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Discussion Starter #1
This is my second post here. I have been scheming to buy a Sprinter, but after meeting Dave Orton (user 'orton') and hearing what he had to say about the Sprinters and Transits, I'm now considering getting a Transit. Hate the wait. Dave is a very nice guy, very knowledgeable and helpful. His Sprinter build is smart, and I'm glad I've gotten to talk with him about camper vans. Our needs; transport four people, four mountain bikes, two dogs. Momma wants to sleep in a camper van, have very little setup or tear-down for weekend or longer road trips. We want refrigeration, storage, fresh water, bike transport - inside ideally, reliable & economic operation, a way to cook food. I do coach a high school mountain bike team, and the option to tow a small trailer or load a bunch of gear in the van is needed. I envision a system where there's a sleeping platform above internal bike storage; slots for tires, parallel to the centerline of the vehicle, and potentially a lower sleeping platform right above the slots for two more people, assuming bikes go on a hitch-mount bike carrier in the rear of the vehicle. Momma likes the low-roof, short-wheelbase option with a Sportsmobile Penthouse pop-top, like a VW camper van. I did ask Sportsmobile about this, and they said:

We will be installing our Pent House top on the low roof van 130” and 148” wheel base.
Availability late calendar year 14. We don’t have one yet but expect one soon.
Only downside with the Transit; there's no crew option like the Sprinter's crew van. Ideally we'd get a van with seating for four or five, no windows in the rear sides, but otherwise similar creature comforts like the Wagon XL and XLT models. Basically, if we're sleeping in the back of a 148" wheelbase, tall, non-extended van, we don't want people looking in, seeing us, or bikes stored under the sleeping platform, especially if we are away from the vehicle. We don't want windows that can easily be broken on the rear sides of the van. We don't need seating for 10+. It's early days, but I'm hoping we can order a van, then add a second row of seats - stock would be nice - and also windows on the middle sides of the van, so those people could see outside. I like the pop-out feature of the Transit windows. But I want metal on the back sides of the van. Maybe we get a wagon and use curtains and extra security for bikes, and sell off the extra seats. The upper sleeping platform would help hide the bikes, which would be mostly below the bottom of the window, I think. *shrug*

I would probably go for the base 3.7L motor. I don't see the need for the eco-boost, and I'm not sure I need the diesel. We roam around the western US. This vehicle would also see some city driving. (Oakland, CA)

I also posted about this in the sprinter forum.

Your thoughts? Anyone know of cad files showing interior of the Transits? Want to start mocking one up.

Morgan
 

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Welcome,
"orton" has been very helpful to everyone here, het him make a "path" or "trail" to follow.
Sounds to me like short/low roof is not enough for your needs?
3.7L will work fine

VanMan
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Welcome,
"orton" has been very helpful to everyone here, het him make a "path" or "trail" to follow.
Sounds to me like short/low roof is not enough for your needs?
3.7L will work fine

VanMan
I'm 6'2", and one of the draws of the Sprinter style van is being able to stand up in it. Another is, having upper and lower space, i.e. bikes below, sleeping platform above. However, my wife likes the low-roof design with a pop-top. We may go either route.

The big question for me is; can I put a 2nd row of Ford seats in a van, and can I get windows for those seats? I will ask my local Ford dealer.

Morgan
 

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The currently available ordering info suggests that windows from the factory in the cargo van are not a problem, but any rear seating would have to be aftermarket.
I also had decided on a Sprinter Crew Van to replace my '08 Sprinter cargo conversion for reasons including the glass and removable bench, and was disappointed that there is no OEM rear seating available from the factory in the Transit.
To each his & her own, but the pop top has so many disadvantages over the mid or high roof.
Even when provided and installed by a reputable upfitter, the roof is still cut out and a less durable material is replacing it. Also any stealth camping opportunities are out of the question. The pop top would also cost more than the mid or high roof, and probably not gain any fuel efficiency (just guessing that the unit itself would add as much drag as the higher roofline would, don't really know or anything)
 
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