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Old 04-20-2016, 04:14 PM   #1
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Join Date: Apr 2016
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Default Newbie Needs Some Help

Hello All,

I'm brand new to the world of RVs and getting ready to make my first purchase. I already know I want a class b and after a lot of research I've decided on a Roadtrek SS Agile for a number of reasons (size, driving ease, warranty, quality, value retention, etc.). So here are a few quick questions and any help or experienced opinions would be much appreciated!

First I should explain the kind of use I'm planning. I'll be using my class b for a little bit of everything - short weekend trips up the coast or to the desert as well as longer, extended tours around the state and possibly the country. I expect to use RV parks and campgrounds at times, but also want to be able to just pull over somewhere and spend the night or go off the beaten path and be able to know that I can keep myself and two dogs comfortable in the heat or the cold. Ok, now the questions:

1) 4 cylinder vs. 6 cylinder - Aside from better mileage with the 4, what are the major advantages or disadvantages of one versus the other. I've heard that they are both great, however the 4 is a bit noisier and can't accommodate the under hood generator.

2) Underhood Generator - is this the way to go? Have there been any issues with them?

3) The most confusing aspect for me is the entire electrical system and I'm wondering what I need to get versus what would be overkill. Are things like Ecotrek and Voltstart important? Lithium Ion batteries? How much battery power do I need?

Thanks in advance!

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Old 04-20-2016, 06:32 PM   #2
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I've test driven both the Agile and the Pleasure Way Ascent, and they are very agile and small and have that benefit. I have hoped that someone would come up with a little better design using the short Sprinter. There has got to be a way that they could take the a short van with the driver's side door and make a slide out to give more room while camping and a smaller profile when driving & parked.

The other problem is that both of these rigs use the 2500 chassis (i.e. NO duallies). You might consider that the larger sprinters using the 3500 chassis may actually drive better and more stable than the shorter rigs. You will still have the parking issues, but you will also have the additional space.

Conceptually, I prefer the 6 cylinder and I like the under hood generator. I haven't driven or tested anything with the under hood generator, but I can vouch that the 6 cylinder engine is plenty powerful.

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Old 04-20-2016, 06:37 PM   #3
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The first big thing to decide is if you and the dogs need to be coolable off the batteries for any length of time. That is likely going to be the driving factor when you consider lithium, voltstart, engine generator, or regular generator. And of course, cost!
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Old 04-20-2016, 08:18 PM   #4
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Thanks for the info thus far. The cooling factor is definitely a must for the dogs.
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Old 04-20-2016, 10:11 PM   #5
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You can get an under hood generator on the SS Agile You can also get an Ecotrek 200 or 400 package and Volt Start.

I would buy the 4 cylinder as you'll get great mileage with it and on the 2500 short chassis it will be more than powerful enough.
2021 Advanced RV 144 custom Sprinter
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Old 04-20-2016, 10:27 PM   #6
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I would check with Roadtrek on the availability of the underhood generator with the 4 cyl engine, as I recall at one time that was not being offered but that may have changed...
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Old 04-21-2016, 12:40 AM   #7
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If not plugging in is a requirement and running the air conditioner is important and if the air conditioner needs to be run for a long time then you should get a high capacity lithium battery bank. The 200AH pack is likely not enough to allow you to consistently stay within the 2hr idling then highway drive guideline mentioned here:
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Old 04-21-2016, 12:48 AM   #8
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I purchased an Agile last year after looking at many different alternatives. But mine has 4 AGM batteries, 3 panels and a propane generator since I like the flexibility. The 4cyl is great and the size is perfect for small spots next to trout streams. For example, it just fits in a clearing next to a river I like in the Catskills while a longer Sprinter would stick out into the gravel road. The occasional truck traveling on the road tends to be going very fast so that little extension into the road would be a problem. Stability is fine but it might be due to the wind assist. As far as climate control, it is no better or worst than other current production B's which means weak on insulation. But if you don't like the weather then drive to a better place, if possible. With this system, campgrounds are just an occasional stop to empty tanks and use a bigger shower.

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