Guest Post by Aly McAndrews of VMAC Global Technology Inc.
There are so many wonderful things about the Mercedes Sprinter Van, and one of them is how versatile it is. Applications are many and varied, whether it’s carting around a large family, luxury transportation or for use in a commercial fleet.
Sprinters have been a go-to for commercial fleets in Europe for years. In fact, they are more common than trucks. The reasons for this are obvious. They are better on gas, they provide more protection for hauling during cold European winters, and the options for upfitting are endless and easily customizable.
Thankfully, North American upfitters and tool manufacturers are starting to take notice of the growing number of commercial Sprinter fleets across the continent, and are developing great products specifically for them. We are increasingly seeing Sprinters used in construction, utilities, plumbing and electrical.
One of these manufacturers is VMAC (Vehicle Mounted Air Compressors), a company based in Canada that arguably makes the best compact mobile air compressor systems in the world.
VMAC is on the leading edge of Sprinter-specific tools. Earlier this year, they released the UNDERHOOD LITE air compressor system – a rotary screw air compressor that is installed under the hood of the Sprinter and provides 30 CFM of continuous air power.
Finding a useful air solution for commercial vans has been a challenge. Most upfitters resort to a skid-mount system that allows the heavy piece of equipment to be moved in and out of the van, which causes all sorts of issues. The weight being the most obvious, it’s a cumbersome piece of equipment for one worker to maneuver and often ends in injury. Some upfitters try to install proper ventilation in the van body, however if something goes wrong with the complex system, fumes can be a major risk quickly. Even if the ventilation does work well enough to keep everyone safe, it often makes the rest of the cargo reek of fuel.
The UNDERHOOD LITE air compressor addresses both of these issues and solves some others. Since the system is installed on the engine, there is no need to move a heavy piece of equipment in and out of the body, and ventilation takes care of itself, keeping workers much safer. It also speeds the time required to set up for a job – a button simply needs to be pushed and by the time you walk to the back of the van, it is ready to go. The system is extremely lightweight. It only adds an additional 62 lbs (with oil) to the van. This is a small fraction of the weight of competitor’s units, not including the skid. An additional 62 lbs does basically nothing to fuel consumption, leaving more space and weight for materials.
The UNDERHOOD LITE air compressor system has another advantage for the Sprinter; since it housed under the hood, it is protected from the elements – it doesn’t overheat as quickly in extreme heat and it stays warm longer in extreme cold. This improves productivity in the heat of summer and the depths of winter, ensuring the Sprinter can get to more jobs everyday.
One last major benefit of the UNDERHOOD LITE that has to be mentioned is performance and quality. It matches that of the Sprinter. VMAC is known for its high manufacturing standards just like Mercedes. The UNDERHOOD LITE will last as long as the Sprinter, and if anything goes wrong, it is backed by the best warranty in the business, a VMAC Lifetime Warranty.
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The Ultimate Tailgating Vehicle for Sale!
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ELECTRIC PRIVACY DIVIDER
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DARK TAUPE WALLS AND CEILING
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DRIVER IN DASH FM/AM CD/MP3 WITH BACKUP CAMERA
Many of you know how long it takes to special order design and build a coach. We just happened to have a totally decked out Sprinter Custom executive coach/ tailgate rig. We personally designed and built this Sprinter while keeping a few different uses in mind.
First off, we took into consideration our market and the small demand that this segment consists of. So we looked at similar units to build or purchase when we were in South Carolina last year. I found basic units priced at the $95,000 tag. Very basic, J type seating, 1 television and not a whole lot of options, or excitement.
Again, it’s a Sprinter, so it’s Beautiful to look at, but very baseline. We then looked at the high end of the spectrum, were not comfortable spending $250,000.00 plus for a beautiful vehicle that essentially could be used in a similar environment.
We pulled it back a notch and found a step up from our build and that was still $185,000.00 MY COST. That’s when we had our approved Mercedes-Benz up fitter right here in good old MA help us with a plan.
