hardly worth mentioning
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
73,545 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 3500 drivetrain problems

drivetrain problem

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2003 Dodge Ram 3500 Owner Comments

problem #11

Oct 062005

Ram 3500 Diesel

  • Automatic transmission
  • miles


Takata recall. The contact owns a 2003 Dodge Ram 3500. The contact received notification of NHTSA campaign numbers: 05V462000 (power train), 09E001000 (steering), 13V528000 (steering), and 15V312000 (air bags). The parts to do the repairs were unavailable. The contact stated that the manufacturer exceeded a reasonable amount of time for the recall repairs. The contact called the same dealer every time since 2006. The manufacturer was made aware of the issue. The contact had not experienced a failure. Parts distribution disconnect. Updated 01/05/2017

- Rentz, GA, USA

problem #10

May 152016

Ram 3500

  • 125,000 miles
The contact owns a 2003 Dodge Ram 3500. While towing a trailer at 70 mph, the transmission seized without warning. The contact stated that the trailer jack-knifed. The vehicle was not diagnosed or repaired. The manufacturer was notified of the failure. The approximate failure mileage was 125,000.

- Bee Spring, KY, USA

problem #9

Jan 312016

Ram 3500

  • 160,000 miles
The contact owns a 2003 Dodge Ram 3500. The contact stated that the vehicle stalled and could not be shifted. The failure occurred without warning. The vehicle had to be towed to the contact's residence. The vehicle was taken to the dealer where it was diagnosed that the shifter cable fractured and needed to be replaced. The vehicle was not repaired. The manufacturer was made aware of the failure. The failure mileage was approximately 160,000.

- Monroe, GA, USA

problem #8

Oct 022015

Ram 3500

  • 60,000 miles


The contact owns a 2003 Dodge Ram 3500. The contact started the vehicle and the gear lever failed to shift into four wheel drive. The VIN was not included in NHTSA campaign number: 05V462000 (power train). The vehicle was not repaired. The manufacturer was not notified of the failure. The approximate failure mileage was 60,000.

- Mrytle Beach, SC, USA

problem #7

Jan 022015

Ram 3500

  • 230,000 miles
Was changing oil on my 03 Dodge Ram 3500 and noticed the frame rail near cab mount on drivers side was completely rusted thru with a hole approximately 2 inches long and 1/4" wide. I'm afraid to haul my goose neck trailer under these conditions. I'm afraid that additional weight could cause the frame to collapse. I don't remember seeing a recall for this condition.

- Lewisburg, OH, USA

problem #6

Mar 102003

Ram 3500

  • 0 miles
I would like to know why there is no mandate for a mechanical interlock to prevent a manual transmission from being shifted into reverse accidentally while driving. In 2003 the Dodge Ram 3500 has a 6 speed manual transmission used with the cummins 5.9 diesel motor which has no mechanical interlock to prevent being shifted into reverse when trying to shift into 5th gear. This is a very dangerous situation which is endangering owners and others on the road. I would also like to know why a manufacturer is not required to provide head restraint in the rear seats of the 2003 Dodge Ram 3500 quad cab. A passenger in the rear seat are at risk of their head slamming into the rear window which is also endangering many people. My personal information is not needed by you or any one else. The above statements are facts which speak for themselves. I know from personal experience that the auto manufacturers do not care the slightest bit about a customers concerns. They lie are arrogant and rude and vindictive. The VIN of my vehicle is not necessary info either because as far as I know all 3500 and 2500 have the same deficiencies.

- Olympia, WA, USA

problem #5

Dec 282013

Ram 3500

  • 130,000 miles


The contact owns a 2003 Dodge Ram 3500. The contact was driving 55 mph when the vehicle began to jerk without warning. The vehicle was taken to a dealer and an independent mechanic for inspection but no diagnosis was determined. The vehicle was not repaired. The manufacturer was not notified. The approximate failure mileage was 130,000.

- Tyndall, SD, USA

problem #4

Feb 122010

Ram 3500

  • 104,000 miles
Was driving about 70 mph and the transmission and transfer case fell off the truck.

- Medford, NY, USA

problem #3

Aug 061998

Ram 3500

  • miles
Not sure if this is a safety problem. 90 percent of the times that I attempt to start my vehicle, I have to readjust the gear swift. It appears to have swifted to neutral or drive. I start noticing this in August, 2008.

- Coffeeville, MS, USA

problem #2

Oct 072003

Ram 3500

  • miles
Poor fuel mileage in comparison to several other Dodge's of the same year. While pulling a trailer at 63 mph the vehilce had a low of 6.85 mpg. On average the vehicle got 7.5-8.0 mpg loaded and 12-14 mpg empty. The dealer reflashed the computer. The vehicle was returned to the consumer but now it was missing. The vehicle was taken to another dealer. The truck was left there for a week but they were unable to determined the problem. The vehicle was ereturned to the consumer. The dealer contacted the cosumer to bring the vehicle back to the dealer to perform service suggested by the manufacturer. On the way to the dealer the truck started blowing transmision fluid through the radiator overflow. The dealer had to rebuild the transmission, replace the radiator and transmission cooler. The U-joint at the rear axle snapped which caused the drive shaft to collapse onto the highway. The fuel lift pump failed which caused the vehicle to stall while driving. Transmission cooler line leaked.

- Fontana, KS, USA

problem #1

Apr 202004

(reported on)

Ram 3500 4WD 8-cyl

  • miles
Numerous problems with 2003 Dodge Ram since ownership. The consumer experienced a stalling problem that occurred whenever the vehicle was coming to a stop or idling. The vehicle was taken to the dealer who could not diagnose the problem. Power steering fluid leaked due to faulty clamp. The vehicle was leaking transmission fluid due to a faulty output seal at the transfer case.

- Warren, MI, USA

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