by GC on Jul 4, 2010 Vehicle: 2006 Dodge Sprinter High Roof 158 WB 3dr Ext Van (2.7L 5cyl Turbodiesel 5A)
I love my Sprinter, I don't like chancing front brake pads every 28,000 miles. I don't like that I'm on my 3rd $116 transmission pan gasket, I don't like that I just replaced mt A/C compressor, filter dryer and expansion valve at 48,000 miles. I HATE that my roof leaks at the seams and most of the spot welds on the roof are rusting from the inside out! I have put multiple coats of Menzerna FMJ per year expecting it to help seal what I knew was crappy paint when I bought it. This weekend I lost several thousand dollars worth of inventory in my well kept van from a leaky roof. I'm livid! I hate that my hood rusted from the inside under my 3M invisible bra. A cassette deck? Come on! It's 2006!
by DBK on Nov 23, 2009 Vehicle: 2006 Dodge Sprinter 140 WB 3dr Ext Van (2.7L 5cyl Turbodiesel 5A)
Purchased 2006 Sprinter for Electrical construction business. Dealership explained all the advantages of the vehicle- low maintenance, good mileage,long engine life. Maintenance and reliablitiy are a nightmare. Paint rusted in first year. Brake rotors have very limited life and are expensive to replace. Very few mechanics can work on the vehicle. Vehicle has been towed for blown turbo- resonator, burnt out starter relay wire, and frozen fuel(even with additives). If you have business this is the wrong vehicle for you. Manufacture does not back up many defects.
by Disipointed on May 15, 2009 Vehicle: 2006 Dodge Sprinter High Roof 158 WB 3dr Ext Van (2.7L 5cyl Turbodiesel 5A)
I needed a high cube van to haul all my HVAC stuff. I moved from a full size dodge van into the sprinter 2006 158" WB, High roof, plumbers package shelving. I was in heaven. Heaven only lasted a few miles from the dealership, a wheel sensor light came on. I have now replaced the wheel sensor, drive line, a/c line, turbo Plate, front alignment, Bad paint now being repainted, all these under warranty with over 20 days of down time. Not under warranty, transmission @ 60,000 miles is down a $1000 repair bill before I am on the road again. The 20MPG is good, to work from the van is great but the repairs cause me to look for something else. If your smart take sprinter off your wish list.
by John on Nov 2, 2008 Vehicle: 2006 Dodge Sprinter High Roof 158 WB 3dr Ext Van (2.7L 5cyl Turbodiesel 5A)
Use the van for heating & plumbing service business. Not reliable. Now has 64k miles. Have replaced the right front wheel bearing twice,once at 22k, again at 25k (due to mechanic not tighening spindle nut properly) turbocharger resonator at 40k, transmission failed at 60k, was rebuilt at the dealer, failed again at 64k, is now at the dealer for that repair. The dealer has only one Sprinter qualified tech. Parts are always a long wait. I have it decked out with a bin package. GVWR is 8500lbs, weighed it two weeks ago at 7400lbs. I work in a rural part of Colorado and need to be able to carry a wide assortment of parts and tools. My business is suffering due to breakdowns.
by steve on May 4, 2008 Vehicle: 2006 Dodge Sprinter 140 WB 3dr Ext Van (2.7L 5cyl Turbodiesel 5A)
Purchased vehicle brand new. Was not told every 10,000 miles needed oil filter. Fuel filter, air filter total cots runs 275.00 dollars at a dealership. Lack of personal to work on this vehicle is terrible. First 6 months had transmission leak oil leak electrical problem leaky roof and my dome light collected water every time it rained. Also back door hinges pulled out of sheet metal. Business link program is a joke. I will have this vehicle paid off in 6 months and will go back to a Ford diesel. I do not suggest this vehicle for anytime of business due to its constant down time.
Minor additions this year include a rear park-assist feature, headlamp washers and wiring for hands-free cell-phone use.
