RVing: 2018 Pleasure Way Plateau TS

RVing: 2018 Pleasure Way Plateau TS

2018 Pleasure Way Plateau TSStory and photos by Howard J Elmer

Pleasure-Way Industries was started in 1986 by Saskatchewan RV dealer Dean Rumple as an answer to his frustration with the Class B products available to him at the time. Rumple found that his dealership was doing repairs and adding improvements to newly received product so often that it suddenly dawned on him that building a Class B, his way, was the answer to this problem. Thirty years later he is still at it.

His latest creation is Pleasure-Way’s 2018 Plateau TS. It’s built on the diesel-powered Mercedes-Benz Sprinter 3500-series frame (aka as a one-ton) with dual rear wheels. Its standard 3.0L turbo-diesel engine is both powerful and economical. With its substantial torque, I felt no lag on hills and it accelerated easily into highway traffic. I did a 0-100 km-h test and recorded a loaded time of 17.9 seconds from a dead stop. For fuel consumption, I recorded a best highway-only number of 12.6 L/100km and a best combined city/highway consumption of 13.5L/100km.

The cab, built by Mercedes, shows off its commercial design origin with features designed to make the lives of paid drivers, who spend full working days in the truck, comfortable and efficient. Fortunately, these features serve travelling RVers just as well.

Picking up the Pleasure-Way Plateau TS in London, ON, we turned northwest towards Lake Huron and two days of beachcombing, with a visit to a travelling rodeo thrown in just for fun.  And that’s my first observation of the Plateau – it’s easy and fun to drive. Over the two days we spent with it, we drove nearly 800 kilometres; sightseeing in this unit on any road – highway or byway – is stress-free.

Touring through beach communities, we were curious about what homes we might see down on the beaches. Often, these access roads were single lane, twisting and winding around the dunes and points. We drove the Plateau down any one that appealed to us. My point here is that this vehicle will go anywhere a car will. It drives smaller than it is, and with its square shape and clear sightlines, it fits easily.

Opening up the interior space is the large passenger-side sliding door. This portal is not only an entry, it’s a way of opening up the living space to include the outside which is covered by the legless power awning.

2018 Pleasure Way Plateau TSThis impression is confirmed by the kitchen counter that extends into the door opening, making for a convenient serving station – food going out, dishes and condiments going back in. A smart idea is installed into the side of this counter. It’s a 7-inch touchscreen that controls all the lighting in the unit, the awning, pumps, HVAC, water heater and fantastic fan. It also shows all the levels and power stats – all in one place. In the living/sleeping area, a second touchscreen duplicates these functions; it’s also backlit for night operation.

Our unit was also equipped with a side door (and rear door) roll-up screen (optional at $780 each). These serve an obvious purpose but I noted a nice feature in addition to the zippered entrance on the side door – a magnetic strip on the right side allows a quick one-handed pass-through and instant closing without touching the zipper.

Standard comfort features found in this cab include: adjustable hi-back driver and passenger seats (passenger seat can swivel 180-degrees to face the coach interior), tilt-and-telescopic steering wheel, full HVAC system, cruise control, high beam assist, keyless entry, power windows, locks and mirrors, Becker in-dash Nav and Audio system with Bluetooth (includes a backup camera).

Safety systems built into the Sprinter Chassis cover what most people would expect in a commercial van, such as four-wheel disc brakes with ABS, driver and passenger air bags and smart steering wheel controls. Past this, stability and traction controls are always on and work in the background to keep the van going straight in all weather conditions. They are designed to brake each wheel independently and automatically to prevent an unintended spin-out.

The seating position in the cab is comfortable, and the seat height and large windshield offer excellent sight lines. In fact, the Sprinter is just tall enough to let you see over most of the traffic ahead of you. Driver seat, steering and mirror adjustments were equally good for me (at a hefty six-foot) as they were for my wife (at a petite five-feet tall).

Most features in the Plateau coach body do double-duty. The bathroom is also the shower thanks to a step-in floor pan and waterproof surfaces. The living room is also the bedroom thanks to a motorized couch that folds flat for sleeping. This is the same seating used for the eating area and the dining table can be removed after dinner to accommodate cushions between the fixed ottomans to complete 70 x 76-inch King Bed.

The standard 24-inch flat screen TV is wall-mounted to be viewed here best, whether you’re sitting or lying down. Signals are fed to it from the Winegard Rayzar digital antenna, a direct cable hookup or from the standard blue-ray player.

2018 Pleasure Way Plateau TSThis, then, is the nature of the Class B. Space is at a premium but that doesn’t mean the buyer has to miss out on any comfort features; smart design sees to that. This assessment also includes a few things you can’t see – such as an Eco-Ion smart lithium battery system and an on-board 20.5 KW Onan LP generator with 2,000-watt inverter.

Our test unit was also equipped with an optional 285-watt solar package that fed the battery array. While we spent the weekend plugged in at the campground, these three energy systems would make days of dry camping possible. Other space-saving devices include a tankless on-demand Truma water heater and underbody propane tank (where you’ll also find a standard BBQ quick gas connection).

The galley is another model of efficiency, yet it feels surprisingly large, in part because of the length of the Corian counter that extends into the side doorway, plus a flip up extension on the living room side and the covers for the stove and sink. The stove is a two-burner flush-mount unit with a splash guard that flips up next to the deep sink with integrated matching counter-top cover. Note, there is no vent hood above the stove, but we found the fantastic vent pulled the steam from our corn boil out quite well.

As you swivel around, you’ll face the three-way two-door fridge/freezer with the High Pointe convection microwave grill right above it. Storage above the windows is all-natural maple cabinetry with radius doors and top mounted hardware that holds the doors open – really nicely finished. Below the kitchen counter, drawers and cupboards are equally well-finished with excellent hardware.

Storage space in the Plateau is at a premium; however, what there is, is well-designed and has good access. Just don’t figure on taking a whole winter’s worth of gear south with you. Unless, of course, you tow a trailer, which is a possibility. So while it’s not something I did I certainly noticed the standard trailer hitch with its 5,000-lb tow rating. With the torquey diesel engine, this option opens up a number of recreational possibilities for the Pleasure-Way owner. My first thought is taking along my power sports – motorcycles in summer and snowmobiles in winter.

However, whatever you decide to do with the Plateau, remember this is a unit that is meant to be driven – an experience you’ll quickly come to enjoy.

2018 Pleasure Way Plateau TSSpecifications:


Manufacturer:                       Mercedes-Benz

Model:                                   Sprinter 3500 chassis cab, dual wheel

GAWR, F/R:              11,140 lb  F-4080 lb  R-7060 lb

GVWR/GCWR:                    11,030 lb / 15,250 lb

Engine:                                   Blue Tec 3.0L V6 diesel engine

SAE Hp:                                 188 hp

Torque:                                  325 lb-ft

Transmission:                       5-speed automatic


Exterior Length:                   22’9”

Exterior Width:                     7’11”

Exterior Height:                    9’8”

Interior Height:                     6’3”

2018 Pleasure Way Plateau TSFreshwater Cap:                   30 gal

Black-water Cap:                 12 gal

Gray-water Cap:                   35 gal

LP gas tank:                           30 lb

Air Conditioner:                   11,000 Btu roof-top A/C

Heating:                                 16,000 Btu auto-ignite LP furnace

Refrigerator:                         3-way 6 cu-ft double door

Inverter/Charger:                  2,000 watt

Batteries:                               12-V chassis, Lithium Ion coach package

AC Generator:                      20.5KW LP

MSRP:                                    $145,535.00

MSRP as Tested:                   $156,845.00


Categories: RVing, Trucks Plus