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View Poll Results: How well does your Sprinter handle in wind?
No Problem 12 30.77%
some buffeting 22 56.41%
nearly undrivable 5 12.82%
Voters: 39. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 04-27-2011, 05:29 PM   #21
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Default Re: Dodge Sprinter - handles very poorly in wind

I see no one has posted here as of late.......I'm wondering how much of a difference dually tires make in cross winds......
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Old 04-29-2011, 05:38 PM   #22
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Default Re: Dodge Sprinter - handles very poorly in wind

The 3500 dually Sprinter is probably the best handling B van available. We have put over 4,000 miles on ours this month in a very windy period. It is much improved over our old chassis and 2500 that I thought handled well. Wind or no wind Edmunds says it is the best handling van compared to Ford and Chevy. It drives like a car and has lots of safety features. The electronic stability control does work. I went into a hairpin mountain turn too fast and it took over.
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Old 05-03-2011, 02:57 PM   #23
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Default Re: Dodge Sprinter - handles very poorly in wind

Quote:
Originally Posted by Davydd
Wind or no wind Edmunds says it is the best handling van compared to Ford and Chevy.
Got a link to the article? I'd like to look it over. I looked at their website and couldn't find much, except mostly user
written reviews, and no one had reviewed the 2011 3500s that I could find.
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Old 05-03-2011, 04:37 PM   #24
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Default Re: Dodge Sprinter - handles very poorly in wind

Quote:
Originally Posted by Davydd
The 3500 dually Sprinter is probably the best handling B van available. We have put over 4,000 miles on ours this month in a very windy period. It is much improved over our old chassis and 2500 that I thought handled well. Wind or no wind Edmunds says it is the best handling van compared to Ford and Chevy. It drives like a car and has lots of safety features. The electronic stability control does work. I went into a hairpin mountain turn too fast and it took over.
Did Edmunds test them loaded down, with weight up high, like in Class B? Empty or lightly loaded tests would really not apply to a motorhome conversion.
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Old 05-03-2011, 07:45 PM   #25
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Default Re: Dodge Sprinter - handles very poorly in wind

This last week-end we picked up our PW Plateau TS Sprinter (dually rear), and drove it from Portland to Seattle pretty much empty cept for diesel and 1/2 tank of water. There wasn't a lot of wind, but a few gusts or probably in the 30 mph range. The vehicle handled very well. Passing 18 wheelers and other large vehicles I had zero problems. When they passed me I had no more issues than I do with my Toyota Sienna. Yeah, there was some side push, but it was not a white knuckle experience. It was very similar to every other experience I've had with 18 wheelers.....if they catch you unaware it's a surprise , but the feeling of control comes back quickly and without having to recover across more than a foot of the lane.
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Old 05-08-2011, 02:56 AM   #26
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Default Re: Dodge Sprinter - handles very poorly in wind

Booster,

Quite the opposite, B vans are more bottom loaded with underfloor generator, water, propane and waste tanks. As for Edmunds, they have been saying in all their Sprinter reviews, "Quite simply, this is the easiest and least cumbersome full-size van to drive."

http://www.edmunds.com/mercedes-benz/sprinter/2010/

As for the 3500 dually, it handles way, way better than the 2500. I don't need Edmunds to tell me that. I have extensive experience with both and just came off a 39 day 6,350 mile trip out west in the Rocky Mountains and Arizona. It was very windy all month long and the 3500 Sprinter in my opinion acquitted itself very well. There was no mountain pass I could not make maintaining posted speed and could negotiate down without using brakes with the 5 speed auto transmission other than some very tight hairpin turns. The turbo diesel Sprinter is finely tuned for mountain driving. I probably drove most all the challenging mountain passes in the west now with both the 2500 and 3500 Sprinter.
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Old 05-09-2011, 05:12 AM   #27
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Default Re: Dodge Sprinter - handles very poorly in wind