After numerous hours of design and headache, we finally agreed on a footprint. How about an executive/tailgate sprinter to use for the family, friends or just to work in a plush design build that has a TON of value for the $$$.
Our Sprinter van has an MSRP of $141,900.00. Let me tell you how many venues you could use this baby for.
My favorite amenity in this Sprinter is the rear tailgate package. How about satellite Direct TV for starters. A rear tailgate sound system with enough power to take over about an acre of tailgate space. Eight speakers include 2 tweeters, 4 mids and two subs that will definitely spill your beverage at full tilt.
A 50” TV so that you and your crowd can pregame from 50’ away and still have a clear screen view. Also in the rear is 110v power with 3 accessory batteries to run your electronics or charge your devices for 5 to 6 hours without the engine running.
The rear section has enough room for 8 golf bags, or a tailgate supply for around twenty people +/- when you plan accordingly.
Moving to the inside, we have two more 32” televisions, also tied to Direct TV, perfect for the inside ride. Also in the passenger compartment, we installed a second sound system that has a DVD player and whatever Bluetooth connections that you may need.
The seating has two forward facing Captain’s chairs in the rear, two extra wide rear facing bench seats with a huge arm rest and the same configuration on the driver’s side wall. The passenger compartment also has a bar set up with an ice chest that has a huge volume as well as a couple of wine holders.
When privacy is called for, there is an electric divider wall between the driver and passenger compartments. We also had a stainless steel floor to ceiling pole installed just in case..!!!! I attached a few pictures for your viewing.
We will sell this to you as a Certified Pre-Owned Sprinter Van so that you can get the added benefit of the Sprinter Extended Limited Warranty above and beyond the Sprinter factory warranty.
The Pats kick off Thursday night! Why not grab this as your New England Patriots Ultimate Tailgater!!
My dealership has been getting more and more folks interested in the Sprinter Van Camper Conversion which is an exciting topic for me since I share this interest!
Nothing against the custom Sprinter Campers, but I’m talking about taking a straight Sprinter Crew Van or Sprinter Cargo Van and creating your own space.
I myself am not particularly handy, but I have to admit the idea of developing a stealth DIY Sprinter does not intimidate me.
The reason I would choose a Sprinter as a stealth camper or even as a straight up camper comes down to value. I am confident that if I invested my hard work and time into the Sprinter it would pay dividends for many years with excellent fuel economy, long engine life, and time tested Mercedes Benz safety.
I had a finish carpenter buy a 170 extended passenger van because he liked the glass all around and the fact that the ceiling was already finished. He kept the first row of seats and traded the other seats to my upfitter for some window work and ceiling exhaust fan work. His camper will be a dry camper and he is using it primarily to travel to and from Florida year round.
This past month, I helped a young lady who purchased a Sprinter Crew Van and converted it to her residence. She lives in the van year round in the Northeast. She liked the extra windows and the fact that the ceiling was already done as well.
My vision for my Sprinter Camper Conversion would be a stealth Sprinter Cargo Conversion. From the outside, my Sprinter would look no different than the average work van. I would choose metallic silver. It would have no windows and a custom partition with a door between the front and back. I would be able to park the van anywhere in the USA and it would blend into the background.
I live on an old Searay 340 Sedan Bridge anyways in the northeast so I am used to small spaces. I am 6-3 and about 300+ lbs. My stealth Sprinter would be a 144 wheelbase with the high roof. The high roof option is about an additional $2500 cost on the build price but well worth it for me. At 6-3, I have approximately another inch or so of height without a headliner in the cargo van.
I would buy a new Sprinter or a certified pre-owned Sprinter and take advantage of the excellent financing opportunities MB offers plus warranty programs.
My vision would include multiple skylights with fans and solar arrays on the roof. The solar panels would power many of the gadgets I would have installed in my custom sprinter conversion.
The beauty of having such a small space to build-out is that you can afford to buy nice things. If you want really expensive wood….well you are only using a little bit of it not a whole household. I would have either custom wood floors in something like a Brazilian KOA hardwood or a synthetic Pergo like material.
