Huge win for car owners! All TSBs to be made public. The Center for Auto Safety just made the NHTSA (US Government) make public the full text of all TSBs from now on. They are the same organization that has petitioned the NHTSA & filed lawsuits to protect car owners over exploding gas tanks & other major safety issues. Whenever you drive in your car, you are safer thanks in part to a lot of work over the years by this small but very effective consumer advocacy group.

Please take a moment & say thank you by donating $5 or whatever you can to the Center for Auto Safety. Notes: The 2002 has the well-known and documented problem with their dashboards falling to pieces, but it also has engine failure from oil sludge. That's a doube shot of awful in your morning coffee.


definitely annoying
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 1
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
32,245 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.

2002 Dodge Ram 1500 transmission problems

transmission problem

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2002 Dodge Ram 1500 Owner Comments (Page 1 of 2)

problem #26

May 082011

Ram 1500

  • 88,000 miles


The contact owns a 2002 Dodge Ram 1500. The contact stated that there was a loup pop as smoke began escaping from under the vehicle. The contact exited the vehicle and discovered that the transmission had exploded, causing the entire vehicle to catch on fire. The fire department arrived and extinguished the fire. A police report was not filed. Neither the dealer nor manufacturer was notified of the failure. The approximate failure mileage was 88,000.

- Colorado Springs, CO, USA

problem #25

May 152010

Ram 1500

  • 180,000 miles
Drive shaft.

- Converse, TX, USA

problem #24

Mar 292008

Ram 1500

  • 35,000 miles
The contact owns a 2002 Dodge Ram 1500. While attempting to park the vehicle, the contact placed the gear into park and the vehicle rolled backwards on its own. He restarted the vehicle, placed it back into park, and applied the emergency brake. The dealer stated that the VIN was not included in NHTSA campaign id number 05V460000 (power train: Automatic transmission). The vehicle has not been repaired and he no longer drives the vehicle. The current and failure mileages were 35,000.

- Omaha, NE, USA

problem #23

Jun 192008

Ram 1500 8-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 44,200 miles


The contact owns a 2002 Dodge Ram 1500. The contact stated that the linkage bar that connects the shifter to the transfer case is approximately 14 inches long. It is held together by rubber grommets. Over time, a combination of excessive temperatures and wear and tear caused the grommets to fail. As a result, the linkage bar falls out of the vehicle without warning, which increases the risk of injury to other drivers. The vehicle has been repaired. The manufacturer did not assist. The failure and current mileages were 44,200. Update 09/10/08 updated 09/16/08

- Cooper City, FL, USA

problem #22

Jul 282007

Ram 1500 4WD 8-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 92,900 miles
I have a 02 Dodge Ram 4X4 quad cab with the 360 engine and the transmission is messed up I contacted a local shop and the solenoids are bad and the shop owner stated that this is a very common problem with these trucks he tried to get the parts and no one has them they are on back order till next week that says to me this is a failure on Dodge for faulty equipment.

- Dickson, TN, USA

problem #21

Jun 012006

Ram 1500 Diesel

  • Automatic transmission
  • 60,000 miles
: the contact stated the driver exited the vehicle after putting it in park with the engine running. The vehicle began to roll backwards and a bystander got in and put the vehicle in park. There was minor damage done to the driver side door. The vehicle was not inspected by a mechanic. There is a NHTSA recall, # 05V462000, regarding the automatic transmission; however, it is not included in the recall due to the VIN. Updated 7/25/2006 -

- Barrington, IL, USA

problem #20

Apr 152006

Ram 1500 8-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 26,000 miles


On Saturday April 15, 2006 we were driving home and the transmission in our 2002 Dodge Ram truck began slipping. We had to drive in low gear to get home. We took the truck to schaefer and strominger, the dealer we purchased the truck brand new from in 2002 and were told "oh its probably just a switch, we'll replace it and its good you bought the power train warranty...well this 2002 truck on has approximately 26,000 miles on it! after having the truck for over a week, I was told the whole transmission had to be replaced on this truck....a truck that only has 26,000 miles on it. Well not only schaefer and strominger, but also Chrysler themselves don't have enough sense to give me a loaner car for the inconvenience of dealing with their defective product. There is no way I should have to be replacing the transmission in a truck that is hardly driven and has never, ever hauled anything. I have spoken to a lot of people about this, I am finding out that this is a problem everyone is having with these trucks and something needs to be done to Chrysler to make them fix these at no cost to the consumer. I am thoroughly disgusted with the "oh well, what a shame" attitude Chrysler has, we consumers spend a lot of money on these vehicles and we all deserve not only a better product, but also better customer service. Please tell me there is someone out there who can make these manufactures stand behind the products they sell before someone gets seriously hurt or killed driving on of these trucks.

