hardly worth mentioning
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
47,191 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 Land Rover Range Rover drivetrain problems

drivetrain problem

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2003 Land Rover Range Rover Owner Comments (Page 1 of 3)

problem #47

May 242008

Range Rover

  • 50,330 miles


I was on the 405 highway driving South bound when my new 2003 Range rover hse lost all of its acceleration. The front differential of the car had given out. When it happened it was a total surprise. A couple of weeks prior the front wheels began to squeak as if I needed new front breaks which I did and thought that was the issue. But now I found myself swerving through 5 lanes of traffic with no acceleration to go from the hov lane over to the far right lane and onto the shoulder. A very dangerous maneuver to make with very little vehicle control. I took my car to a certified rover repair shop and they said to have a front differential kit that will never break or snap and if it does it's 100% lifetime warranty. Now I ask, why can't Land Rover use the same kit" why can't they develop a stronger and safer differential shaft for its vehicles"

- Marina Del Rey, CA, USA

problem #46

May 212008

Range Rover

  • 50,000 miles
Front differential went out. I was on an incline, truck made a loud noise, display read put truck in neutral and it stopped, though the emergency brake worked little if at all.

- South Orange, NJ, USA

problem #45

Mar 242008

Range Rover 8-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 44,950 miles
Front differential failed on my 2003 Land Rover Range rover while driving which caused an emergency stop that could have resulted in injury to myself and others on the road. Apparently this is a recurring problem with 2003 and 2004 Range rovers and yet no recall has been done. The dealership replaced the front differential as my vehicle was under warranty but at great cost of time to myself.

- Houston, TX, USA

problem #44

Mar 062008

Range Rover 4WD 8-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 87,932 miles


Front differential and drive shaft failed while driving at 65 miles per hour.

- Phoenix, MD, USA

problem #43

Apr 122008

Range Rover 4WD 8-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 66,103 miles
Driving 2003 Land Rover, Range rover. Driving 60 mph on a highway and felt a strange thump. I started to smell burying and the car felt different. I drove on for another 30 miles and started to hear a low grinding when accelerating. I parked my car at home that evening, planning to take the car to the dealer the next morning. In the morning I started the 5 mile drive to the dealer and the grinding was worse. Coming down from speed at a stop light, at around 5 mph, my front wheels locked up and I screeched to a stop in the middle of the road. The car could not be moved from where it was. The flatbed had to deag it up onto the truck. When I reached the dealer by tow they told it was the front differential that locked up and that it was fairly common. I was lucky I was not involved in a crash the way the vehicle suddenly locked up.

- Medford , NJ, USA

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problem #42

Apr 062008

Range Rover 4WD 8-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 36,000 miles
My 2003 Range rover with 36K miles has a defective front end differential which is a known problem in models from 2003-2005, yet no recall. Orig my extended warranty refused to cover claim.

- Dallas, TX, USA

problem #41

Nov 242007

Range Rover 8-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 70,000 miles


First occurrence - driving in residential neighborhood about 10-15mph. My 2003 rr made a big clunking noise then immediately followed and awful screeching noise. I was unable to drive, truck instantly stopped and screen stated put in neutral. I was stranded on side of road waiting for a tow truck with my 3 children, the youngest was 4 months. Second occurrence - less than 1 year later, I was on vacation in cleveland Ohio thanksgiving time. Driving about 30 mph and the same exact noise happened and instantly the truck stopped, I knew exactly what it was. It was 11:30 pm, I called my insurance company and there were no tow companies open. Finally someone came to assist me and pushed my 7000lb truck into an empty lot until the next day. When the help arrived they parked about 3 feet behind my truck, not knowing the truck was not safe in park my truck drifted back and hit his new BMW truck. Both times the differential went up I had to pay for it! over $2500 both times not to mention the cost to tow my truck back to md from Ohio $1600. I must say that when my truck arrived at the shop all of the mechanics knew about the issue with rr's and their differentials. This is so sad, there is no warning it just happens. I expected so much more from Range rover, the name to me means quality but this vehicle has not lived up to its name. Not to mention that the company has not acknowledged that this is a common issue with these vehicles and they still will not take ownership of this defect. There are many more stories like this, coincidental as it seems my good friend with a 2004 rr differential went up the same day as mine, luckily she was still covered under warranty.

- Randallstown, MD, USA

problem #40

Feb 042008

Range Rover 4WD 8-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 79,800 miles
On 02/04/2008 my shaft/differential broke in my vehicle for the third time. Twice in the past it was fix under warranty and this occurrence it was not.

- Alpharetta, GA, USA

problem #39

Feb 122008

Range Rover 4WD

  • Automatic transmission
  • 72,500 miles
Driving at 55 miles an hour and car started making loud searing noises and could not press on the accelerator, sounded like the engine was going to fall out. Car said to slip it into neutral, which I did, then it came to an abrupt stop. Pretty scary going 55 miles an hour. Had no prior warning just happened within seconds.

