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What Wheel Base is Best for Van Life?

Are you exploring the world of custom camper vans and quickly learning that van life has a vast amount of new information to absorb? If this sounds like you, you might have recently discovered that camper vans come in different sizes, each catering to distinct needs. In this blog, we’ll delve into the Mercedes Sprinter and its three distinct “high-roof” options. We’ll be focusing on the high-roof models as they offer the best suitability for living and traveling in a van for extended periods. These three sizes include the short wheelbase (144 WB), the long wheelbase (170 WB), and the long wheelbase extended (170 WB EXT). If you haven’t yet visited our shop or a local Mercedes dealership (if you’re not local to us), we highly recommend doing so to truly appreciate the size and potential of these magnificent machines. 

Understanding the Differences Between the 144 and 170-Wheelbase Sprinter Vans

Now that we’ve set the stage, let’s dive into the nitty-gritty of Sprinter vans. First up, we have the 144-wheelbase Sprinter van. Think of this as the compact option, perfect for those who prioritize maneuverability and agility. It’s like the sportscar of camper vans – nimble, sleek, and ready to take on any adventure. With its shorter frame, you’ll have no trouble navigating tight city streets or squeezing into that perfect parking spot.

On the other hand, we have the 170-wheelbase Sprinter van, which offers a bit more room to stretch out and get comfortable. This is the van for those who crave space and versatility. Whether you’re a full-time nomad or just looking for a weekend getaway, the 170-wheelbase has ample room for all your gear and then some. If you plan to travel with two or more people this size is a no-brainer to choose. Plus, with its longer frame, you’ll enjoy a smoother ride and more stability on the road.

The Uniqueness of the 170 Extended Sprinter Van

But wait, there’s more! If you’re in the market for even more space, look no further than the 170 extended Sprinter van. This beast takes things to a whole new level with its extended length, offering even more room for living, lounging, and storing all your adventure essentials. It’s like the mansion on wheels – spacious, luxurious, and ready to impress. Just imagine the possibilities with all that extra square footage!

170 Extended Sprinter Van

Day-to-Day Practicality of Living in a 144-Wheelbase Sprinter Van

Living in a 144-wheelbase Sprinter van is all about embracing the minimalist lifestyle. Sure, you might have to get creative with your storage solutions, but that’s all part of the fun! With a bit of ingenuity, you’ll find that there’s plenty of room for everything you need to live comfortably on the road. And when it comes to parking, you’ll be the envy of all your friends with your ability to squeeze into tight spaces with ease.

144 Wheel Base Sprinter Van
144 Wheel Base Sprinter Van

Day-to-Day Practicality of Living in a 170-Wheelbase Sprinter Van

Now, let’s talk about life in a 170-wheelbase Sprinter van. With its extra length, you’ll enjoy the luxury of more space to spread out and make yourself at home. Whether you’re cooking up a gourmet meal in the kitchenette or kicking back and relaxing in the lounge area, you’ll appreciate the extra breathing room that the 170-wheelbase provides. And while parking might require a bit more finesse, you’ll quickly get the hang of maneuvering your spacious steed through tight spots with ease.

170 Wheel Base Sprinter Van
170 Wheel Base Sprinter Van


Well, there you have it – a comprehensive guide to Mercedes Sprinter van sizes and their practicality for everyday living as a custom camper van. Whether you’re drawn to the compact convenience of the 144 wheelbase or the spacious comfort of the 170, there’s a Sprinter van out there to suit your lifestyle and your adventures. So go ahead, give Papago Vans a call and we will acquire the perfect Mercedes Sprinter for you at an unbeatable price then proceed to turn it into a beautiful custom-built camper van for you and your adventures.