really awful
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
4 / 0
Average Mileage:
52,363 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 3 of 9)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #123

Feb 222012

Ram 1500 8-cyl

  • miles


Very large and sharp jagged edges coming up from a very badly cracked dashboard. There needs to be a recall on 02-09 Dodge Ram trucks. Very dangerous to driver and passengers. Especially if that vehicle is involved in an accident.

- Wafb, MO, USA

problem #122

Mar 092004

Ram 1500

  • 12,000 miles
Dash board/panel, crumbled and cracked. Literally disintegrated with vent guards falling into vents and then pieces blowing out when defroster comes on. Dealer said no warranties on dash, due it being cosmetic, offered to sell a dash cover for $200.

- Oceano , CA, USA

problem #121

Feb 082010

Ram 1500 4WD 8-cyl

  • miles
Dash started to crack slightly a couple years ago, within a few days it was all the way across the forward panel in the center. I have noticed recently that there are several other cracks that have developed in both the forward and rear portions of this dash. There are places that I can literally pull pieces out out the dash, all of the grids over the vents are so brittle that when I put my sun shield in the front window 3 of them busted out just by touching them with the shield. The condition of this dash is so bad that I fear if the passenger side airbag were to inflate it could possibly throw pieces of the dash plastic at the passenger and severely injure them. I have spoken with a parts manager at a Dodge dealership and he said that there have been problems with the dash boards of models from 1999 through 2005, but he said Dodge has made no effort to fix the problem.

- Cibolo, TX, USA

problem #120

Jan 012006

Ram 1500

  • 70,000 miles


The contact owns a 2003 Dodge Ram 1500. The contact stated that the dashboard was fractured, causing small fragments to fall into the vents. Once the ventilation system was activated, the contact stated that those small fragments would fly out of the vents and into her eyes. The dealer did not offer any assistance. The manufacturer failed to offer any assistance either since there were no recalls addressing the failure. No repairs were performed. The failure mileage was 70,000 and the current mileage was 180,000.

- Cantonment, FL, USA

problem #119

Feb 012010

Ram 1500 6-cyl Diesel

  • miles
Dash board on 2003 Dodge Ram 2500 is cracked in multiple areas. Windshield defroster vent panels have crumbled and fallen into the air handler system causing defroster to stop functioning.

- Pflugerville, TX, USA

problem #118

Oct 132010

Ram 1500

  • miles
Several months ago, I purchased a 2003 Dodge Ram 1500 from a local car salesman. The first few months were perfectly fine, however, that did not last for long. One day, I noticed a small crack above my steering wheel. I figured it was nothing and began cleaning the interior of my truck. However, when I started wiping down the dashboard, that crack spread at least five or six inches. By the end of the month, there were several cracks throughout my dashboard, some leaving pieces completely removable. Several the pieces have fell into my defrosting vents, leaving me to remove them. I quickly started looking online for replacement dashboards, and I noticed that several other people were having the same problems, some even becoming cut while trying to clean the interior. This poses a serious safety risk. If a person were to have a collision, that individual would most likely get cut by flying dash debris. It might even cost that individual his or her life. So I urge the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration to step in and fix this problem.

- Winfield , TN, USA

problem #117

Jan 042010

Ram 1500

  • 60,000 miles


The dashboard in my 2003 has alot of cracks and now pieces are falling into the vents. This is a safety hazard to have pieces of the dashboard breaking off, it's just a matter of time before the entire dashboard caves in.

- Fort Worth, TX, USA

problem #116

Jan 092012

Ram 1500 4WD 8-cyl

  • 154,000 miles
On 1/9/2012 as I was getting something out of the passenger side of the cab, I noticed a crack in the dashboard. This crack was not there the day before. It is approximately 6" long, just to the left of the glove box on the top of the dash.

- Conway, NC, USA

problem #115

Jan 082010

Ram 1500 8-cyl

  • 85,000 miles
Horrible cracks all over dashboard. Plastic is crumbling. Some parts are very sharp.

- Virginia Beach, VA, USA

problem #114

Dec 012011

Ram 1500

  • 80,000 miles
Dashboard cracked around speaker grill. Then another, now 5 cracks one by glove box that is sharp and has cut me twice. I understand that this is a continuing problem with Dodge trucks from model years 1998-2006. Shameful!!!!!!

