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Old 02-14-2012, 02:35 AM   #1
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SoCal Sprinter camper van rental?

Just a few short weeks ago, I thought it would be interesting to see if there were any modern-day camper vans out there as I had only been exposed to the VW van before. I was amazed at what I saw and hadn't realized! I've been around seemingly-inconspicuous vans and never knew the awesomeness that could have been lurking behind the closed doors and tinted windows. Then I found myself looking at Sprinter van conversions several times a day and now I want to drive one and spend some time in it. This feels like a slippery slope...

So does anyone know of places that would rent a Sprinter camper van for a weekend in the southern California area? Or is there anyone in the area that would be willing to at least show off their Sprinter?

Thank you.
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Old 02-14-2012, 10:27 AM   #2
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Re: SoCal Sprinter camper van rental?

That's how it started with me. I would recommend taking a little vacation to lovely Fresno and while you are there arrange a tour at SMB west.
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Old 02-14-2012, 11:16 AM   #3
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Re: SoCal Sprinter camper van rental?

I am most definitely planning a trip to the SMB plant in Fresno. I was hoping to also spend a few fun days actually camping in a Sprinter. My understanding from them is that they don't have rental vans.
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Old 02-14-2012, 12:54 PM   #4
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Re: SoCal Sprinter camper van rental?

That question has been asked many times and to my knowledge nobody commerically rents SMB's. Owners are reluctant to rent because of the obvious risks. There's a certain leap of faith when you start down this path but rest assured that everybody has been in your shoes and SMB has been in business for over 50 years.
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Old 02-14-2012, 03:41 PM   #5
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Re: SoCal Sprinter camper van rental?

On the web their is this outfit that has a larger Sprinter for rent near Yellowstone NP: http://www.campervannorthamerica.com/ca ... ison.shtml It looks like a big long high top sprinter which has most of the available bells and whistles. Of course it will handle differently than a smaller possibly lighter one and it may not have your preferred floor plan.


We have a 2012 Sprinter pop top on the SMB West build line right now ....it will replace our unheated/ no A/C noisy but trusty 1991 Westy for camping in AK.
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Old 02-14-2012, 07:51 PM   #6
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Re: SoCal Sprinter camper van rental?

Thanks for the tips. I saw the campervannorthamerica options elsewhere on this forum somewhere and checked them out. It's a bit far for a weekend getaway from Los Angeles. Fresno is definitely do-able. I wonder how long the SMB folks will let me sit in one of the vehicles in their factory. I tend to take time to visualize things in my head and they may want to kick me out after I spend a whole day camped in one of their vans.

Anyway, thanks to all for the feedback.
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Old 02-14-2012, 10:33 PM   #7
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Re: SoCal Sprinter camper van rental?

SMBW is a great place to visit. We did the factory tour first and then spent a long time checking out the various Sprinter vans that were in the showroom area. It's a very low pressure place and so you can take a lot of time just exploring the vans. SMBW does ask that you phone ahead to set up an appointment time. Have fun!

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Old 02-15-2012, 11:51 AM   #8
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Re: SoCal Sprinter camper van rental?

I found a California Sprinter-based RV rental site through Greg Keith's site (http://www.sprinter-rv.com/). The rental company only has Roadtrek models at the moment and they're based in San Francisco. Rates seem to be around $235/day, not including insurance, with various specials available.

http://www.rvsanfrancisco.com/

They're booked for months ahead. Sprinter rentals are more popular than I thought...
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Old 02-19-2012, 06:09 PM   #9
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Re: SoCal Sprinter camper van rental?

Sandy,
I visited SMBW for a quick tour when in the area on business.
There were a few demo Sprinters in their showroom area plus I checked out a finished van that was ready for pickup and spent some time in there seeing what was done.
I also visited SMBW at the Pomona RV Show so my wife could check out the vans as well.
At the show you can see Sprinter based conversions from several sources all in one place.
You can spend the entire day there getting ideas on what works for you.
Your head will be spinning by the time you leave.
I'm guessing going during the week will enable you to spend more alone time. We went on a Saturday and it got crowded at times, not so much for the Class B vans. There are also Class C conversions that you can get ideas from. some really neat features and amenities.
Best of luck
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Old 02-20-2012, 07:18 PM   #10
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Re: SoCal Sprinter camper van rental?

Not advocating Roadtrek conversions, but I checked the Roadtrek website and they also list a place near San Diego that rents so you might have another option that's closer to home.
http://www.roadtrek.com/rental_locator.aspx

West Coast Motorhomes
8163 Winter Gardens Lakeside (east of San Diego), California, 92040
Telephone: 619-390-0840
Email: westcoastmhs@nethere.com

The link that SMB has on their website for rentals, that you mentioned, has two locations they rent from, the closer being St George UT besides the Idaho location.
http://www.campervannorthamerica.com/

Please keep us posted on what you find out.
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