Even the smaller shows display the latest fads that RV makers come up with. This year, it is televisions, and lots of them. Two years ago, it was using Azdel. Before that, it was adding outside speakers.
The next couple years will actually have some true improvements with motorhomes, with the new van chassis models out, so we should see some significant changes such as new models, floorplans, etc.
Advantages of a Sprinter:
They hold their resale value.
The Mercedes logo.
They are the top dog when it comes to MPG.
They are reliable.
Finding service on a Sprinter chassis rig may be problematic.
There is a cost premium around $15-20k over a Ford, and that cash can buy a lot of gasoline.
If you are looking to downsize, and don't mind waiting a year or two, Ford is putting out their new chassis offering next year, and Dodge is putting out a cab chassis which is very class C friendly (www.fiatcamper.com) later this year.
Both the Ford and the Fiat *cough* Dodge will be very good chassis offerings, and will have MPG comparable to the Sprinter, but will also have gasoline models available.
I like rvroof.com, but they are only in Florida. Next would be the Rhino liner (the RV elastomer type, not the bedliner, as the bedliner doesn't stretch/flex and isn't made to stop leaks.)
IMHO, anything is an upgrade from TPO/EPDM. I've even wondered about the 48 inch wide rolls of Eternabond for a roof.
The Champion 3100 watt model is a pull start with about half the size of a gas tank as the Yamaha. This means every four hours of A/C use, it will need to be refilled.
It is less than half the price of the 3000 watt Yamaha, so there are trade-offs.
Thinking about it, were I to buy a generator again, I'd probably skip the 3000 watt models and either go for a pair of paralled Honda eu2000s or a Yamaha 4500iSE which would more than easily handle the compressor inrush, even at high altitudes.
The ones on I-35 and I-10 in Texas I'd be leery of. However, on more rural roads where there isn't the population (and passing by predators), it would be something to consider.
Yes, inside a MH, there is 10 feet from where they are to the driver's seat, but a criminal with a razor blade or a knife can do a lot to slow down a rig before they make their presence known.
Some people use their "C" as a secondary vehicle. However, there are some thresholds which make it difficult to park. Once you get past the 21-22 foot threshold, taking up one spot in a parking lot becomes impossible, and around 30-31 feet, it may require more than two end to end.
It can be done, but it takes some planning.
My F-150's TBC gives feedback, and also will pulse the trailer brakes as part of the ABS, as well as if it starts swaying. Plus, it is easy to squeeze the brakes lightly to doublecheck the trailer is hooked up without issue.
The box isn't the expensive part, it is the time for a master electrician (or an electrician who at least knows the difference between RVs and a dryer) to wire things up. If I were having a pedestal put in, I'd pay the extra to have a 50/30/20 box put in and tested. That solves the problem once and for all, since this provides 100 amps of total power, and one can have a pair of 20A outlets on each leg of the 50A.
Going through tunnels shouldn't be an issue in most places. At worst, you just shut off a valve on your propane tank. There are two Connecticut tunnels which completely forbid any type of propane completely, but most allow RVs. Never hurts to check.
I think HYMER will have more success with its Car model than its class C/B+ versions.
The reason is stated above. Americans want slideouts on their Cs for the most part, and if the HYMER models are not attracting the B market (or the people who would buy the PW Pursuit), nor attracting the "C" market, they will have to reinvent to be viable in the US market.
On the other hand, there is an untapped market for midrange type B campervans, so an upfitter that knows what is doing with the new chassis models that are being sold this year should have some success in that market.
I'd also second a .357 Magnum. S&W has eight shot revolvers, which may not give one the amount of rounds a 9mm or .40 has, but a revolver is simple and reliable, and with hogs/gators, you want penetrating power. Rat shot might scare them, but with hogs, it might just get them mad.
A Judge with PDX1-410 shells is another option, but the firearm is larger.
I'd have her go to a good dealer and see about either, find the best gun/holster combo she can easily wear.
Then, once purchased, practice, practice, practice.
Here in Texas, our camping season is ending, because for a rig to be campable from May to October, it requires full time electricity and A/C for most of the day, and it doesn't really cool down until 9-10 at night.
Don't be nervous. There is far more risk of some drunk wrecking into you than there is with getting hit by a twister.
If worried, I'd call ahead -- a lot of places have reinforced bath houses just in case this happens.
I've lived in tornado country all my life. Tornados are an issue, but they are not something to worry yourself sick over. Plain old lightning is far more dangerous.
Not surprising. HYMER has a lot of experience on the Ducato/ProMaster, but in the US, they would have to retool to either the E450 platform or the Sprinter (and compete in a very saturated high end market due to the price premium.)
For them, they have all the fiberglass molds, CAD files needed to upfit Ducatos with furniture, as well as the electrical schematics they have developed. They just need to set up a shop somewhere in the US, contract with a local mill and other suppliers, and they could be up and upfitting in a short time.
I am eager to see what they produce. Ducato chassis offerings are very RV friendly (in fact, Fiat has a site for those, fiatcamper.com.) With this in mind, I can see HYMER making a fast market dent. Especially in today's market where fuel economy is important.
Of course, there are some things that European campers don't have which US motorhomes do, for example air conditioners and generators. I'm sure it won't be too much of an engineering hassle for HYMER to deal with those things.