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Old 08-05-2019, 03:17 PM   #1
Senior Member
Join Date: Jan 2019
Location: Toronto, Ontario
Posts: 429
2001 SMB - Argentina

Saw this of Facebook if anyone is interested in a road trip.....

From the Seller:

Ford Sportsmobile Campervan For Sale

$35,000 USD OBO

Villa la Angostura, Argentina (


2001 Ford E250

5.4 liter V8 Triton engine (reliable and strong)

2002 Sportsmobile conversion

2017 4x4 conversion

2017 overlanding outfitting (Aluminess front bumper, Hella fog lights, new wheels and tires, Smittybilt synthetic rope 12,000 lb. winch, extra 5-gallon fresh water tank, exterior shower, two 100-watt solar panels, rear bumper set-up, Fantastic Vent, extra interior and exterior propane connections, DVD/CD/back-up camera)

103,XXX * miles (see note on miles below)

Seats: 6 (six seatbelts)

Sleeps: 4 (two in the bed up top, in the pop top area, and two on the pull-out gaucho couch)

The mileage is slightly off. After the 4x4 conversion, we got bigger tires, and thus we get a little extra distance per rotation (which the odometer doesn’t calculate). Using GPS, I’ve determined that the odometer will be off (unless it’s possible to get fixed?) by about 15% to 20% going forward. We completed the 4x4 conversation at about 85k miles. It now reads 103k. However, I estimate the true mileage to be between 106k and 107k. This also affects the mpg calculation (see below).

The Good:

Strong engine with low miles. The engine has been the champ of this trip. We had it completely gone-through — changed all the oils, spark plugs, lines, belts, filters, etc. — in September 2017 before we left. We’ve had no issues with the engine our entire trip. Just had it checked again in June 2019.

All turn signals, lights etc. work as intended.

New Flow Master exhaust installed in Jan 2018. This gave the van an extra burst of power; we think our van is one of the quicker overlanding vehicles out there, which is nice when you’re trying to pass semis on small, two-lane highways in Central America….

The 4x4 system was completed by Buck’s 4x4 in Boise, Idaho in August 2017. The 4x4 system has performed admirably, gotten us to some cool, remote locations, and gotten us out of some bad, stuck situations. Plenty of power in four high and plenty of power and torque in four low (however, occasionally it slips out of four low; we don’t know why).

The body. A few dents and scratches, little to no rust. Honestly, in pretty good shape for an 18-year-old body.

Container-able. Fits into a shipping container which will save you thousands of dollars shipping either between Panama and Colombia or overseas.

Great size. We feel this vehicle, while big, is just about the perfect size for traveling the Americas. Can still fit in most campsites and down narrow streets.

New rear shocks in March 2019. The front shocks were replaced in Mexico in March 2018.

New front and rear brakes in March 2019.

New air filter in March 2019.

The Decent:

The interior. I’d give it a 7/10. Shows some wear here and there, like some dings in the wall and ceiling where my kids have thrown toys. A few surface rust spots on a few bolts, but nothing major (it’s hard to avoid all rust when you spend a lot of time near the ocean…).

The appliances. Older grill but works fine. The fridge is newer (bought in January of 2018) — functions fine, but is not the most efficient fridge (if you bought a new ARB fridge, you would save power).

The electronics. Most every outlet, switch, lightbulb, etc. functions perfectly. With the solar panels, we can get about three days off the grid if we are using the fridge; if we are not using the fridge, we can likely get a week-plus off the grid. Also, replaced house batteries (two 6-volts wired in series) in February 2019.

Storage. I literally built shelves on the side of the road with nothing but a handsaw and a drill. Then I had to modify the shelves when we replaced the fridge. In other words, they are not the most efficient or precise shelves, but they function. There are only a few connection points (screws), so the shelves would be easy to remove if you didn’t want them.

All other interior fixtures (grill, sink, cabinets, etc.) are in good shape, show some wear, but are perfectly functional.

Fuel economy. We average between 10 and 16 miles per gallon — 10 if climbing to high elevations; 16 if mostly highway. It’s not great, but the van has plenty of power. Obviously your miles per gallon will change depending on where and how you drive and how much you store in the van. It also tends to perform better with better gas.

The Not So Good:

Our spare tire. To paraphrase a line from a Christmas Story: “Our spare tire is only actually a tire in the academic sense; it’s round and had once been made of rubber.” We lost a tire and wheel in Mexico. This spare will certainly work, but it’s not one of the newer tires and wheels (purchased in August 2017).

Two periodic leaks. There seems to be no rhyme or reason to why or when these two leaks happen, but they do, and we haven’t been able to figure it out. It is infrequent, however. One is in the top right front windshield and one is in the pop top near the front fluorescent light bulb.

House fan. The mount broke; it still works, but we’ve not figured out a way to remount it.

Need to replace microwave (we think; it hasn’t been working, even with the 220v to 110v transformer, in 220v countries).

