We’ve seen some pretty cool vehicle concepts from Jeep and Toyota before, but this one is my favorite so far. Improving quite a bit upon last year’s model, the 2015 Winnebago Travato is dubbed the “best value for the adventurous explorer” and comes equipped for just about anything outdoorsy we’re into.

Built on the Dodge Ram ProMaster frame, the 20’11” touring RV gets a kitchenette, full bath, flat screen, two beds, dining area, storage, a complete array of hookups and more as standard fare. The integrated bike rack and kayak mounts are optional, but we’re kinda digging the high placement for the bikes.

Wanna see the rest of it? Please, step inside…

2015 Winnebago Travato adventure sports touring sprinter van

Other standard features include exterior speakers, a retractable awning with LED lighting, blackout roller shades, touchscreen GPS/radio with rear-view camera monitor, power everything and plenty of 12-volt outlets. Inside is a 22″ HDTV wired to an HD antenna, LED ceiling lights and dual roof vents.

2015 Winnebago Travato adventure sports touring sprinter van

Ladder and roof rail system are standard. Open the rear door and there are accessory outlets and a hose attachment for washing off bikes and muddy people.

2015 Winnebago Travato adventure sports touring sprinter van

Side and rear screen doors are optional, but based on my own RV’ing experiences they’re highly recommended.

2015 Winnebago Travato adventure sports touring sprinter van

The front captain’s chairs swivel to make for good family and friends time, and the forward facing bench seat has two 3-point seatbelt with child seat attachments for drive time. A Cummins gas generator runs the fridge, water heater and rooftop AC unit when outside power’s not available. It’ll also power the water pump, which is good for running the toilet in case of emergency.

2015 Winnebago Travato adventure sports touring sprinter van options

Two colors are offered, red and gray/silver, along with several paint/trim levels. From top to bottom are basic to best, with the top models getting polished steel accents and full paint coverage on the bumpers and trim. All models have alloy wheels.

The only option we’re left wanting for is the ability to put all this on a diesel Mercedes Sprinter platform. As is, it’s powered by a 280hp, 3.6L V6 with 6-speed automatic transmission. It comes with a Class II hitch and wiring harness and a tow rating of 3,500 pounds. Base price is $85,500 and, as if you needed any additional encouragement, RV financing isn’t so bad.



  1. Not to be pedantic, but as Sprinter is a RWD Mercedes-Benz platform. The Ram “Underbite” ProMaster is a FWD Fiat platform. Either will be better than the Ford/Chevy vans of years past- but they are different vehicles.

  2. Interesting (at least to me), how painting the bumpers reduces the ugliness of the vehicle substantially. Tim, is correct, a FWD platform is a big improvement for anyone who drives in any weather. 85k is too high. 5 miles out of the lot resale will be 50k at best.


  3. I have a Nissan NV2500 that I converted, it doesn’t have all those bells and whistles, but I have adapted it for camping/biking and it’s been great.

  4. Don – FWD is not an automatic advantage in inclement weather, especially in a long wheelbase van that will be loaded/equipped to have a large amount of weight on its rear axle. Try going up any type of grade in said inclement weather in a FWD loaded van, and you’ll soon see the issues. A near 60/40 weight distribution is needed to make FWD really work well, from a traction perspective. None of these vans will have that, especially as shown.

    RWD handling characteristics are predictable as well, but they do require more training. I think many people were burned by poor weight distribution (front end heavy) RWD vehicles and unloaded trucks. Modern stability and traction control have helped mitigate oversteer issues for those that refuse to go beyond the very basic training the US requires for a license.

    FWD in a vehicle like this only does two things.
    – allows a flat load floor
    – slight increase in drivetrain efficiency as torque does not need to take an additional 90 deg turn

  5. JBikes is spot on. Price and packaging are the only real advantages of FWD. Plus inexperienced drivers will not suffer lift off oversteer in a panic situation.

  6. I’ll have less than 1/4 of this things price into my diesel econoline when I’m done with it and it’ll be 4wd and get 18 mpg. Neat features for those that feel like throwing away money though- I also like the high mounted bikes.

