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really awful
Crashes / Fires:
3 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
5 / 0
Average Mileage:
74,364 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.

2003 Dodge Ram 1500 body / paint problems

body / paint problem

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2003 Dodge Ram 1500 Owner Comments (Page 2 of 3)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #28

Sep 012009

Ram 1500

  • 150,000 miles


The contact owns a 2003 Dodge Ram 1500. The contact stated that the dashboard was fractured. The contact noticed that the fractured dashboard pieces were falling into the vents. The contact sustained minor injuries on his hands that did not require medical attention. The vehicle was not diagnosed or repaired. The manufacturer was not notified of the failure. The approximate failure mileage was 150,000.

- Miami , FL, USA

problem #27

Oct 032014

Ram 1500 6-cyl

  • 29,000 miles
While driving I had the dashboard crack in two spots. First crack is located in front of passenger seat above air bag, the second crack is located on the dash, in front of the drivers seat at around the 12:00 position of the wheel.

- Davie, FL, USA

problem #26

Jul 282014

Ram 1500

  • 146,400 miles
I bought this truck used and expected some components of the truck to be worn.the dashboard has several cracks in it when I bought it and have continued to crack even more. This does not appear to be age related but a serious manufacturing defect. I'm worried about pieces flying off and hitting me in the face as broken parts have already done but only landed at my's like driving with broken glass on your dashboard. I would hate for the passenger airbag to go off and be stabbed by pieces of flying dashboard. I've noticed that N.H.T.S.a. has received more complaints about this component than any other on this truck. Why hasn't a recall been issued? this is a serious safety issue. Let's not make this another recall debacle. Chrysler needs to take responsibility for this defect. No dashboards crack like this with age.

- Livonia, MI, USA

problem #25

Jun 152012

Ram 1500

  • 65,000 miles


The contact owns a 2003 Dodge Ram 1500. The contact stated that his dashboard was severely cracked in multiple places. The vehicle was not taken to the dealer for diagnostic testing. The manufacturer was not notified of the defect. The vehicle was not repaired. The failure mileage was 65,000. The current mileage was 97,000.

- Orlando, FL, USA

problem #24

Sep 032003

Ram 1500 8-cyl

  • 5,000 miles
During the first year we bought the truck it had to be towed in to the shop because it would lose power and just "turn off" and could not be started about 6 times. After the truck was returned to us after one of these episodes, we had hooked up our camper to leave for the weekend, went into the house for some more stuff, and noticed that the gas tank had fallen off the truck and was sitting in the driveway under the truck. So much for camping that weekend and another tow to the dealer. We also purchased an extended "bumper-to-bumper 100,000 mile, 5 year warranty that covered rust. I brought the truck into the dealer to show them the rust around the rear wheel wells and lower body in the 4th year into the warranty and they said they made a record of it and would take care of it. They put if off with promises after numerous calls and trips to the dealer until the dealership sold to another party and the warranty had expired (years, not miles). The body is rotten, the passenger front window was never fixed, and it still occasionally stalls. I'm told that the stalling and body problems are engineering defects, and internet searches confirm this.

- Oconto Falls, WI, USA

problem #23

Jun 102011

Ram 1500

  • 92,000 miles
Truck has excessive rust over both rear fenders. Had it looked at by a couple of body shoppes and estimate to have it fixed will cost about $5,500. Rust is coming from underneath about wheel and rusting from under surface to exterior on fender. 90% of other Dodge Ram trucks with the same body style as my 2003 Ram all have surface rust where the paint looks bubbled. This should have been a recall with Chrysler.

- Easton, PA, USA

problem #22

Jul 152013

Ram 1500 4WD 8-cyl

  • 77,000 miles


Dashboard directly above the front passenger side airbag has completely cracked creating a significant gap. This has caused my wife to inadvertently get her finger caught in it and be cut and injured. Additionally the location and severity of the crack has significantly weakened the dashboard and compromised it's structural integrity. This problem will only get worse and expand. Should the vehicle be involved in a collision which causes the airbag to deploy it will most certainly pose a great risk to all occupants as the dashboard is likely to fragment at high velocity, sending sharp shards of plastic throughout the passenger compartment. Additionally, this may cause the airbag to be punctured upon deployment and fail to operate as designed.

- Newington, CT, USA

problem #21

Jan 092014

Ram 1500

  • 300 miles
The contact owns a 2003 Dodge Ram 1500. The contact stated that while driving various speeds, the front passenger's side door released independently. The failure recurred four times. The vehicle was taken to an authorized dealer for inspection. The technician was not able to provide a remedy to correct the problem. The manufacturer was notified of the defect. The approximate failure mileage was 300. The VIN was unavailable. Updated 3/28/14

- Middletown , NY, USA

problem #20

Sep 282012

Ram 1500 8-cyl

  • 122,739 miles
I had just stopped my truck in front of my garage and, with my foot on the brake, shifted into the park gear position. Suddenly the engine began to race and my foot on the brake peddle went to the floor as if I had no brakes at all. I took my foot off of the brake peddle and the engine leaped forward through my garage door. I hit the brakes immediately and came to a screeching stop. I put the truck in reverse but it would not engage. A neighbor came and asked if I needed help. I asked him to try backing out of the garage for me. He took my place behind the wheel and shifted into reverse with the same result. He asked me if I had the emergency brakes on because the truck would not move. I told him no and when he attempted to use reverse again the gears engaged and he backed the truck out of the garage for me.

