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Willys

What do we know about Sprinter vans ???

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Hi guys, didn't know where to put this question so here we are.
I am looking for a Sprinter Van to convert into a camper.  I have heard some thing about the van but not enough yet to sway me away from them.  Hmmm...?
I have one I may look at 2012 3500 clean and looks well kept.....but looks can be altered and deceiving....augh!   180,000kms on the clock.
I am looking to find out any known issues or not so well known issues  they can have. Then the fixes to repair them and how difficult and or expensive is it to do....?
I think my STAR will read the vehicle as it does come up when entering the Smart Car, so maybe?  Would be a plus.

So have at it and lets get educated on this subject if nothing other than to have fun learning about them.

 

Thanks.....

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They're driven hard and put away wet in most cases. I'm not sure when the Chrysler/Dodge manufacturing partnership ended but you'll definitely want to avoid those ones. Rust magnets down here in southern Ontario - probably lots of 401 miles in all weather. If you can identify the engine, just put it into the old googler and see what comes up. I think some models have the injector seals issue, wherein injector seals start leaking and combustion gasses incompletely incinerate the sound dampening foam directly above them, creating a horrible carbon deposit that makes future service extremely difficult. The DPF/catalyst maintenance is important too; sometimes people dodge that stuff.

Edited by cheapsmart
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Thanks, still searching....and yes they do get used well...low mileagers are expensive.!
I have thought about Promasters and the Transit  all in the high roof configuration. But these are also hard to find, so far...

 

Thanks....all info is better than none.

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Yeah, I've seen a lot of early Daimler-era Sprinters that were rusted all to hell. Don't see many of those first-generation vans on the road much any more. The second-generation ones seem to hold up a little better, which a 2012 would definitely be, but I have no first-hand experience with them, just what I observe out on the roads here in and around Toronto.

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Money pit would be my thoughts, unless buying a new camperized one and using it sparingly for touring in nice weather.  Auto box will probably die at under 200K km, direct injection EGR turbo intercooled sounds smart-ish but they're EU-4+ meaning with DPF and AdBlue, which offers up a whole new world of hurt.  Then the rust issue: even here in BC the fenders are flapping after 10 years. I'd think it's a masochist's choice as a used vehicle and the concept of a camperised one of these does attract me too. But only if new or nearly new.

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I am not interested in anything that owns rust issues already and i will be looking deep into it for this reason over most anything else. All, vehicles have mechanical issues at some point in their lifespan and you have to watch for the time they typically appear to decide what year to purchase.  I won't be buying a new one I doubt just because of the massive mark down from new to just off lease type pricing, the typical 30% loss when buying new, if that still applies in today's age of shortages...?  I am thinking due to how hard they are to find even in reasonable condition, it might well not be such a hard hit. That is while this crisis mode is upon us....seems delivery drivers are buying all things that can carry an Amazon delivery up.
I also want to build my own van out to suit my needs, over having it cookie cutter designed. Once I'm done with it, who cares....what happens to it....I rarely sell off my vehicles before they are used up or not worth anything.
The thing is, I priced up a bare bones Pro-master  the other day without any modern cons at all, bare bones. It came out to $53,000.....around me you must pay close to $40K for a very good condition low miler......but it may have had the issues ironed out in that time, or are they just about to surface...?   Crap shoot....lol.
I'm in no position to spend that amount yet so I wait and watch.  

Again the only reason I went for the Sprinter was the diesel engine and it's far better fuel economy......and if you are traveling in it, this will add up over time to savings in fuel and longer life on the engine.  IF you don't use it much then all the others are a better choice.....and you may as well buy a ready built RV. where it has all the modern conveniences of a home. Plus again if you plan on using campsites and not roughing it, again RV..?     RV's aren't built for constant use, they are made flimsily and in short time they start the never ending leaking cycle.  You must buy a commercial type machine which is designed to run down the road it's entire life to steer clear of structural leaking. At one time in my lifetime, I was a trailer mechanic, so I have personal experiences as what to look for and how things are built for longevity.  RV's are not built the same way.  They are built to be used 2-4 weeks of the year then parked at a storage place or on a plot of land immobile.

To each their own....I'm after a high top van or a small maybe a box type truck, cube van....but they can't easily be parked just anywhere either.

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Some of the Promasters up to a couple of years ago had Fiat diesels but I don't know if they were any good. And I think Ford Transit has a diesel option, more powerful than that in the Sprinter, I believe.

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I thought about the other diesels also, but someone told me something neg about them so i stopped...? I forget what it was now, will need to jolt my memory banks....this will take some doing.
Plus the cost to get the diesel over the gas model was huge if I remember correctly, maybe that was it..?    The other thing is, how many kms will a gasoline engine last these years compared to the olden days of detroit iron crap.  ????  Then comes down to if you do buy a new or close to new, will you add 300K kms to it in our lifetime?  I like driving so I would definately get up there for sure.....and a good used one will already have close to 100K  maybe 50-60 K if you are lucky. This will be a benefit as it will already have all the bugs ironed out in those kms, no...?
All things to consider when searching for a van, new, almost new, slightly used, how it was used or ready for a serious mechanical over haul..?  But all must not have rust issues already.   

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