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Old 04-01-2016, 11:41 AM   #361
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On the bright side though, the flexbed setup may help resale.
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Old 04-01-2016, 03:11 PM   #362
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Are the holes in the floor recessed, or are they those things that stick up? If they are holes, then fashions some plugs for them and leave the rest of the kit at home.

FWIW, not a fan of the way they did this.
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Old 04-02-2016, 12:57 AM   #363
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Are the holes in the floor recessed, or are they those things that stick up? If they are holes, then fashions some plugs for them and leave the rest of the kit at home.

FWIW, not a fan of the way they did this.
They aren't the really big cones, but they do have a lip of about 3/8 inch, plus the hole. If you cap the hole, you add another 1/8 inch with the cap, so about 1/2 inch and two of them in the middle of the walk way! Ugh.
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Old 04-02-2016, 05:49 AM   #364
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We have that set up in our 2016 59K. The "holes" are not in the center of the aisle but about 1" from the passenger side bed frame. The table is offset and you can put the table up so it spans the aisle or is mainly over the passenger bed which allows you to walk through the aisle with the table up. The table also becomes your center support for joining the two beds together when dropped down on the bed frames. I would guesstimate the table to be about 4 feet long by 20 inches wide. We really like having those options and have used the table in all three positions at various times. As much as we enjoy it, I can understand someone not wanting it and am surprised you can't order one without that option.
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Old 04-02-2016, 04:12 PM   #365
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We have that set up in our 2016 59K. The "holes" are not in the center of the aisle but about 1" from the passenger side bed frame. The table is offset and you can put the table up so it spans the aisle or is mainly over the passenger bed which allows you to walk through the aisle with the table up. The table also becomes your center support for joining the two beds together when dropped down on the bed frames. I would guesstimate the table to be about 4 feet long by 20 inches wide. We really like having those options and have used the table in all three positions at various times. As much as we enjoy it, I can understand someone not wanting it and am surprised you can't order one without that option.
Even though the edge of the flange is only one inch from the side, isn't the flange 4 to 5" across? Also, we currently have a trailer and don't want to manhandle a 4' board that has two support poles(been there done that). As Wincrasher asks, couldn't they have come up with a more elegant solution if it was going to be a standard item? For example, make two 2' tables so you arent struggling with something 4' long in a confined space? As a standard item, Winnebago informed me that standard items cannot be deleted.
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Old 04-04-2016, 03:14 AM   #366
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Default Transit Class B

Back to the question about Transit Class B's - While browsing the Leisure Travel site, I ran across this:

Leisure Travel Vans Introduces ĎWonderí B-Plus | RV Business

They are calling it a "B+ style class C motorhome". Not sure what is meant by that.

I find the comments here, regarding Transits not being the best choice for class B because of Ford's market attitude interesting. You would think they would see the success of the Sprinters and want to cash in. Perhaps Ford knows it can't compete with MB

Do most agree that the reason to pay more for MB is quality and reliability and not just prestige? I'm thinking so.
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Old 04-05-2016, 01:58 AM   #367
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Suza, you seem to be looking for someone to present a different view so here we go...

US Sales of full size commercial vans in 2015 were as follows...

Ford Transit 117,000
Chevy/GMC 85,000
Ford Econoline 51,000
Mercedes Sprinter/Metris 30,000
RAM Promaster 28,000

So, it would appear that Ford had no trouble competing with MB even during ramp up towards full production on the Transit.

During production ramp up Ford wisely focused on the major portion of the market which are the standard commercial van configurations. I expect that they will address all the issues RV builders have had with the Transit Van and Cutaway configurations as they continue to ramp up to full production. They will add a T-450 cutaway at some point before the E series cutaway production ends.

I personally think the MB prestige factor is something that has very little logic when it comes to commercial vans. When the same van is badged as a Freightliner or Dodge no one felt there was anything prestigious about it, it was simply a commercial van. I would say that there are camper conversions that can turn a Sprinter into a prestigious camper maybe in keeping with the prestige of a MB luxury vehicle but it had very little to do with the base van they started with. Many owners have switched from a Sprinter to a Transit and find the powertrain and handling to be better on the Transit.

In terms of quality and reliability I personally have not seen any data showing much difference between between a Sprinter and a Transit. Finding a qualified service facility is clearly an issue with the Sprinter, especially when away from large urban areas, that is not really an issue with the Transit.

I will let you know that I used to be an engineer at Ford but I also own a 2008 Roadtrek Freightliner Sprinter that has had no major issues in the 4 years we have owned it. The only real concern I have with our Sprinter is being able to find a well qualified and reasonably priced service facility when we are away from our local Freightliner Sprinter dealer where we get excellent service at reasonable prices.
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Old 04-05-2016, 02:25 AM   #368
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Also as I think I've stated somewhere above, Ford is building all the Transits it can at the moment, and have been since day one, (and getting further behind) The Kansas City plant is virtually maxed out, so why worry about a smallish market such as the class B.

