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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Going to purchase a cargovan within next 2 weeks. I would probably need the 135” wheelbase 10% of the time if that. But these are my main concerns, #1 would the longer wheelbase give me a more comfortable ride on long trips??? -( ie: less chopyness feeling on road) #2 is maneuverability really that much more noticeable getting around tight spots as longer version adds 2 or 3 more feet to turn radius??? Cost is not really an issue as it’s a nominal cost to me for the extra 9 inches.

Also probably going with the standard white. Unless someone can convince me otherwise to go with metallic paint. So I’ll throw that in as well. Metallic paint a lot better then standard, if so I will consider the $900 upgrade for metallic. Thanks to all. Has been a great forum!
 

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The metallic paint is way better; the standard paint is ****.

The vehicles ride is perfectly fine with 126”; it is a very long wheelbase to begin with. It’s good enough for the S-class sooo...
 

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Yeah the standard 126" is already longer than an S-Class, the ride is great considering what it is.
 

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I have a 135 with standard navy blue paint. The maneuverability is incredible even with the extra 9". The other day I did a 180 into a big box store space and it felt easier than my sedan. I should clarify it was a low speed 180. :)

I really like that the 9" is all within the wheel base, meaning the Metris stretch does not increase rear overhang. For $500, I couldn't say no, especially since the payload capacity drops only 55# with the LWB.

The base paint is barely serviceable. Mine looks nice enough (with the dealer-thrown-in "Zurich Shield") -- no water marks yet, but I am concerned about some ghosting, whitish spots on the hood. It scratches easily too.

I am 50/50 on whether I'd buy the premium paint were I to do it again. I certainly would not paint the bumpers, but higher quality paint would be nice in the long haul. OTOH, this is a commercial van, not a collector car.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Thanks for the feedback guys. And Focus , I believe the zurich shield is a waste of money, I have been offered similar coatings by dealerships in the past and just say no, unless they throw it in. I apply paint sealant to my own vehicles on a regular basis anyways. I take pride in what I own and how it looks wether it’s a van or a nice sports car. And I always want it to look nice, so paint is somewhat important to me. That’s what I like about this van is the fact that it’s just not a canertlever over the wheelbase but a wheelbase extension, just for 9” and the price for that sounds reasonable.
 

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If you are planning on installing a partition, you may not be able to fit a 4'x8' sheet of plywood flat in the back of the van with the shorter wheelbase. I have the 'Ranger Design' Plastic Partition and it tapers toward the back doors to allow the seats to recline but eats into the cargo space. Either way, the partition is worth considering because it keeps your gear out of sight and also cuts down on the hollow noise of the cargo area.

The turning radius is amazing on the short wheelbase so I cant imagine a few feet will make that much of a difference.
 

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We have 135 van outfitted to haul whippets and bed to camp at dog events. the inside is almost as big as the B250 it replaced. Just returned from six hundred mile trip...love the ride of the 135..worth the extra
 

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I would definitely go for the longer wheel base if you can.

Be cautious about the interior configuration and plywood.

My understanding of the dimensions are that if there is not an interior in back, it is wide enough for plywood to sit flat in between the wheel wells.

If there is a factory interior lining in back (passenger version) , it is just thick enough to be narrower than plywood. In this case, the plywood has to either be carried width "vertical" vs "horizontal" unless the plywood is carried above the wheel well.

If I was listening correctly, the cargo versions can have interior panels in the back, as well as track for holding things down - which is useful.
 

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We have 135 van outfitted to haul whippets and bed to camp at dog events. the inside is almost as big as the B250 it replaced.
Do you mean a Dodge B250 (Tradesman/Ram) van? I had several of those, from 1973 to 1998 model years. Or does B250 refer to something else also?
 

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Yeah on the Zurich Shield. I told them no way I'd pay for ($200) it and they claim to have put it on anyway. I didn't pay for it.
 

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I would definitely go for the longer wheel base if you can.



If I was listening correctly, the cargo versions can have interior panels in the back, as well as track for holding things down - which is useful.
Yes, the 2019 DOG has the con-pearl panels for the 135. Not available for my 2018
 

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Practical question.

On a regular 126 wheel base model, with the factory partition, does it fit sheets of insulation / plywood / drywall length wise, standing on their side?

Can you slide a sheet in on its side and but it up to the partition, if there is one, either one one side or down the center?
Or can there be no partition and the sheet would need to slide in-between the driver and passenger sheet some.

How much interior cargo length is there actually at let’s say two three feet up, where the partition cuts back the most?

MB list 111” cargo length but that is under the seat base in the space saver ... and I do not want to empty the van to haul a sheet as I have to do currently with my Dodge GC. Back to the Metris’s I have read that partitions will take 9-12” of space, and upfitters make mention of 86” of space for the short model and 91” for the long model.

So, I am confused / worried now that neither a 126 or 135 would allow standing up a fee sheets on their side? Can the short one do it? Can the long one do it? With partitions? Or only without partitions?

Thank you.
 

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I am very confused as to why you would want to be laying standard sheets of drywall or plywood on their side. They sit laying down perfectly in either wheelbase length with or without partition; Actually if you remember when they were big ads on the merr is back when it came out, the claim was that the metris could fit 65 sheets of drywall. I think that was limited by weight rather than size as well. The distance to the seat base is about 8’9”. I believe the partition at the furthest back part remove six or 7 inches from that.
 

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The above scenario would be where I may need 1-2 sheets of something for a project or repair, without having to empty the van. I'd certainly not want to haul 12-24 sheets that way.

Sheets good are most easily carried in and out by a single individual when they're on their side, rather than face or back.

My current situation may best describe why I'm concerned about vertical cargo length at shoulder height of the seats.

I have a Dodge Grand Caravan with stow and go seats. Seats are typically down, but my van floor easily fills up with some tool boxes. If I need to get a sheet of something, in the DGC, the sheet can only fit on the bottom, so the van needs to be emptied entirely. If the seats are up, then that requires front seats to go all the way forward, second row folding in, ... Not fun and time consuming when you just need to run a quick errand. ( note I have done this for an emergency repair situation, where I had several sheets of plain construction plywood on the bottom, then piled tool boxes etc on top ... but it is not very practical or efficient )

A Metris has 49"+ of vertical loading height at the rear doors, rather than the 36" of the DGC. I am envisioning shelving on one side length wise or maybe both sides in the Metris, and when I need a few sheets for something, with a cleat or two at floor height and ceiling height, I can just lean those sheets up against the shelf or even on their own. To remove them, just slip them forward half way, panel carrier under it ... without shuffling a single thing, removing items, clearing the floor.

Alternatively, one can envision an elevated sturdy platform, ordinary stuff goes under it, maybe some trays and drawers for access, bulk & sheet goods go on top ... but sheets are much harder to put in and retrieve. Even with two people. Especially solo. Materials will get damaged in the process.

I have even considered the other way around, a large truck bed loading tray as seen in some truck. Ordinary stuff goes on a platform above. Any sheets would go on the heavy duty tray.

But, I'm trying to keep things simple and not reinvent the wheel, while at the same time making the van less versatile with various hard fixings and commercial upgrades.

So, that's why I'm hoping to get a measurement / length from the farthest the seat goes back, not the base, towards the rear door :)
 

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PS: Almost forgot about the main point.

So, about 8 ft 9 to the seat base. But a seat back protrudes into the rear and partitions follow that contour.
Would there be 8 ft left at the shoulder or wherever a partition protrudes the most?
 

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So buy a 135
 

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No. The minimum distance from the partition to the back door is only 90":

View attachment 18075
Thank you!

Fantastic detail!
Can’t believe I didn’t check for Vito details.

So, without a partition and if just for occassional & short range use it can work, the front edge of the sheet would just have to rest between the front seats a few inches.

Yes, a 135 would be ideal, but I may have to compromise, due to timing.
 

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Hi, I have a 2016 passenger model 126" and have a custom built tool rack down the passenger side. I regularly carry sheets of plywood (easily 4-5 sheets of 3/4") vertically, but slightly tilted over to accommodate the height. I believe there is more clearance with the cargo versions, but it is possible with the passenger by tilting it over, conveniently onto the rack that I have built in there... here is an old image with some tool storage also on the left, which I have since removed for increased flexibility.

IMG_2638.jpg
 

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Thank you for replying, adobeTX!

I knew it could be done and that I would not be the only one thinking that way :) Storing tools in the trunk and on the sides, slipping a couple sheets in the middle.

I am going cargo model and will resist to put commercial racks in, and save the money; as I want to be able to do hobby duty or plain old cargo space at short notice ... without a lot of hassle. I have some modular options in mind, to ” jazz “ things up; but I think I need to get a van first and use it for a few weeks to evaluate options to switch between carpentry, hobby and cargo.

If I may ask, what did you build on the passenger side? If anything, you may have the driver shelf all the way and thus left it open on the passenger side for access & miscellaneous use.
 
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