The Ford Ranger falls far short of modern pickup-truck standards. It's ungainly and stiff-riding; has a rough and noisy, inefficient engine; and a cramped, uncomfortable cabin. The interior is crudely finished. Compact dimensions and a usefully sized bed are the Ranger's only pluses. Even if you took thousands off its list price, the Ranger still would not be a bargain.
There are 5 recalls on this vehicle. Learn More.

Overall Owner Satisfaction

Consumer Reports’ Annual Owner Satisfaction Survey can improve the chances of finding a compatible car match. How? Our survey data reveals whether, all things considered, owners would buy the same car again. The answer to that question is what determines our owner-satisfaction rating, which is a powerful piece of intel because it predicts how well a particular model will satisfy other owners.

Overall Owner Satisfaction

Owner Satisfaction with:

Driving Experience

Includes acceleration and handling

What Owners Say

"Response time a bit slow, but this is an older model. No accidents or near misses; I do a lot of mountain driving with this Ranger."

Anonymous, CO (2003 Ford Ranger)

"It is an overall good run about. I like the 4.0 liter Moyer."

Anonymous, CA (2003 Ford Ranger)

"The front shock absorbers are a little mushy."

Anonymous, UT (2003 Ford Ranger)

"Has great accelration and handles run great,much more power than my old 3.0 Ranger."

Barry C., NY (2003 Ford Ranger)

"The 2.3 4-cyl engine is SLOW! And, it defines the meaning of the phrase "drives like a truck"."

John C., GA (2003 Ford Ranger)

"This is a very capable mid sized truck. It has proven very reliable and useful, but economy could be improved."

Daneil G., NC (2003 Ford Ranger)

"The acceleration and handling are good considering its age and mileage. I have only had to replace a few parts in the front suspension when the bushings wore out. It was a simple repair I could do myself."

Paul J., TX (2003 Ford Ranger)

"acceleration is good, handles well, but light in the back. rear wheel drive vehicle. put tube sand (6-10 tubes) in back for winter driving"

Anonymous, OH (2003 Ford Ranger)

"Answered this on previous page."

Sandy P., NC (2003 Ford Ranger)

"Very stable and capable both on and off road. Great size for my needs - hauls enough with out being too big."

Robert P., TX (2003 Ford Ranger)

"It kicks butt with handling and acceleration and I love the size. The new small trucks are much bigger than the Ranger I own and I live in central Denver so this truck is perfect to drive and park."

Bruce M., CO (2003 Ford Ranger)

"Truck is definitely underpowered. Should have bough one with the larger engine."

Anonymous, GA (2003 Ford Ranger)

"turning on a bump destabilizes vehicle"

Anonymous, WA (2003 Ford Ranger)

"It has the power and speed of a race car with a truck bed on it...much better acceleration and top end speed than my old truck."

Anonymous, TX (2003 Ford Ranger)

"The turning radius is too large. It is hard to park."

WALTER T., MD (2003 Ford Ranger)

"Rear end is too light and tires spin on wet pavement."

DOUGLAS D., TX (2003 Ford Ranger)

"The manual transmission works well and 4cyl engine gives me good mpg, up to 32 mpg on open road. However, the 4 cyl engine is unable to accelerate quickly and it is sluggish driving up steep inclines such as traveling over mt passes. That said, it does the job ok and I've traveling over mt pass many times sucessfully."

HEIDI P., WA (2003 Ford Ranger)

"Very good acceleration."

LEON B., NJ (2003 Ford Ranger)

"It is a small truck, which we love because we live in central Denver. I just wish truck makers would keep this size. The new small trucks are too big. This drives well, and we use it to HAUL materials for renovations and it does well off road. The pick-up and acceleration does well in the mountains."

Bruce M., CO (2003 Ford Ranger)


Herb K., WI (2003 Ford Ranger)

"Engine. Value for the dollar"

Anonymous, IL (2003 Ford Ranger)

"Stand-out is that the only problem encountered has been the CPS sensor drive started to be noisy and was replaced by me for less than $100. The fuel pump failed and appeared to be half melted away. I credit this situation because I was using E-85, which the vehicle was supposed to be certified for."

