning diameter. The Intrepid would span 2 generations before being replaced by the all-new Charger in 2006.

Here's a quick rundown:

First-generation (1993-1997)[edit | edit source]

The first generation of the Dodge Intrepid began in 1993 and continued until 1997. The Intrepid was available in two trim levels which were the base and the better equipped ES. The ES added four wheel disc brakes, 16" wheels and larger tires, and a stiffer suspension. Both trim levels featured driver and front passenger airbags, air conditioning, and a four speed automatic transmission. Anti-lock brakes were an option for both trim levels as was traction control. A 153 hp 3.3L (201 cid) V6 was standard, with the 214 hp 3.5L (215 cid) V6 as an option for both models. The Intrepid (and the other LH cars) were lauded by the automotive press and the motoring public alike for its above-average power, handling and athletic demeanor, a far cry from its previous sedate, marshmallow-like handling Dynasty predecessor.

For 1994, mentionable changes were an 8 hp boost for the 3.3L V6 to 161 (the 3.5 remained at 214), a new power steering rack that allowed for easier parking, the ES's upgraded suspension was made standard. And of course a couple of new colors were added to the roster. In 1995, anti-lock brakes were made standard for ES models, and the cruise control added a "cancel" feature. The base model got new rims in 1996, and fog lights became standard on the base. Additional sound deadening was added to both models to quiet road noise, a common complaint for this car. No real changes in 1997 as an all-new model was forthcoming for 1998.

Main Competitors[edit | edit source]

2002 Dodge Intrepid
Dodge Intrepid
Production 1998-2004
Class Intermediate
Body Style 4-Door Sedan
Length 203.7"
Width 74.7"
Height 55.9"
Wheelbase 113"
Weight 3300-3500 lbs
Transmission 4-Speed Automatic, FWD
Engine 2.7L (168 cid) V6 (1998-2004)
3.2L (197 cid) V6 (1998-2004)
3.5L (215 cid) V6 (2000-2004)
Power 200-250 hp
Similar Chrysler Concorde Chrysler LHS Chrysler 300M
Platform LH

Second generation (1998-2004)[edit | edit source]

The second generation of the Dodge Intrepid ran from 1998 until 2004. The design was different from the ground up and, just like the first generation models, were again very well received by both consumers and critics. The previous 3.3L and 3.5L V6s were replaced by two aluminum units which were a 200 hp DOHC 2.7L (168 cid) V6 for the base model and a 225 hp SOHC 3.2L (197 cid) V6 for the ES edition (and optional for the base). The base model of the Intrepid continued to use a four speed automatic while the ES model boasted the new "autostick". Front bucket seats with a floor shifter and a console were standard on both models, although a bench seat with a column shifter could be had on the base models if so desired. The previous "LH" trio was now a duo, as the former Eagle Vision did not carry over into this generation as Chrysler was phasing out the Eagle brand.

After last year's redesign, changes to the 1999 Intrepids were minimal - remote keyless entry now was available on base models, and seat materials were new this year. Chrysler's new "Sentry Key", which disabled the ignition unless the proper key was used, was added to the optional theft-deterrent system. For 2000, the big news was the addition of the R/T model, which included unique trim and badging, 17" tires and a high-output 242 hp 3.5L (214 cid) V6 was standard with the autostick transmission. 16" tires were now standard on the base models, and the 3.2L V6 was now available only on the ES model. Anti-lock brakes became demoted from standard equipment to optional on the ES also. A power sunroof became available this year. In 2001, front side airbags could be had and a 3-point seat belt was added for the rear middle passenger. The ES's split-folding rear seat became optional on the base and R/T.

For 2002, the R/T's 17" rims could now be had in chrome as well as polished, but that was about the only noteworthy change. The R/T would be dropped for 2003, although the R/T's basic package would still be available as the SXT, and the 3.5 V6 would be upgraded to 250 hp. The base and ES carried on with no other changes other than the optional 4-disc in-dash CD changer was replaced with an optional 6-disc in-dash CD changer. 2004 would be the final year for the Intrepid, and as such received no real changes at all. The Intrepid would be replaced by the all-new rear-drive LX-based Charger, which would debut in mid-2005 as a 2006 model.

Photos[edit | edit source]

In Popular Culture[edit | edit source]

An ex-taxi Dodge Intrepid was used in MythBusters to prove whether a jet airliner can blow a taxi 100 ft away. The car mostly stood in place whereas some of its components were blown over.

A green Intrepid appeared in a film Rat Race as a Budget rental car until it was crashed down a very steel mountain face.

See Also[edit | edit source]

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