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Old 09-03-2017, 08:43 PM   #1
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Default AWD/4WD options on a Class B?

Hi All,

As I search for viable options for purchasing a Class B RV, one thing I want is a beefy AWD/4WD option which I cannot seem to find.

Do All Wheel Drive Class B's exist?

Are there any 4 Wheel Drive chassis offerings where you can actually drive at highway speeds when in 4WD?

I was so disappointed to learn the Mercedes Sprinter 4x4 requires one to fully stop then roll to engage 4x4. What? To disengage do the same. What? Are we living in the 1990s? I have a 17 year old SUV & all I do it turn a dial.

I'll admit I know nothing about engines or drivetrains but it seems every new passenger vehicle offering includes fancy AWD and/or 4WD options that do not appear to be as inconvenient.

I don't wish to climb mountains with my Class B but I would like half way descent off road capability.

Regards,

Tony
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Old 09-03-2017, 09:27 PM   #2
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Originally Posted by TonyLuca View Post
Hi All,

As I search for viable options for purchasing a Class B RV, one thing I want is a beefy AWD/4WD option which I cannot seem to find.

Do All Wheel Drive Class B's exist?

Are there any 4 Wheel Drive chassis offerings where you can actually drive at highway speeds when in 4WD?

I was so disappointed to learn the Mercedes Sprinter 4x4 requires one to fully stop then roll to engage 4x4. What? To disengage do the same. What? Are we living in the 1990s? I have a 17 year old SUV & all I do it turn a dial.

I'll admit I know nothing about engines or drivetrains but it seems every new passenger vehicle offering includes fancy AWD and/or 4WD options that do not appear to be as inconvenient.

I don't wish to climb mountains with my Class B but I would like half way descent off road capability.

Regards,

Tony
No question, the Sprinter 4WD design badly compromises your ability to get out of a jam that might well be avoided with a system that permits engaging on the fly and getting the benefit of inertia.

I'm not aware of any high volume (WGO, RT, PW et al) class B builder that is currently upfitting with a good 4WD option. Maybe Sportsmobile does. Even the high end ARV vans are stuck with the Mercedes arrangement. Roadtrek used to provide a Quigley converted 4WD on their 190PC but they discontinued it a couple of years ago.

I think your best option is to purchase the van, have Quigley provide the 4wd conversion and then have a domestic or Canadian upfitter complete the van to your specifications. IMO, the platform best suited for that is the Ford Transit which Quigley will convert. It ain't cheap - somewhere in the vicinity of $11,000. But at least, you'll end up with a no nonsense 4WD vehicle.
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Old 09-03-2017, 11:38 PM   #3
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check out Sportsmobile Custom Camper Vans - Your Home Away From Home they will build one to your specs and can include a 4X4 option
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Old 09-04-2017, 10:56 PM   #4
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No question, the Sprinter 4WD design badly compromises your ability to get out of a jam that might well be avoided with a system that permits engaging on the fly and getting the benefit of inertia.

I'm not aware of any high volume (WGO, RT, PW et al) class B builder that is currently upfitting with a good 4WD option. Maybe Sportsmobile does. Even the high end ARV vans are stuck with the Mercedes arrangement. Roadtrek used to provide a Quigley converted 4WD on their 190PC but they discontinued it a couple of years ago.

I think your best option is to purchase the van, have Quigley provide the 4wd conversion and then have a domestic or Canadian upfitter complete the van to your specifications. IMO, the platform best suited for that is the Ford Transit which Quigley will convert. It ain't cheap - somewhere in the vicinity of $11,000. But at least, you'll end up with a no nonsense 4WD vehicle.
Awesome info cruising7388. As I research I have a feeling I'm going to have to go the route you suggest. I would think the manufacturers would take notice. Perhaps the demand is just not there. Thank you very much. - Tony
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Old 09-04-2017, 10:59 PM   #5
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check out Sportsmobile Custom Camper Vans - Your Home Away From Home they will build one to your specs and can include a 4X4 option
Thanks g1g. I have looked at Sportsmobile. They could be a viable option. They do need to update their website... at least with updated pictures from this decade instead of what, the 70s?! Just a small complaint. The info they provide is pretty extensive. Thanks again. -Tony
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Old 09-05-2017, 02:03 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TonyLuca View Post
Hi All,

Do All Wheel Drive Class B's exist?

Are there any 4 Wheel Drive chassis offerings where you can actually drive at highway speeds when in 4WD?

I was so disappointed to learn the Mercedes Sprinter 4x4 requires one to fully stop then roll to engage 4x4. What? To disengage do the same. What? Are we living in the 1990s? I have a 17 year old SUV & all I do it turn a dial.

Tony
I have a 2015 Sprinter 4x4 van that and I hated the fact that you have to stop to engage the system and I wasn't until I drove on a 5K mile winter trip that discovered what 4x4 system it actually had.

There are two systems available 4x4 hi and 4x4 hi/low. The 4x4 system is actually a selectable AWD system. when it is engaged you can drive at any speed. After stopping on the fist three mountain passes to engage the 4x4 and then stopping the disengage I read up and realized that you can engage it before you leave and drive in AWD the whole trip. That's what I did the last 1K miles and it worked perfectly at 70 MPH.

If you want an AWD chassis for and RV I think the Splinter is a good choice.

Jon
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Old 09-05-2017, 03:21 AM   #7
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I have a 2015 Sprinter 4x4 van that and I hated the fact that you have to stop to engage the system and I wasn't until I drove on a 5K mile winter trip that discovered what 4x4 system it actually had.

There are two systems available 4x4 hi and 4x4 hi/low. The 4x4 system is actually a selectable AWD system. when it is engaged you can drive at any speed. After stopping on the fist three mountain passes to engage the 4x4 and then stopping the disengage I read up and realized that you can engage it before you leave and drive in AWD the whole trip. That's what I did the last 1K miles and it worked perfectly at 70 MPH.

If you want an AWD chassis for and RV I think the Splinter is a good choice.

Jon
Thanks, Jon, that is very good to know. I'll do a little more research on that. There's a Mercedes dealer not too far from me & I see they have Sprinter vans on the lot. I'm hoping to stop by soon. I can ask about the hi/lo 4x4.
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Old 09-05-2017, 01:16 PM   #8
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I think another converter is Whitefeather 4X4 Conversions in CA. I saw a Sprinter converted by them in CO last year. Guy was very happy. FWIW
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Old 09-05-2017, 01:50 PM   #9
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Good read on Sprinter 4x4

https://sprinter-source.com/forum/ar...p/t-44252.html
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Old 09-05-2017, 01:53 PM   #10
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.

Check out this review:

Four wheel drive in a Sprinter good, but not quite what youd expect Sprinter Adventure Van


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