The prevalence of RVs continues to thrive, and the desire for camper vans will continue to rise as enthusiasm among millennial and Gen Z populations grow.
Sprinter camper vans are a huge part of the #vanlife movement that’s been widely popular these days. The Mercedes Sprinter has been available in the United States for 20 years. Sprinter camper van conversions have just been so widespread in the last ten years, and notably over the last five. What is with these Sprinter conversions that so many people find so intriguing? What makes them great and why are they so popular? Let’s talk more about the interesting Sprinter van!
What are Sprinter Camper Vans?
Let’s begin with the fundamentals. There was quite a little misunderstanding regarding what Sprinter vans are. People often use the phrase “Sprinter van” to apply to all makes and models of elevated vehicles, although this is incorrect.
Mercedes’ ‘Sprinter’ series of high-roof cargo vehicles are truly known by that name. Mercedes was the first to introduce this design of van to the United States after it’s become extremely popular in Europe. There was a cause why the name “Sprinter” is used to apply to all makes and models of high-roof vans; the Mercedes Sprinter is the industry standard and the most prominent alternative for conversion into a camper van.
Whereas other high-roof vans, such as the Ford Transit and Ram Promaster, can be converted to camper vans, the Sprinter delivers unrivaled reliability, gas mileage, features, and build quality. These are the top factors why Sprinter vehicles are ideal for conversion into campers.
What Makes a Sprinter Van Good?
If you are wondering why the Sprinter Camper Cans are so popular among RVers then here are a few characteristics that will inform you what makes these types of campers good.
Sprinter vans are quite popular due to their versatility. Sprinter campers are indeed the ideal blend of luxury and efficiency, being smaller than an RV but with inherent benefits over car camping or smaller vans.
Sprinters are quite nimble in urban areas. These can fit in a conventional parking space based on the wheelbase of the vehicle. They’re tall enough to stand in but compact enough to go almost wherever a car can. In a Sprinter van, you can fit a bed, kitchen, seating space, and plenty of storage, but unlike an RV, you won’t be restricted to where you can transport it. Sprinters are also available with optional four-wheel drive, allowing you to utilize them for ski vacations and accessing off-the-beaten-path camping areas.
Despite already having more than enough space for several of the conveniences of home, Mercedes’ widely acclaimed range of extremely effective diesel engines allows Sprinter vans to get amazingly good gas economy. Several folks drive their Sprinter camper vans as well as their expedition rigs on a regular basis.
The #vanlife trend was always about personalization since its inception. Sprinter vans are designed to be used mainly as cargo or work vehicles, therefore their interiors are a blank canvas. It’s understandable that personalization is so important in the camper van converting industry.
While there are now several camper van conversion firms that offer RV-like, cookie-cutter camper constructions in Sprinters, that was not the usual vanlifer’s lifestyle. Personalizing your Sprinter camper van is a part of what makes this concept unique. Even though you purchase a fully equipped van from a professional conversion firm, you’ll like to have a voice in the amenities and appearance.
The Sprinter Van Popularity
Due to the growing popularity of van living, Sprinters have become increasingly popular. Camper vans are popular because of their mobility, right to drive on any road and park in any location, and excellent gas consumption. A camper van is as practical as a regular car and comes equipped with all of the conveniences you’ll need to live comfortably on the road.
For all the mentioned reasons previously, Sprinter camper vehicles are frequently regarded as the top-of-the-line camper van. Aside from the fundamentals, these vans may be customized and modified to go on some great adventures. Sprinter vans are in high demand because of their dependability, quality, and iconic “van life” style.
The Sprinter Camper Vans
When it tends to come to camping, users wouldn’t need a fully equipped camper van. Your current vehicle or truck, a simple cooler, some survival food, and a sturdy tent pitched on any small splash of ground will suffice. Many individuals did grow up camping in this manner, but there’s something special about the wonderful memories created while camping with only the minimum essentials.