There was an on going debate on the Yahoo RT group about handling a little over a week or so ago.
Many of the comments were similar to this thread's, and could be categorized pretty much the same by make and model.
Some preferred Chev to Sprinter and vice versa, some Sprinters handled well, others did not, some recommended
all sorts of mechanical mods to help, some just said slow down, and so on.
I think the conclusion I've drawn is, handling is a very subjective situation. One man's white knuckle sway and wandering,
is another man's minor steering correction.
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Old 05-09-2011, 05:10 PM   #28
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Default Re: Dodge Sprinter - handles very poorly in wind

Mike,
Some of what you are saying is true. Much of this is subjective, specifically when the person has nothing to compare against.

Many of us have either driven multiple models (Davydd and others) or modified our own rigs (Booster and me). Then we have driving characteristics to compare. In those cases, I think other readers can make informed choices, based on the posts here, on what to buy or how to modify, to improve driving characteristics of their Class B RV. At least within the specific models mentioned.
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Old 05-10-2011, 02:23 AM   #29
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Default Re: Dodge Sprinter - handles very poorly in wind

Quote:
Originally Posted by Davydd
Booster,

Quite the opposite, B vans are more bottom loaded with underfloor generator, water, propane and waste tanks. As for Edmunds, they have been saying in all their Sprinter reviews, "Quite simply, this is the easiest and least cumbersome full-size van to drive."
I guess I would have to see some center of gravity numbers to believe this one. From all I have read, MB had issues with the 2500 motorhomes, but not the regular vans, in the handling department, and actually added swaybars and such to counter the problems. May be true, but kind of defies logic.
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Old 05-10-2011, 02:48 PM   #30
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Default Re: Dodge Sprinter - handles very poorly in wind

booster,

I'm not sure what you read about handling but I have never heard of any Sprinter modifications other than adding air bags to the 2500 chassis. Are you confusing all the older American Dodge van talk with Sprinters? The old American Dodge vans have been discussed extensively about handling problems. The shift now seems to be the Pleasure-Way Excel TS Ford wide body model where there is numerous discussions about improving handling with sway bars, spacers, shocks, air bags, tires, tire pressure, etc. over what came from the converter. The new 3500 dually chassis does not even have an air bag option and doesn't need it.

This might be worth noting about Sprinters:

ADAPTIVE ESP Electronic Stability Program
ADAPTIVE ESP is a dynamic handing control system which also takes into account the vehicle load. It intervenes in critical situations by applying a brake force to one or more wheels and adjusting the engine output in order to help stabilize the vehicle. ADAPTIVE ESP combines the functions of the anti-lock braking system (ABS), acceleration skid control (ASR), electronic brake-force distribution (EBD), Brake Assist (BAS), and Start-Off Assist as well as further aiding directional stability. Additionally, ESP Trailer Stability Assist enhances handling safety when towing a trailer.


I don't know if Ford and Chevy have this kind of safety feature, but I can tell you it works. I went into one mountain hairpin turn too fast and the Adaptive ESP actually did take over. Slammed me down to common sense with both brakes and transmission gear.
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Old 05-10-2011, 05:53 PM   #31
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Default Re: Dodge Sprinter - handles very poorly in wind

Quote:
Originally Posted by booster
Quote:
Originally Posted by Davydd
Booster,

Quite the opposite, B vans are more bottom loaded with underfloor generator, water, propane and waste tanks. As for Edmunds, they have been saying in all their Sprinter reviews, "Quite simply, this is the easiest and least cumbersome full-size van to drive."
I guess I would have to see some center of gravity numbers to believe this one. From all I have read, MB had issues with the 2500 motorhomes, but not the regular vans, in the handling department, and actually added swaybars and such to counter the problems. May be true, but kind of defies logic.
Not sure how the CG of an empty Chevy van would compare to our R/T's, but a work van will have a much higher CG than my loaded R/T. Most of my extra weight is at or below frame level. A work van will have all of their added weight, above the floor level.

