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Old 09-06-2016, 08:26 PM   #1
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Just Pulled the trigger on a 17 Isata 3

After about a week of research. Including lurking on this forum. Found the right coach with the colors my wife wanted. Got a great deal but unfortunately its at Bullyan RV in Duluth Minnesota and we live in WA State. Gonna fly there this Friday and drive it the 1590 miles home over the weekend. As a side note, we couldn't get the logistics worked out for a trade so I now have a very nice 2013 Airstream Interstate for sale at a very good price if anybody is interested (Shameless plug )

Andy was great to deal with and really sharpened his pencil when it came to price. Brian (BCCLEMONS) is wonderful and goes way above and beyond when it comes to customer service. I already knew Dynamax made a great product from their reputation in the Motorsports community so the decision wasn't hard but the research aided by Brian and the courtesy and treatment by Andy and Chris at Bullyan sealed the deal.

Speaking of service. Check out the youtube video he made just this morning. He actually went back in and renamed the title right after the deal was made. Anybody looking to buy one could do worse than this place or this brand.

I will update next week with a review of the "Little Big Coach" after its initial trial run home. having owned 9 different coaches since 2000. From 22 footers to 45 foot ultra luxury models I feel pretty well qualified to rate it from a real world perspective.

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Old 09-07-2016, 07:25 AM   #2
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Welcome to the Dynamax family, we greatly appreciate your support Frank! Safe travels on your way back to Washington.
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Old 09-09-2016, 10:27 AM   #3
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Congrats!

I ended up doing the same type of thing with our DX3. Found the exact model we wanted down in TX and drove it all the way back home to WI. Kind of funny considering it started out in Elkhart, IN to begin with.

You're spot on about the service, that's what won me over as well and they've all continued to deliver through our first year.
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Old 09-12-2016, 04:37 PM   #4
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Made it home Saturday night after a Marathon driving trip. Arrived at the Duluth airport at 5.15PM Central Time and was picked up promptly 15 minutes later (They close at 5.30 on Fridays and stayed open late for me).

Even though they were staying late they still took the time to give me a short tour of their very nice facility, and met the owner before getting down to the business of signing me up. One of the techs and several of the front service people were on hand to give me a walk around and demo the unit (What a great buying experience).

Left Bullyan RV at about 6:30 with Water tank, Propane and Fuel Tank all full and drove 330 miles to Jamestown ND where I parked at a Walmart. The drive was pleasant but the stay not so much, Seems there are very few rest areas in North Dakota so truckers like the Walmart's instead. Not quiet with all the diesel rigs running their engines all night long. Ended up staying 4 1/2 hours and decided to take a quick shower and hit the road. The Truma on demand water heater works great.

To make a long story short, I drove the remaining 1260 miles in a 19 hour marathon drive and made it home before midnight Saturday. Spent Sunday inspecting the unit more closely, Installing a Tire pressure monitoring system and Remis cab shades. Next on the list is the HWH 4 Point Leveling system.

My conclusion so far as to the Isata 3 fit and finish.. Its very nice
Any Issues? No. Everything works as it should

The big question everybody usually has is it is a good value for the money. I would say most definitely yes.

This is our 3rd Sprinter based Coach. The first was a 2012 Leisure travel Vans Unity, And the second a 2013 Airstream Interstate (That's up for sale right now at Auto Max USA, My car store). I will compare the Isata 3 to the Unity as they are more similar.

Build Quality........ The Leisure Travel Vans are famous for being "The nicest Sprinter based units in the industry. I do agree but the Isata is close. mainly the cabinets Leisure units use are a bit higher quality. ONE POINT FOR THE UNITY

Price? The Unity is about 20k more than the Isata. ONE POINT FOR THE ISATA

For the Tie Breaker we go to form and function...

The Unity has a small slide About 18" deep with a Murphy bed that takes up most of it. The couch in front of the bed is uncomfortable and so far forward that when watching TV you feel you don't need a remote as you can just reach over and run the controls while seated. Its cramped and its the reason we sold it after only 6000 miles.

The Isata on the other hand has a full wall slide that, when extended, gives
you the impression of being in a small studio apartment. 2 people can view the TV from its travel position while seated at the very comfortable dinette. The 28" TV is just the right size and comes in clear as a bell with great color and sound. The Bed is Extremely comfortable and plenty large enough for even me at 6"3". THE ISATA WINS THIS, THE MOST IMPORTANT PART HAND DOWN.