One might not have to camp that way if they wouldn’t want to, because many people have learned. Explorers with a large sum of money can camp in complete luxury and connectivity, which is a very appealing concept. Sprinter vans are often very much part of such amazing camping experiences for many. And now that we have talked about what are sprinter campers, it’s time to note a few brands and manufactured sprinter vans that you might be interested to see!
Jayco Terrain Class B Camper Van
If you have not camped before, you’ve still certainly heard of Jayco. The RV company from Indiana is known for its large RVs and travel trailers, but the van depicted here is a little distinct. This camper, a Class B motorhome, foregoes campgrounds and RV parks in favor of off-road excursions. Welcome to the Jayco Terrain in 2022.
A tried-and-true Mercedes-Benz Sprinter 2500 4×4 with a 144-inch wheelbase serves as the cornerstone for Jayco’s venture into the Overlanding domain. Jayco then adds everything you’ll need for long trips off the usual road, along with a bathroom with a shower and cassette toilet. The kitchen does have a tiny sink, a small refrigerator, and an induction burner, as well as a pullout table that stretches across the side door for additional counter space. An additional flip-up table can be found in the following row of seats, which, when combined with the front seat swiveled backwards, offers a comfortable lounge/dining space.
The one and only bed are located in the back of the vehicle. It was a powered drop-down double that rests atop a large garage area once unfolded. Its open space features a variety of attachments for anchoring items, while the upper part of the Terrain’s backside has fiberglass side pods which provide another few inches of width for additional sleeping capacity. A 48V 210AH lithium battery and a 3,500-watt inverter supply electricity, which is charged by a dedicated 48-volt alternator and 200 watts of roof-mounted solar panels. The fresh and grey water tanks are both interior-mounted, although Jayco does not provide details on their sizes.
It’s quite a thing to experience off the grid; it’s but another to get somewhere. The Terrain’s obligatory Customer Value Package includes Koni shocks and a heavy-duty rear stabilizer bar. It also comes with a sturdy roof rack, a patio awning, outside LED lights, a 48V air conditioner, and black aluminum wheels with all-terrain tires. A standard feature is an inbuilt air compressor.
Sanctuary Mercedes Sprinter Camper Van
Companies have been turning out new Class B campers as rapidly as they can, and the market has reacted positively. The most recent example is this 2022 Thor Motor Coach Sanctuary Sprinter camper, the latest Class B product to jump in on the #vanlife activity. The Sequence, Tellaro, Rize, Scope, and Tranquility are some of the other Thor Class B vans. It appears that they enjoy coming up with unique names.
This Thor Sanctuary Sprinter isn’t trying to remake the motorhome scene, and it doesn’t need to. It’s based on a Mercedes-Benz Sprinter 2500 4×4 van platform from 2022, with a 144-inch wheelbase and a usable external length of 19 feet, 8 inches (excluding the roof ladder). Its 3.0-liter V-6 diesel engine produces 188 horsepower and 325 pound-feet of torque, which is much more torque-y than that of the gasoline 3.6-liter V-6 (280 horsepower, 260 pound-feet of torque) that enables the Ram ProMaster at the core of the relatively comparable Winnebago Solis Pocket, but much less torque-y than the Ford Transit’s 3.5-liter V-6 EcoBoost (310 horsepower, 400 pound-feet of torque).
A few of the 2022 Sanctuary camper features are as follows: cassette toilet, shower, sink, 190-watt solar panel, 24-lb propane tank, 19-gal freshwater tank, 4.8-gal black water tank, 20.0-gal gray water tank, 2.4-gal water heater, refrigerator, dual-burner gas cooktop, convection microwave over, stainless steel kitchen sink, fold-out exterior table, side steps, LED light bar, screen doors, pull-down shades, and 24-inch cabriolet wheels.
The Sanctuary’s addition of typical Thule gear for the right touch of overland ruggedness caught our attention: a Thule power patio awning featuring incorporated LED lighting, a Thule roof climber and roof rack equipment, and a Thule bike rack on the back door.