My bed would take up the rear of the Sprinter and would be raised off the floor to allow space for cabinets that would roll out the back and front of the bed.
For a kitchen, I would buy a prefabricated unit that matched my color scheme and decor.
I would have a small portable toilet for emergencies only and would not have an internal shower facility. There are these things called 24 hour gyms nowadays…wink wink…..throughout the country so I would take advantage of my membership on the road.
My Sprinter would have a desk that would have multiple uses such as kitchen table, card table and portable on the road work area.
If I were building a Sprinter in the northeast, I would most likely get the 4×4 Sprinter. If I did not plan on taking it out in bad weather, I would stick with the traditional 4 cylinder rear wheel drive. Since I like to ski often, the 4×4 would be a nice option. The downside to the 4×4 is that it would cost approximately $6,900 more for the option and another $995 for the 6 cylinder. Although if I was in northern Vermont in the middle of January, the extra money would be well worth it!
Speaking of the cold, they make an aftermarket heater that can run on one gallon of diesel for the day and heat the rear of your van. It even can be tied into your diesel line and fits right under the seat.
The Sprinter provides an open canvas for you to create whatever your imagination can come up with…..More and more people are living in tiny spaces and simplifying their lives. The Sprinter in my humble opinion could make a nice rolling tiny home.
Let’s share our passion and get you into a great Sprinter to build your dream. I’ll be super competitive on price and I can ship anywhere in the USA.
Couple of cool Sprinter RV sites:
I had the pleasure of driving both the Mercedes Metris Passenger Van and Mercedes-Benz Metris Cargo Van this past week at our corporate headquarters.
I would expect the Metris to arrive at our location by mid to late October.
The first thing that impressed me was the powerful 4 cylinder engine. The Metris cargo van had a little more pep due to the fact that it did not have rear seats, but both vehicles performed very nicely.
The Mercedes Metris passenger van had a less stiff suspension than the passenger van as would be expected.
One huge attribute I noticed immediately was the turning radius. Mercedes has always been known for this, but they really did a great job with this van.
The interesting thing is that Mercedes has been selling the Vito in Europe for many years. It is named after the city where it is produced, Vitoria in Spain. This is not a new vehicle for Benz so you should not be nervous purchasing the Metris.
The Metris utilizes the time tested 4 cyclinder used in many of our sedans and also the 7 speed transmission.
If I were to buy the passenger van I would purchase it with the eighth seat option even if I didn’t intend on using it. This option will be a good value. The seat is easily removable and you never know when you could use the extra room.
The Metris will be the only true mid-sized van in the US market with some capabilities like towing that rivals the larger competitors….coming in at around 4960 lbs.
The Mercedes Metris will also come standard with a number of safety features setting the gold standard as usual for the market.
There is no doubt in my mind that the Metris Van will be a huge success in America!
- Best in Class Cargo Capacity
- Best in Class Payload Capacity
- Best in Class Side Step-in Height
- Best in Class Load Floor Height
- Best in Class Rear Door opening Area
- Best in Class Side Door opening Area
- Best in Class Interior Standing Height
- Best in Class Interior Accessibility
- Best in Class Fuel Efficiency
- Best in Class Turning Diameter
- And last but not least Best in Class Maintenance Cost
More and more families are coming to realize that the Mercedes Sprinter Passenger Van or custom Sprinter Van makes a great alternative to a SUV for a larger family!
My family is made up of 4 daughters who are now all teenagers or young adults. I wish I had the Sprinter instead of the Pilot or mini-vans we had while the kids were growing.
The Pilot with kids, their friends and our 2 mid sized dogs would be packed to the gills on long trips. Ironically, the Sprinter would have cost a similar amount and gotten appreciably better fuel economy as well. Also, the residual value and engine life would have been significantly improved.
A 12 person passenger van would have been great for all of our needs. If I had the extra funds, I could have built a custom Sprinter with captains chairs and a more robust interior.
The dogs and our bags would be out of sight and mind. I can’t tell you how many times the kids fought over the dogs trying to climb over the back seats.
