Here are some thoughts after traveling with my family of 6 approx 8500 miles since April in our our new 2016 AI 4WD.
- In General the MBZ Sprinter features work great. My only two annoyances were that the vehicle does not feature Dynamic Cruise Control, which would be a great feature. Also, the sliding door can be heavy, especially when parked on a hill. A soft close feature (or better yet full power such as on most minivans) would be a welcome addition. The "no bio-diesel" thing is a bit of a bust in Minnesota, where they mandate bio-diesel.
- I had minimal problems on the trip from the Airstream upfit, and was overall very pleased with the performance of the AI. The problems I did have were tweaky / minor things (some of my automatic blinds needed limit adjustments, the bathroom fan developed an issue, and I developed one annoying squeak at about 6000 miles.) The only "real" issue I had was the solar controller giving up the ghost during my return trip (or at least the remote has - will know next week)
- Suggestion for Airstream:
Add a single option package, the "dry camping package", including the following: Upgraded battery capacity, upgraded solar capacity, a better solar controller and an upgraded inverter. It would save many of us the work we end up doing anyway.
- It's a fantastic travel vehicle for 6 people. We would have been comfortable with 8. It's a fantastic sleeping vehicle for 2 people, with 4 a possibility of two of them are kids!
- We hit the following NP's, and camped at each one (to house six of us, we pitch a tent for 4 and 2 sleep in the AI.) Death Valley, Kings Canyon / Sequoia, Bryce, Zion, Grand Canyon, Escalante National Monument, Mount Rushmore National Monument, and Badlands National Park. We also visited 4 state parks.
-We used the 4WD in several situations, including a thunderstorm in Utah when on Hells Backbone Road, and in the Bonneville Salt Flats.
- I was amazed at the stability of the vehicle in a variety of situations, including driving through a 40MPH cross wind in the plains.
- Outdoor shower = awesome. For all kinds of stuff, including cleaning kids, cleaning dogs, and simply cooling off!
- Averaged 16mpg, at close to max GVW
- We visited Wall Drug. Couldn't resist after 400 miles of signs.
- We didn't see as many AI's on the road as we thought we would, but did see a fellow Silver 2016 at the gas station at 1880 town in South Dakota about a week ago.
- The bed is comfortable!
- Leveling Blocks are important