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Old 08-12-2018, 12:25 AM   #1
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Default 2018/2019 Agile or Ascent

On our short list of potential B vans are the Agile and the Ascent. Wondering if any recent owners of these vans have any input good or bad?

Somewhat wary of the diesel. We have been studying the Sprinter and emission issues, even found a hack for resetting the restart message. But wary of sprinters reputation.

The Ascent has a nicer layout in that we like the bathroom on the driver side but it doesn’t have the ekotrek of the Agile. We like the extra safety features like blind spot, TPMS, lane assist and collision that most Bs don’t have. The Ascent seems very well built and both look stealthy and noble to handle which suits us.
Also on our list are CrossFit, Aktiv and Travato.
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Old 08-12-2018, 01:31 AM   #2
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I saw an Ascent this week just wandering about a sales lot while my rig was being tweaked. I was very impressed with it... but PW is always worth a look. I really liked the white chocolate cabinetry.

Like you, I am leery of Sprinters which is why my latest rig is on a Promaster. Also PW has an Onan instead of the underhood generator. But PW does come with a 100 ah lithium battery and there seems to be fewer problems than with the RT system. It also has the 3 system fridge while I prefer a 12v.

When I was making my latest choice, I made up an excel spreadsheet with the various units I was interested in. The Activ came up with the most top choices on options and inclusions... but in the end, I went with a lower price and most important... the bigger fridge. LOL
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Old 08-12-2018, 04:14 PM   #3
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Good Morning,

Here a pretty extensive video comparison of the Ascent and Agile. Reviewer is an Ascent owner but he's pretty objective with his comments/assessments.

http://youtu.be/snaUGYqAZns

Why is the Zion SRT not included in your list of potenials? Since I need a sub-20 foot coach, the Zion is #2 on my list behind the Ascent. Love the Ascent's floor plan but not sure if I want to deal with a diesel platform or the higher purchase price and extra cost of M/B parts and service.

Good luck in your search and keep us updated.

Mike
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Old 08-12-2018, 05:01 PM   #4
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Thanks I have seen that video and thought it was quite good.
Actually have been looking at the Zion, Zion SRT, and Simplicity too.
Trying to elicit some actual ownership info from owners of the 2018-2019 range if possible to see how they’re bearing up in reality
We also have a preference list for chassis which is Ford, Promaster, and MB.
On the Ascent/Agile we most like that the short Sprinter has safety features like our SUV, and that the Agile can be eco with no propane, whilst the As ent is very well completed.
Of course, a compilation of all the pros would be perfect, but we don’t live in a perfect world.
It’s a process!
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Old 08-12-2018, 07:49 PM   #5
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.

The best way to learn first-hand info is to join the respective model-specific Facebook owners group.
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Old 08-12-2018, 08:50 PM   #6
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We’re on several already and there’s such a lot of material to sift through on each getting up to speed, so just thought asking very specific question would be quicker
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Old 08-13-2018, 04:03 AM   #7
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These models are good candidates to be put on the new gasoline powered Sprinter. Probably won't see such a development for another 12-18 months though. Your other choices are the Promasters - Roadtrek, Hymer, Winnebago & Pleasureway all have strong offerings 19-21 feet.
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Old 08-13-2018, 01:37 PM   #8
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Hi,

A couple years ago we went thru the same decision. At that time we wanted a Mercedes Sprinter so it was really between Acent and Agile.

For us FWIW

Ascent - Pro's
- Layout with kitchen behind co-pilot. Only because we felt we would leave the slider open more of the time.
- Bath - Don't even remember why but I think it felt just a tad larger


Agile - Pro's
- We liked the extra tech
- Thought the sofa was firmer and for us equated to more comfortable (It is comfy but we like firm mattresses)
- Decor/Cabinetry - Seemed a bit more updated. Feels like we are in the 80's verses the 70's with the Ascent.

In the end we went with the Agile but both are really fine rigs.
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Old 08-13-2018, 07:37 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ponti33602 View Post
Hi,

A couple years ago we went thru the same decision. At that time we wanted a Mercedes Sprinter so it was really between Acent and Agile.

For us FWIW

Ascent - Pro's
- Layout with kitchen behind co-pilot. Only because we felt we would leave the slider open more of the time.
- Bath - Don't even remember why but I think it felt just a tad larger


Agile - Pro's
- We liked the extra tech
- Thought the sofa was firmer and for us equated to more comfortable (It is comfy but we like firm mattresses)
- Decor/Cabinetry - Seemed a bit more updated. Feels like we are in the 80's verses the 70's with the Ascent.

