I'm new to the forum and trying to decide whether to buy a new or used promaster for my conversion. I've noticed a lot more used PMs coming on the market. It's great to see all the helpful advice and experience on this forum.
I have bought both new and used vehicles through the years and can easily justify doing either. And your personal situation can dictate which you really need to do. .
Used - Will cost less up front and there is no worry about cutting up a brand spanking new vehicle. May come with useful extras (floor installed) or junk you do not need (shelving). Some of its useful life will be used up and you do not know what its been into (sure we can drive through that high tide water).
New - Cost is higher but it comes with a warranty. Fewer worries about where its been. No extras except for that new van smell.
Since we intend on living in it for months at a time once our house is sold and could afford it, we opted for a new van.
I got my 2016 159" gas HT used with 20,000 miles for $24,000. I waited for used and have honestly made a decision never to buy a new vehicle again. Ever since I stopped buying new vehicles I have always had good equity in my vehicles. there's just something about that $1000's that goes out the window when you drive off the lot that rubs me the wrong way. Its not for everyone as I do my own maintenance and can do a major repair if need be (engine/tranny swap). **** I drive a 99 dodge stratus to work everyday and ill continue to do so till the wheels fall off, I got it for $500 5 years ago and its still going strong.
I will say its not for everyone tho, if you have the money and need the feel good of the full warranty than by all means buy new.
It depends on your budget and how much investment, time and money, will go into the conversion. Even if used had been available when I was looking (it was hard enough to find a new one), I knew I wanted to start from ground zero with a new one. I wanted the security of the full warranty and the assurance that the vehicle was well-cared for from birth.
Note: I survived two horribly unreliable Vanagons. I call the PM the VW that runs. I want to maximize the probability that it will run.
You all nailed my conflicting thoughts. Yes, I hate the $1000s lost as soon as I drive a new one off the lot and yet I like knowing that a vehicle was well maintained. Funny, I actually owned a reliable VW. I loved my 97 VW Eurovan but I sold it along with a great sea kayak to pay for the adoption of my 2nd child. These days I look at my now 13 year old and think, "Sure , you're an awesome kid but I still miss my van."