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Are Sprinter Vans Worth The Money?

Gray van on street in urban area

One of the most popular vans on the market right now is the Mercedes-Benz Sprinter. The Sprinter is a versatile vehicle that’s commonly used for package delivery or as a work vehicle. The Sprinter is also the base vehicle that many camper vans are built on. But with a Mercedes badge on the front, we have to ask: are Sprinter vans worth the money?

Mercedes-Benz Sprinter vans are definitely worth the price. The very popular Sprinter is loaded with safety features, has a reputation for reliability, and is manufactured by one of the most experienced and competent automotive companies on the planet.

Among the features that make the Sprinter worth the money are the plentiful and modern safety options, the up-to-date and highly rated MBUX infotainment system, and a reasonable cost of operation. Sprinter vans are highly versatile and can be converted to RVs or offroad vans. Read on to learn more about this premium van and how it is worth every nickel you spend on it.

Sprinter Vans – Will You Get Your Money’s Worth

Are Sprinter vans worth the money? To decide for sure, we’ll need to take a deep dive into the Sprinter and see what kind of features it offers that add value to the buyer and distinguish it from competing vans.

First, let’s talk about safety features. The roads are busy these days, and people are more distracted than ever, making safety a top priority. Shoppers looking for any vehicle would do well to consider the safety features available to them. The Sprinter has a comprehensive safety package designed to thwart the most common causes of accidents on the road.

The Sprinter comes standard with an Active Brake Assist package. This safety tool essentially uses radar to measure your approach speed when you’re coming up on an obstacle or another vehicle. If it determines that you’re closing too quickly, the Sprinter will apply the brakes to help you avoid a collision. The Sprinter also comes standard with an Emergency Call system that detects an impact and will automatically contact 911.

For drivers seeking extra safety features, the Sprinter can be equipped with blind-spot assist, rear cross-traffic alerts, and a 360-degree camera. An added bonus is the Attention Assist system. This system monitors driving patterns for signs of fatigue and lets you know when it thinks you need a break or a nice cup of coffee.

Are you hitting the highway between stops? The Sprinter can also be equipped with an active distance assist system, sometimes known as adaptive cruise control, that will help you maintain a safe following distance from other vehicles.

If you’re driving in more rugged conditions, the Sprinter has tools to help you. Available LED performance headlights provide a bright, clear picture of the road ahead in dark driving conditions. For snowy, dusty, or muddy driving, you can use the optional Wet Wiper System to apply washer fluid from the wiper blades instead of from a nozzle, thus applying cleaning fluid directly to your windshield and directly in the path of the blades.

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The Sprinter’s safety features are impressive. So are the available engine options. Sprinter vans can be equipped with a turbocharged 2-liter 4-cylinder gasoline engine that puts out a solid 258 foot-pounds of torque. If you want more power, the Sprinter can be equipped with a 3-liter, V6 turbo diesel engine, and a 4X4 drivetrain. These engines can be paired with either the Mercedes-Benz 9G-tronic or 7G-tronic transmissions.

Safety is great, but in today’s connected world, we all need access to information while we drive. Navigation, entertainment, and communication systems are valuable components in any vehicle. The Sprinter comes standard with either a 7” or 10.5” MBUX multimedia infotainment system.

Mercedes-Benz designed the MBUX infotainment system to leverage modern computer technology for the benefit of drivers. Machine learning algorithms recognize habitual patterns. For example, if you call your spouse every day at 4 from the road, MBUX will remember and preemptively load their number for you.

The MBUX voice command system is designed to understand natural language, so even if you have a thick Downeast Maine accent or a refined Southern Drawl, MBUX will understand you.

While it’s designed to stand alone and offer complete functionality without an attached smart device, the MBUX system is designed to integrate with your smart device. MBUX interfaces seamlessly with Android Auto and Apple CarPlay. An optional wireless charging feature is handy to reduce cable clutter in the cab.

The Sprinter offers a lot of value for the money. The question is: is the Sprinter more expensive than comparable vans? The basic passenger van that underpins many camper vans begins at $43,120.

Comparing the Sprinter Passenger Van with the Ford Transit Passenger XLT, the Ram ProMaster 3500 Window Van 159WB, and the Nissan NV Passenger SL reveals that the Sprinter is priced very competitively, with an MSRP below that of the Ford Transit or Nissan NV.

  • Mercedes-Benz Sprinter: $43,120
  • Ford Transit Passenger XLT: $43,530
  • Ram ProMaster 3500 Window Van: (159WB) $41,140
  • Nissan NV Passenger SL: $43,610

Not only is the Sprinter priced competitively, but its features are also high-end and valuable to drivers. The MBUX infotainment system easily outperforms competing systems from companies like Ford and Nissan. Adaptive cruise control, braking assist, and driver fatigue monitoring add a lot of value to this van that is not found in all competitors.

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What Kind of Warranty Does a Sprinter Have?

The Sprinter comes standard with a 3-year, 36,000-mile warranty. If you prefer an extended warranty, Mercedes offers options for five years or 100,000 miles; 6 years or 120,000 miles; or seven years and up to 140,000 miles. This warranty indicates that Mercedes is confident in the quality of their product – something that the brand, in general, is known for.

Are Sprinters Expensive to Own?

While searching for information on Sprinter vans, you might find articles indicating high maintenance costs, especially regarding the Mercedes-Benz diesel exhaust system. And while it is true that the diesel exhaust system can be expensive to repair, that is only an issue if you have a diesel engine and drive heavily.

For the average driver, whether you’re an electrician using the van to haul tools, an RVer exploring America, or just a guy with a big family to tote around, the Sprinter has routine and predictable maintenance costs. If you prefer to pay for routine maintenance in advance, you can buy a prepaid maintenance plan from Mercedes. If you want to avoid the dealership, Sprinters are easy to service and can be worked on by most any qualified mechanic.

As with any vehicle, your usage patterns will affect the cost to maintain the vehicle. If you drive responsibly, keep up with routine oil changes, and take good care of your Sprinter, your overall maintenance cost will be lower. If you drive erratically, fail to complete routine maintenance, or abuse your vehicle, your cost to own will go up. For the average responsible driver, the Sprinter’s maintenance costs are comparable to similar vehicles.

How Many Miles Per Gallon Does a Sprinter Van Get?

Your specific gas mileage will vary based on the vehicle configuration, usage patterns, climate, and geography. If you live in the Rockies, kit your Sprinter out with heavy furnishings, and spend a lot of time driving up hills, your fuel economy may not be so good. If you live in a less mountainous area and drive at reasonable speeds, your Sprinter will get better fuel economy.

On average, Sprinters get about 14.5 miles to the gallon. Considering the size of the Sprinter and the fact that it can be loaded to the gills with cargo and options, this is a decent fuel burn rate. If you want to stretch a few more miles to the gallon, you should minimize idling, drive conservatively, and use the cruise control as much as reasonably possible.

The Sprinter: Worth Every Penny

Mercedes-Benz has a reputation as a premium automotive brand. While their luxury cars might get more attention, Mercedes-Benz has been manufacturing commercial vehicles and vans for a really long time and has become very good at what they do.

The Sprinter is a venerable and capable van that is certainly packed with features designed to improve the driving experience. If you’re looking for a versatile, capable, and comfortable van, the Mercedes-Benz Sprinter is worth every last penny you spend on it. This van is absolutely worth the money.

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The western part of the country draws me with its mountains, deserts, and red rock vistas. Still, there are numerous other wonders I'm ready to explore., from Maine's rugged coast to California's Big Sur cliffs and everywhere between.