We are seeing more and more people from around the country considering this option. Also, with the 4×4 now available, families in colder areas can navigate better in winter conditions.
The passenger van comes with the class-beating standing height(2 options), wide side doors, new standard crosswind assist, 3 pt. seat belts and headrests for every seat, very large rear storage area, and the rear doors open 270 degrees.
The passenger van also comes with optional high & low 4×4, electric sliding step, and rear heat/AC.
So if you are tired of the gas guzzling SUV or the less than optimal space in minivans for a large family, pick up the phone or hit the live chat button…..let’s discuss how awesome the Mercedes Benz Sprinter would be for your growing family!
I love when customers look at the total cost of ownership and consider how much savings they can realize weekly because of the Mercedes Sprinter Van MPG.
Guys driving box trucks and other not so efficient options getting less than 12 mpg or less notice the savings immediately.
Even existing long time Sprinter customers have noticed savings from upgrading their old Sprinter Vans to the newer 4 cylinder turbo diesel.
I have a customer that drives throughout New England in a giant silver 170 extended Sprinter Van selling high end golf equipment to pro shops. He had a 2007 Dodge Sprinter before and now has a 2014 Mercedes Sprinter.
He let me know how happy he was that he went from around 20 mpg to 25 mpg or better now with his new engine.
I drive a 144 standard roof 4 cylinder Crew Van and I average around 27 mpg.
If a customer can cut his fuel cost in half weekly, the money saved can often pay for a material part of his new monthly payment.
When the new vehicle helps pay for itself, the transaction becomes very easy on my end.
We have a very large busing company in Boston that has custom Mercedes Mini-Buses that hold 15 passengers that is averaging around 19 mpg in the city running all day long. They are also using the 4 cylinder engine.
The 6 cylinder engine gets approximately 18% less fuel economy than the 4 cylinder according to Mercedes. If you are going to be towing often or operate in a hilly/mountainous environment we recommend the 6 cylinder which is approximately $995 more.
Best in class Sprinter Van mpg is one of the coolest features of owing a new Sprinter especially for workers that commute to a job site far away. When you combine this savings with the highest residual values in the markeplace as well, you will see why we have many repeat customers!
The Mercedes Benz Sprinter is the benchmark euro style van in the commercial van marketplace…..the van that all others wish they could be!
In early October 2015, we will be coming out with the 2016 Mercedes Metris with about 50% more payload than it’s smaller competitors and 40-50% more cargo volume. The platform for the metris van will be larger than all small van competitors.
Mercedes Metris Specs:
There will be two models a Metris passenger van and a Metris cargo van.
The Mercedes Benz Metris cargo van will be aggressively priced at $28,950. The Metris passenger van will start at $32,500 and seat 8 passengers.
The van is 21 inches than the Sprinter and will fit in any garage.
The base gasoline engine will be a time tested Mercedes 4 cylinder turbo with 208 hp and 258 lb/ft in torque with a 7 speed transmission. This configuration has proven to be very reliable and fuel efficient. It is a rear wheel vehicle.
The maintenance intervals will be every 15000 miles which leads to lower total cost of ownership.
We anticipate high 20’s in terms of mpg and can take regular gasoline.
One big advantage for the commercial market is that it was designed to be able to tow 5000 lbs.
It will come in one length(126 inch wheeel base) and one roof height.
The 2016 Metris will come standard with industry leading safety features including—no one in the segment comes close:
Crosswind Assist– which helps keep the Van stable in high winds
Attention Assist– the Van will actually alert a sleepy driver when they are drowsy at the wheel(awesome cutting edge feature)!
Also, the Van will have other optional safety features such as:
Lane Keeping Assist
Blind Spot Assist
Rear Backup Alarm
I anticipate the Metris being accepted by many verticals including:
Metris Hotel Shuttles
Metris Limo/Executive Shuttle Service
Metris Refigerated Vans
Metris Courier Vans
Metris Delivery Vans
Metris Floral Van
Call me at 781-688-1073 to be first on the list for a Mercedes Benz Metris or hit the chat now button to start a discussion!