In the end we went with the Agile but both are really fine rigs.
Thanks!
How has your Agile held up as far as maintenance and the emission system? We’ve heard horror stories about Sprinters stopping running due to failed sensors and or problems with DEF? Also many say the dealerships are few and far bdtwen especially out west and that they’re always more expensive. Many say they’d never buy a Sprinter again or a diesel for that matter, how about you?
Our local mechanic, great guy and diesel class A owner says he’d buy diesel over gas. Which seems against popular opinion on many forums and that he prefers Ford over GMC.
We plan to see Agile/Ascent in person.
Agile has the electronic options we like and can get all electric with no propane. Saw one online with two inverters one just for induction stove top. Ascent has bathoom behind driver which we like and both have much more safety features than Fird and GMC rigs. We think the shorter length is good for the two of us for what we need.
Thanks for your input and any more insight you can offer!
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Old 08-13-2018, 07:54 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Britmobile View Post
Thanks!
How has your Agile held up as far as maintenance and the emission system? We’ve heard horror stories about Sprinters stopping running due to failed sensors and or problems with DEF? Also many say the dealerships are few and far bdtwen especially out west and that they’re always more expensive. Many say they’d never buy a Sprinter again or a diesel for that matter, how about you?
Our local mechanic, great guy and diesel class A owner says he’d buy diesel over gas. Which seems against popular opinion on many forums and that he prefers Ford over GMC.
We plan to see Agile/Ascent in person.
Agile has the electronic options we like and can get all electric with no propane. Saw one online with two inverters one just for induction stove top. Ascent has bathoom behind driver which we like and both have much more safety features than Fird and GMC rigs. We think the shorter length is good for the two of us for what we need.
Thanks for your input and any more insight you can offer!
Hi,

I am in the "pro diesel" camp at this point. I just believe it is a real truck/ commercial vehicle . Probably just in my head............than reality. I feel resale will be better down the road as well but I could have purchased a Zion SRT and saved the money upfront rather than what I think the tail-end will bring.

We do not fear the emission issues. FedEx puts hundreds of thousand miles on them. If I need to spend some bucks on emissions down the road I just will despite the expense.

Unlike many of this forum, we did not see Pleasure Way as a step up in build quality. We did with Leisure Travel Vans just as an FYI back when they made a true B but not a 144".

The AC unit was replaced a few months back but that is more an issue with the maker and could plaque any number of upfitted vans.

My wife was like you where she didn't want any propane. Have diesel Alde for heat and hot water which works very well the few times we have used it.

We are relatively new to RVing so take what we say with a grain of salt. We are still happy with our purchase and as I stated, we went with Roadtrek due to the Tech (which includes no propane ability) primarily. The finishes were more to our liking as well.
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Old 08-13-2018, 08:44 PM   #11
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Thanks Bob for your thoughts, you sound very much like where we are in decision process. We’re also almost first timers to having an RV.
We’re also looking at Coachmen CrossFit, especiLly to see if they upgrade the electronics with the new 2919 van. Figure there are Ford dealers everywhere.

Retired pilot by any chance!? I noticed you said kitchen was on “co-pilots side”!

Wife and I are retired airline folks, I flew and she checked in.
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Old 08-14-2018, 02:00 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Britmobile View Post
Thanks Bob for your thoughts, you sound very much like where we are in decision process. We’re also almost first timers to having an RV.
We’re also looking at Coachmen CrossFit, especiLly to see if they upgrade the electronics with the new 2919 van. Figure there are Ford dealers everywhere.

Retired pilot by any chance!? I noticed you said kitchen was on “co-pilots side”!

Wife and I are retired airline folks, I flew and she checked in.
hmmm...no to the pilots. Guess I always view traveling as you need or is better if you have two people. One to man the vehicle and one to navigate where you are going. :>
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Old 08-19-2018, 06:07 PM   #13
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FWIW diesel prices are going up by about 20% in 2019. There was a big article in our paper here this morning about it. Fleet owners are very worried. Also, manufacturers don’t beef up much at all when they put diesel in a vehicle that normally has a gasoline engine. Diesels require larger batteries, and more insulation, but that’s about it. I would love to see an analysis of the true cost of ownership. Diesels last forever, but most people don’t keep their vehicles forever.
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Old 08-19-2018, 09:08 PM   #14
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We have a 2015 Accent & have been happy with it. The layout with the kitchen looking out on the traditional “campsite side” of the unit was what sold my wife.
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Old 08-19-2018, 10:57 PM   #15
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Default 2017 ascent owner

