View Full Version : Thinking about a Sprinter

11-03-2007, 05:04 PM
We have been looking into Conversion vans for our special needs son for a while now. Currently, we use a double stroller as a wheel chair, but will probably be getting him a wheel chair in the near future. He most likely will not be 100% dependent on the wheelchair, but will need it because he most likely will not have the endurance for a full trip around the Zoo, or an ammusement park, etc. We had narrowed in on the Gm conversions because of the drivers side passenger door, which would be extremely convenient for loading him and his equipment up. He is on a ventilator and has a trach, so a trip to the store or zoo involves him, his ventilator, his suction machine, his emergency bad, an oxygen cylender and a diaper bag. A two or three night medical visit out of town (let alone a vacation) involves basically loading up his room into our SUV. There are literally 3 large boxes along with his backup ventilator, extra batteries. We have room for a large suitcase, and that is without bringing our 8 year old son.

We like the versatility of the Sprinter conversions because it looks like you could easily remove one of the passenger seats for a wheel chair and lift. You also get a ton of storage space and a decent number of seats. The only problem is the Sprinter is expensive as it is, let alone a conversion. Is there any way of getting one with leather captains chairs without having to break the bank? For those of you that have wheel chair lifts (I have seen a few of you on here), where do you put the wheel chair and what seats do you give up. Ideally, an adult needs to be sitting next to Tommy.

11-03-2007, 05:56 PM
Is there any way of getting one with leather captains chairs without having to break the bank?

Probably the best way is to go through the used route for a T1N or if you can find it an NCV3. Even if you go this route a comparable used GM or Ford product will still be cheaper. :idunno:

The T1N's have aftermarket power sliding door units while the NCV3 have a factory install option coming in 2008 if that's what you're looking for.

As for the captain chairs, do you know what type you are looking for? I would get the van and then have the aftermarket captain chairs installed. I doubt you will find the Sprinters in a converted unit that doesn't ask for a premium on top of an already expensive van.

11-03-2007, 09:54 PM
Here is a link to a pic of a Sprinter with a wheelchair lift: http://www.autotrader.com/fyc/img_popup.jsp?car_id=230360692. While the sprinter will seem more expensive upfront, it is easier on the wallet than a comparable Ford, Chevy/GMC in the long run. Not to mention it's much roomier and has a much higher resale value.

11-03-2007, 10:21 PM
I am a wheelchair user who will soon be purchasing a Sprinter. I have waited to order a 2008 as I will be driving the van, and require some options that will be available on the 08 that were not on earlier models, such as a power side door option from the factory. You can get a power door aftermarket for 06 and earlier from Braun if you want side entry.

The Sprinter is an excellent choice for transporting a wheelchair. First off it does not require that you raise the roof or drop the floor. When your child is older you will need the additional clearance the Sprinter provides (65" interior clearance on standard roof). You can add either a lift in the rear or side door, regardless of the model year. If you go side door, you would lose one seat. If you go rear entry you have several options. In any case the Sprinter , new or used is a perfect match for your needs. The cost to setup a Sprinter versus a ford or GM van are much less since you do not need to modify the vehicle roof or frame.

If buying new is not an option, there are very good used available if you take the time to shop.

Given your child's needs with a vent, the room and features of the Sprinter will be will worth the investment.