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Mark Gregory

Camper van Class B motorhome Questions which is a good brand

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My brother is thinking of buying a USED Camper home or Class B motorhome.

 

I have heard stories of certain engines that cost thousands to rebuild.

 

So what is a good brand of Camper or good motor Mercedes ?

 

Here is a description of what he is looking for.

 

Also called camper vans or conversion vans, Class B motorhomes are an engineering marvel! Kitchens, washrooms with showers and they sleep up to four people; all in a slightly stretched full-size van with a raised roof. A Class B Motorhome is easy to drive, fits in a normal parking space, is easy on fuel, and can be used as a second vehicle.

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  After 40 years of class A ‘s, both gas and diesel, towing small car/jeep, and the whole rv experience, we ended up with a Roadtrek 210 class B in our old age.

   Absolutely love it. Everything class A has just smaller. 21’ Chevy  1 ton van. 6’5 inside height. Toilet, shower, water heater, furnace, microwave, queen bed, 2 burner range,  generator, 8500 btu AC, refrigerator, amazing storage , and on and on.

  Over 2000 lbs cargo capacity. Fresh water, Gray, and black tanks.

   It’s older, (1993) may qualify for this forum, but pristine in and out.

   350 tbi with 4l80e. 12-14 mpg running west ( from CO.), 16-18 running east. Still marvel at mpg. Drive 65-70 mph. Park anywhere.

    Roadtrek workmanship very very good in this era. Think original Roadtrek was bought out a couple of years ago, and have heard there’s lots of problems.

     The older Roadtreks were only built on Chevy or Dodge 1 ton vans. Good ones are out there. Easy to work on and of course parts are easily available and priced right.

      Newer ones are built on Chevy, dodge, Ford, and Mercedes I think. Transit van types.

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Posted (edited)

As a 30 + year Class A owner, I agree with Ted Sweet  response #1.

We know 3 couples with the Mercedes powered Class B.   All have reported the same nightmare experience with them.

Mechanical problems on the road and being required to go to Mercedes Dealers to get parts/repairs and finding long waits for parts and service,

plus high costs of these parts and services.    

We/ can get our Cummins Diesel serviced /repaired at almost any truck stop.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

= year

Edited by Paul Dobbin (see edit history)
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Unless you plan to drive the road full time.......rent one. I wanted a pusher very bad for a long time. Rented one for two weeks, and realized renting is a MUCH better option. 

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I prefer a fifth wheel trailer. We've had two of them. They tow very well with none of the ball hitch trailer problems like swaying. When we're home I still have a truck to use for every day driving and hauling same when we are parked at a campground. To me, a motorhome is a useless lump that sits around deteriorating  90% of the time while you continue to pay insurance premiums. As to costs of rebuilding the engine it doesn't matter what brand it still is going to cost thousands

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We went from small slide in campers to a B. We love both for the same reason you can park them most anywhere and are easy to maneuver in traffic. I only pull a trailer once in a while but a pull behind camper would be in the way. B owners tend to be travelers more than campers.

 

As far as brands pick a chassis you like then see what layouts and features fit your needs. If you want to tow be sure it can handle what you want to tow.

 

A lot of people love the Mercedes chassis but repairs can be expensive, after all it is a Mercedes.

Dodge seems to be the most popular chassis companies pick but there are plenty of Chevy and Ford based Bs around also, so pick the brand you feel most comfortable with.

 

Most RV forums suggest not spending to much money or time picking your first RV because after you own it a year or two you will probably know what you really want and then you will buy the one that fits your lifestyle the best. Your already have the right idea of looking used because you don't have to eat the early depreciation. On the flip side B campers hold their value the best of any RVs, that is why a lot of people end up buying a used A or C.

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Had a Vixen class A. Drives like a car and could reach 100 mph & 30 mpg.Five speed manual trans. Turbo diesel. Even had a second bedroom.

 

 

toad.jpg

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I've read that Pleasureway motorhomes made in Saskatoon, SK are well-made.

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15 hours ago, Jubilee said:

  After 40 years of class A ‘s, both gas and diesel, towing small car/jeep, and the whole rv experience, we ended up with a Roadtrek 210 class B in our old age.

   Absolutely love it. Everything class A has just smaller. 21’ Chevy  1 ton van. 6’5 inside height. Toilet, shower, water heater, furnace, microwave, queen bed, 2 burner range,  generator, 8500 btu AC, refrigerator, amazing storage , and on and on.

  Over 2000 lbs cargo capacity. Fresh water, Gray, and black tanks.

   It’s older, (1993) may qualify for this forum, but pristine in and out.

   350 tbi with 4l80e. 12-14 mpg running west ( from CO.), 16-18 running east. Still marvel at mpg. Drive 65-70 mph. Park anywhere.

    Roadtrek workmanship very very good in this era. Think original Roadtrek was bought out a couple of years ago, and have heard there’s lots of problems.

     The older Roadtreks were only built on Chevy or Dodge 1 ton vans. Good ones are out there. Easy to work on and of course parts are easily available and priced right.

      Newer ones are built on Chevy, dodge, Ford, and Mercedes I think. Transit van types.

Road Trek is now closed, bankrupt. I've had 2 of them. Older Dodge's, pretty decent quality. Great West Vans does a better job of outfitting. This is my current one.

vanap11 022.jpg

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Since you mention Mercedes - I am assuming your brother is considering a Sprinter Van type platform.

 

My brother currently has (2) later model Sprinter Vans.

 

Don’t buy one unless you can get a factory or extended warranty.

 

Major $$$ repair costs on common problems that should have ( but did not ) generate manufacturer recalls.

 

Jim

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I have a question.

A class B would make for a good size, but I tow heavy.

I have my 38 ft. Class A pusher outfitted to haul 12,000 or more on the ball.

Is there any class B that could do that and not run out of power?

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I don't know the tow ratings but there are/were some based on the E350 van with a diesel or V10.

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7 hours ago, JACK M said:

I have a question.

A class B would make for a good size, but I tow heavy.

I have my 38 ft. Class A pusher outfitted to haul 12,000 or more on the ball.

Is there any class B that could do that and not run out of power?


Nope

 

Not unless you buy a newer model specifically custom engineered and designed for towing that weight.

 

Jim

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Posted (edited)

Up here a friend told me Hostess sold off all their diesel Mercedes delivery trucks being too problematic in cold weather. 

Edited by Joe in Canada (see edit history)
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Mark,

Tell your brother to look a used motorhimes.  The rule of thumb is old motor homes are worthless when it comes time to sell.   Yes one that is 1 or 2 years old are still costly, but when 20 years old they are almost given away.   My two have both been garage kept and used mostly for going to AACA Tours, towing something.   When our GMC was 25 years old, I put it in a AACA Show, then sold it for $15,000.

It was 26" long, had a rebuilt Olds 455 motor,  and a 455 final drive, custom interrior, great on flat land but awfull in the mountains.

7 MPG with that final drive, but didn't lke 80 MPH anymore.

437672484_GMCRightSideAwning.thumb.jpg.583706361e914a95a7e128fe5fb2dcc4.jpg

 

 

We moved up to a 35' Airsteam Land Yacht turbodiesel pusher, pulled a car on a trailer anywhere @ 11 MPG.  Probably have to give

it away too, after this years Glidden Tour..

632743010_smallRH34.jpg.ebac0ed4e755ed228ab30623c8f679ac.jpg

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14 hours ago, Trulyvintage said:


Nope

 

Not unless you buy a newer model specifically custom engineered and designed for towing that weight.

 

Jim

 

That is what I am seeing.

Probably handy for what they are but are not trucks.

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