Hi.

Welcome to my blog. I document my adventures in travel, style, and food. Hope you have a nice stay!

First Impressions

First Impressions

I've got about 5hrs or so in Vanatoli at this point, and have been bombing around town daily with it so I thought I'd share my initial impressions.

It drives great! Seriously, it drives so much better than most vans. I suppose that this is the Mercedes part of it coming out. Steering is responsive, and the van does not wallow down the road at all. The V6 turbo diesel is very peppy, and a noticeable improvement in get-up-and-go compared to the RAV4. So far I'm hovering right at 21mpg with a fair amount of in-town driving.

I'm super glad I got the 144" wheel base model. It's a breeze to whip around parking lots and get in parking spaces. That was a big concern of mine. I've already got one motorhome, and I didn't want this to feel big and bulky driving it. Well, it most certainly does NOT! I will note that a back-up camera is in the very near future. With no windows (yet) at all behind the drivers seat it's definitely a little "blind" feeling backing into places.

The seats are crazy comfortable. You can tell they build this with the higher mileage work van in mind, because it's certainly comfortable to sit in going down the road. The road noise at this point is less than desirable, but I don't think that's really this van in particulars fault. It's still an empty van with no insulation or interior panels in it. Of course it's going to have road noise.

The cruise control, and Bluetooth systems work great, although the interface is a little clunky. I'm still not sure what I'm going to do with the audio system. Originally I had hoped to keep the factory unit, and just add a couple speakers in the back, but it looks like the deck isn't capable of that. Combine that with only marginal audio quality to begin with, and it looks like a large face head unit with screen will be in my future. Then I can tap a backup camera into that for a cleaner look.

I like that the newer Sprinters have a DEF fluid meter that you can access in the cluster so you can see where your DEF fluid level is at.  It certainly sips the DEF fluid. Much less than I had expected so that's good. There is a TON of storage space in, and over, the dash area. Lots of great little cubicles to put stuff so that's cool.

Biggest complaints? The cupholders flat out suck. They're too small and shallow. This is something the Europeans have never really grasped to be honest. Ummm hello! This needs to be able to hold a big gulp not a little midget tea cup! The HVAC system is a little odd with the vent selection methods, but I'll get used to it I think. That and I hate the door lock button on the center of the dash. Again, another dumb euro thing.

I've already got some of the parts coming for the first project so I'll be posting shortly on those!

The How and Why

The How and Why