- Anthem, AZ, USA

problem #38

Feb 032008

Range Rover 8-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 97,532 miles
Driving at 80mph passing a tractor trailer on interstate 380 North, my front axle and drive shaft gave out almost causing me to loose control of vehicle and run into the truck. Luckily I was able to get control and guide vehicle to the side of the road. Vehicle was inoperable and had to be towed. This is the second time this part has failed on this vehicle as it was repaired by previous owner only 10K miles ago.

- Owego, NY, USA

problem #37

Dec 012006

Range Rover 4WD 8-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 38,470 miles


Front diff failure. Stripped spline on drive shaft (aka propeller shaft).

- Colorado Springs, CO, USA

problem #36

Jan 112008

Range Rover 8-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 111,000 miles
At traffic light I heard a grinding sound in transmission, moved gear from drive to N to hear it again. As light changed the driveshaft disengaged from the transmission, coasted across traffic to service station, but unable to move rear of vehicle out of traffic. Passersby helped push me and my child out of the intersection. I believe this is the 2nd differential failure for this vehicle.

- West Monroe, LA, USA

problem #35

Dec 122007

Range Rover 8-cyl

  • miles
Landrover rangerover hse 2003 we broke down in this car twice, the differential failed. 4/19/08 12/20/07.

- North Salem, NY, USA

problem #34

Jan 082008

Range Rover 4WD 8-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 59,201 miles
(1)excessive noise and vibration at front end of vehicle (2)front differential failure/front driveshaft spline misaligned with input spline on differential. (3)front drive shaft and differential replaced.

- North Ridgeville, OH, USA

problem #33

Jan 082008

Range Rover 8-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 56,000 miles
Husband had 2003 Ranger rover hse vehicle in drive & waiting to go at a 4-way intersection. Suddenly, he hears a loud noise and vehicle is stuck (motionless), no acceleration. There was no forewarning noise or indication previously to be aware of such a potential incident. Vehicles has approx. 56K miles vehicle was towed to vacant housing parking lot(to get out of traffic) then had to towed to Land Rover dealership(same day). Service department has diagnosed vehicle to have front differential failure.

- Anchorage, AK, USA

problem #32

Dec 192007

Range Rover 4WD 8-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 43,272 miles
My son was driving on the 105 freeway in the carpool lane when my 2003 Range rover suddenly made metal noises and failed. He narrowly avoided being hit and was able to pull to the side. Front drive shaft and differential or slip differential was to blame. This was supposed to have been fixed by Land Rover during my service in May 2004 due to many complaints of failure and vehicle suddenly stopping even at high freeway speed. With the help of police and aaa, my car was towed to nearest Range rover authorized mechanic in culver city, California. Since my car only recently crossed 40,000 miles, it was no longer under warranty. Cost to fix was $2700. We called Land Rover to complain that this should not have happened if it was already fixed. They wanted my car to be towed to thousand oaks dealer since that's where the original fix took place in May 2004. Land Rover of North America informed us they would pay for a portion of the repairs and the balance of $600 would be our responsibility. After much investigation on the internet and discussions with other Range rover owners, I discovered that the so-called fix was just a modified fix so it would last till after 40,000 miles and no longer under warranty. This could have been a very serious accident and my son could have been badly injured as he had no control over the vehicle on the freeway. This problem needs to be addressed before anyone gets seriously hurt or even die. It is a well known issue of front differential failure among mechanics that I have talked to.

- Calabasas, CA, USA

problem #31

Nov 152006

Range Rover 4WD 8-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 65,000 miles
Front differential failure. No prior warning. Failed on roadway at approximately 25/mph to 30/mph. Truck completely disabled. No power from engine to wheels. I was able to get to shoulder of roadway (coasting) without causing accident. Land Rover paid for repair under warranty. Dealer provided loaner for duration of repair. (I am not sure of incident date and miles as I traded vehicle in on a 2005 which is the subject of complaint ODI 10213308. I have used approximations for dates.)

- Sandy, UT, USA

problem #30

Dec 172007

Range Rover 4WD 8-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 53,866 miles
Front differential total failure.

- West Warick, RI, USA

problem #29

Oct 232007

Range Rover 8-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 36,008 miles
I purchased this 2003 Range rover with 19,000 miles February 2007. It currently has 36,008 miles and the transfer case differential and drive shaft needed to be replaced. The car had a catastrophic failure stopped at a traffic light, and was in gear at the time. They had to replace the drive shaft and differential. Time in service is not the issue with the low miles on this vehicle. The only wear and tear that could occur would be through usage. The warranty is 50,000 miles or 4 years. This vehicle is not even close to the mileage limitation.

- Perrineville, NJ, USA

problem #28

Nov 232007

Range Rover 4WD 8-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 77,000 miles
Front differential catastrophic failure while driving 65 mph on us 290. 1 adult driver, 1 3 month old boy, 1 4 yr old girl no warning signs. Front wheels locked up for a moment almost causing an accident on moderately busy freeway, then was able to have vehicle coast to a stop following loud noise.

- Austin, TX, USA

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