Hymer: Fiat v Mercedes - Motorhome Forums, Motorhome Discussion, Motorhome Chat

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post #1 of 32 (permalink) Old 05-08-2010, 10:13 Thread Starter
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Hymer: Fiat v Mercedes

Is there much argument for one manufacturer over another?

Logic says you'd plump for the Mercedes but before I rule out the Fiat in my tireless search for the right motorhome I wanted to gauge opinion.

There seems to be far more Fiats on the market than Mercs and if I wasn't narrowing the criteria with this it would be a lot simpler!

Thanks

James
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post #2 of 32 (permalink) Old 05-08-2010, 10:24
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I think the reason for more Fiat's (and Peugeot's for that matter) is probably due to their lack of popularity in the commercial vehicle world. Mercedes vans, trucks, chassis cabs etc are in strong demand and perhaps they don't need the Motorhome business as much as Fiat and Peugeot.
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post #3 of 32 (permalink) Old 05-08-2010, 10:36
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Fiat

Hello,

I would go for a New Mercedes over any of the others, budget allowing.

*Adaptive ESP (What a superb safety feature)
*RWD
*Alko Low frame Chassis Available
*Stronger Engines
*Real Automatic Available
*Better Residuals
*Costs almost the same as Fiats on Frankia Base
*Better After Sales
*More options on Base, Factory and retrofit.
*No Juddergate, Scuttlegate etc
*V6 Is a Gem.

If considering a Mercedes make sure you buy a Euro V with the improved gearbox's. Do not be fooled into buying old Stock.

TM
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post #4 of 32 (permalink) Old 05-08-2010, 10:41
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I had a Swift Sundance on a Fiat 2.8 jtd. I now have a Hymer on a Mercedes 2.7.

The Fiat was probably a bit more economical and much longer geared. Being front wheel drive it did not have good traction on grass (only happened very rarely for me). I was never very happy with the gear change up to fifth gear.

The mercedes is 5 cylinder and very powerful. It seems quiter and smoother than the Fiat. Being rear wheel drive it has good traction. I understand the Mercedes engine is very robust and reliable.

I am really happy with the Mercedes and for any future van would go for the Mercedes over Fiat
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post #5 of 32 (permalink) Old 05-08-2010, 10:44
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For me - no contest. I'd rather pay more for the robustness and serious commercial back up from Mercedes than a "Fix it Again Tomorrow".

Smick
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post #6 of 32 (permalink) Old 05-08-2010, 11:21
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As the owner of a Merc-based B630, I have to say I am very happy with it. The engine is smooth and powerful and the full-auto gearbox makes driving it a pleasure. It is very solidly built. I think so many more Fiat bases are used because they are cheaper to buy. The premium for a brand-new Merc-based Hymer is substantial.

The continentals seem quite happy with the Fiat base, but I guess they are less likely to use them on wet grass where the FWD would be a problem. Most aires and stellplatz are on hard standing. In the UK, the majority of CS / CL sites are in fields and as we go away all year-round I would not want a FWD Hymer. I think ours has more ground clearance than the Fiat / Alko versions and that can be an advantage on a CS.

The only downside to the Merc chassis is the lack of a double floor if you think that is important. I do not as the standard of winterisation on ours is perfectly good. The fresh water tank is inboard and the waste tank, whilst slung between the rear wheels, is insulated and heated by the Truma, as is the dump-valve housing. We have used our van in temperatures well below freezing with no problems whatsoever.
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post #7 of 32 (permalink) Old 05-08-2010, 11:51 Thread Starter
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JeanLuc,

Do the Mercedes not have a double floor then? Hmmm.

If I'm spending winter in Northern Europe, a double floor is a necessity.

May have to plump for a Fiat then, even if I wanted a Merc!

Thanks all

James
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post #8 of 32 (permalink) Old 05-08-2010, 11:54
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Fiat or Mercedes

To date we have owned VW, Peugeot and Mercedes Vans.

I preffered the VW over the Peugeot and our current Merc over both of our previous vans. IMHO the build quality on both VW and Merc is much better.

Steve
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post #9 of 32 (permalink) Old 05-08-2010, 11:56
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Hi

Mercedes Mercedes Mercedes Automatic Automatic Automatic, a totally satisifed customer

Delboy
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post #10 of 32 (permalink) Old 05-08-2010, 12:07
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JimmyBee
JeanLuc,

Do the Mercedes not have a double floor then? Hmmm.

If I'm spending winter in Northern Europe, a double floor is a necessity.

May have to plump for a Fiat then, even if I wanted a Merc!

Thanks all

James
You don't need a double floor, the Merc-based single floor version is well winterised and all the important bits are insulated / heated. I would not consider a British van with a single floor, but a Hymer is a completely different proposition. A lot of Germans use theirs in the Alps when skiing and I'm sure they would soon shout if the vehicle could not be used in low temperatures.

It may be that the newest Merc Hymers have a double floor - I'm not sure. I know the post 2000 S-class have a double floor at the back (not in the middle) but the B-Starline series does not. Don't forget that the Fiat Hymer does not have a double floor at the front - only rearwards from the point where the Alko chassis is attached. And you have to have a B-Klasse / B-SL model NOT a B Classic / B-CL as they are built on the original Fiat chassis with a single floor. However, they are all well-winterised, whether single or double-floored.

Philip
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