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really awful
Crashes / Fires:
3 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
2 / 0
Average Mileage:
32,881 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.

2004 Ford Ranger engine problems

engine problem

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2004 Ford Ranger Owner Comments

problem #13

Nov 102014

Ranger 4WD 6-cyl

  • miles


On 4 November 2014 I was referencing the current air bag issue with Ford vehicles. While reviewing current recall on 04 Ranger I noticed NHTSA recall #11V3520000> the description of the vehicles malfunctions accurately describes a same issue I am currently having with my, when shifting from P to D or D to R a fuse will blow causing my turn signal, brake lights, and cruise control to become inoperative. I called my local Ford dealer service department about the issue and was told there were no recall notices for my vehicle VIN number. I'm wondering if there is an issue with the recall VIN database or if the parameters shouldn't be expanded to cover more applicable vehicles. In addition there was a recall for the same year and make vehicle as mine yet the service department doesn't show any recalls for my particular VIN.

- Centralia, MO, USA

problem #12

Jan 012010

Ranger 6-cyl

  • 77,000 miles
The contact owns a 2004 Ford Ranger. The contact stated that the vehicle would intermittently surge forward while driving at various speeds. The failure also occurred when the cruise control was engaged. The vehicle was taken to an authorized dealer on numerous occasions in which they were unable to diagnose the failure. The vehicle was not repaired. The failure mileage was 77,000 and the current mileage was 80,000. Updated 07/20/11 the dealer replaced the cruise control swtich. Updated 02/06/12

- Milford, IL, USA

problem #11

Aug 052007


  • 80,000 miles
The contact owns a 2004 Ford Ranger. In August of 2007, the contact received a recall notice for the vehicle speed control. The dealer did not receive the parts from the manufacturer to repair his vehicle. Each time the contact calls the dealer, he is informed that the parts are still unavailable. In January of 2009, he received another recall notice, which stated that he did not comply with the first notice. On February 4, 2009, the dealer stated that the parts were available for the repair. The NHTSA campaign id number was unknown. The failure mileage was 80,000.

- Massena, NY, USA

problem #10

Jun 012008


  • 55,000 miles


I have a 2004 Ford Ranger P/U that has a problem with the cruise control. From time to time (and getting more frequent)the cruise will not work and when this happens also the horn is inoperable. I know that Ford has a recall for certain vehicles with cruise problems, but my truck VIN does not fall under those being recalled. I contacted Ford customer service, they informed me to take it to a dealer as it wasn't covered.I called a local dealer service and the service manager said to me oh yeah we get that problem and 9 out of 10 times it's a spring in the steering column that wraps the wires and along with no cruise or horn you also lose your driver air bag protection!!!now this is a real problem, as how many people do you know test their horn before driving out the drive and for that matter really how many people even use cruise control on a regular basis? I know in my case that if it does go in cruise and I am going down the nys thruway and have to tap my brake for slow traffic and then tap resume after traffic clears and cruise does not function that tells me my horn isn't going to work and my life could be in danger if I was involved in an accident because my air bag is also inoperable.

- Rochester, NY, USA

problem #9

Aug 152007

Ranger 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 114,000 miles
The contact owns a 2004 Ford Ranger. He received a safety recall notification in August 2007. Every month the dealer stated that the part would be available the following month. The purchase date was 04/2000. The current mileage was 114,000.

- Harper's Ferry, WV, USA

problem #8

May 182006

Ranger 4WD 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 30,000 miles
: the contact stated while the vehicle was at an idle, the engine revved and lurched forward. The vehicle was inspected by the dealer, but was unable to duplicate the problem. The manufacturer was alerted. Updated 6-15-06 the door ajar light is on. Dealer lubed the locks and latches.

- Topsfield, MA, USA

problem #7

Apr 052006

Ranger 4WD 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • miles


While coming to a stop (twice) the Ford Ranger engine accelerated suddenly to a point it could not be completely stopped with the brake system. Had any traffic been coming I would be a dead man. I did not have my foot on accelerator nor are there any floor mats in this truck to get stuck under the accelerator. I'm scared to death to drive this vehicle and I know that if I bring it to the Ford garage that its going to cost tons of money and they are going to say they don't see anything wrong. There is obviously a serious problem with a control mechanism somewhere. This has happened twice. Once after driving the vehicle about a mile. The second time (today) after driving for hours. Can you please help me out I really am scared to drive this truck.