That being said, my A/C, microwave, cabinet structure, some clothes, DVD player and some canned foods are all at head-level, when standing in the van. They don't weigh nearly as much as the batteries, water, propane, and black/gray tanks; but they do bring the CG back up a bit.

As for the difference it causes to the handling characteristics, I think the biggest problem my R/T has, is just the excess weight being more than the suspension is optimized to support. It handles much better now, with the Tuff Truck front springs. I expect it to improve more, when I install proper rear springs and all 4 shocks.
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Old 07-08-2011, 01:17 AM   #32
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Default Re: Dodge Sprinter - handles very poorly in wind

Davydd Tue May 10, 2011 7:48 am:
“I'm not sure what you read about handling but I have never heard of any Sprinter modifications other than adding air bags to the 2500 chassis.” “The new 3500 dually chassis does not even have an air bag option and doesn't need it.”

Davy
My 2008, 2500 is also terrific handling in stock form, as my rig has comparatively low weight in the rear. But body sway is an issue. I’m currently working on some easy suspension mods like Timbren bushings and antisway bars that I think will be of interest to everyone. For over 10 years, The Sprinter Store south of Portland OR has vast experience with both First and Second Generation Sprinter suspensions using better springs, sway bars, shocks, air bags and many other Sprinter specialties. People with Sprinter issues will be relieved to talk to someone who are experts and devoted to them. They have many Sprinter parts and accessories online at:

http://upscaleauto.com/sprinter_store.htm
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Old 07-08-2011, 02:35 AM   #33
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Default Re: Dodge Sprinter - handles very poorly in wind

Quote:
Originally Posted by Orca
Davydd Tue May 10, 2011 7:48 am:
“I'm not sure what you read about handling but I have never heard of any Sprinter modifications other than adding air bags to the 2500 chassis.” “The new 3500 dually chassis does not even have an air bag option and doesn't need it.”

Davy
My 2008, 2500 is also terrific handling in stock form, as my rig has comparatively low weight in the rear. But body sway is an issue. I’m currently working on some easy suspension mods like Timbren bushings and antisway bars that I think will be of interest to everyone. For over 10 years, The Sprinter Store south of Portland OR has vast experience with both First and Second Generation Sprinter suspensions using better springs, sway bars, shocks, air bags and many other Sprinter specialties. People with Sprinter issues will be relieved to talk to someone who are experts and devoted to them. They have many Sprinter parts and accessories online at:

http://upscaleauto.com/sprinter_store.htm
Well put.

We don't have a Sprinter, but do have an 07 Chevy Roadtrek 190, which also handled well stock, just as your Sprinter does. That doesn't mean it couldn't be improved, which we did with stiffer front springs, air bags, big rear sway bar, Bilsteins. It is now significantly better, especially in the wind and in swaying type areas. Perfect? Probably not. Could it be better? Probably. Is it to the point we think it is good enough and not worth more effort and money? Yes!

Those that say their Sprinter/Chevy/whatever handle perfectly because they are better than a Sprinter/Chevy/whatever are using a flawed reference. The question is if it is as good as it can be in comparison to stock, not others, and is it good enough for you. Much of what we hear about how wonderful any given unit is, IMO, comes from the pride of ownership, and justification of lots of $ spent, and is very understandable. After spending that much, it is hard to admit it isn't perfect. My goal is to be able to spend more time looking at the scenery, and less keeping in a straight line (isn't that what touring is all about?), and we are really quite good now, in that respect. Is it better or worse than a Ford or a Sprinter? I don't really care, but if folks ask, I will very gladly tell the good and the not so good, so they can make a rational evaluation without false expectations.

Everyone has their own standards for handling, so it is a very subjective topic. I tend to be very picky about it, so I notice the weaknesses. Others may not.

