2020 Boldt 70KL

Observations After A Week On The Road In The Boldt

I started this post thinking about the things that I would change on the Boldt 70KL. But I ended up going down the rabbit hole of things that I liked more about the Boldt than our 2018 Travato 59K.  

My hope with this post is to offer observations for those struggling with the decision between Boldt and Travato and other Class B vehicles (as I did before biting the bullet, er, Boldt).

I want to say right up front that we love the Travato and could have been happy keeping it as our primary RV, but we’re trying a business venture to see if we can earn a decent income in the Travato rental business. Others have done so with pretty good success, so that was the reason for dedicating the Travato to rental – and buying the Boldt for our primary RV. 

After a week of living in the Boldt, I am happy with the purchase. If price were not a consideration, I’d prefer the Boldt over the Travato without question. But even with the Boldt being pricier, there are four key differences that make the Boldt the winner for me: 

1) the Mercedes-Benz Sprinter experience– superior drive, superior comfort (power, heated ultra-leather seats and more room to stretch this 6’5” body), superior safety features, superior convenience features, better torque for the mountainous region where we live.

2) storage galore, the bedroom closet and drawers chief among the storage options that we really appreciate; the roomier (than the Travato) bathroom closet; the larger wet hold at the back (accessed from the outside); the better-constructed dove-tail drawers and more drawers in the galley than the Travato; storage baskets over the bed; more room behind the driver’s seat, where we store a large basket with two bear canisters that we use for trash and recycling; and storage under both beds. The pizza oven storage over the cockpit also just functions better for us.

3) the galley, including the additional countertop space in the galley, the driver’s side flip-up table, which extends our galley countertop space; the induction cooktop (we thought we’d prefer the propane in the Travato, but we’re loving the induction); the spice racks mounted on Ram Tracks; the sink and its countertop cover on one side and cutting board on the other. Also, the flip-up table also serves as a desk or dining room table. Unlike the Travato, in the Boldt, we’re able to swivel the driver’s side seat all the way around and have plenty of room to sit at the table. We enjoy this feature also when we are working at our desks side-by-side. 

2020 Boldt 70KL galley.
The Boldt’s galley has lots of countertop and storage space for a Class B van. This is the 2020 Boldt 70KL. The 70BL has a different interior configuration. © Ralph Grizzle

4) miscellaneous features. Cheating here, because these could have had their own numbers! The quieter air conditioning system when compared to our 2018 Travato; a higher ride (in the Travato, I could not exit my sloped drive with anything in the tow hitch – such as a bike carrier); the absence of a step up to from the coach house to the cockpit (who hasn’t bumped their head multiple times on the overhead storage in the Travato?); the easy-to-pair JBL soundbar (the Travato’s sound system was so 1970s, a decade that I appreciated but technology has come a long way since then); the Ram Track system throughout the van; the dual-pane acrylic windows; the bathroom with its Oxygenics showerhead and shower curtain on tracks; the side and back magnetic screen doors; the slightly better (than the Travato) Mercedes Sprinter warranty, 3 years or 36,000 miles for the vehicle (same as Ram Promaster); and 5 years or 100,000 miles for the power train (40,000 miles more than the Ram Promaster); a greater tow capacity than the Travato; and dual rear wheels (just feels safer to me); four-season insulation (which also makes the interior quieter); easier winterization (controls are more accessible); and last but not least, 17.5 miles per gallon vs. 15 miles per gallon in the Travato (though diesel is more expensive for the Sprinter).

Next post, what I could change (if I could).