William S., NV (2003 Ford Ranger)

"Had good luck with it."

Anonymous, CT (2003 Ford Ranger)

"It's fun to drive and handles very well for a truck as it is not big and bulky. Still has a bit of pep when hitting the gas."

Anonymous, PA (2003 Ford Ranger)

"It has a V6. Otherwise, it's a good, reliable, basic truck. Nothing particular in handling. Reliable"

Anonymous, NC (2003 Ford Ranger)


Includes seats, climate control, noise, and ride

What Owners Say

"Most comfortable car I ever owned"

Anonymous, MD (2003 Ford Ranger)

"road noise is high. Replaced tires but no improvement."

David C., NS (2003 Ford Ranger)

"harsh ride and rattles over bumps"

Anonymous, SC (2003 Ford Ranger)

"Average comfort ride ,good handling"

James W., TX (2003 Ford Ranger)

"The seats have a bench like feel to them and are somewhat hard. The 89 ranger we had prior to this one had very comfortable seats."

Jeannie K., OR (2003 Ford Ranger)

"Two full seats along with the middle area under the console. Comfortable for two, tight squeeze for three. Bouncy on roads if there's no weight in the bed."

Anonymous, OH (2003 Ford Ranger)

"The ride is poor but acceptable for a truck of its age."

Paul J., TX (2003 Ford Ranger)

"The shocks are always a little bouncy and I have had the whole suspension checked a few times because I feel it is not solid enough. However, my mechanic says everything is good. The size and reliability for short errands and hauling has been good. There isn't a better small truck on the market for the price."

Anonymous, MO (2003 Ford Ranger)

"Fold up seats in back are less than desirable for anyone other than a child."

J T., CO (2003 Ford Ranger)

"The noise level inside the cab is very high. when your in a turn at highway speeds the door to the inside of the turn is noisey!"

RANDY W., MO (2003 Ford Ranger)

"The steering wheel controls for the cruise control was poorly made. The switches on both sides of the steering wheel just disintegrated a little at a time. The housing for the buttons started cracking, thus the buttons came loose and then to top it off the whole switch assemblies on both sides broke their mountings on the switch side of the part. You had to literally pick up which ever one of the switches you wanted to operate, hold it in your hand and press the button because the only thing ke"

DENNIS F., AR (2003 Ford Ranger)

"The ride is a little rough but tollerable"

ROBERT W., MD (2003 Ford Ranger)

"Rough ride, poor traction in inclement weather."

Anonymous, MD (2003 Ford Ranger)

"split bench seat console/cup-holder is poor design."

Anonymous, VA (2003 Ford Ranger)

"This is a noisy, rough riding typical truck that is not fun to drive"

Anonymous, GA (2003 Ford Ranger)

"Very firm and comfortable front seats. Vehicle sits nice and high like a 4-wheel drive model; yet it is only 2-wheel drive for better gas mileage."

Norm R., MI (2003 Ford Ranger)

"for a truck seats noise and ride is nice"

Michael B., CT (2003 Ford Ranger)

"It is a great small truck and there are still a lot of them on the road. I keep waiting for Ford to bring their new one to the US. However, I read that they want us all to buy their F150. I do not want one. It's too big and expensive. We use this truck for Biking and to carry large loads for gardening. Haven't found a good replacement for the price."

Anonymous, MO (2003 Ford Ranger)

"Seats are comfortable, ride is very good, even for a 4-wheel drive. (depending on the type of tires that are on it) handles and maneuvers very-well in situations."

Kenneth R., OH (2003 Ford Ranger)

"The Ranger rides like a small truck and for it's age, is still somewhat comfortable. You are not being jostled all over when on a rough road."