- Wildwood, NJ, USA

problem #19

Jan 222014

Ram 1500

  • miles
The contact owns a 2003 Dodge Ram 1500. The contact stated that the dashboard had several cracks along the surface. The vehicle was not diagnosed or repaired. The manufacturer was contacted about the failure. The failure mileage and VIN was not available.

- Murfreesboro, TN, USA

problem #18

Mar 152013

Ram 1500 4WD 8-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 54,000 miles


The contact owns a 2003 Dodge Ram 1500. The contact stated that the dashboard had begun to crack near the driver's side air bag and on the passenger's side near the glove box. The vehicle was not inspected or repaired. The manufacturer was notified of the issue. The approximate failure mileage was 54,000. The consumer stated there were two separate cracks on the dashboard. Updated 03/11/14

- Massapequa Park, NY, USA

problem #17

Oct 102012

Ram 1500

  • miles
Vehicle dash board came apart while driving at 45 mph. I had noticed it had already cracked. When the dash came apart small pieces became air born. Was not injured neither was my wife, surprised though and we could have been.

- Apex, NC, USA

problem #16

Sep 052013

Ram 1500

  • 90,000 miles
Tire popped and I spun out of control when it started to rain. I spun into some trees.

- Cedar Park, TX, USA

problem #15

Jul 042012

Ram 1500 8-cyl

  • miles
Dashboard cracked in multiple places. Defrost vents disintegrated and fell into ducts. Defrost blend door not functioning and causing windshield to fog up when using A/C. rear fenders rotted out from the inside out on both sides in the exact same place. Random engine loss of power, re-starting fixes problem until next occurrence.

- Blackstone, MA, USA

problem #14

Jul 262013

Ram 1500 8-cyl

  • 90,000 miles
Ok, so I recently buy this one owner Dodge Ram 1500 pickup. 2003, 90,000. In pristine condition. I mean primo. I get in the pickup, and am pulling out of my driveway and hear what was a loud craking sound, like breaking plastic. I didn't think much of it, thinking I ran over a can or something. Later in the day, I notice my dash board. Oh my god. It has this large crack in it. Right above the glove box from the glove box to the window. I then notice another crack right above the passanger door vent (dash) that is working it's way up toward the window. I do some more inspection and see yet another crack near the defrost vent and a small part of the vent missing. I figured that out today when I piece of plastic blew in my face and hit me in the eye when I turned the ac on. I thought, well, maybe I was duked. Maybe it was in an accident. I check it all out with carfax. Nothing. Clean title. Well maintained one owner. Wtf. I call my local dealer. 'well, we are aware of the issue, we have heard about these things happening, but your truck is out of warranty". what" this is not a warranty issue. It's a defect. After hours of research, I see this is a huge problem with these trucks. The dealer said it's about a $2800 fix?? what?" so now I am stuck. I am going to persue this matter for as long as it takes. This is not "sun damage" I know what sun damage is. This is a defect. I have been driving cars/trucks for 30 years, never ever seen a dashboard do this. Ever. Please keep the complaints coming. Tomorrow I am doing battle with Dodge at 800-992-1997. I am one pissed customer. Who was a loyal Dodge fan....not any longer.

- Wyanet, IL, USA

problem #13

Nov 012012

Ram 1500 8-cyl

  • 79,888 miles
My 2003 Dodge Ram 1500 has a defective cracked dashboard. This seems to be a common issue for Dodge Ram trucks and the manufacture is refusing to take any responsibility for a defective item.

- Weston Fl, FL, USA

problem #12

Nov 232012

Ram 1500

  • 79,800 miles
The contact owns a 2003 Dodge Ram 1500. The contact stated that the dashboard became cracked. The vehicle was taken to the dealer but was not repaired. The manufacturer was notified of the failure and advised the contact that there were no recalls for the vehicle. The vehicle was not repaired. The failure mileage was 79,800 and the current mileage was 84,316.

- Weston, FL, USA

problem #11

Jan 012011

Ram 1500 8-cyl

  • 90,000 miles
The contact owns a 2003 Dodge Ram 1500. The contact stated that the dashboard exhibited a hair line fracture that expanded over the dashboard area, to the defroster vents and caused the plastic to fracture into several pieces. The vehicle was not repaired. The manufacturer was made aware of the failure. The approximate failure mileage was 90,000 and the current mileage was 120,000. Updated 02/12/13 updated 02/13/13

- Boca Raton , FL, USA

problem #10

Jun 012012

Ram 1500 4WD 8-cyl

  • 69,000 miles
I love my truck and paid hard earned money for it. I keep it in good shape. Earlier this summer, I noticed my dash has started cracking. I keep protectant on it and sun shields in the front windshield. It's dis-heartening to have something I took care of and spent good money on fail in this manner.

- Gaffney, SC, USA

problem #9

Jul 182012

Ram 1500

  • 108,000 miles
The contact owns a 2003 Dodge Ram 1500. The contact stated that the entire frame of the vehicle was completely rusted. The vehicle was taken to a dealer for diagnosis. The dealer inspected and took pictures of the failure, sending them to the regional representative. The regional representative denied the contact any assistance with the repair. The manufacturer was notified but offered no assistance. The vehicle was not repaired. The failure and current mileages were 108,000. The VIN was unavailable.

- Ray, OH, USA

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