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definitely annoying
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
39,286 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 Mitsubishi Eclipse body / paint problems

body / paint problem

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2003 Mitsubishi Eclipse Owner Comments

problem #14

Sep 012015


  • 150,000 miles


The contact owns a 2003 Mitsubishi Eclipse. The contact stated that while driving, there was an odor of fuel present. The vehicle was not diagnosed or repaired. The contact also indicated that water had leaked from the floor board causing the brake pedal to become slippery. In addition, the vehicle would not start. While checking the battery connection the contact discovered that the battery cable was smoking and had melted. The vehicle was taken an independent mechanic who diagnosed that the air conditioning hose that failed caused the water leak. The vehicle was repaired. The manufacturer was not notified of the failure. The failure mileage was 150,000.

- Charlston, SC, USA

problem #13

Feb 152009


  • 109,000 miles
The contact owns a 2003 Mitsubishi Eclipse. The contact stated that the hatch back and sun roof had water leakage. In addition, the check engine warning light illuminated. The vehicle was not diagnosed or repaired. The manufacturer was notified of the failure. The approximate failure mileage was 109,000.

- Marietta , GA, USA

problem #12

Mar 052012

Eclipse 4-cyl

  • miles
I have a 2003 sterling silver metallic Eclipse which I purchased new in 2002. I have noticed that the paint on my hood, roof and truck have started to delaminate and the primer is starting to show through. I only have 73,000 miles on this vehicle. I have noticed a lot of other 2003 Eclipses with the same problem, in the same color as mine and also in black. I went to the dealer where I purchased my Eclipse and was told that Mitsubishi was having a paint issue for this model. I am hoping that Mitsubishi will stand behind their name and make this right. I also purchased a 2003 Chevy Silverado in 2002 and that paint job looks like the day I drove it off the lot. I should have bought 2 of them.

- Palatine, IL, USA

problem #11

Mar 102009


  • miles


I have had the car since 2003 or 04, and kept the car covered when I didn't drive it much, but for weekends I used the car for errands. Last year I started to drive the car more often and did not cover the car as much, but continued to wash and wax the car when needed. I started to notice fading spots on the hood on the black paint, but did not do anything about it, but continued to wash and wax the car as usual. This year, around March, I noticed the color started to get more white and it was spreading half way on the hood near the windshield side. Now the paint is also chipping within the white spots exposing the undercoating. The fading on the paint is also noticeable on the trunk and side panels on the top.

- Concord, CA, USA

problem #10

Jun 142004


  • 19,000 miles
Purchased 2003 silver Eclipse gs with 5000 miles in June 2003. With in 12 months, paint was showing signs of wear and flaking off exposing primer coat. This deterioration progressed quickly and after 5 years hood, roof and rear quarter panels are almost completely down to primer. I am filing now to hopefully raise the number of complaints to the point where somebody realizes this is not an isolated incident but a systemic defect for which Mitsubishi should be held accountable.

- Danbury, CT, USA

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problem #9

May 062009


  • 32,000 miles
Purchased brand new 2003 Eclipse in 2004. I am experiencing paint delamination and it's spreading rapidly. Went to the Mitsubishi dealer after finding out many others are experiencing this problem. They took pictures and said they will contact Mitsubishi. I was notified the next day that my car has been declined any help due to expiration in warranty.

- Kent, WA, USA

problem #8

Dec 212007


  • 69,000 miles


The contact owns a 2003 Mitsubishi Eclipse. When the contact bought the vehicle, she noticed that the paint was fading from gray to white. Through online research, she found a few complaints about the same defect on her vehicle. The dealer stated that there was a recall for the vehicle's paint, but her vehicle was excluded since it was purchased in 2006. The vehicle is currently at the insurance company, but would have to be repaired at the owner's expense. The VIN was unknown. The failure and current mileages were 69,000.

- Las Vegas, NV, USA

problem #7

Feb 262008


  • miles
I own a 2003 Mitsubishi Eclipse gts and I have noticed on the top of my roof that my black paint is turning white! it is very noticeable. I have done a lot of research online and found out that I am one of hundreds with this same problem. I have also found that company does not take responsibility and blames it on the road, salt, and birds. A car that is this new should not be having paint problems! I am extremely disappointed with Mitsubishi and will not be a continuing customer if the problem is not fixed. I am hoping Mitsubishi takes full responsibility in fitting the paint.

