Mercedes-Benz is bringing a pop-top camper van to the U.S. market this spring. Based on features, the Metris-based Weekender might be the answer to our factory-offered camper dreams!
Mercedes-Benz is making a camper van? Say what? The new Mercedes-Benz Metris Weekender is a camper van and pop-up package. The van will have seating for five and sleeping for four.
It will be a great option for small families and couples who like to travel together. Its size and conveniences make it the perfect combo of a great daily driver and weekend adventure machine.
The weekender will be built by Driverge Vehicle Innovations in North Charleston, South Carolina, alongside the Mercedes-Benz factory. Mercedes has also partnered with Peace Vans on this project. Peace Vans is a Seattle-based van upfitter, renter, and restorer. It’s been upfitting Weekender packages on the Metris van for years now at a starting cost of $25,000.
“Pop-up campers are iconic and highly functional vehicles, “ said Robert Veit, VP and managing director of Mercedes-Benz USA Vans.
“We have known for a long time that this market need was unmet, as evidenced by the high demand for aging existing camper vans still on the road. With the help of our partners, we have utilized the Metris to create a product suited to those who seek adventure but also need a versatile vehicle for their day-to-day lives.”
The Metris Weekender
The Metris Weekender is packed with standard features, starting with the obvious elevating roof and upper sleep platform. The sleeping area features an integrated spring system, 2-inch memory foam mattress, three windows, and USB outlets. A second vehicle battery keeps your devices and campsite powered up.
Also standard is a rear bench seat that converts into a bed. It slides on a rail and locks in four locations, allowing for a wide range of cargo-carrying configurations. The front seats also both swivel. This greatly opens up and optimizes the interior living space to easily accommodate four people comfortably.
There’s a host of optional upgrades available on the Weekender. You can add things like solar panels, a roof rack, upgraded navigation, and even a vinyl wrap in one of 200 different colors. Camper upgrades available include an awning, door bug screens, and a pullout rear kitchen. A 1.5-inch lift is even available to get more ground clearance if needed.
“From adventure-seeking millennials to hip retirees, everyone is craving authentic and connected experiences to nature,” said Harley Sitner, president of Peace Vans.
“Small camper vans, like this exciting new Metris Weekender from Mercedes, hit a very large sweet spot in the market. Being experts in pop-up campers, we are confident Mercedes has a fantastic product that is going to delight an entire new generation of road-trippers.”
Yes, the Metris is just a minivan. But it’s a really nice minivan! Not only is it super-refined, comfortable, quiet, safe, and easy to drive, but it’s also super capable.
The Metris can tow up to 5,000 pounds, has a massive payload capacity of 1,896 pounds, and has nearly 100 cubic feet of cargo room behind the second-row seats. It also averages 21 mpg and only needs to be serviced every 15,000 miles. The base price on the Metris is about $36,000, but it goes up quickly from there.
The Metris is far from perfect as an adventure vehicle, however. It only has 3.82 inches of ground clearance, which will make it tough to even get down some basic forest service roads without bottoming out. There’s also no diesel engine option or four-wheel drive offered on North American Metris models. Hopefully, there will be down the road.
The Weekender will be available at any Mercedes-Benz dealer starting this spring. Mercedes hasn’t announced pricing, but we’re guessing it will start north of $60,000 and quickly get much higher from there with options.
To find out more about the Mercedes-Benz Metris Weekender and get your preorder in early, click here. To sweeten the deal, the first 100 Weekender customers even get a free National Parks Pass with their van.