I have had different Class B's (Open Road on a Ford Econoline chassis in 72, made 2 out of Ford Econoline chassis, Airstream B190 and now the PW Ascent). I purchased the Ascent for several reasons: ease of driving/parking, great fuel economy (22-24MPG), 2-100watt Lithium Ion batteries, larger bathroom (same as 24' models) on drriver's side (no blindspot), 8500# gross weight and still can pull 5000#, 190 watt solar (great for boon docking), and some of the other features mentioned in other replies. In addition, the Sprinter 144" chassis is single rear wheels; has cross-wind correction; blind-spot monitoring; lane assist monitoring, a 5-year, 60K miles PW warranty on the coach, plus a good warrenty on the Sprinter from MB. The interior is excellent, well-finished and very comfortable memory foam. Jst my opinion, good luck in your selection.
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Old 08-20-2018, 12:24 AM   #16
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Default Emissions --- just thought I'd add something here for you

Quote:
Originally Posted by Britmobile View Post
Thanks Bob for your thoughts, you sound very much like where we are in decision process. We’re also almost first timers to having an RV.
We’re also looking at Coachmen CrossFit, especiLly to see if they upgrade the electronics with the new 2919 van. Figure there are Ford dealers everywhere.

Retired pilot by any chance!? I noticed you said kitchen was on “co-pilots side”!

Wife and I are retired airline folks, I flew and she checked in.
I see Bob addressed this issue... I have an older 2012 Roadtrek RS Adventurous.

Around 39,000 miles last December we had an issue with the emissions system. Brought it to Mercedes and discovered that they were going to replace the entire system with brand new software, new catalytic converter, NOX sensors, pretty much everything... cost was well over $4,000...

Now, for the good news.... the emissions system is under warranty for 8 years and 80,0000 miles... thankfully, the federal emissions warranty covered everything.

Keep an eye on your DEF consumption ..if you start using a lot of it, you probably have issues, I noticed this right away and alerted MB... although they were slow to catch on.

Like Bob, I think the "advantages" of the MB diesel outweigh the disadvantages, but, it will probably be more expensive in the long run to maintain.

Take a very close look at the Crossfit, particularly the front dashboard and the very cramped quarters there.. if you're fine with that, then go ahead and consider it.... I didn't like it. Also, the ability for climbing mountains is better for the diesel. Fuel efficiency suffers with the gasoline models as well, it's a trade off. But, like Bob said, the gasoline models cost less to purchase.

Good luck.
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Old 08-20-2018, 03:42 PM   #17
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FWIW, based on a Google search, the most frequently cited diesel price rise predicted for 2019 was 2%. I can handle that with my Social Security adjustment.
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Old 08-21-2018, 09:04 AM   #18
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That's an easy one.. The Ascent. Roadtreks have way too many build quality issues from what I've seen; exposed wiring inside cabinets, poor fit and finish, etc. On the other hand, Pleasure Way is widely respected as one of the best quality B van builders. They may not have the latest high capacity batteries and such, but the build quality is definitely there. Personally, I wouldn't buy a RT, unless it was used and an incredible deal, leaving room in the budget for repairs and upgrades.

Also, as others have mentioned, RT insists on placing the galley on the wrong side of the coach. It should be on the camp side
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Old 08-21-2018, 02:02 PM   #19
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Actually I think Pleasureway has 1-2 lithium batteries in all of their rigs now. And I assume that solar is an option. Too bad they don't dump the Onan for the added alternator.
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Old 08-22-2018, 02:04 AM   #20
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Default On my short list too, but problems with Roadtrek QC?

I have been reading the owner posts on the Roadtrek Owners Facebook page, and there are several reports of big issues that some owners have had with their new Agiles - much having to do with things that went wrong, and the dealer service, even sending back to Canada for service, did not get fixed right. A long warranty isn't much good if things don't get fixed, or keep going wrong! Sounded like a big nightmare. I have heard that PleasureWay has much better quality control, but since you have to actually be a PleasureWay owner to get into their forum, I havn't been able to get much info on that company. Wonder if you all know more about this (the QC issue).

Quote:
Originally Posted by Britmobile View Post
On our short list of potential B vans are the Agile and the Ascent. Wondering if any recent owners of these vans have any input good or bad?

Somewhat wary of the diesel. We have been studying the Sprinter and emission issues, even found a hack for resetting the restart message. But wary of sprinters reputation.

The Ascent has a nicer layout in that we like the bathroom on the driver side but it doesn’t have the ekotrek of the Agile. We like the extra safety features like blind spot, TPMS, lane assist and collision that most Bs don’t have. The Ascent seems very well built and both look stealthy and noble to handle which suits us.
Also on our list are CrossFit, Aktiv and Travato.
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