Before we bought our C we looked extensively at Bs. When the time comes to purchase again we are planning on a new B. Maybe a SMB. My question is why are rigid high tops so rare? I like the older Falcons and SMBs I have seen. Not so much on the old Airstream. Anyway. It seems like almost everyone is doing either a pop top or low profile roof like RT. Don't really need an upper bunk but the storage, openness, and head room would be good to have. Other than SMB, who else is still producing the classic high top Van Camper? LeisureVans I think? The new Airstream? Thanks.
P.S. I have looked at the high top Sprinters and am still undecided on them vs the Ford or Chevy.
87 Mallard Sprinter 24' Class C Ford E350 w/460 gas "The Runny Duck"
Shiny side up, Rubber side down.
Add Pleasureway, Roadtrek, Winnebago to the hightop Sprinter list. And there are more. I don't see many Sprinters in the southeast, but have up north and west. We are still very happy with our Roadtrek Adventurous after a year. Sweet little diesel.
Ah, but the question is not about Sprinters... it is why there are no longer any rigid construction high tops Fords and Chevies. My Great West Van - Classic Supreme - was probably one of the last, if not the last, of the type. It is obviously a matter of the market... not enough of us liked them. Mine was on a Ford and it was a pain to drive in wind or with lots of trucks. But, when I bought it in 2004, it was just about the time that everyone was building some of the first Sprinter B's. I looked at them, but I had twice the storage in my high top Ford - double outside and inside - and a roomy rear bath. Because I wintered in it, I needed that storage. But, eventually I found it to be too small and am now moving up to an LTV Libero - a small C.
I think the demise of the true high top B like the Airstream 190, Falcon, or GW Classic came about for several reasons.... the perceived or real impact of the added top-weight and sail area on fuel economy, handling, and cross-wind driveablity, for starters. Then there's the fact that many baby boomers have become empty nesters, and don't really need a camper that has sleeping room for the kids. With the move to ever-more-fancier B's, their cost has out-run what simple inflation would explain. I suspect most families with kids buy a probably-cheaper maybe-small (or not) C these days. I wonder if a 'simple B' (less fancy that the RT 'Simplicity', even) would find a market niche?
Jim, "See Snookie's new reality show, 'Duncing with the Stars'."
'06 Tiger CX 'C Minus' on a Silverado 2500HD 4x4, 8.1 & Allison (aka 'Loafer's Glory') www.tigervehicles.com
At 6'2 I appreciate the head room and anything that adds more storage and ventilation are good things. I agree that the price point of the B vs. C has really driven the family away from the B for the most part. I've wanted one for years and still bought a C instead. It just made more sense right now. As far as price point goes, I think that is the SMB niche. You can spend as little or as much as you want. Each one is a custom job. Even their standard vans have so many different options I would be surprised if there are two that are completely identical. Kinda like the YT-class freighter. I think the only thing they might not do is upscale elegant. Hopefully, when it is finally time to buy a brand new rig, there will still be somenone doing the true hi-top van.