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...


hardly worth mentioning
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
98,238 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 suspension problems

suspension problem

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2003 Ford Taurus Owner Comments (Page 7 of 8)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #27

Jan 112009


  • 91,000 miles


Loading car for vacation lf coil spring broke in driveway damaged L/F tire this being the only incident which made the car inoperable. Vehicle towed to garage and is now being repaired. Parts are available.

- Mercer, PA, USA

problem #26

Jan 022009


  • 82,000 miles
My son drove 3 1/2 hrs to go back to college, the next time he used the car when he took off the coil spring broke and punctured the tire, if this would of happened on his travel back it could of resulted in death. He is in the process of trying to get the car fixed at a hefty price, they are suggesting that all need to be replaced because this will happen again. This is a dangerous situation.

- Marshfield, WI, USA

problem #25

Jan 042009


  • 75,000 miles
While backing out of my driveway, I heard a loud noise. I got out to investigate and found I had a flat tire on the driver's side. Upon further investigation I discovered that the spring had broken and ripped my tire. This is the same exact thing that happened to my wife's car twice. Luckily I had enough space to put the spare tire on and pull it back into the driveway. I am going to call the dealer tomorrow and work on getting it fixed. I don't think that there is a recall yet on this year, although there definitely should be. I'm just thankful we chose not to take it on our Florida trip, who knows where we would've been stranded or if we would've gotten into a terrible accident on the highway.

- Chippewa Lake, OH, USA

problem #24

Feb 202007


  • 75,000 miles


This was the second time my Ford Taurus front spring failed, the first time was one year earlier. I was slowing down to pull into the driveway when I heard a loud noise, stopped, looked to see if I could find anything wrong, I couldn't tell, so I drove into the driveway and parked it. This one was the driver side. Luckily this time it was only the spring and strut and not the tire also. The first time I was backing out of a parking spot and I heard a loud noise, that one ripped up the tire also. In both situations, I had it towed and repaired. When I called Ford I was told that year wasn't covered under the recall, even though I argued that it was the same problem as the recalled ones. They wouldn't cover the repairs, so I had to pay for it myself. It makes no sense that it's the same exact problem as the recalled vehicles, yet they refuse to add a recall for this model year.

- Chippewa Lake, OH, USA

problem #23

Dec 312008


  • 68,000 miles
My 2003 Ford Taurus sel experienced a failure (fracture) of the front suspension coil spring on the drivers side (left) which caused a puncture in the adjacent tire. The vehicle was being parked at the time the tire was punctured by the protruding fractured spring and deflated. The vehicle will be repaired soon; however, I will retain photos of the broken part on the vehicle and the old part. My experience is the same as those described in NHTSA action no. EA08018.

- Goshen, IN, USA

problem #22

Dec 252008


  • 76,400 miles
Front left coil spring broke while the vehicle was parked in my garage.  the spring punctured the tire and also I had to replace the sway bar link.  this was damaged when the spring broke.  the mechanic recommended replacing the entire strut assembly on both sides.

- Greensburg, PA, USA

problem #21

Dec 262008


  • 85,000 miles


Coil spring broke and took out brand new tire on a 2003 Ford Taurus. No signs of wear and tear, let go when still in driveway, pulled car into reverse and the spring broke and went through the tire.

- Somerset, PA, USA

problem #20

Dec 162008


  • 101,000 miles
I took the car into a Ford dealer on 2 occasions in the last 6 months complaining of a bouncy ride. Asked for the struts to be looked at. Dealer says they found nothing wrong. Less than 3000 miles after last visit, left front strut self destructed. I went out to the car, started it up, put it in gear and heard a loud crashing noise similar to a glass gallon jug being thrown to the ground. The car was not moved forward even an inch as the brake was applied while putting it in forward gear. Then another loud bam and the front of the car came down. Visual inspection found that the left front strut spring exploded and blew out the tire. All 4 struts were replaced with aftermarket parts as Ford is still selling the same version of the strut and spring. Parts were disposed of.

- Copley, OH, USA

problem #19

Dec 202008


  • 92,865 miles
Driver side front coil spring broke on 12/20/2008 puncturing tire. Part of broken coil spring has rust line all the way through. Have not had repaired yet.

- Elbridge, NY, USA

problem #18

Dec 152008


  • 36,942 miles
When backing out of my garage to leave for work in the morning I heard a loud popping and screech coming from the left front wheel. I stopped and got out of the car and found my tire flat. Upon inspection by my mechanic it was discovered that the left front coil spring just snapped without warning causing a large tear in the tire. It was very fortunate that this happened when I was in my driveway and not on the highway at high speed. This could have caused a very bad accident. My mechanic said that it will need a new spring and a new tire. Since my front tires are winter tires I will probably have to purchase two to match.