The Mercedes Sprinter 4×4 has arrived to much fanfare!
This past winter was a record setting one in Boston for snowfall. The traditional Sprinter Cargo Van, Crew and Passenger Vans have the option of 4×4 in 2015.
The option comes with a high and low range option, but for the money I recommend my customers get both since it is only about a $100 difference.
The Mercedes Sprinter 4×4 has a higher ground clearance and is only available with the V6 turbo diesel.
The Sprinter 4×4 also combines Load Adaptive ESP and 4-ETS. These short videos demonstrate this advanced technology better than I could ever describe.
The option requires the V6 which is about $1,000 more and 4×4 with High/Low will be about $6900.
I suspect most dealers will not be discounting these aggressively since they will be in high demand and there will be limited available.
My suggestion to clients is that they custom order their sprinter 4×4. Hit the live chat button below or call me at 781-688-1073 to discuss your particular needs.
We have 4 dealerships within the Prime Motor Group that have Sprinter 4×4 Vans for sale. We are one the largest dealership groups in the North East and can handle all of your Sprinter Parts, Service and Sales.
We even have a Sprinter Airstream dealership in our Scarborough, Maine location.
If I were building a custom Sprinter 4×4, I would definitely get heated seats and a heated windshield. I have heated seats on my Sprinter Crew Van and they are my favorite option(my kids love them too).
The first thing I hit on a cold New England morning is the heated seat which kicks in very quickly and has three levels of comfort.
We also have a cold weather package which includes insulation in the front and back, heated seats, rear defroster and a 17,000 BTU fuel fired heater booster.
The Mercedes-Benz Sprinter Van’s 2-stage turbo diesel 4-cylinder engine has shocked more of my customers than any other feature on this standard setting vehicle.
Often, customer’s will come into the showroom with their mind made up that they only want our V6 Turbo Diesel 5-Speed engine.
I meet them in the front with a 4 cylinder for a test drive with them thinking it is a V6 and they consistently comment on a few things:
- How quiet the diesel engine is!
- How much torque the engine has…….
- How smooth it shifts on the highway……
- They can’t believe how much they will save on fuel
I sit them down and let them know that the payload is actually higher on the 4 cylinder and that it gets approximately 18% better gas mileage than our V6.
The engine was designed to bring torque when it is needed while merging onto the freeway or off the line. Also, because of the 2-stage turbo there is hardly any turbo lag when you really hit the pedal hard.
I drive a 4 cylinder daily and I love the torque and fuel economy. With a 26.4 gallon tank and fuel economy for me averaging over 25 mpg, the sprinter engine gets better gas mileage than all the other vehicles in my household.
This is what Edmunds said about this engine: “Expect the Sprinter(standard 4-cylinder engine) to achieve significantly better mileage than competitors with gasoline engines.”
The 7 speed transmission is very smooth on the highway and it is a rear wheel drive vehicle.
The Mercedes diesel engine delivers 161 horse power at 3,800 rpm’s. The torque is rated at 265.5 lb-foot at 1,400-2,400 rpm.
The Mercedes Bluetec diesel engine is also one of the most advanced diesel engines with very low emissions, awesome fuel economy and peppy response!
Now if you are operating in an environment with hilly/mountainous terrain or will be towing often we recommend the V6 3.0 Liter turbo diesel with 5-speed transmission. It produces 188 hp at 3,800 rpm and 325 lb-ft of torque at 1,400 to 2,400 rpm. The fuel tank is also 26.4 gallons.
This is what Kelley Blue Book said about our V6: “…the tried and true 3.0 liter V6 turbo diesel….strong pulling power, good fuel economy, and proven longevity.”
One of the biggest testaments to the Sprinter van diesel engine is the use of our vans in Fed-Ex’s daily operations. Next time a Fed-Ex truck drives by look on the front hood and you will see the Mercedes star proudly displayed.
People also do not realize that Daimler owns Freightliner so the Freightliner Sprinter Van is identical in all aspects except for the badges on the vehicle.