15 Of The Best Vans To Live In And Why

5 min

Do you feel lost browsing all the different types of vans to live in? We get it, you're not alone. There are a variety of different types of vans to choose from, and this can be overwhelming and intimidating.

To make the process easier for you, we've compiled 15 of the best vans to live in and will detail why for each.

But before jumping to the list there are some essential things to first consider when buying a camper van to live in.

If this is the beginning of your nomad life, it can be a hard adjustment, especially if you don't have much experience with vans, or living on the road.

Things To Consider Before Choosing Your Van

Before you choose a van to live in, it’s important to go over a few preliminary things to help you determine what type of van is best for you.

First, do your research. Determine what size van you are looking for, and the purposes you would like for it to perform. Once you have decided what type of space you are looking for, you can move on to browsing vans.

If you are going the route of converting a van into a campervan yourself, there are a few things to consider first. First, make sure to fully inspect a van before buying it.

Here are some of the steps to walkthrough:

  • If it is a second-hand van, ask the one supervising the car to let you check its previous owners.
  • If you have a friend who is an auto technician, it might be best to bring them over to make sure the engine is working properly.
  • Always check the seat belts of the van for wear and tear. You can determine the strength of the material by how resistant it is while pulling it down.
  • Always make sure that while the vehicle is on no black smoke or soot is coming out of the fumes.
  • Check the chassis and exterior paneling and make sure it is rust-free. Typically good quality camp vans that are in good shape have little to no rust underneath the said panels.

You can access our full guide to researching, buying, and converting your van into the campervan here.

15 Of The Best Vans To Live In

The best van to live in truly depends on your personal preferences, activities, lifestyle, and desires. After you determine what size van you desire, your price point, the technical state, mileage, safety, and complexity of mechanics, you can move forward to picking a vehicle.

To give you a look at the variety of vans out there, we will walk you through 15 of the most popular vans to live in and what qualities make them great.

The Mercedes Sprinter Van

The all-around great Mercedes Sprinter has been held a top reputation as one if not the best camper vans out there for years. It is loved for its affordability while maintaining its comfort levels and strong engine.

With a Mercedes Sprinter van, you can choose between 2wd or 4×4 and a gas or a diesel engine. It is also great if you are looking to customize features.

These sprinter vans are well-known for their high-quality interior and exterior, with spacious quarters that are great for relaxing and sleeping on the inside.

You can read more about the Mercedes Sprinter Van here.

The Dodge Ram Promaster

Whether you are planning on embarking on the road alone or are going with a friend, or a significant other, sitting on the side of a Dodge Ram Promaster can be a wonderful time to spend your day! The Promaster is a competitive rival to the other best camper vans out on the market.

For starters, the Dodge Ram Promaster is great for people of all sizes! While many vans don't work for taller people, this camper van is broad in terms of its width and height. Even a person 6' to 6’4 ft tall can relax in this camper van because of its spacious interior.

The Promaster is also known for its easy maneuverability – coming with one type of engine: a 3.6 liter V-6. This engine is great for stability and long road trips. The only downsides are the lack of driver-assist and safety features that are offered by its rival, the Mercedes Sprinter.

Overall, this is a great camper van that offers you a reliable mode of transportation while assisting you with comfort and convenience.

You can read more about the Dodge Ram Promaster here.

The Ford E-Series 

The Ford E-Series is the best pick for a van if you're planning on doing plenty camping in the woods. With its great engine efficiency and durable tires, it can go even on long off-road trips.

The Ford E-Series is a tough white cargo van, with an installed pop-top. It provides users with a broad interior that gives you and your friends spacious room for a kitchen, load storage, and sleeping bed.

You can read more about the Ford E-Series here.

The Chevy Astro Van

One of the best and most affordable camper vans you can live in, the Chevy Astro van is known for its capability to travel off-roads. This van, made in 1985, is nearly identical to the GMC Safari. In the mid-2000s the Chevy Astro van became increasingly more popular partially due to its affordable price.

However, with its nice exterior and interior, the Chevy Astro van is making a comeback. This year, interestingly, this van is heavily sold second-hand on many buy and sell sites such as classified ads and Craigslist.

The Chevy Astro van is great for two travelers and much better if you're alone due to its minimal space. However, the price and the efficiency of the engine of the van are reasonable because it's an older model that will let you get it at a cheap price.

You can read more about the Chevy Astro Van here.

The Volkswagen Bus

The Volkswagen Bus is sought after for its campy vibes that give travelers a glimpse of the 1970s car aesthetic, no matter where you live. This iconic Volkswagen Bus has become a wonderful vehicle used for long-distance road trips and vacations.