- Baltimore, MD, USA

problem #19

Apr 052006

Ram 1500 4WD 8-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 77,330 miles
First, the automatic transmission failed due to an overdrive band that broke and then the whole transmission had to be rebuilt. Second, I had the mechanics check the differential for normal servicing. It was determined that the ltd slip component had broken, which then caused bearings to break, which then nearly destroyed the axle housing. $4500 or more to repair transmission and to replace rear axle. 77337 miles, no off road use and gentle driving habits. I can have the old axle I believe. 10 days in shop so far.

- Maple Valley, WA, USA

problem #18

Mar 242005

Ram 1500 4WD 8-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 56,000 miles
First the transmission is slipping in 3rd gear at times, this has been an on going issue that the dealer can't reproduce. The lamp out light goes on and off with the bell this will do it intermittently for as long as 30 min straight and this truck is all over the road when you hit bumps at high speed.

- Oscoda, MI, USA

problem #17

Dec 032004

Ram 1500

  • Automatic transmission
  • 70,000 miles
The consumer placed the vehicle into park, while exiting the vehicle the door knocked the consumer to the ground. The vehicle continued to roll into a creek. The consumer stated that the gear was in park, however she was not sure if it came out of park. The manufacture will be contacted.

- Winston-Salem, NC, USA

problem #16

Oct 032002

Ram 1500

  • miles


Complaint involving 2002 Dodge Ram truck. (nar) the consumer has experienced ongoing problems with vehicle and requested that the dealership repurchase the vehicle.

- Quitman, TX, USA

problem #15

Jul 092004

Ram 1500 4WD 8-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 65,000 miles
With 65,000 miles on 2002 Dodge Ram 4X4 quad cab. Transmission failed. Only do ordinary driving, no hauling of any kind. Of course no warranty. $3000 to get a new transmission.

- Fallon, NV, USA

problem #14

Feb 272004

Ram 1500 4WD 8-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 32,000 miles
While driving vehicle jerked forward when consumer tried to down shift the transmission gears. Dealership was notified, but did not resolve the problem. In addition, consumer is having trouble with tires and its sidewall and requesting manufacturer to design tires for off road conditions. Front brake rotors are warped and the pads have 80 percent left at 34,000 miles.

- Fort Worth, TX, USA

problem #13

Nov 122003

Ram 1500

  • 927 miles
While attempting to accelerate out of the driveway vehicle would not accelerate. Consumer had vehicle towed to the dealer. Mechanic informed consumer that transmission failed.

- Akron, OH, USA

problem #12

Aug 282003

(reported on)

Ram 1500

  • miles
Consumer noticed after placing vehicle in park vehicle started rolling backwards.

- Clifton Park, NY, USA

problem #11

Aug 122003

Ram 1500

  • miles
While driving at night consumer did not know what gear the vehicle was in because shift lights are on all the gears, making it difficult to judge which gear the vehicle was in.

- Weir, MS, USA

problem #10

Feb 012003

Ram 1500 8-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 10,000 miles
Vehicle has a hard shift or bump when reaching about 20 mph. Happens mostly on the up shift and during cooler weather. 8jb

- Fort Worth, TX, USA

problem #9

Jun 262003

(reported on)

Ram 1500 8-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 6 miles
The vehicle had an automatic transmission lock out failure. The consumer was able to change gears without first pushing on the brake pedal to shift out of park position. Lock out feature worked intermittently. Dealer replaced interlock cable and ignition switch. Dealer worked on 4 times. However the interlock still did not engage properly.

- Dimondale, MI, USA

problem #8

Feb 212003

Ram 1500 8-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 1,000 miles
The transmission gear went into neutral, without warning. The transmission problems began at 1K miles, and at 6K miles a new transmission was installed. The manufacturer felt that the problem was remedied. Scc

- Del Ray Beach, FL, USA

problem #7

Mar 042003

(reported on)

Ram 1500

  • miles
The vehicles steering, transmission and suspension failed.

- Council Bluffs, IA, USA

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