- Lynchburg, VA, USA

problem #113

Jun 302008

Ram 1500 8-cyl

  • 60,000 miles


The grip handles and dashboard have degraded from heat and uv radiation and cracked into many sharp pieces. I cut my hand while wiping the inside of my windshield. I take blood thinners and this caused me to bleed for quite some time. I did not realize how razor sharp the edges of the broken pieces are. These would likely slice the air bag & driver/passengers faces & arms in a crash. The plastic selected by Dodge is not suitable for the purpose intended and presents a hazard. An additional hazard is the exposure of wire harnesses exposed to the direct sunlight and extreme heat. Cracked insulation will lead to electrical fires & failed operator controls. The failure is most prevalent in tropical and sub-tropical climates. The plastic used by Dodge needs to be reformulated, and sale of the faulty formulation halted immediately.

- Ruskin, FL, USA

problem #112

Dec 022010

Ram 1500

  • miles
My 2003 Dodge Ram 1500's dashboard is completely shattered without and force to it. It started cracking back in 09 and is now becoming sharp edged pieces all over my car. In the case of an accident these sharp pieces could easily do some damage to a sensitive part, such as a persons eye. If this is to happen to me, or any of the other of 1000's of people with this issue, there will be lawsuits out the ass for lack of recall. There is something obviously wrong with the dashboard in these trucks, and they need to be fixed.

- Punta Gorda, FL, USA

problem #111

Jun 012005

Ram 1500 8-cyl

  • 24,000 miles
2003 Dodge Ram 1500 dashboard cracked in less than 3 years of buying it new. According to Dodge its cosmetic but this is clearly a safety hazard when I drive. The dash has so many cracks and sharp jagged edges than can severely hurt someone. Obviously Dodge does not care about its customers once they have bought one of their vehicles. Its an obvious defect yet Dodge somehow manages to get away with poor quality at the customers expense.

- Glendale, AZ, USA

problem #110

Jan 012007

Ram 1500 8-cyl

  • 15,585 miles
The dash has a crack in it from the front to the back. The truck is like new. It only has 30,000 miles on now after eight years. Updated 10/20/11....updated 10/26/11 updated 11/08/11.

- Moore, SC, USA

problem #109

Apr 012011

Ram 1500

  • miles
Dash is disintegrating. Could be very dangerous and hurtful situation, if the air bag were to deploy, which could result in serious injury or possible fatality. Apparently, this problem has been ongoing for years. Updated 10/20/11

- Cantonment, FL, USA

problem #108

Aug 222010

Ram 1500 8-cyl

  • 88,000 miles
Severe cracking of dashboard. Cracking is so bad that pieces are falling into/inside the dash. These exposed edges are extremely sharp, posing a severe laceration hazard.

- Summerville, SC, USA

problem #107

Sep 132011

Ram 1500 8-cyl

  • 144,000 miles
Dasboard cracking - vehicle is not even 10 yrs. Old yet. Handle inside that you would grab to help yourself in has cracked and is not safe to use. My wife almost fell out of the vehicle when this handle cracked and came loose from the inside of the truck. Dashboard cracks match exactly what I have viewed on-line while investigating other owners issues with this vehicle with same problem. Obviously a common problem with this make (Dodge) of vehicle. Cannot find any info on any recall being issued. I am worried if an air bag deployed that the dash would become flying shrapnel.

- Anderson, SC, USA

problem #106

Sep 012011

Ram 1500 8-cyl

  • miles
If I were to be in an accident I am extremely concerned that the dash would fly apart with the air bag on impact seriously hurt someone, the dash is cracked badly and I have already seen chunks come out of my brothers dash this is an expensive repair.

- Greenville, SC, USA

problem #105

Jan 012007

Ram 1500

  • 58,000 miles
The contact owns a 2003 Dodge Ram. The contact stated the dashboard cover broke into pieces. The manufacturer stated the dashboard failure was not a recall and denied assistance with the repair. The vehicle was taken to the dealer who stated the dashboard cover was made of defective material. The vehicle was not repaired. The VIN was not available. The failure mileage was 58,000 and the current mileage was 120, 00.

- San Tan Valley , AZ, USA

problem #104

Aug 102011

Ram 1500

  • 120,000 miles
Dashboard on my well cared for 03 Ram 1500 has cracked and is spreading rapidly, and exposing sharp jagged edges above airbag which apparently is a well known problem on the Dodge trucks. Certainly could be a safety issue if involved in a crash.

- Nc, NC, USA

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