This news is actually a couple days old. Today was spent celebrating Jef’s niece’s birthday, so we didn’t make any progress on this crazy wonderful van dwelling idea.
Jef and I made the trek down to Orange County to check out a 2005 158WB Sprinter, asking price $10,995. The ad looked somewhat promising, but the asking price seemed low compared to other ads on Craigslist. And we found out why.
Pictures just can’t capture all the details of a vehicle. Water stains don’t show up very well. Tiny rust spots are completely invisible. The contour of sloppily patched up metalwork doesn’t catch the eye. So, yes, it was a surprise to see just how beat up the vehicle was.
All the vents were broken, and the glove compartment wouldn’t stay closed if that bright blue screw wasn’t wedged in the crack. Non-functioning air conditioning knobs spun 360 degrees, as if they were installed for looks only.
Sprinters have seams in the high top, and apparently it’s common for rust to develop along these seams. As a definite non-expert on the subject, rust scares me.
A number of signs indicated that this vehicle may have been involved in a collision. The passenger door closed funny, the back doors looked oddly dented, and the latch on the back doors was sloppily replaced.
We took a quick look at another Sprinter listed at $17,900, and it quickly became clear why asking prices varied so much. Unfortunately, even the higher priced one had rust on the ceiling, which leads me to believe that Sprinters are fairly rust-prone. Perhaps all vehicles are rust-prone. They are, after all, big metal boxes.
The shopping will likely continue tomorrow, with the Chevy Express at the top of the list.