Campervan Accessories and Systems (Rated 1/10, 10 being perfect):

interior propane grill (7)

exterior propane grill (8) — purchased new in September 2017; pilot-light doesn’t work but lights fine with a regular lighter

propane heater (9) — we’ve hardly had to use this, but it gets nice and toasty real quick

sink and faucet (8)

gray water tank (5) — we lost the valve (which we still have in case you want to replace it) 4x4-ing over a barricade during the protests in Nicaragua.… however, we haven’t felt the need to replace it, since it just drains under the van and we only brush our teeth and wash dishes in that sink

porta-potty (9) — purchased new in January 2018

manual pop-top (7) — functions perfectly; mostly cosmetic on the exterior some of the clear coat is peeling

screen, netting, and canvas in pop-top (7) — canvas is dirty in a few spots, could likely be cleaned with a thorough cleaning; there are a few holes in the screens; we have tent/screen tape for this, which we will leave in the van, but since the holes are pretty small we haven’t felt the need to tape them yet

electrical system (8) — I kinda feel like there’s a drain somewhere (in other words, we should get more time from our batteries), but I haven’t been able to find it…. everything works fine, however


paddleboard cover (3) — it’s been beaten up a bit by the sun and the trip…

paddleboard (7) — a few dings and scratches, occasionally it takes on a little water but it tends to dry out after taking out of the water

paddleboard paddle (9)

Thule SUP Taxi (5) — fits two SUP and/or surf boards and locks and is mounted to the side of the van; the plastic has faded in color a bit; I only gave it a 5 because the original Thule mounts broke (I hit them against a wall on a narrow street…) — I was able to remount, and it’s possible they’re as strong as they were, but I don’t view it as a permanent solution

Yeti cooler (9) — hardly ever used (only for storage of food); just some scratches on the top; bought new in January 2018

sleeping bags (8) (2 adult negative 20 F, 2 kids) — adult sleeping bags are older; kids sleeping bags purchased new in September 2017 and only used a handful of times (despite being a pop-top, the van stays pretty warm at night). However, sleeping bags are for younger kids like 5 and 7 years old.

hammock (6) — one grommet is broken, but functions fine

ARB awning (8) — bought new in September 2017; haven’t used much on this trip

ARB tent/screen room that attaches to awning (8) — also bought new in September 2017 and haven’t used much on this trip; comes with two extra tent poles for an additional awning off the tent

foldable, camping end table (8)

2 bungee clotheslines and a bunch of clothespins (8)

2 adult folding chairs, 2 kid folding chairs (4) — still functioning, but who knows how long…

tools (7) (Makita power drill, Makita regular drill, Makita hacksaw, three Makita batteries and charging box, various screw drivers and wrenches and drill bits and miscellaneous tools) — all in pretty good shape

one exterior fresh water hose and one interior fresh water hose and funnel (8)

one shower hose (9) — hardly used

four exterior extension cords (8)

hitch extender (7)

Hi-jack lift (6) — we had this on the front of the van originally (you’ll see the connectors), but we moved it to the back because it was getting rusted

bottle jack (8)

2 fire extinguishers (9) — one old and one brand new (never used)

10 plastic leveling blocks (8)

set of safety triangles (9)

first aid kit (10) — brand new, never used

jumper cables (10) — brand new, never used

snow tire chains (10) — brand new, never used

full kitchens-worth of plastic plates, spatulas, cups, bowls, etc. (8)

metal silverware (8)

Ninja (small) blender (8) — hardly used

various new and used spare parts (8)

Tornado fan (8) — it’s a little touchy but works fine

various plastic baskets and containers (8)

1 shovels, 1 axe, 1 8-gallon jerry can on rear doors (7)

Various camping lights, headlights and flashlights (7)

Various bungees, straps and nets (7)

Steripen (10) — never used

12 volt vacuum (8) — hardly used

Final Thoughts:

This is not a complete list. I’m sure we’re missing and/or didn’t identify something. We’ll do our best to represent everything as accurate as possible, however. Also, I’m no mechanic, but I’ll also do my best to answer any technical questions you may have.

As of now (August 2019), we plan to sell the Sportsmoblie in the next three months. We’d prefer to meet someone after Sept. 11th but can be flexible. Obviously, like any overlanding vehicle, our Sportsmobile is best experienced and evaluated on-site. However, we realize that may not be possible. We’ll also do our best to make reasonable accommodations to deliver and/or ship it. The closest airport is in Bariloche, Argentina. The closest major South American city is Santiago, Chile.

Besides our toiletries, clothing, and electronics, we plan to leave everything in the van. It’s ready to go. Head back up north. Or continue traveling the world. You can decide, after taking possession, what things you wanna keep or donate. However, if there’s anything on the lists above that you know you don’t want, please let me know, and we’ll decide to either keep them or donate them ourselves.
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2020 T250 AWD Ecoboost 148 High Roof Long
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Old 08-05-2019, 03:31 PM   #2
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Join Date: May 2007
Location: Southern New Mexico
Posts: 10,174
Posted here:
SMB-less as of 02/04/2012. Our savings account is richer, but our adventures are poorer.
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