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Old 10-13-2017, 10:24 PM   #11
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Default Re: Winnebago Revel

@Vanzer Great review. I'm awaiting deliver around 11/20 - 11/30 so I have lost all objectivity at this point. You have "touched" one, I have not. However from photos I agree with you, underbody protection and a lift are necessary to really go off road. Are you doing the Van Compass works Lift/skid protection pkg?
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Old 10-13-2017, 11:29 PM   #12
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Default Re: Winnebago Revel

Good post on your opinion. Great points on ground clearance on equipment hung under the floor. You could also consider a second 220 amp alternator to power the A/C roof unit but then you would need to idle the 3.0 BlueTec and that is a no no unless you install an idle kit or engine oil heater.

How would a 170 inch 4x4 gas engine Sprinter or Transit fair? Then you could also install a gas genset to power AC and induction cook top? Sorry I know this is a Sprinter site.
I own a 2016 Sprinter 3.0 BlueTec Winnie View and I am not sold on the limitations of the idling issues. If you could idle with a second. 220 amp alternator I would not need a genset and would want a second 100 liter fuel tank.
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Old 10-14-2017, 04:57 PM   #13
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Default Re: Winnebago Revel

I'm coming from a vanagon westy and have been shopping for it's replacement for a couple years. I think the Revel is as close to the right vehicle as I've seen, but it's not perfect. I also went to the LA RV show to check it out (and the leisure vans serenity).

They really nailed the layout. I've never seen any other short sprinter that fits a bed, storage and bench seat into the same design in a way that seems useful and practical.

Regarding the windows. Initially I was of a similar mind and thought I would prefer the CR Lawrence style windows, but I actually think what Winnebago did is better. The reason it's better is that you can open the whole freaking window instead of just tip out a little corner of it. The shades and screen integration are also super nice.

I'm over 6' tall, so a sideways bed has been a challenge for me. I'm happy to say I fit on the revel bed, even lying on my stomach. I don't personally care that much about the lifting/lowering, but the bed is very stable and I don't think it's a detriment at all. I'd be happy to have it.

My three biggest concerns are (in order):

build quality - The door to the bathroom/closet is pretty janky. In the demo RV the latch was broken. Opening it was weird and tricky to get it to fold up. I think they should have put the hinge in the middle on the other side. The table behind the driver's seat was also pretty loose and wobbly. The push out knobs on the cupboards and drawers also appear to be knock-offs of the real thing and are not quite as nice. Sink faucet is "ok", but none of the gear is super impressive.

induction burner - I don't cook a *ton*, but it's starts to give me anxiety to know the power is coupled. I'd prefer if it was a diesel cooktop that I knew would run forever. Maybe if I knew more about how long that thing would last I would feel better.

Storage - particularly in the kitchen I found the layout a little lacking. Three small drawers that don't seem they would hold much and the "pantry" cupboard would really benefit from being the pull out style like on most RVs.

The under vehicle situation is not perfect, but I don't think you can do much better if you plan on putting batteries, water tanks and waste tanks underneath the vehicle. My biggest complaint would be the side steps. They kinda pitch them as combo steps/rock sliders, but that's a joke. The steps have big brackets underneath them to mount that would get mashed immediately if you got near a rock. I can live with ground clearance thats better than any non-custom RV.

The roof rack ladder thing looks cool, but I wouldn't use it and would prefer a more streamlined setup to avoid road noise, etc.

I also think the design could just be a little simpler. I don't ever see myself using that outdoor table thing off the kitchen pod or the tracks for the ipad mount, etc.

For $110k, I don't think you can beat it without doing the work yourself. When you add in service and resale, I think it's a really solid offering.

Besides upsizing to a leisure van serenity, the other thing I'm considering is asking one of the name brand builders to take a stab at copying the layout of the revel, but using nicer materials and higher quality construction. I'm assuming that would end up north of $150k, though, and I have a hard time thing it would be worth it.

I'm going to wait until I see what the 2019 sprinter has going for it before I make a decision, though. I'm curious to see if there are new powertrain options and I would desperately love to have full adaptive cruise control on my next van. My g-wagen has it and I can't live without it anymore.
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Old 10-14-2017, 04:57 PM   #14
Vanzer Pagen
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Default Re: Winnebago Revel

Originally Posted by Fresno View Post
@Vanzer Great review. I'm awaiting deliver around 11/20 - 11/30 so I have lost all objectivity at this point. You have "touched" one, I have not. However from photos I agree with you, underbody protection and a lift are necessary to really go off road. Are you doing the Van Compass works Lift/skid protection pkg?
Have not done the Van Compass suspension thing yet, but I do have their skid plate. Current ground clearance seems to be OK, got the truck back to the South Lake overlook on west side of Coyote Flats Ridge. Lots of deep ruts, boulders, etc. My wife seemed to think we spent more time on 3 wheels than 4.
But I have yet to hang anything underneath. Their shocks get good reviews and I'm considering them.
No comment on the idle with big alternator thing. So far we plan our travels around the seasons; looking forward to some sweet Sedona singletrack after a late season trip to Downieville.

Back to figuring out how to best use the mass loaded vinyl on the floor...
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