- Jefferson, ME, USA

problem #6

Jan 192006

Ranger 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 30,000 miles
: the contact stated while approaching an intersection at 40mph the vehicle in front stopped short. When the brakes were depressed the vehicle seemed to accelerate rather than slow down. The contact swerved to avoid a direct rear end collision, but clipped the vehicle in the right rear bumper. Both vehicles sustained only minor damage. The police filed a report at the scene. The contact experienced two previous failures with the brakes, but no accidents resulted in the other incidents. The vehicle was taken to a dealer, but the problem could not be duplicated. However, the dealer replaced the brake pads.

- Lilburn, GA, USA

problem #5

Aug 292005

Ranger 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 22,000 miles
(1) when I (the driver) have attempted to stop the vehicle (a 2004 Ford Ranger with automatic V-6), the throttle fails to disengage and even appears to be working to overcome the brakes. This has occurred (3) times since the vehicle's purchase on July 30, 2005. (2) while the occurrences appear random in nature, the engine races, tires spin/squeal even with the brake pedal fully depressed. The problem has occurred each time when the engine is warm and always when attempting to come to a stop at low speeds, such as at a stop sign or in a parking lot. No accident has occurred yet, however, this was purely a matter of luck and timing. (3) the vehicle has been returned to the Ford dealership twice and no corrective actions have taken place, as the dealership can not duplicate the random event.

- Brownsburg, IN, USA

problem #4

Dec 152004

Ranger 4WD 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 18,700 miles
After making a right turn, the vehicle accelerated and lurched forward and crashed into a bridge. The consumer drove the vehicle home and a tow truck picked the vehicle up and took the vehicle to the dealer. The problem was not determined.

- Orchard Park, NY, USA

problem #3

Nov 162004

Ranger 4WD 6-cyl

  • Manual transmission
  • miles


The engine controller tends to hold the engine speed between 2000 and 2500 RPM when my foot is not touching the accelerator pedal. This behavior is most obvious when the clutch is depressed while changing gears. The engine RPM is held artificially high (way above normal idle) for as long as I depress the clutch, up until the point that the vehicle has coasted almost to a complete stop. I believe that the computer also does this when the clutch is engaged. For example, if I remove pressure from the accelerator pedal and allow the vehicle to coast with the clutch engaged while in third gear on a level road, the vehicle never slows down below approximately 30 mph (corresponding to approximately 2000 engine rpms). Also, while descending a hill in a low (2nd/3rd) gear using engine braking (not touching the gas pedal), I can feel the truck spontaneously accelerate. I first took the truck to the dealer for this complaint on 10/22/04. The technician confirmed the behavior, inspected various sensors, probed the computer for error codes, and eventually resorted to resetting the computer in hopes that the problem would magically disappear. This of course did not fix the problem, so I returned to the dealership on 11/16/04 with the same complaint. They researched the issue and found that it is a "normal characteristic" of the vehicle, supposedly added to the computer program to improve emissions. Aside from being annoying, I believe that this "feature" could pose a safety problem because it reduces the effectiveness and predictability of engine braking on down-hill grades. Engine braking is very important in my area because of the steep, frequently snow-covered roads.

- Silverthorne, CO, USA

problem #2

Jul 082004

Ranger 8-cyl

  • miles
While driving 45 mph vehicle suddenly accelerated. Consumer applied both feet to the brake pedal and vehicle continued to accelerate, causing the vehicle to hit an embankment and roll over more than twice. Driver and passenger sustained neck and back injuries and were transported by ambulance to the hospital. Vehicle was totaled out by the insurance company. Upon impact, the air bags did not deploy.

- San Bernadino, CA, USA

problem #1

Feb 232004


  • 750 miles
While driving vehicle suddenly accelerated on its own. This sudden acceleration occurred more than thirty times since ownership of the vehicle. Four different dealers examined the vehicle, and none of them could find the cause of the problem.

- Ripon, CA, USA

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