My point, I guess, is take claims of handling, quality, mileage, etc with a grain of salt.
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Old 07-20-2011, 03:51 AM   #34
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Default Re: Dodge Sprinter - handles very poorly in wind

Regarding the Sprinter 3500 and 3500 Cab&Chassis based RV’s, the issue of crosswinds and buffeting from large trucks, I have friends that swear by the Timbren Hollow Rubber Spring stops. While not cheap, they are simple and easy to install. They’re very effective, reducing body roll and “driveway rock” when entering driveways at an angle. I can also testify they help reduce the jiggles from rough road surfaces as well. There are many other suspension modifications available, but this is something anyone can do, while you plan your next steps.
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Old 12-25-2011, 11:04 PM   #35
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Default Re: Dodge Sprinter - handles very poorly in wind

Quote:
Originally Posted by booster
Quote:
Originally Posted by Orca
Davydd Tue May 10, 2011 7:48 am:
“I'm not sure what you read about handling but I have never heard of any Sprinter modifications other than adding air bags to the 2500 chassis.” “The new 3500 dually chassis does not even have an air bag option and doesn't need it.”

Davy
My 2008, 2500 is also terrific handling in stock form, as my rig has comparatively low weight in the rear. But body sway is an issue. I’m currently working on some easy suspension mods like Timbren bushings and antisway bars that I think will be of interest to everyone. For over 10 years, The Sprinter Store south of Portland OR has vast experience with both First and Second Generation Sprinter suspensions using better springs, sway bars, shocks, air bags and many other Sprinter specialties. People with Sprinter issues will be relieved to talk to someone who are experts and devoted to them. They have many Sprinter parts and accessories online at:

http://upscaleauto.com/sprinter_store.htm
Well put.

We don't have a Sprinter, but do have an 07 Chevy Roadtrek 190, which also handled well stock, just as your Sprinter does. That doesn't mean it couldn't be improved, which we did with stiffer front springs, air bags, big rear sway bar, Bilsteins. It is now significantly better, especially in the wind and in swaying type areas. Perfect? Probably not. Could it be better? Probably. Is it to the point we think it is good enough and not worth more effort and money? Yes!

Those that say their Sprinter/Chevy/whatever handle perfectly because they are better than a Sprinter/Chevy/whatever are using a flawed reference. The question is if it is as good as it can be in comparison to stock, not others, and is it good enough for you. Much of what we hear about how wonderful any given unit is, IMO, comes from the pride of ownership, and justification of lots of $ spent, and is very understandable. After spending that much, it is hard to admit it isn't perfect. My goal is to be able to spend more time looking at the scenery, and less keeping in a straight line (isn't that what touring is all about?), and we are really quite good now, in that respect. Is it better or worse than a Ford or a Sprinter? I don't really care, but if folks ask, I will very gladly tell the good and the not so good, so they can make a rational evaluation without false expectations.

Everyone has their own standards for handling, so it is a very subjective topic. I tend to be very picky about it, so I notice the weaknesses. Others may not.

My point, I guess, is take claims of handling, quality, mileage, etc with a grain of salt.
Absolutely agree.
Generally speaking, when a quality assurance report comes from a source which may have a "dog in the fight" for any
reason, you have to treat it with some skepticism. Frankly, the only opinion that counts is that of the owner/driver, in
the case of handling issues. If you drive it, and it doesn't handle well, then that's all that matters to you. If you drive it, and it handles great, same answer. It's subjective, based on individual driver experience and reaction. Doesn't matter what the specs state, or what the test track guys or another owner thinks.
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Old 12-25-2011, 11:56 PM   #36
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Default Re: Dodge Sprinter - handles very poorly in wind

I drove a Sprinter in fairly high winds and I'll say that it is no comparison to either my Older Dodge Saratoga or my Chevy van or any other van that I drove. I don't think I will be in the market for a Sprinter
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Old 08-11-2012, 03:49 PM   #37
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Default Re: Dodge Sprinter - handles very poorly in wind

I installed Timbrens SES springs front and rear on our 2010 sprinter 2500 ERA conversion. Long and tall. Made a huge difference. Handles more like a regular van vs a motorhome. Great investment. I would suggest to all who have the 2500 series to consider them.
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