When will Mercedes start building Sprinters in the USA?

Sprinters at Mercedes assembly plant, North Charleston

Mercedes has to disassemble every cargo Sprinter van it ships to the USA, and then reassemble it over here. That’s to avoid the chicken tax.

They worked out it costs them around 7% more on the vehicle price to do this, but that’s still better than paying the 25% tax.

Now that there’s a large enough market in the USA for Sprinters, Mercedes is building a plant in Charleston to make them directly in the USA. Its opening will probably coincide with the introduction of an updated Sprinter model.

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Choosing an awning for your Sprinter

Sprinter van with Fiamma F45 awning extended

Although there are lots of awning manufacturers out there, the choice for Sprinters is limited by their height and the ways you can attach the awning to the van.

There are four main types of awning;

  • Retractable ones that roll up into an aluminum or plastic case bolted to the vehicle.
  • “Patio” style ones that are like a big roller blind with the legs bolted on to the side of the vehicle (like on larger, older RVs).
  • Fold-out ones that often zip up into a fabric case attached to the roof rack.
  • Stand-alone tent style awnings that clip on to the side or back of the vehicle when they are assembled.

The most common type to find on a Sprinter are the case style, sold either by Fiamma or Dometic. There’s a reason for that, which we’ll explain below.

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What things really void your vehicle warranty?

Mercedes Sprinter extended warranty brochure cover crop

A while back we made a joke about voiding the warranty on the van by cutting a hole in the roof. Some people took it seriously and we still get questions about what really is OK to do on a van conversion without voiding the manufacturer’s warranty.

The short answer is, it’s completely up to your dealer and Mercedes what they say they will cover or not cover, but knowing what the manufacturer warranty claims to cover and knowing what the law states about warranties is a good starting point for any warranty-based claim you might need to make.

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