If you are wondering how much would the Thor Motor Coach Sanctuary 2022 cost you then we have the answer. The 19P floor plan starts at $148,680, while the 19L floor plan starts at $151,060. Available off-road tires ($1,744), which appear to be BF Goodrich KO2s based on the images, and an optional re(Li)able Power Pack electrical system ($8,495), which includes a 400-Ah lithium battery, 3,000-watt inverter, and 170-amp alternator, swiftly raise the price. When compared to nostalgic camping, which costs hardly anything, that’s a hefty entrance price, but for those who can afford it, it might be a wise decision.
Mercedes-Benz Metris Weekender Camper
According to various Mercedes insiders, the 2020 Mercedes-Benz Metris Weekender camper will cost around $70,000 whenever it comes up for sale in the spring. That’s a lot more than just the $36,775 starting price for a standard five-passenger Metris from Mercedes.
The Weekender comes with standard features that the aftermarket alternative does not, including an auxiliary battery for charging additional equipment. A pop-top roof that sleeps two, a multi-position folding rear-bench seat that also sleeps two, swiveling front seats and an incorporated table are all included with any Metris Weekender (whether it’s a factory-backed Mercedes vehicle or maybe one of the aftermarket Peace Vans). An eight-foot awning and a pull-out back kitchen are available as options for those seeking even more extravagance.
To put it another way, the Weekender isn’t inexpensive, but it isn’t lacking in features either. Furthermore, if the free market operates in favor of consumers, competitors such as Ford or Ram may opt to produce factory-backed motorhomes look at Ford’s Euro Nugget! —that come with more convenience features or a lower price tag than the Metris Weekender. That’s the kind of future we’d like to see.
Weight You Can Carry In A Mercedes Sprinter
Sprinter camper vans have different payload and hauling capacities depending on the version. Mercedes vans are available in a number of sizes and engines, which affect the vehicle’s dry weight, including its power and capacities. The kind of vehicle (Cargo, Crew, or Passenger), roof height, wheelbase, gas or diesel motors, 4 or 6 cylinder engines, and whether or not you desire 4×4 are all factors to consider. Diesel engines with much more cylinders are generally more powerful, but they also weigh more than that, to begin with. You’ll also discover that choosing the 4×4 reduces your payload capacity because the extra 4×4 parts absorb a few of the additional weight.
In general, the new Mercedes Sprinter Cargo Van 1500 or 2500 can pull a maximum of 5,000 pounds. Across the board, towing capability in the new 3500 and 4500 models increases to 7,500 pounds.
Nevertheless, be careful to verify the precise capacities of your Sprinter van’s year and model, since some extras and amenities can alter these capacity. Take note of the gross vehicle weight ratings (GVWR) and gross combined weight ratings (GCWR) to get a comprehensive picture of your vehicle as well as how much load you can securely transport in it.
Sprinter Van Cost
New Sprinter vans range in price from $150,000 to over $200,000. Popular brands include the Winnebago Revel, the Pleasure-Way Plateau, and the Roadtrek SS Agile, which start at more than $175,000 and go up to more than $173,000. There are firms that convert Sprinter cargo vans into campers. Such vans are extremely expensive, costing upwards of $100,000. There are a variety of reasons why Sprinters are more expensive. The very first cause is the name of the company: Mercedes-Benz. Here are a few more reasons why they’re so costly.
Sprinter Van Base Price
A new, unfilled Sprinter van starts at roughly $44,000 for the smallest and shortest variants and goes up to $65,000 for a bigger wheelbase and more powerful engine.
The cost of manufacturing a Sprinter van is the greatest of all van types, comparable to the Ram Promaster at $41,000 to $45,000 as well as the other famous camper van model, the Ford Transit at $45,000 to $49,000.
Modifying a Sprinter is neither simple nor affordable. Some of these are constructed within the van’s body, while others are created on a cutaway chassis that removes most of the van’s body. The high cost represents the conversion costs.