One other point. Has everyone noticed that MB has combined the sales numbers of the Metris & Sprinter? That way their sales variances don't show so much.

Oh, and I've driven both vans MB & Transit back to back. The Transit does drive, ride and run much better than the Sprinter does. That's comparing diesel to diesel and EcoBoost to MB diesel. No contest on that last one, not even close of course
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Old 04-05-2016, 02:55 AM   #369
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As I recall, when MB announced that they were building the new Sprinter plant in SC that their plans were based on reaching sales of 50,000. I assume the plant is flexible enough to fill it up with other models if they stay at their current sales numbers.
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Old 04-05-2016, 03:13 AM   #370
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A few things. I doubt they would build that plant if they were not confident in meeting those numbers. Secondly, there will be a new model version coming out of that plant. Thirdly, there are a lot of Mercedes Benz dealers not servicing Sprinters. You can bet they will gear up those dealers once they make a USA commitment like that. I have two Mercedes dealers within 12 miles of my house yet I have to drive 40 miles to a Freightliner dealer or 100 miles to a Mercedes Sprinter dealer. That will have to change.
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Old 04-05-2016, 03:40 AM   #371
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It would be rare these days to design an automotive assembly plant that cannot easily be reconfigured to adapt to the market. I expect they have the capability to easily introduce a mix of other models if the expected Sprinter volumes do not materialize.
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Old 04-05-2016, 03:38 PM   #372
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True, but you don't go into a venture of that magnitude with that fallback reasoning and uncertainty. Companies don't gamble. They pretty much know their expectations. The only thing that would change that would be unknown external future changes like recessions.

As for automotive plants they have always been reconfigurable. I worked in a Chevrolet manufacturing plant's plant engineering depart in my early career. The plant was designed by Albert Kahn Architects out of Detroit in the 1930s.
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Old 04-05-2016, 03:49 PM   #373
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I find it interesting that someone would report the Transit as "driving better" than the Sprinter. Considering it's goofy proportions and tremendous rear overhang, there must be some serious stability control electronics at work to make that happen.

As I've said before, I think customers shopping for a B, for the most part, see MB as a prestige brand, regardless of the real truth. They expect a price differential between a Ford and a Mercedes. Since in reality, there is no price premium, many may balk at the price on a Transit conversion. A smart converter, I would think, would just increase the price on their Mercedes to meet the expectation. I don't think it's crazy to stratify segments as low (Promaster), mid (Transit), and high (Mercedes). Whether the market is big enough to support this is another conversation.
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Old 04-05-2016, 05:01 PM   #374
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Handling is so subjective, it is very hard to compare one person's observations to others, or your own. Add to that the fact that you may be comparing empty vans, which really have very little in common with a fully loaded up "B" and it gets even worse. Better empty could easily be worse full. Even between B's on the same chassis, the weight distribution can be grossly different and make them feel totally different.

I need to go drive a Promaster B and see how it feels to me, but I feel guilty wasting the dealers time and gas when we have no intentions of buying anything. I have been surprised by the very favorable reviews of the Promaster handling based on past experience with front drive vehicles, which usually lose a lot of handling when they get more weight in the rear. All the years of minivan building must have taught them something.
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Old 04-05-2016, 05:02 PM   #375
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I find it interesting that someone would report the Transit as "driving better" than the Sprinter. Considering it's goofy proportions and tremendous rear overhang, there must be some serious stability control electronics at work to make that happen.
That was me. I've driven every body style Transit except the low roof wagon and bare cutaways with the 3.7 V6. The rest of the styles with both the EcoBoost and the 5cyl diesel, which by the way has more torque than the V6 Sprinter along with an extra gear, and it does drive better, at least on an up to 60mph, curvy, with switchbacks track scenario. Took our 24' long and tall ERA over, and drove the long, mid-roof Transit with the Ecoboost first. Thought I was in a racecar. Handles wonderful, and talk about the power!
Then got in the same configuration diesel. Was really surprised how much difference a modern 6spd transmission made over the Sprinter setup.
MB should put the 7spd in with the V6, which I'm sure will happen with the next platform change. Would make a big difference.....
Drove 3 other configurations the same day
The Transit does have excellent stability controls built in...
By the way, all these Transits had 3k lbs. of flat, dense insulation boards strapped down in the back for a loaded down effect
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Old 04-05-2016, 05:27 PM   #376
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True, but you don't go into a venture of that magnitude with that fallback reasoning and uncertainty. Companies don't gamble. They pretty much know their expectations. The only thing that would change that would be unknown external future changes like recessions.

As for automotive plants they have always been reconfigurable. I worked in a Chevrolet manufacturing plant's plant engineering depart in my early career. The plant was designed by Albert Kahn Architects out of Detroit in the 1930s.
Very good, let's just say that the newer plants are more flexible than any plant you worked in back in the day unless you go way back to the Model T plant in Highland Park where all models were on the same assembly line...

