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10.0

really awful
Crashes / Fires:
2 / 1
Injuries / Deaths:
3 / 0
Average Mileage:
21,992 miles

About These NHTSA Complaints:

This data is from the NHTSA — the US gov't agency tasked with vehicle safety. Complaints are spread across multiple & redundant categories, & are not organized by problem.

So how do you find out what problems are occurring? For this NHTSA complaint data, the only way is to read through the comments below. Any duplicates or errors? It's not us.

1998 Dodge Ram 1500 transmission problems

transmission problem

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1998 Dodge Ram 1500 Owner Comments (Page 2 of 4)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #55

Jun 102003

Ram 1500

  • miles

A D V E R T I S E M E N T S

While driving at 40mph transmission broke.

- Idalou, TX, USA

problem #54

May 302003

Ram 1500 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • miles
Automatic transmission did not engage to next gear after driving slow. When you step on gas pedal, it seems that the transmission does not want to engage into next gear. Had to push down on gas pedal as if trying to get into passing lane in order for transmission to engage. Chrysler could not find any problem.

- Southport, FL, USA

problem #53

Apr 122003

Ram 1500 4WD 8-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 67,000 miles
Transmission overheats. As near as I can tell, from reading the numerous complaints on message boards, the problem is due to two possible things. A bad torque converter (frequent problem)and/or clogged cooling system lines as the lines and passageways are too narrow and filter is insufficient.

- Westlake Village, CA, USA

problem #52

Oct 292002

Ram 1500 4WD 8-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 60,000 miles

A D V E R T I S E M E N T S

I own a 1998 Dodge Ram 1500. The transmission went out on me and the pickup only had 61000 miles on it. There was actually fire inside the transmission, you could tell when the mechanic dropped the pan, there was nothing left every thing was fried. That could of started the whole pickup on fire and I could of been killed or badly hurt. I have talked to some other guys and they owned 1998 Ram and the same thing happened. Now this is a big safety thing and there was not a recall on the faulty transmission. I contacted Chrysler to see if they would pay for a new transmission and they said no, they wouldn't even help me out. This could of been a big law suit if I would of gotten hurt.

- Osnabrock, ND, USA

problem #51

Apr 032002

Ram 1500 4WD 8-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 11 miles
When approaching a hill or attempting to pass at highway speeds (75 to 85mph) either with cruise on or off the truck will down shift from overdrive to low gear.(suddenly bringing you to a hault!) it will then cause the engine to overdrive. Then the truck will stay either in low gear or 2nd gear until you shut the key off and restart or by putting it into neutral then back into drive and letting it coast for a bit. This is very dangerous! I have been almost smashed into several times! this transmission has been rebuilt and the problem has been with it since rebuilding. There is only 4000 miles on the rebuild! I have brought it back over ten times for this problem but it will never leave a code! I have now been told there is nothing they can do with it! the reason the first tranny went out is because the park control rod broke and fell into the guts of the tranny and virtually destroyed it!

- Ely, MN, USA

problem #50

Jan 042003

Ram 1500 4WD 8-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 71,000 miles
At 71,000 miles transmission failed for the second time. First time was at 34,000. $3200 to repace with rebuilt unit. Also, the rear differential needs rebuilding for another $1600.

- Cumming, GA, USA

problem #49

Jan 052003

Ram 1500

  • Automatic transmission
  • 67,500 miles

A D V E R T I S E M E N T S

The transmission failed without warning while attemping to drive from a red light. The dealer was notified. Please provide additional information.

- Ottisville, MI, USA

problem #48

Oct 022002

Ram 1500 4WD

  • miles
Noticed a vibration while driving. Took to dealer. Advised transmission needs overhaul. $2400.

- Danville, CA, USA

problem #47

Aug 122002

Ram 1500

  • Automatic transmission
  • miles
While driving at any speed andwith no warning transmission locked up, locking rear tires. It was hard to control vehicle. Consumer was forced to pull over. Dealer notified.

- Center Point, TX, USA

problem #46

Jul 292002

Ram 1500 4WD Diesel

  • Automatic transmission
  • miles
The vehicle will not go into reverse and back up, but will go forward. Consumer had taken the vehicle to dealer when it was first purchased, due to a vibrating noise. At 36041 miles, the overdrive unit failed which had taken out the reverse. A new transmission was installed. This corrected the vibration noise which turned out to be coming from a broken snap ring that held the overdrive unit.