Sprinters are not mass-produced in the same way that other RVs are. Sprinter campers are often produced by luxury off-road or overlanding auto manufacturers. The interior of a Sprinter van is geared toward elegance and technology, which both arrive at a cost.
To construct such a high-quality RV in such a little space, highly trained craftsmen are required. It’s difficult to streamline a complex process like the production of a Sprinter camper van. The whole cost of the van constructed also gives a part for someone’s skill and hard work.
Details and Features
Most Sprinters are premium RVs with exquisite detailing, from technology to high-quality furnishings and cabinets. The cost is increased by intricate embellishments and a high-quality structure. Since there is a lot to add and put on your camper by modifying it, this adds up to the price.
Picking a Camper Van for Conversion
The lengths, heights, powertrains, choices, and classifications of Mercedes Benz Sprinter vans are all available. When picking a Sprinter for a DIY campervan conversion, here are some of the following points you might want to keep in mind. We’ll use the Mercedes Benz as a basis for our guidelines. You can think about these characteristics more after that.
Sprinter vehicles are available in two different heights: standard and high. With such a Standard roof van, you won’t be able to completely stand up, but you’ll have superior handling in the wind and off-roading. One may attach a pop-top to a Standard (low) roof van for more sleeping area. If you’ve been living the van life, high roof vehicles are by far the most preferred. These let users stand up totally, which would be ideal for cooking, changing clothes, and simply hanging around.
When it comes to Mercedes Sprinter cargo vans, they are available in three different lengths: 144′′, 170′′, and 170′′ extended. Crew vans are only available in two lengths: 144′′ and 170′′. The length of your Sprinter van conversion is determined by the amount of space you require.
The 144-inch wheelbase makes driving and maneuvering much easier. You would like a shorter wheelbase if you do a lot of overlanding. The living area of this van is 11′ long by 6′ wide. The 170′′ Sprinter van has a lot more interior space. If you plan on having a restroom and extra seating room in your van, you may want to buy a longer vehicle. The living area of this van is 5′ long and 6′ broad.
Type of Sprinter Camper
There really are three types of Mercedes vans that can be converted into Sprinter vans: cargo, crew, and passenger. Because they’re a clean canvas, cargo vans are by far the most common to convert into campers. The cargo van choice is also the most economical off the lot because you can add windows to your preference and you won’t have to eliminate seats as if you would with the passenger van.
If you really want extra windows, a crew van is a way to go. Passenger vans aren’t ideal for camper van conversions since you’d have to remove too many internal elements to create a place for your construction.
Mercedes Sprinter vans are available with four different powertrains: four-cylinder gasoline, four-cylinder diesel, six-cylinder diesel, and six-cylinder 444 diesel. You’ll get greater gas mileage with the 2WD option. Diesel engines last better, and the 4WD option provides additional traction in snow, ice, sand, and off-road conditions. Remember that a 4×4 engine will affect your fuel efficiency. You must first determine how you will use the Sprinter van conversion and then select the appropriate powertrain.
Wrap Up: Is a Sprinter Van worth it?
This van life trend isn’t going anywhere any time soon. Take a glance at YouTube, TikTok, and Instagram, for example. Movies like “Nomadland” depict a harsher aspect of the living, but the trend is still alive and well. We can only anticipate the demand for socially distanced leisure to grow as it becomes the standard. A lot of people are looking for a way to spend their vacation and time away from their homes without having to deal with crowds or live life while always on the road, this makes Sprinter vans or campers, in general, more relevant to people.
A Sprinter camper van is well worth the money if you really want a tiny premium RV with everything that you need to survive on the road. Sprinter vans keep their worth well, last a long time, and are built to a high standard. When you purchase a Sprinter van, you’re getting a lot so much more than the vehicle. You’ll be spending on high-tech amenities, professional labor, and a camper that’s extremely popular.