My new Sprinter
I am picking up a new Sportmobile Sprinter RB with the penthouse top in a few weeks in Austin. I wrote a detailed reply on design notions for this thread earlier but it seems to have disappeared into the ether. I live in Iowa and have been down to Austin once before settling on the design. I had already purchased the van at Georgetown Texas MB (Sprinter Guy Dave Graham) and they brought to Sportsmobile for the build. The van is a 2011 that was configured for a Sportsmobile conversion that fell through: low roof, swivel seats, tow package, heavy duty suspension, etc.
I was looking for something to travel in after I retire in 18 months and after looking around it became obvious that the Sprinter was the best platform - Ford and Chevy design and engineering are 25 years old and mileage is from the early 1970's and VW campers no longer exist and were never that great anyways. And I am not a "motor-home" person. I have done backpacking and car camping but mostly in the last several years I have been canoe camping - Boundary Waters and Utah and Ozark and local rivers. I am used to minimum gear but I am also looking for a bit more comfort for extended road trips to British Columbia, Alaska and the like.
I bought the van sight unseen and a few week later got down to Austin to discuss and finalize the design with Paul at Sportsmobile. This was the first time I had seen one of their vans. My first idea was to go with something like the RB50 because of forward facing seating safety but I decided that there would rarely be more than the two of us in it and I wanted to be able to walk from front to back and also not have the portapotty in the main living area.
I also had to have the penthouse for the tent/outdoor feel while sleeping and the power lift for the canoe on the penthouse rack. The final design is below.[img]MBvanlayout800[/img]