Anonymous, PA (2003 Ford Ranger)

"Ranger has good sized and supportive seats. Has a quiet and smooth ride, especially considering is a smaller pickup truck The engine is quiet (V-6) and runs smoothly"

William S., NV (2003 Ford Ranger)


Did you get what you wanted relative to the price you paid?

What Owners Say

"Great performance and reliability. Example: the original Motorcraft factory battery lasted nine years before it had to be replaced."

Anonymous, UT (2003 Ford Ranger)

"Considering I only paid $9,995.00 for this truck brand new in 2003 it has been an incredible value. It is a very simple and "bare bones" contractor special. It serves this purpose perfectly."

John C., GA (2003 Ford Ranger)

"It is easy riding. I use it when I need to haul big items in the back and can lock the cover for protection. It is a stylish looking pickup."

Anonymous, NE (2003 Ford Ranger)

"best pickup I ever owned...would recommend this truck to everyone."

Douglas V., NV (2003 Ford Ranger)

"It has been more reliable than expected. I purchased it at a time when the as purchased price was just $ 14,600, delivered. It still looks almost like a new truck 14 years later, and performs as it did when new."

Anonymous, VA (2003 Ford Ranger)

"Incredible value - it just keeps going year after year. It is only used as a truck, hauling heavy, bulky material. A great vehicle, economical and useful. Too bad this size truck is not made any more."

Anonymous, NH (2003 Ford Ranger)

"Has run flawlessly for 15 years and total repairs over the period less than $1500."

Anonymous, ME (2003 Ford Ranger)

"Great vehicle! It is very useful when we have to carry landscaping material to our property. It was a fleet vehicle in the past. Smooth rider on the highway."

DON A., FL (2003 Ford Ranger)

"Purchased at a low price, and has been relatively reliable, and durable. It still looks new even after 13 years on the road"

Anonymous, PA (2003 Ford Ranger)

"I use the Ranger mostly for local errands and light loads. It is easy to handle in traffic, easy to park, and runs inexpensively. It rides like a truck!"

I H., IN (2003 Ford Ranger)

"Totaled a 2000 Truck, this truck was 3 yrs younger and more delux for $59 more than value of the 2000 vehicle."

Anonymous, AL (2003 Ford Ranger)

"Bought it used and it was a good value"

ROBERT W., MD (2003 Ford Ranger)

"it is worth its costs"

HANS W., GA (2003 Ford Ranger)

"Excellent value. 152000 and still going strong."

LEON B., NJ (2003 Ford Ranger)

"This vehicle has been above-average in reliability and when it needs maintenance or repair, the cost is usually less than for other makes and models."

HEIDI P., WA (2003 Ford Ranger)

"I purchased it after it had gone through a flood, got a great price, no problems with the engine, minor maintenance events."

IAN M., BC (2003 Ford Ranger)

"Great truck for my needs....a good carry-all for my woodworking projects."

Anonymous, CA (2003 Ford Ranger)

"Great small pickup. Good reliability and styling. Cost was modest for the utility delivered."

Robert P., TX (2003 Ford Ranger)

"Very dependable"

Anonymous, IL (2003 Ford Ranger)

"This is probably pointless since Ford no longer produces this vehicle. My vehicle is bottom of the line, only non required accessory, an AM/FM radio. It is now pushing 14 years and carries tons of fire wood and other material without complaint. Yes, we are fighting rust and had to replace all the brake lines because of it but for my $ spent and value received, this machine tops the list."

H S., NH (2003 Ford Ranger)


How it looks inside and out

What Owners Say

"is good"

HANS W., GA (2003 Ford Ranger)

Would you buy this car again?

2003 vehicles
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Ford Ranger
Mazda B-Series
Toyota Tacoma
Percentage of owners who would definitely purchase that same vehicle again. Owner-satisfaction Ratings are determined by the percentage of those who answered "definitely yes" to the question asked by the Consumer Reports Annual Auto Survey "Considering all factors (price, performance, reliability, comfort, enjoyment, etc.), would you get this car if you had to do it all over again?". If we don’t have sufficient data, a similar model might be used to form the owner-satisfaction score.
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