- Syracuse, NY, USA

problem #17

Dec 132008


  • 59,264 miles


My 2003 Ford Taurus experienced coil spring failure. I put my car into reverse and the coil spring broke putting a 4 inch gash in my nokian winter tires. I have taken the vehicle to the dealership, the capital Lincoln Mercury on 100 pearl street in essex junction, vt 05452. I am replacing the struts and coil springs along with the stabilizer link on the driver side and also replacing the struts and coil spring on the driver side. I also had to replace the winter tires on the front since the left front tire was ruptured and although the passenger tire was still good to balance out placing a new winter on just one side would have made the balance off. The total price was approximately $900. In doing research I see that Ford has had multiple problems with their coil springs and there have been recalls before on this defective product. The 2003 Ford Taurus has not yet been recalled although this problem has occurred on the 2003 Ford Taurus.

- Colchester, VT, USA

problem #16

Dec 132008


  • 100,445 miles
I went to back my 2003 Ford Taurus out of the garage and heard a loud noise followed by air coming from my left front tire. While jacking the car up, I noticed that the coil spring was against the tire and then realized that part of the spring had punctured the tire. The spring had broken into two pieces. The plastic stabilizer link was also broken.

- Chagrin Falls, OH, USA

problem #15

Dec 092008


  • 70,000 miles
The contact owns a 2003 Ford Taurus. While the vehicle was parked, the contact heard a noise coming from the front driver's side tire. He noticed that the tire was completely flat. The failure occurred without warning. The vehicle was towed to an independent mechanic, who stated that the failure was related to the coil spring. The vehicle was repaired. The failure and current mileages were 70,000.

- Homer Glen, IL, USA

problem #14

Dec 022008


  • 104,000 miles
Sudden blow out of left (drivers)T front tire while back up. Tire was removed and stuck on front spring. Inspection of front spring reveals the spring broke into two peices. The lower rung of the spring was found under the vehicle. Not repaires at this time waiting for Ford service to contact if Ford will cover repair.

- Brownstown Twp, MI, USA

problem #13

Nov 262008


  • 85,500 miles
Today is thanksgiving. I drove home on Tuesday night (two nights ago), a trip of approximately 500 miles from college to see my family. Last night, as I put my 2003 Ford Taurus into drive in my church parking lot, I began to go forward and heard a gigantic "boom." I stopped the vehicle, and noticed that my front right tire was flat (a new, and expensive tire). After attempting to take the tire off, I discovered that my coil spring on my strut snapped and came through my tire. I have learned that this problem is not recalled, and I think, with it being so common and the part being junk, it should be recalled. I am going to the dealer tomorrow to try to resolve the problem.

- Rittman, OH, USA

problem #12

Nov 222008


  • 58,130 miles
I have a 2003 Ford Taurus with 58,000 miles on it. I was in my garage and just started to back out when I heard a loud bang. The front left tire blew out. After pulling off the tire I discovered that the spring broke and punctured the tire. If I had bin going down the highway my 9 year old son and I could have been seriously injured or even killed. I went online and saw that hundreds of other Ford Taurus owners had the exact same problem with the springs snapping. This is a huge safety issue on a national scale. Everyone on the websites are saying that Ford had a recall until the 2001 model year. I put my VIN # into the Ford Motor Company's website and searched for a recall but nothing came up. It looks like they sold a defective product and are not stepping up to make their customer's whole.

- Upper St. Clair, PA, USA

problem #11

Jul 232008


  • 58,248 miles
Found flat tire resulting from broken front left coil spring piercing side wall of tire.

- Wurtsboro, NY, USA

problem #10

Aug 302008


  • 144,946 miles
Have a 2003 Ford Taurus that broke the front spring that shredded the tire there was a recall on older models this problem must not of been fixed. This broke as soon as wife turned off the highway if this would of happened at high speed it could of been bad.

- Albany, OH, USA

problem #9

Jun 062008


  • 58,960 miles
My wife started to drive the car and heard a scraping noise. Then the right front tire blew out. The right front spring had broken while the vehicle was parked and punctured the tire when she attempted to drive the car.

- St. Louis Park, MN, USA

problem #8

Jun 302008


  • 146,000 miles
Front coil spring broke, punctured my tire and broke the stabilizer arm. Had just parked my car when this happened. Thank god we weren't hurt.

- Limington, ME, USA

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