In conclusion. No buyers remorse. Penny and I are both happy we bought it. We will use it from April through September on our once a month 4 and 5 day long weekend excursions and expect to be very happy with it.

I do have a few suggestions though

Make the HWH AP52393 4 point leveling system and option. Its a bolt on automatic system made specifically for the Sprinter based coach. HWH makes a great product so it would be wonderful to be able to buy one already equipped with it than have to install it afterwords.

Make the Remis Cab Shades an Option, For the same reason as the HWH.

Set up the fresh water fill pressure feed instead of gravity feed. Its just more convenient to fill until it runs out the overflow under the coach instead of overflowing onto your freshly washed paint side. Its the small things that make big differences.


Anybody on the fence about buying one of these little gems, I hope this helps. I wouldn't hesitate to do it again at this point. The Manufacturer has a great reputation and the quality and price point. Especially the year end deals being offered right now make this "Little Big" Coach a great value.

Go ahead, Pull the trigger
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Old 09-13-2016, 10:20 AM   #5
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4 point levelers have always been on the table, but we really wanted to make sure we had the weight capacity. Thus the change to a soft shower door. I'd like to find another 50 lbs and I think they will be a factory option.

Remis shades...don't get me started. We talked to the supplier who is representing them locally in December of 2015. They said they had a container coming in late Jan...then it was Feb, then March, then April and I finally gave up. Once they actually have them in the states in qty's I can use, then we would make them an option.

Deleted the gravity fill a few weeks ago. The argument is that you can buy bottled water and pour into the gravity fill...I'd like to know who in the world is actually doing that?

Thanks for the tips...I think we're on the same page (which is always good to know).
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Old 09-13-2016, 11:20 AM   #6
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This is the reason the GVWR doesn't scare me. I know you, as a manufacturer has to comply. Read this article. Maybe the US RV Manufacturers association should be talking to Mercedes.

European Sprinter Gets 990-Pound GVW Boost - Top News - Van - Top News - Automotive Fleet

It reads


Mercedes-Benz Vans has boosted the available gross vehicle weight rating of its European Sprinter by 990 pounds, to 5.5 metric tons or 12,122 pounds. The Stuttgart, Germany-based builder also said it has raised power ratings for its engines.

The higher rating is aimed primarily at operators who require special bodies or conversions of standard van bodies, said Norman Kunz, head of Sprinter product management. European Sprinter payloads currently range from 2.95 to 3.41 metric tons, or 6,502 to 7,416 pounds, depending on the model. A metric ton equals 2,204 pounds.

The top GVW rating for the North American Sprinter is 11,030 pounds. “The changes you’re seeing in Europe are under consideration for the U.S. market, but no official decision has been made yet,” said spokesman Brian Cotter.

The new variant for Europe was developed in response to requests from bus and truck operators, Kunz said.

"Customers operating in weight-sensitive areas in particular have often expressed a demand for a version with a higher payload,” he said. “Such areas include the building sector or public service vehicles, for example.

“More payload is equally a boon for passenger transport. Wherever a particularly good ratio is desired between kerb weight and payload, we now have an appropriate solution at hand."

Previously, special arrangements were often necessary for ambulances, fire service trucks and other special vehicles, when the conversion resulted in a gross weight above the previous limit of 5 tons, explained Peter Strobach, head of the Mercedes-Benz Bodybuilder Centre. The new variant precludes the need for such arrangements.

"Our 5.5-ton Sprinter avoids additional work for our customers from the body and conversions," he said. "The required body can now be ordered in the customary, routine manner, with no need for individual approvals."

Mercedes-Benz Vans will offer new engine ratings for the European Sprinter as of summer 2016. The entry-level diesel now produces 84 kW (114 hp) as opposed to the previous 70 kW. The next-highest power rating has been upgraded from 95 kW to 105 kW (143 hp).

The Sprinter also remains available with the 120 kW (163 hp) and 140 kW (190 hp) engine variants. Torque on all engines has also been raised. All ratings comply with the Euro 6/VI emissions standards, which will become mandatory for vans in the mid-range weight class from September.
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Old 09-13-2016, 12:16 PM   #7
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They did discuss with us looking at higher GVWR's. I think that will be a while.
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Old 11-18-2016, 04:59 PM   #8
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Will we see the higher gvwr by the end of 2018?
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Old 11-20-2016, 02:10 PM   #9
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All I know is that Daimler is looking at it for the US. Not planned on the 2017 model year however.
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