If you’re looking for a turnkey off-road Sprinter van conversion that’s capable of going pretty much anywhere then you definitely need to consider checking out one of the MODE vans from Storyteller Overland.
Now, unlike Winnebago, who you’ve undoubtedly heard of, Storyteller Overland is a newer van conversion company which started in 2019 and quickly built a strong name and reputation in the Sprinter camper van world.
Storyteller Overland are known for their modular layouts, style, and off-road travel capabilities – and they’re available to buy across the country from Storyteller’s growing dealer network.
In this post I’m giving you a quick overview of the Storyteller Overland MODE camper vans series, including what differentiates Storyteller vans from the competition and who these vans are best suited to, to help you decide whether one of these vans is the best choice for you if you’re trying to decide what camper van to buy.
Types of Storyteller Overland Van Conversions
If you’re looking for an off-road and off-grid capable converted Sprinter van then the Storyteller MODE series of van conversions is absolutely an option.
Storyteller offers several levels of MODE vans with different options, although essentially the base conversion specifications are the same for all MODE camper vans, which are based on the smaller Mercedes Sprinter van chassis, the 144 WB AWD (4×4).
–> For more context on what ‘144 WB’ means, our guide to the different types of Sprinter van will help you out <–
Classic vs Beast MODE
The differences between Storyteller van editions are most notable in terms of the number of exterior modifications you get included.
You get less on the Classic (the ‘base’ model, if you can call it that), and alllll the extras you can think of on the appropriately-named Storyteller Beast MODE.
There are then some other editions in between, with different styling, colors and extras. For example, in the 2024 line-up, they have the Mystic and Stealth MODEs.
To name a few of the most significant upgrades that come with the 2024 Beast MODE compared to the Classic mode:
- Agile Off Road Ride Improvement Package
- Storyteller Updog Rear Step
- On-Board Air Compressor with Front & Rear Air Chucks
- Flarespace nVader Rear Rack with Full-Size Spare
- Owl Vans Rear Box, Side Steps and Side Ladder
Once you delve into the details of what each of these upgrades does for your van and owner experience, you’ll totally understand why they’re there, it’s not just for looks.
For example, I can tell you from first-hand experience, having had the Agile Off Road Ride Improvement Package installed on a Sprinter camper van I used to own – this expensive suspension upgrade (it costs up to around $5,000 installed) makes a HUGE difference to the responsiveness and handling of a converted campervan.
You can compare all the different MODE van specs on this handy Storyteller MODE van comparison page on their website.
Storyteller Camper Vans Have Best-In-Class Battery Power Systems
The electrical system and battery capability installed in the MODE camper vans are pretty much as high-spec as anyone’s going to want or need to go on a vehicle of this size.
For the 2024 editions, these Storyteller campervans have a 16.8 kwh double battery system, powered by Lithionics.
What this means in plain english is this system will power the van’s heat or air conditioning system for up to 12 hours.
It is, of course, also capable of powering all the van’s electrical ports and outlets so you can cook, watch TV, and charge any piece of gear you may like, and the whole system will recharge super quick using the alternator charging capability which operates when the van’s engine is running.
It’s a great camper van for travels with pets
With the MODE’s high-end HVAC system and battery capability you can keep yourself and your pet (or pets) comfortable without getting too hot or cold, regardless of whether you’re camping in a hot desert or up a snow-capped mountain.
This is great, because we all know that van life (and camping, for that matter) is better with furry family members.
It seats 4 and sleeps up to 4 people
One of these Storyteller Overland vans can comfortably sleep 3-4 people.
The main bed is a Queen-sized platform bed at the back (which is around 6ft 5 long when you sleep sideways) that sleeps two adults.
Then there is the twin-sized bed that is created by converting the crash-tested dual passenger seat behind the driver’s seat (the ‘GrooveLounge’) and can accommodate people under 6ft tall.
This makes it a comfortable sleeping setup for three adults, or a family with one kid or two younger children sharing the twin-sized bed.
The Open Floorplan
If you want bathroom facilities in your camper van but don’t love the idea of a full-height bathroom / closet unit taking up space permanently in your campervan (a la Winnebago Revel) then check out Storyteller Overland’s bathroom solution for the MODE vans.
It’s not a fixed bathroom but includes a cassette toilet and a shower system that folds away into a cabinet when not in use.
This setup is a great solution for many, who desire an internal shower but may actually not use it all that often, depending on how, when and for how long you’re camping or traveling in your van – and the space it frees up is much more appreciated.
For more insights on whether or not a van shower is really essential, read why you don’t need a shower in your camper van.
The Storyteller Overland community
When you buy a Sprinter camper van (yes, any Sprinter camper van) you’ll quickly realize there’s a kinship among those of us who love our vans and enjoy our own unique flavor of van life.
Sprinter owners will wave when you pass, and if you meet people when parked up you’ll probably start comparing notes, discussing cool van conversion gadgets and gear such as roof racks or sharing mini van tours with one another.
Storyteller Overland ownership takes that community one step further, by buying one of these vans you’re joining a unique community of van owners and adventurers – which is awesome whether you’re going to be living in your van full time or have one to enjoy for days, weekends or weeks at a time.
Modular floorplans aren’t for everyone
Ok so I just said the open floorplan with the fold out shower system, cassette toilet and those fold-away beds is great, and it IS, but not everyone wants to be ‘converting’ their van interior every time they want to sit, sleep or wash.
Maybe you just want it all laid out and don’t care able flexibility and modular features. Different strokes for different folks, y’all!
You may not need a 4×4
I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, if you don’t see yourself really going off-road into the wilder places in your camper van, and you’re not planning extensive travel in the snow and ice, then you probably don’t need a 4×4 Sprinter van.
You can save yourself a lot of money buying (or DIY converting) your van, as well as opening up many other camper van buying options (such as the Westfalia Wave, for example), if you opt for a camper van that’s based on the Rear-Wheel Drive Sprinter van chassis.
If you want to improve your van’s traction then make sure you have good suspension and premium tires on it capable of taking on those gravel tracks and beach campgrounds you plan to visit – these upgrades will make a world of difference.
How much does a Storyteller Overland Camper Van cost?
For a new Storyteller MODE camper van, you’re looking at a starting price of $181,321 for the Classic MODE, to $232,586 for the Beast MODE.
Prices are correct as of February 2024 according to Storyteller Overland’s website, and they offer ‘no-haggle’ pricing through their dealer network so you don’t have to stress about dealer markups or not negotiating the best deal, the price you see is the price, and that’s refreshing in an ever-confusing world!
If you’d like to try out camping and driving in a Storyteller MODE van then browse available camper vans for rent on these camper and RV sharing rental websites: