Deeb J., Chardon, Ohio

Those are the model and trim (or price level) designations Dodge used on the Dakota, which ended production with the 2011 model year. You need a scorecard to tell one model from another, and automakers serve generous portions of alphabet soup to do that. In the case of the Dakota the ST was the lowest-price (or base) trim level, and the SLT and SXT were better-equipped, higher priced versions.

2011_dakota

Such designations are dreamed up by each manufacturer, so one brand’s ST could be the equivalent of another brand’s LT (used by Chevrolet) or XL (Ford).

Years ago, most car companies used monikers such as Deluxe, Custom and Super to separate base models from the high-end machinery, or even gave different names to the same car (Chevrolet Biscayne, Bel Air and Impala). Before that, some cars had only a single letter to their name, such as the Ford Model T.

What goes around comes around, so Infiniti refers to its car lines by letter, such as the “M” instead of M37 and M56, while others are infatuated by multiple letters (Acura RL, TL, TSX), and some go for numbers instead (Fiat 500). And instead of a mundane moniker such as Deluxe, individual models can have kicky names such as Fiat 500 Lounge and Smart ForTwo Passion.

The best way to gauge what such model designations really mean is to look at the price tags: The higher the price of each trim level, the more standard features on the vehicle.

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Answered by Rick Popely on November 14, 2011 in Dodge , I'm Just Wondering | Permalink

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