When it comes time to start looking for a conversion van, you will have a few options, including those from multiple manufacturers. While the RAM ProMaster and other RAM vans are currently the leaders in the world of conversion vans, GMC held that title for a long time. Because of this, you will find a nice mix of both brands in your search for a van. To help figure out why you should choose one over the other, take a look at how they compare to each other.
A Note about Used vs. New
An important thing to keep in mind is whether the van is new or used. Because RAM vans are currently the class leaders in numerous metrics, you will almost always be able to find them new and be able to customize them however you want. Because of their popularity, you can also find a used RAM van without an issue, including gently used ones. Since GMC conversion vans are slowly being replaced by RAM models, you are unlikely to find a new one. You will, however, have multiple options for used models.
Although the RAM vans are the more recent conversion vans, the industry has not seen dramatic changes to the vehicle’s structure. This means that whether you look at a RAM or GMC conversion van, you will likely see the same two options for passenger capacity: seven or nine. This is the industry standard, and both capacities are typically available. Since GMCs tend to be used, however, you may be limited to either seven- or nine-passenger models.
Powertrains and Drivetrains
Whether you look at a RAM or a GMC, you can find a model with your choice of rear-wheel drive or all-wheel drive, as both have reliably offered either option. The difference comes from the engines. As RAM models tend to be new or used while GMC conversion vans in the area are used, they rely on slightly older engines. This typically translates to a bit more efficiency and/or power for the RAMs. Even so, a 2004 model from GMC can still have a 310-horsepower engine; that engine was still found on 2010 models as well. By comparison, a modern RAM conversion van typically has a 3.6-liter V6 from Pentastar for better efficiency than the GMC and offers a diesel.
Types of Conversions
The good news is that no matter what type of conversion you want from your van, you should be able to find it from either a GMC or a RAM van, including wheelchair conversions. Of course, the same issue arises with GMCs as before; since most are used, you need to find the type of conversion that best meets your needs. With RAM, on the other hand, you can have the van customized since it is new.
Best-in-Class Features on the RAM Van
For those who aren’t sure which type of conversion van to go with, remember that because RAMs are newer, they have the latest features. In the case of the RAM, this includes a long list of best-in-class figures, including the Best-in-Class turn radius of 36 feet, the Best-in-Class interior height of 6 feet 4 inches, and the Best-in-Class fuel economy of over 20 mpg. You will also be able to find more modern technology and features in a new RAM.