- Portland, OR, USA

problem #45

Jul 192002

Ram 1500

  • Automatic transmission
  • miles

A D V E R T I S E M E N T S

I was on the freeway, and as I went to pass a slower vehicle, I felt the transmission "slip" and watched the RPM's increase dramatically, while my speed actually decreased. I slowed down and tried to continue to drive at a slower speed, however this became impossible very quickly. I also smelled something, probably the clutches "slipping" so I pulled over and called for a tow truck.

- Merced, CA, USA

problem #44

Oct 102001

Ram 1500 4WD

  • Automatic transmission
  • miles
I reported the failure to Chrysler who agreed to a diagnosis. A representative verbally agreed that Chrysler would pay for diagnosis and repair if problem was caused by factory defect. A diagnosis showed that the failure was caused by a factory defect. At least one metal part was missing from the transmission causing the failure. Chrysler then said I was responsible for $350 of the repair cost, going against their earlier agreement.

- Antioch, TN, USA

problem #43

Jul 052002

Ram 1500 Diesel

  • miles
The overdrive or 5th gear of the truck slipped out while driving home from a trip to myrtle beach, SC. I have found out that this has happen to numerous other truck like mine. This could have caused problems if I hadn't been the only vehicle on the road at that time.

- Phil Campbell, AL, USA

problem #42

Sep 032001

Ram 1500 4WD

  • Automatic transmission
  • miles
Was loading boat at dock ramp when came out of park injured leg badly. No safety defect listed.

- Black River Falls, WI, USA

problem #41

Mar 012001

Ram 1500 4WD

  • Automatic transmission
  • miles
After vehicle is warmed up it will intermittently not shift into drive. Consumer has to shift it into neutral, then, back into drive before vehicle responds. Consumer is concerned about vehicle rolling backwards when this occurs.

- Woodbridge, VA, USA

problem #40

Sep 012001

Ram 1500

  • Automatic transmission
  • miles
Transmission failure.

- Elyria, OH, USA

problem #39

Jun 252001

Ram 1500

  • Automatic transmission
  • miles
Consumer can shift vehicle into any gear. Stepped on gas pedal and vehicle would not move. Rpms revved high or low before vehicle had a delayed response by lurching forward in whatever gear it was in. Diagnostic test showed no codes and shifted as normal. Problem had to duplicate to be remedied.

- West Henrietta, NY, USA

problem #38

Apr 292001

Ram 1500 4WD

  • Automatic transmission
  • miles
Transmission failed in overdrive which caused failure to the rest of the transmission which required the transmission to be rebuilt.

- Eagle, WI, USA

problem #37

Mar 072001

Ram 1500

  • Automatic transmission
  • miles
Transmission overheated, overdrive automatically disengaged. The odor of burned transmission oil was evident.this was a new transmission and was replaced with a rebuilt transmission by the dealer at $50 deductible. The rebuilt will only be warranted for the first 12 months or 12000 miles.I suspect the transmission is either undercooled or a failure to use the proper atf fluid caused this.vehicle is under service contract and is serviced for all fluid changes by the dealer.

- Toms River, NJ, USA

problem #36

Sep 212000

Ram 1500

  • miles
We purchased a 1998 Dodge conversion van as our family vehicle. On Sept 21,2000 my wife loaded our children, ages 7,6, & 2, into the vehicle. She then went & locked the house door. Our 2 year old got out of her car seat, went to the front of the van, & pulled down on the gear shift pulling it into gear. The vehicle rolled over a 3 foot wall, down a steep hill, through a 2 foot ditch, and then struck a telephone pole. Thank goodness no one was seriously injured, but this condition could have tragic. I own an insurance Agency so I started to check around to see if this was a defect that the vehicle could be put into gear without first applying the brake. What I found out was shocking, I was informed by the Dodge dealer that this safety feature was an option on this vehicle, which I was not informed of at time of purchase, this is ludicrous!!! in my research I have yet to find a private passenger vehicle that is not equipped with this safety feature and to declare it an option on a family use vehicle is irresponsible. Thank goodness the lord was looking over my family that day, but what about the next family. Please look into this situation, so no family has to needlessly endure a tragedy.

- Roseburg, OR, USA

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