Detroit Auto Makers Confront Flexible Manufacturing as New Necessity | News & Analysis content from WardsAuto
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Old 04-06-2016, 05:18 AM   #377
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Originally Posted by gregmchugh View Post
Suza, you seem to be looking for someone to present a different view so here we go...

US Sales of full size commercial vans in 2015 were as follows...

Ford Transit 117,000
Chevy/GMC 85,000
Ford Econoline 51,000
Mercedes Sprinter/Metris 30,000
RAM Promaster 28,000

So, it would appear that Ford had no trouble competing with MB even during ramp up towards full production on the Transit.

During production ramp up Ford wisely focused on the major portion of the market which are the standard commercial van configurations. I expect that they will address all the issues RV builders have had with the Transit Van and Cutaway configurations as they continue to ramp up to full production. They will add a T-450 cutaway at some point before the E series cutaway production ends.

I personally think the MB prestige factor is something that has very little logic when it comes to commercial vans. When the same van is badged as a Freightliner or Dodge no one felt there was anything prestigious about it, it was simply a commercial van. I would say that there are camper conversions that can turn a Sprinter into a prestigious camper maybe in keeping with the prestige of a MB luxury vehicle but it had very little to do with the base van they started with. Many owners have switched from a Sprinter to a Transit and find the powertrain and handling to be better on the Transit.

In terms of quality and reliability I personally have not seen any data showing much difference between between a Sprinter and a Transit. Finding a qualified service facility is clearly an issue with the Sprinter, especially when away from large urban areas, that is not really an issue with the Transit.

I will let you know that I used to be an engineer at Ford but I also own a 2008 Roadtrek Freightliner Sprinter that has had no major issues in the 4 years we have owned it. The only real concern I have with our Sprinter is being able to find a well qualified and reasonably priced service facility when we are away from our local Freightliner Sprinter dealer where we get excellent service at reasonable prices.
Your comment regarding access to service is one of the reasons we would consider the Transit. We are in rural Oregon. The nearest Merc service is in Eugene - a 2 1/2 hr trip. Is MB Sprinter powered by Freightliner? Still 2 1/2 hrs for FL service. Ford dealer is only 50 miles away.

We own a Ford F350 and a BMW X5 - both diesels - and are more than pleased with each.

Thank you for the "different view"
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Old 04-06-2016, 12:55 PM   #378
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Your comment regarding access to service is one of the reasons we would consider the Transit. We are in rural Oregon. The nearest Merc service is in Eugene - a 2 1/2 hr trip. Is MB Sprinter powered by Freightliner? Still 2 1/2 hrs for FL service. Ford dealer is only 50 miles away.

We own a Ford F350 and a BMW X5 - both diesels - and are more than pleased with each.

Thank you for the "different view"
All Sprinters for the US come from the same factory in Germany and are sold as either Mercedes or Freightliner and have the same Mercedes engines for either brand. Exact same van for both brands but different badging depending on whether it is sold by a Mercedes dealer or a Freightliner Sprinter dealer. Most Freightliner dealers do not sell or service the Sprinter just as many Mercedes dealers do not sell or service Sprinters. If you go to the Freightliner Sprinter USA website you can see where the dealers are.

Freightliner Sprinter: Cargo and Passenger Vans
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Old 04-06-2016, 01:34 PM   #379
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I've driven over 160,000 miles in a Sprinter just about everywhere in North America including Alaska and the tip of Newfoundland and Labrador where the Vikings first landed in America. I had my first road incident last week which could happen to any van. A power steering hose disconnected, the fluid drained, and I lost power steering. I could still drive easily on the highway but it was hell trying to turn from a stop though I managed to get in and out of a service station for fuel. I drove to the nearest Mercedes Benz Sprinter dealer in Littleton, Colorado, pulled into their service lot and boondocked over night. I caught them as they were arriving at 7 AM to open up. The mechanics didn't start until 8 AM. The manager pulled our B in at 7:30. The hose was fixed with new clamps. They filled and double bled the fluid and took care of two minor recalls (some non-corrosive screws in the door and a computer update) and we were on our way at exactly 9:24 AM. We are up to 37,000 miles on our current B in a short 14 months. We were at 36,103 miles when we got service but they honored the 36,000 mile warranty and the cost was free. As for normal service, we had one at 18,000 miles short of the normal 20,000 mile service because we were heading out on a trip last year. We will be heading out again soon so we will have the 40,000 mile service done early again. Once a year seeing dealer service is no big burden. With 20,000 mile service intervals we don't have to wonder about when while on the road.
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Old 05-13-2016, 08:52 PM   #380
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Default Travato 59k auto stairs

i have a 2016 Travato 59k. Which I love. Today the automatic slide out entry stairs died. Fuses all seem good. Any advice on how this would be appreciated thanks
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