2003 Mercedes Sprinter--should I buy?


#1

I’m looking at a 2003 Mercedes Sprinter with a freightliner engine, diesel, 5 cylinder. 260,000k.

It has been converted into a sweet camper which gives it a lot of its value (for me). Seller is asking $15,000.

My question is: what should my questions be?

I didn’t know much about these vehicles (although I did take this particular on one a week long road trip, put about 500 miles on it and it performed like a champ). I’ve heard everything from the amazingly positive to the extreme negative. Anyone out there with mechanical knowledge? Thoughts on what I should look for?

Thanks!


#2

You’ve just done the best test drive in the history of test drives.
I have no idea how something like this would be priced, but if you’re as happy with it as you sound, and the price seems fair based on your research, I say go for it. You only live once.


#3

This would not be a good daily driver, as it has a dismal repair record. With that mileage anything can happen.

However, as a camper, it would be a good choice if it checks out mechanically. Maintenance will be expensive.


#4

That’s a lot of money for an 11 year old vehicle with 160,000 miles…In today’s economy, I would offer half that money and see what happens…


#5

These are Mercedes vans with Mercedes engines whether they say Mercedes, Freightliner or Dodge on them. The earlier ones had a inline 5cyl diesel, the latter ones a V6. Their repairs and maintenance are much more expensive than Honda or Toyota cars but all vans of this size are.

Many class B campers were built on this chassis and you can look up the value on NADA-RV.
If this is a Home made camper it would be worth much less.

If you watch American Pickers they have been using one of these vans for years.


#6

A loaded 2003 Dodge Sprinter (same truck) in clean condition and 260,000 miles is worth about $3500 in a private sale. Even if that’s doubled, it is still way under the asking price. BTW, you will need to know the RV manufacturers name, not the truck they built it on. If this is a home made RV, I would not pay more than $3000 for it.


#7

Tgram, take a walk around an R/V sales lot and see what $15,000 will buy…You might be amazed and surprised…


#8

Looking on rvtrader.com you can find similar ford/dodge vans with much less miles for around the same asking price but they are mostly from the 90’s with a 2001 Dodge based RV with 98,000 miles for 19,000 in Tacoma being on the higher end. These sprinters are used by lot’s of Airport shuttle companies and other commercial users. But they will likely cost more to service and repair than the average Ford or Chevy with a more common drivetrain. A couple of the one’s I’m finding are made by a company called Leisure Travel which is still making RV’s on the sprinter chassis.