- Lisbon Falls, ME, USA

problem #6

Mar 282008


  • 60,000 miles
I noticed recently that a section of the roof on my car was whitish in color. Quite apparent as my car is black in color. I have heard and read from many sources that this issue was prevalent in 2003 models and obviously mine is not exempt much to my disappointment. I hope that Mitsubishi steps up to the plate to correct this manufacturer defect.

- Sylvan Lake, MI, USA

problem #5

May 012007


  • miles
I purchased a black 2003 Mitsubishi Eclipse and the entire car looks terrible because of peeling paint and white spots all over it. I was told by an auto body specialist that it because of a clear coat failure. I have taken really good care of the car and it is garaged in the winter. Mitsubishi needs to take responsibility and repaint my car.

- Jaffrey, NH, USA

problem #4

Aug 012006


  • miles


Bad paint on 2003 Mitsubishi. Dealer will not do anything about it. Mitsubishi knows they are responsible for the bad paint and needs to fix all complaints.

- Myrtle Beach, SC, USA

problem #3

Jul 092006

Eclipse 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 67,000 miles
I purchased the 2003 Mitsubishi Eclipse new off the lot in April 2003. I have taken care of the car with regular washes and attempts to keep it clean. Last year started noticing light grey spots developing on the top of the car behind the sun roof. Now, just a year later, the spots increased and are now located all over the car. Every day they appear to be getting wide R and larger in size. I have had many paint chips knocked off the front of the car in just normal driving conditions and those spots are now also starting to rust. I am very upset about this as I spent good money on this car thinking it would be a reputable company. I have never had a car this new start experiencing such paint problems. There is no excuse for this. I have completed research online about the paint problems with Mitsubishi, and it appeared I wa S not alone. There have been many owners of Mitsubishi cars that have complained of a paint problem, (especially with the black paint, in the year my car was manufactured. I would never purchase another Mitsubishi after this experience and would never recommend anyone purchase one as Mitsubishi is not being cooperative in fixing or admitting there is even a problem when obviously there is. There was no way without a new paint job that I could even sell my vehicle and make my money off of it. I am so extremely disappointed with Mitsubishi and their product.

- Palmyra, VA, USA

problem #2

Jun 062006

Eclipse 4-cyl

  • Manual transmission
  • 44,000 miles
There was no incident, crash or injury. I purchased a black 2003 Mitsubishi Eclipse, in 2005, which had 40000 mi on nit. The paint was ok at time of purchase. Unknown to me, Mitsubishi vehicles from 1999-2004 have defective primer which causes the paint to flake off in large quantities. I had the vehicle less than a year when the paint starting coming off. The manufacturers aware of the problem, but only fixes some of the vehicles. My claim was denied. I believe these vehicles should be recalled due to defective paint.

- Piqua, OH, USA

problem #1

Jun 102003

Eclipse 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • miles
I would like to file a complaint regarding my Mitsubishi Eclipse gts 2003. The product has not performed well because during the six months that I have had my brand new car, I had to bring it for several repairs. First, the car went to the shop at Mitsubishi bosak Chicago for a loose bolt, second the car had a leak on the coolant system, third the wheel was no longer aligned, and fourth the rear defroster does not defrost properly. I am very disappointed of that matter because one of the reason I invested my money in buying a brand new car and choosing Mitsubishi so I donT have to spend more time in the shop for repair and spend more cash. The car was only six months old and already experiencing a lot of problems, now the car has been a year and I brought the car back to Mitsubishi bosak dealer to have the rear light fixed because water was going inside and still waiting to have the sunroof to be fix because it does not operate properly and the axle of the car needs to be replace. They wouldnT replace it right away because the mechanic stated that we have to wait for the item to be delivered. What if during that time of wait something happen to the car? (may god forbid) I have before try to complain with the Mitsubishi headquarter in California, but the person wouldnT do anything. I feel very unsafe of my car. I think that the company should check their entire product before selling it to the public. Driving my Eclipse is something that I fear because I never know something might happen because of the carS defect.

- Chicago, IL, USA

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