Even though this van tends to be on the slower side, getting the look of this classic van is rare.

You can read more about the Volkswagen Bus here.

The Knaus Boxdrive CUV

Knaus Boxdrive CUV is a futuristic-looking camper van that boasts its modern advancements and modern design. It also provides you with luxury and convenience that makes you feel at home.

Aside from Knaus Boxdrive CUV’s modern design it also has its modern perks such as beautiful LED lighting accompanied by a master bedroom, a spacious area for cooking and eating, and an onboard shower.

A truly delightful van that deserves to be on the list, you can also add other customized kits and other safety features for more convenience.

You can read more about the Knaus Box drive CUV here.

The Citroen WildCamp

 With the look of a retro camp van and the luxuries of a modern one, the Citroen WildCamp offers the best of both worlds. It's a low maintenance van, a modernized version of the 70s prototype. The Citroen WildCamp is an iconic vehicle good for adventures on wilderness, beach trips, and more.

What's more, this van has a comfortable and spacious interior that is good for cooking, storing your load supplies and space for sleeping. Truly one of the best vans to live in!

You can read more about the Citroen WildCamp here.

The Four Wheel Campers

If you already have a truck and you don’t want to buy a camper van, you can give Four Wheel Campers a shot!

Not necessarily a camper van, Four Wheel campers are specifically designed to attach to your truck's bed and can be removed and adjusted whenever you like. This is especially helpful for people with busy schedules considering how convenient and comfortable it is, making you feel at home anywhere.

You can read more about the Four Wheel Campers here.

The Mercedes-Benz Luton Box Van

A great van to turn into a home, the Mercedes-Benz Luton Box Van is a perfect camper van for any adventurer! As more and more people turn to van conversion, this option has grown in popularity.

Mercedes-Benz offers an extra space above the cab, big enough to hold a double bed, also including a wide bathroom and overhead storage. The Mercedes-Benz will make you feel like you’re at home rather than being in a camper van.

You can read more about the Mercedes-Benz Luton Box Van here.

The Sportsmobile Classic 4×4

Another camper van that is great for long road trips, camping, and off-road driving, is the Sportsmobile Classic. It's worth the investment with several great features that makes it stand out from the crowd.

Sportsmobile Classic provides you with a spacious bedroom, kitchenette with a sink, storage space, and a complete solar electric system that provides you with eco-friendly practical electricity.

You can read more about the Sportsmobile Classic 4x4 here.

The Rivian Electric Truck

An unconventional camper van but still a great camper van on our list, the Rivian Electric truck is your best choice if you don’t want to leave a carbon footprint with your van.

The Rivian Electric Truck pursues its off-road driving capabilities while giving you the right amount of comfort as a real house can give. Aside from that, Rivian Electric Truck also provides you with a well-developed pull-out kitchen and a wide space for storing your gears and supplies if you ever run out of any!

The design of the Rivian Truck is unlike many others. It's clean, crisp, and modern.

You can read more about the Rivian Electric truck here.

The VW Crafter

The VW Crafter is specifically used and commercialized for transporting goods and supplies from one manufacturer to another but because of its very wide interior, it is a great pick for many travelers around the globe.

VW Crafter is also a great choice if you're looking for a camper van that has a long wheelbase that is not too pricey nor too cheap! These are especially easy to buy used after others have already transformed them.

You can read more about the VW Crafter here.

The Vauxhall Movano

A dream camper van by many, the Vauxhall Movano is loved for its fiberglass roof that allows natural sunlight to seep in as well as allowing you to stargaze at night.

It's also good as a live-in vehicle as it is not too large nor small and can fit right in parking spaces. It also has a good amount of space inside which is good for basic domestic chores! 

The Vauxhall Movano is a serious contender for the best vans to live in the list and the reviews speak for themselves.

You can read more about the Vauxhall Movano here.

The Nissan NV 200

Good for stealth camping, long road trips on mountains, and other harsh areas, the Nissan NV 200 is a great camper van to live in with space wide enough for large sleeping and cooking.

It’s powered by a 4-cylinder, 2.0-liter engine and has a great gas mileage suitable on long highway trips. Alongside the fact that it also fits in a parking space, and it is also easy to maneuver and drive.

You can read more about the Nissan NV 200 here.

The Toyota Sienna 

Last but not least the Toyota Sienna is a popular but modern minivan with incredible gas mileage that provides you comfort knowing you can drive on the long roads peacefully without the engine crashing.

Toyota Sienna also has a roomy interior and length even longer than The Ram Promaster or Ford Transit, you will surely feel at home with this one!

You can read more about the Toyota Sienna here.

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