  7. Considering the poor reliability of Sprinters in fleet service, being on a Fiat Ducato (Ram Promaster) chassis is not such a great loss, although a Ford Transit option would be nice since it has RWD and Ford’s excellent engines.
    Personally I would like something a little more basic for day tripping with just 6 seats and internal storage for the bikes. Sadly Ram and Ford don’t currently have a crew van option with a back seat and side windows and I don’t want to touch a Sprinter.

  8. SJC, the answer is to purchase a Promaster and have mods done to suit your use. I’ve looked into that, and the price should come in way under the 85K price of this rig. I’m thinking more like 50. Bonus is the tv can be omitted.

  9. Has anyone noticed how hideous the front of the vehicle is. I think the Pontiac Aztec had better looks and it failed it was so ugly. The setup of the vehicle is cool however. Would love to see it in a Ford Transit.

  10. I like it, but it’s definitely expensive and i’d prefer to have a more minimal interior so that I could keep up to two bikes inside at night.

  11. Don, front wheel drive is pretty bad in the snow when going up a hill. I have had several front wheel drives and if the hill was snowy and steep, the only way I could get up it in my FWD car was by reversing up it.

  12. Isn’t there going to be an AWD Sprinter in 2015? That’s the one I would want to convert. I like the layout of the one above, but agree it only needs one (large-ish) sink and can drop the tv.

  13. There is absolutely nothing new or unique to offer a cyclist with this RV. The Lopes Sportsmobile is much more useful in that there is actually compartment in the rear to put bikes, tools and etc. Nothing in the Winnie here, so really it could be any other RV.


  14. Most RV’s sell for about 25% less than the MSRP so this isn’t as bad a deal as you might think. I’d sure as heck buy one before an Escalade or a Landcruiser.

    I looked at the Travato earlier this year (the only thing new about this one are the bike and kayak racks) and mostly liked it but couldn’t get past the annoying segmented bathroom door. Bed was also a bit narrow for 2 people and 2 large dogs.

    Slow Joe/Adam12 – I’m told that RV’s on the new Ford Transit chassis are coming soon. I agree that platform has great promise. And I’m with you on the Sprinter, there are some horror stories about late-model Sprinter repairs.

    Joe Marin – the bed on the Travato folds up when not in use so you can carry two bikes inside if you want. Also note that the Lopesmobile does not have a bathroom.

  15. @tim A: The Ford Econoline of years past is no longer, they are now selling a Sprinter/Promaster style van called the Transit (not to be confused by the compact Transit Connect). The Chevy is the only dinosaur cargo van left.

    Slick van for sure, but for less than $5k you could buy an early 00s cargo van and equip it similar, but certainly a bit rougher around the edges. For $10k, you could do the same and have someone else do the work. I’m currently living in a 1998 Ford E350 w/ Stahl utility body, but have yet to really build it out.

  16. I’m driving one as my work van. Handling on snow and ice….. It’s the very best vehicle I have driven. It’s a sweet van to say the least.

  17. FWD on this vehicle is done for one reason. Low deck height in the rear. You’ll notice the step down behind the rear seats. It allows for max cargo space and low load height without sacrificing ground clearance. The “underbite” bumper is designed with recessed lights mimimizing damage in fender- benders.

    Also, it get’s the 3.0 diesel that is currently pushing the 1500 pick up to 28mpg

  18. Owning a Sprinter T1N and having test driven a ProMaster, I felt like it was thin sheet metal and not as high quality. We drive our Sprinter back and forth across the country for Road and CX, and while it’s not problem free, it has 235k on it and still does the business.

  19. “Price and packaging are the only real advantages of FWD”. Lol. That’s two pretty big advantages in any vehicle not to mention in a vehicle where the cargo space is the most important consideration!

  20. I also agree that FWD is a mistake for a vehicle that will see subfreezing temps or any slick surface. This is purely a cost cutting measure – the deck height is the same. For 2015 Ford is now offering their RWD van and Sprinter will offer 4WD.

  21. Just put 4500 miles on my Travato. 50 mph winds, mountains and snow. Got 16 mpg. Very comfortable ride. I live in 6 months of snow and front wheel drive matters to me. To meet weight requirements most sprinters are going to duals. Didn’t want the extra weight, noise and sledding effect that four wheels in the back add. Good luck building one out for under 60k. If you haven’t looked into the advantages of buying an RV over building one, you haven’t been paying attention.

  22. One sink. Then the shower is nicest size and shape and separation of any model near this size. That makes all the difference for she and I.

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