Notes: Most people need a car that shifts gears & coil springs that don't shred tires. The Taurus fails in that respect.

The 2003 Ford Taurus has major issues with the transmission failing. Typically the 2003 Taurus transmission failure costs $2,000 to fix by about 90k-100k miles. Not good.

Adding insult to injury, the 1999-2003 Taurus also has a huge problem with coil springs breaking which can puncture or even shred tires while driving.

The US government spent THREE YEARS (2008-2011) investigating the 2002-2003 Taurus coil springs. Although Taurus/Sable from earlier years were recalled, ultimately the NHTSA did not force a recall. They determined that because there had been no deaths & very few bad crashes & injuries, the broken coil springs defect was no big deal & not a safety defect. Tell that to all the owners who had close calls...


really awful
Crashes / Fires:
1 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
45,296 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 Ford Taurus fuel system problems

fuel system problem

Find something helpful? Spread the word.
Get notified about new defects, investigations, recalls & lawsuits for the 2003 Ford Taurus:

Unsubscribe any time. We don't sell/share your email.

2003 Ford Taurus Owner Comments

problem #8

Aug 082014

Taurus 6-cyl

  • 143,000 miles


My 2003 Ford Taurus accelerates by itself to 35-45 mph without having to touch the accelerator (note: The car will also accelerate uphill without having to press the accelerator. Also, the cruise control light works, but the cruise control itself is not engaging.

- Rincon, GA, USA

problem #7

Jun 162014

Taurus 6-cyl

  • 147,777 miles
Driving down long road, got up to 40 mph, car stayed on that speed as if it was in cruise control mode. I had the cruise control off. I even slowed down to 30, car stayed on thirty. Had foot off the gas pedal. It surges forward. I read horror stories of other year Taurus' doing same thing, causing crashes. My 16 yr old daughter drives this car. Every other car around this years date was recalled, but not the 2003. I changed my hoses, so it's not that. The car is literally staying in cruise control mode even when it's off. When I turn my steering wheel slightly to the right, I can hear a ticking sound once or twice, not sure what that is, it's scary though. Before something bad happens I want a recall for this year of Taurus regarding the cruise control being engaged.

- Moore, OK, USA

problem #6

Jun 152010

Taurus 6-cyl

  • 70,000 miles
I have a 2003 Ford Taurus since new. At about 70,000 miles it started having acceleration without touching the gas. No codes showed up. Every mechanic has a different opinion. Basically trial and error, none of which works. I have had the cruise checked, changed the throttle position sensor and the idle air valve. It still does this at 111,000. I am concerned for my wife's safety since it is her car. I read that Ford has not recognized this as a problem, but there are hundreds of similar online complaints.

- Pataskala, OH, USA

problem #5

Mar 202005


  • miles


Gas tank had to be replaced...gas leaking...tank full of holes.. heat shield also replaced.

- Erie, PA, USA

problem #4

Aug 032007

Taurus 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 2 miles
I have a 2003 Ford Taurus it is a flex fuel vehicle. We have recently gotten E85 gas in our area and I use it periodically. I have been having "starting issues" with it; over the past year it has had the iacv replaced twice, the fuel pump, the starter and the fuel filter all replaced once. The fuel filter was replaced with in the last 3 months. The car either will act like it does not want to start (sputter starting), or it will die right after putting it into drive. It happens more frequently when using the E85 gasoline, but also does it with regular gas. Ford basically has told me they have never heard of any starting or stalling problems related to ethanol fuel and have given up on fixing my problem.

- Austin, TX, USA

problem #3

Apr 152004

Taurus 6-cyl

  • miles
2003 Ford Taurus has problems with transmission, engine backfiring, hood latch is broken, and seat bracket fell off. The tires were continuously going flat. Six flats occurred while the consumer was on a trip, the transmission was slipping and would jerk in traffic, the engine would back fire intermittently and stalled on one occasion, the seat bracket was replaced by the dealer but failed again (the seat bracket was incorrectly installed from the start), the engine also displayed knocking and had taken about 9 visits before the problem was corrected, it was discovered that a valve was sticking out. The A/C did not cool, the consumer smelled coolant which leaked inside the vehicle. The tires and rims were a problem and the vehicle had been in for repairs about 18 visits/two rear tires remained a problem due to severe inflation problems and the tires would need to be inflated several times daily. The consumer requested another vehicle. The gas mileage was poor. Tire loosing air pressure from the time of purchase. The consumer was involved in an accident on 2-25-06 and the air bags failed to deploy. Updated 03/29/06.

- Corona, CA, USA

problem #2

Apr 152003


  • Automatic transmission
  • 1,591 miles
Three authorized Ford repair facilities made 5 attempts to fix or repair an inaccurate fuel guage on a 2003 Taurus SE sedan with no luck. All new parts were replaced from one end to the other to no avail. Ford Motor Company states there is no current fix, but they were working on one. This was as of 06/18/03.

- Port Richey, FL, USA

problem #1

Apr 222004


  • miles
Consumer received recall notice 04V105000 regarding air filter paper which could cause a fire. No parts were available. Mechanic informed consumer that the parts were on national back order.

- Kansas City, MO, USA

Not what you are looking for?