After towing a 39-foot horse (llama) trailer for 12 years of vacations including a 6-month full-time sabbatical and after we had an empty nest, in June 2012 we decided to have built a custom class-B (van-based) motorhome suitable for two people. We wanted access to small forest campgrounds, good mileage, the convenience of never having to hook up a trailer or towed car, access to the living space while driving, and the ability to park almost anywhere.
We chose the Mercedes-Benz Sprinter, a van that I can stand up in which gets 18-20 mpg and is 7 feet wide and 23 feet long. To build the interior we chose Sportsmobile, Huntington, Indiana. The interior was completed in January 2013. About 4 months of the wait was for the Sprinter to be built in Germany, shipped to North Carolina in crates, then reassembled.
We named her Vanessa for "Van odyssey". Our uncle Den, who named his yacht "Dovekie", told us that seven letters and a repeated vowel bring good luck. I hope this works as well for us as it did for him and not like it turned out for the Titanic.
Major features that make Vanessa stand out above other class-B RVs, especially for extended dry camping:
Other features that make living in Vanessa great include:
Click on links below for details
There are comments by me (Llamadave) and others on the Sportsmobile Forum.
Click here for Vanessa's complete building experience.
You can also comment and ask questions at the bottom of this page.