Texas-based Kitchens on Wheels has become the first Preferred Upfitter for Sprinter‐based food trucks. The Preferred Upfitter Program is designed by Daimler Vans to ensure the quality and safety of all modifications. To become a Preferred Upfitter, several Sprinter specialists review each upfitter's plans, visiting its facility while work is in progress and inspect finished vans. Approved upfitters get advance product information, exclusive access to certain options and ship‐through service. Each upfitter also receives special programming of the electronics system that is tailored to the customer's need and vehicle functionality.
Kitchens on Wheels has experience building a wide range of custom‐designed vehicles, including some unconventional ones. For example, it installed a ten‐keg beer system in a restored fire truck, and it even fitted another fire truck with a four‐ton, woodfired pizza oven and a two‐keg beer system. However, the company said it is especially proud of an emergency food truck it built years ago for a Red Cross operation near Washington, D.C.
As soon as it was completed, the truck went to New Orleans for Hurricane Katrina relief, and it was recently spotted in New Jersey following Hurricane Sandy. Interestingly, Kitchens on Wheel has also built a number of prototype food trucks for franchises that are internationally known for their brick‐and‐mortar food operations.
The Sprinter cargo van features a payload capacity of 5,415 pounds and cargo capacity of up to 547 cubic feet. The van also boasts the largest side‐ and rear‐door openings as well as the lowest load floor and step‐in height of any full‐size van.
All Sprinters come with a number of Mercedes‐Benz safety features – ADAPTIVE ESP stability and rollover control, ABS anti‐lock brakes, brake assist and traction control. The driver and front passenger seats are equipped with standard multi‐stage front air bags, and side curtain and torso air bags are optionally available. Standard equipment includes a five‐speed automatic transmission and four‐wheel disc brakes. All Sprinters are powered by a 3.0‐liter BlueTEC diesel engine that attains 24.9 miles per gallon on the highway.
The Sprinter has been sold in the U.S since 2001 by Freightliner and through select Mercedes‐Benz USA (MBUSA) dealers since 2010. Both MBUSA and Freightliner are divisions of Daimler AG, the world's largest manufacturer of commercial vehicles.