On sale at Dodge dealerships since 2003, the Dodge Sprinter is actually a rebadged version of a Mercedes-Benz van built in Germany. By tapping into the resources of parent DaimlerChrysler, Dodge has come up with an alternative to the more traditional passenger vans from Ford and General Motors. Compared to these vans, the Sprinter is much more focused on passenger comfort, ease of use and driving dynamics. It's available in a comprehensive selection of configurations that makes it easy to meet specific needs. Not much flash or prestige can be expected of such a boxy van, of course, but the upright and narrow styling endows the Sprinter with near-flat interior sidewalls, a huge cargo capacity, easy urban maneuverability and plenty of flexibility. In addition to a selection of wheelbase lengths, the Sprinter is available with a choice of two roof heights. High-roof models make it possible for owners to stand up inside their vans when loading or unloading passengers or equipment. Families interested in converting their van into a camping vehicle will find this aspect of the Sprinter appealing as well.
The Sprinter's diesel engine is its weakest aspect. With just 154 horsepower available, the Sprinter's acceleration is rather meek at highway speeds, more so when the van is heavily loaded. Additionally, towing and hauling abilities are not as robust as those provided by the Sprinter's competitors. Maximum towing capacity tops out at just 5,000 pounds. In comparison, the V8-powered Chevrolet Express and Ford Econoline can tow anywhere between 6,000 and 10,000 pounds. The only bright spot here is fuel economy. Combined driving should result in about a 25-mpg average, significantly higher than that of the domestic V8s. Overall, we think large families or businesses in need of a passenger van should certainly consider the 2006 Dodge Sprinter. Its strengths certainly outweigh its weaknesses, particularly for buyers who require maximum interior space.
Body Styles, Trim Levels, and Options
The Dodge Sprinter is a full-size van. For the passenger version, only the 2500 style is available. (A heavy-duty 3500 is offered for the Sprinter cargo van.) The 2500 has a wheelbase measuring either 118, 140 or 158 inches. Additionally, there is a high-roof version. The extended roof height provides additional capacity and allows an average-height person to stand up inside the van. Standard equipment is limited to the bare necessities. A comprehensive range of options is available that allow buyers to fully customize the Sprinter to their needs. Highlights include aluminum wheels, upgraded heating and cooling, a sunroof, heated windshield, rear park assist, sliding rear windows, upgraded seats, cruise control, an alarm system, a CD player and power windows, mirrors and locks.
Powertrains and Performance
An inline, five-cylinder 2.7-liter turbodiesel engine powers all Sprinters. It's rated at 154 hp and 243 lb-ft of torque. A five-speed automatic transmission is standard and sends power to the rear wheels. Extended maintenance intervals and an estimated average 25 mpg help reduce overall operating expenses. Properly equipped, the Sprinter can tow 5,000 pounds.
The Dodge Sprinter comes with standard four-wheel antilock disc brakes, traction control and stability control. Neither the NHTSA nor the IIHS has crash tested this vehicle.
Interior Design and Special Features
Though far from luxurious, interior accommodations are certainly adequate and businesslike. Filled to capacity, the Sprinter can accommodate 10 people. Fit and finish is up to typical Mercedes-Benz standards. Multiple seat adjustments ensure decent comfort, and overall ergonomics give the impression of driving a regular passenger car instead of a hulking van. Some will find the lack of tilt steering to be an annoyance. Storage cubbies abound, but don't expect to put a super-mega-size drink in any of the cupholders. Photos may make the Sprinter look diminutive, but do not be deceived -- it offers up to 473 cubic feet of interior capacity depending on wheelbase and roof height. The Ford E-350 Extended Van offers a comparatively paltry 308 cubic feet. The Sprinter's rear cargo doors open up to a helpful maximum of 270 degrees.
While far from nimble, the Sprinter handles more like a midsize SUV and is better than any other van in the full-size class. The ride is also surprisingly smooth, and the Sprinter's turning circle is smaller than those of other full-size vans. In spite of the engine's low horsepower rating, its generous torque and minimal turbo lag result in adequate acceleration at low speeds. Highway passing ability is not as impressive.