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5 Best Box Truck for RV Conversion [Factors to Consider]

When people think of an RV, most often, they only visualize a pop-up camper, a travel trailer, a van, or a bus. However, note that you can also purchase a box truck and convert it to an RV. Even though you don’t always see many around on the road, box trucks are known to be very suitable to convert to RV.

Box trucks tend to be cheap and easier to purchase, as they are used by professionals, such as plumbers and movers, and you can even buy retired service vehicles, like ambulances, at your local town office. Owing to their rectangular shape, box trucks are also easy to customize, and you will get enough freedom to design the floor plan to suit your needs.

You can easily obtain used box trucks at a very affordable price. You can reach out to your local dealership to help connect you with the point of contact in your town for out-of-service commercial vehicle sales. However, it is always recommended to carry out your due diligence to make sure the box truck you acquire is mechanically sound.

Top Box Trucks for RV Conversion

Note that the best box trucks for RV conversion will be box trucks with enough headroom to stand up, and go up and down without feeling limited. To help to make the best choice, here are the top options to consider;

  1. Ford E-350 Box Truck

This is one of the most versatile box trucks you can ever purchase, delivering a wide array of light-duty to medium-duty commercial and recreational applications. With this truck, you can choose between a single and a dual-rear-wheel cutaway.

Both the E-350 SRW and DRW Cutaways are duly fitted with either a 6.8L Triton V10 or 6.2L flex-fuel V8 gas engine. While the E-350 SRW Cutaway comes with a GVWR of 10,050 pounds, with a max payload rating of 5,190 pounds, note that the E-350 DRW Cutaway is available in cutaway chassis that can hold up to 12,500 pounds (GVWR), with a max payload rating of 7,560 pounds.

  1. Hino 268 Box Truck

This is another very top option to consider when seeking reliable and efficient box trucks. According to reports, the 268 is renowned for providing the lowest cost of ownership in its class. In addition, it is very fuel-efficient, and the strong residual value makes it the most suitable truck to consider converting to an RV.

  1. Isuzu NPR Box Truck

This truck tends to come with a 5.2L turbocharged diesel engine or 6.0L V8 gas engine, depending on your preference. Four wheelbase options are available, ranging from 109 to 176 inches. Also, note that the truck’s body varies from 10 to 20 feet.

In addition, space is never an issue since the Isuzu NPR offers standard and crew cab configurations, seating up to 3 and 7 respectively, and this creates enough room to design a floor plan that suits your needs. The gas-powered edition of the Isuzu straight truck can carry up to 12,000 pounds GVWR, while the diesel-based NPR-HD can tow and haul up to 14,500 pounds GCWR.

  1. International 4300 Box Truck

According to data, the body of this truck measures 98” wide by 97” high in the interior of the box with a roll-up door, a solid wooden deck, translucent roof, and an aluminum pull-out ramp in the rear. In addition, it is powered by a 260 HP Maxxforce DT diesel motor and an Allison 2500 automatic transmission.

It also comes with air ride seats, cruise control, an engine heater, power windows, heated mirrors, an air brake, A/C, and an AM/FMCD radio. This truck sits on 295R75 22.5 tires, steel wheels, spring suspension, and a ball hitch in the rear.

  1. Freightliner M2 106 Box Truck

This truck will give you room to make numerous customization when converting to an RV. The M2 106 offers three engine choices: the Cummins B6.7, the Detroit DD5, and the Detroit DD8.

It can be duly fitted with both automatic and manual transmissions. Three cab configurations are available, including a day cab, extended cab, and crew cab. Depending on your setup, the M2 106 boasts of an impressive GVWR of up to 66,000 pounds.

Factors to Consider When Choosing a Box Truck for RV Conversion

Indeed there are vital factors to consider when choosing a box truck for RV conversion. These factors include;

  • Fuel economy: You need to understand that fuel economy varies by vehicle size, engine type, and age. Also, note that certain extra accessories like rooftop tents and cargo boxes also affect fuel economy.
  • Size: It is important you also extensively consider the number of passengers and the amount of gear you intend to carry or fit into the box truck.

Note that you will want adequate space even if you go it alone. Ensure to take into consideration different vehicle lengths and widths and factor in features like individual floor plans, pop-up roofs, cargo boxes, and accessories like rooftop tents.

  • Budget: You should take into consideration the cost of the box truck and also the conversion cost. You wouldn’t want to spend your whole budget on the box truck unless it’s already converted to your needs. DIY and professional box truck conversions differ greatly.
  • Diesel vs. Gasoline: According to experts, diesel engines can go roughly 20 to 35 percent farther on a gallon of fuel than similar gas-powered engines. Note that this fuel efficiency comes at a price, and in many regions of the U.S. diesel fuel is more expensive than gasoline.
  • Service history and mileage: A used box truck should be in good running condition. The seller should also make available a detailed service report. Routine maintenance and modern vehicle tech can allow a box truck to run for over 200,000 miles.
  • Drive train: Also consider the roads you intend to drive and the environments you plan to be exploring. If you intend to be off-roading or driving during winter, look for four- or all-wheel drive vehicles. A two-wheel-drive box truck will be more suitable and less costly if paved roads or light off-roading is your choice.

Conclusion

Indeed you can turn a box truck into a fully functional RV as long as you are creative enough. You can also purchase a used box truck at a cheaper price and design its interior like the finest RV. These sorts of trucks are not often considered when seeking trucks to convert to an RV. However, RV box trucks are a valid option to consider. It will provide you with the platform and space needed for a conversion.