What base vehicle????

Discussion in 'Tech/Mech General' started by Home&Away, Sep 6, 2009.

  1. Home&Away

    Home&Away Funster

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    Hi all

    So here we are searching out what to buy for our first MH. Thanks to everyone for all the tips and views on here. THanks to other sites such as Motorhome Chooser. We're beginning to get a sense of what to avoid and what to buy as well as what layouts etc.

    So we know that if we choose any Fiat later than 2006 we'll shudder up a hill backwards until we go to Exeter to get it fixed. Better to get a Merc or a Ford, epecially since they're chaincam and won't crush our valves at 70 mph when the belt snaps.

    But hang on, Sprinters are a disaster waiting to happen I see tonight, so better drop them too otherwise I'll have a 10k bill for a new engine when our's seizes.

    So that leaves us looking for something based on a Transit which is just as well as that's my preferred platform and no-one has told us any horror stories of them falling apart.

    Unless you can, of course! Are we safe with a Ford? What should we know before we go and buy something which uses a Transit base?

    Cheers

    Mike
     
  2. DESCO

    DESCO Read Only Funster

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    Hi Mike
    I am not going to say the Transit mark 7 is the perfect base vehicle but I have had a Transit based Laika for nearly 2 years now and like the Transit base a lot, this is my first Transit.
    It does have one minor problem in moving off. It will stall if on moving off if you let the revs go down too low, but I soon found the way of getting over this [ give it a little more welly] and now apart from the odd problem if I have not driven it for a while it does not catch me out.
    Ours is a front wheel drive, would have preferred rear but van only made in front wheel drive. We have parked on wet grass etc and as it has traction control we have had no problems so far [touch wood].
    It has now done 15000 miles and averages 33/34MPG cruising at 60/65 on motorway's on cruse control, as you can see ours is low profile.
    Can't say any more ,it does what it says on the tin.
    Would have taken a chance on Merc but they don't use them so have the Ford.


    Best of luck with your choice.


    Dave:thumb::thumb:
     
    Last edited: Sep 6, 2009
  3. scotjimland

    scotjimland Funster Life Member

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    Also worthy of consideration is a Renault Traffic base vehicle ..
     
  4. vwalan

    vwalan Funster

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    to be honest if you are looking for a not too old van it may be worth looking abroad. i quite like the renault mascot. rear wheel drive and nice strong chassis goes up to 6.5ton. there are also quite a few isuzu /mitsubishi convertions being brought in from japan. they use the same running gear as gb trucks so spares are easy. seen some nice ones on ebay. remember if you want to long term or more than two people 3.5ton doesnt carry much. cheers alan.
     
  5. Terry

    Terry Funster

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    Hi I think you will find horror story's about any vans :Rofl1:Talking to the mechanic when he changed my cam belt last week and he reckons there are no good vans made at present :Rofl1:
    Trannys used to have bullet proof engines with problem g/box -sorted
    millennium engine trannys prone to starter failure causing the flywheel to need changing £500 :Eeek:
    LDV maxus doors and other body parts fall off :Rofl1:
    PUG, FIAT, CITROEN enough said :Eek!:
    MERC, VW reckons are the best
    Iceco and renault ??? nothing major wrong
    terry
     
  6. scotjimland

    scotjimland Funster Life Member

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    Sign of the times Terry ,

    the vast majority of new vans are bought or leased by fleet operators who replace every three years. Manufacturers compete for the lucrative contracts by building to cost rather than longevity .. :Sad:

    jim
     
  7. vwalan

    vwalan Funster

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    whats needed in this country is like whats happening in germany. purpose made campers on small truck chassis .they have the strength ,wt. cap,and reliability .there are several firms in germany doing this ,they look very nice on completion. built plain but functional. the problem with most m,homes is trying to keep the weight down below 3.5ton. the merc 508 took some beating. you get alot of truck for your money i think much better than van money .the americans do it but put alot of luxury in that brings up the price, keep looking at value for money make the manufacturer build what you want not what he wants. cheers alan.
     
  8. Judge Mental

    Judge Mental Funster Deceased RIP

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    I have had my Ford based Euramobil since 2007 (new) So two and a half years...

    Its a great chassis IMO and I will be sticking with them in the future
     
  9. Losos

    Losos Read Only Funster

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    Mike, we are in the same position, I looked at Ford Transit but none of the current models (Either FWD or RWD) have auto gearbox as an option which is one of my top requirements. If anyone can tell me I'm wrong I would be delighted but from looking at the website it seems no auto option :Sad:

    I've recently looked again at the Merc. Sprinter and surprisingly prices are not that much higher than FIAT on a like for like basis (Of course the words 'like for like' are open to considerable interpretation :BigGrin:)
     
  10. vwalan

    vwalan Funster

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    hi losos do you want new ,iveco do some sort of stickshift i believe .also isuzu do something. there is an isuzu on ebay..180398523316. may be worth a look if only for ideas. do you need full auto?i have an electric operated clutch on my vw lt ,or click n go/by vehac..i,m sure if you look hard you,ll find what you need . the good thing with jap home market stuff is its rhd. bits are obtainable from uk dealers and special dealers for the odd bits.
     
  11. Johns_Cross_Motorhomes

    Johns_Cross_Motorhomes Trader - Motorhome & Accessory Sales

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    Rapido do a fixed bed on a Merc chassis, nice van 4 berth

    Peter
     
  12. savantuk

    savantuk Read Only Funster

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    They also have to build in reliability. The unfortunate thing about forums such as these, is that tjust about he only time one generally reads about a particular base vehicle, is when something goes wrong, and the owners have an axe to grind - one only has to look at the 'fault/breakdown posts' to see that a good proportion of them are from first time posters seeking help.

    A lot of fleet operators will expect their vans to do mileages of the order of 100k plus during the first few years, so they expect, nay demand, reliability to be one of the buying factors. Companys will soon suss out any unreliable brands, and leave well alone.
     
  13. evans88

    evans88 Read Only Funster

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    No problems with my Transit in 7 years. Have travelled all over Europe. The new Mk7 is not markedly different from my old Mk 6 so in my book a Transit is a pretty safe bet.

    DESCO. Were you aware that there is a software modification to deal with the high reving needed on takeoff? I think I read something about this on the Ford Transit forum but it may have been somewhere else. I understand that it is not done as a matter of course; you have to ask for it.
     
    Last edited: Sep 6, 2009
  14. bazfergy

    bazfergy Read Only Funster

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    ive got a merc on an 03 plate never had a bit of bother:pray: hope i haven't just put a hex on myself:Doh:
     
  15. DESCO

    DESCO Read Only Funster

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    Yes was aware of the software mod and may ask about it at next service, but in truth it causes no problems. I only mentioned it to give an honest opinion, and the extra revs needed is not that great, its more knack than anything. Thanks for the info. though



    Dave:thumb::thumb:
     
    Last edited: Sep 6, 2009
  16. Bulletguy

    Bulletguy Read Only Funster

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    More than 'safe with a Ford'.

    I'm running a sixteen year old Transit yet can still get parts off the shelf from a Ford dealer anywhere....UK and europe. Not to mention breakers yards.

    Ford based motorhomes are not cheap. You can buy a Fiat base mh with similar layout far cheaper.......but they don't have a good record of parts availability even for fairly late models.
     
  17. Bulletguy

    Bulletguy Read Only Funster

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    Couldn't agree more. Mine has also travelled extensively throughout Europe.
    This year, 4,500 trouble free miles through nine countries.
     
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