Happy Independence Day to Storytellers and MODElifers everywhere!
We get asked pretty frequently why we choose the Fourth of July to make so many of our important public announcements – or declarations if you will. Simply put, it’s because the Fourth of July still serves as a powerful symbol and reminder of the universal rallying cry for “Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness.”
This date in particular seems to encourage everyone, from all backgrounds and walks of life, to set aside other differences and come together to celebrate our shared values and the common bonds that exist as a result of our freedom.
It also reminds us of all of those who have willingly sacrificed and paid the price throughout our collective history to ensure our ability to embrace and share the joys of such freedom with one another – and the world around us.
With all of that in mind, we at Storyteller never want to distract anyone from the real meaning of this day, or interrupt anyone’s individual and community celebrations here on the Fourth of July. We just want to join our voices with yours and take a few moments to let you know some of the ways that we at Storyteller are trying to help harness the greater aspects of Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness into opportunities for our community to continue to “Live Free. Explore Endlessly. Tell Better Stories.”
We know you all have been eagerly awaiting new feature details and pricing updates on our 2023 MODE lineup, so let’s get to it…
2023 Feature Enhancements and Updates
First of all, we think it is important to begin by providing you with full assurance that everything you all have come to know, love, and expect from our MODE adventure van line-up all remains perfectly intact in 2023.
However, as always, we have continued to listen to the feedback and voices of this community and have found a few key areas for continuous improvement and fine tuning adjustments.
Here’s what we came up with:
New Bug Screens -(See video below) We know there’s nothing better than parking your van somewhere beautiful, opening the door and letting the breeze roll in while simultaneously keeping the bugs and pests out. That’s why we’re so excited to have completely reimagined our new Bug Out bug screens.
We admit our soft goods solutions have been a weak point and have not always lived up to their full potential (at least not according to our hopes and standards). So now, having the opportunity to elevate expectations with a bug and privacy screen system that checks all the boxes for quality, durability, ease of use, and ravishing good looks… well, needless to say we hope you all like them as much as bugs and mosquitos hate them.
These all new, and greatly improved Bug Out Bug Screens are included on all four MODE adventure van models.
Upgraded Window Shades – (See video below) We didn’t just stop with the bug screens either. We took the same energy we were applying to enhancing the experience on the bug screens and applied them to all of our window shades and treatments.
You know your favorite puffy jacket? The one that goes with you on every outdoor adventure, to every campfire hangout and every vanlife meetup when the weather’s a little chilly? Well imagine all of those same warm fuzzies, but in window shade form.
We wish we would see your reaction the first time you put one of these window shades on your MODE. With dozens of 360-degree magnets expertly sewn into the border of the window shade, it makes the most satisfying clicking sound as each magnet comes in contact with the metal around the window glass. Trust us! It’s more satisfying than a whole roll of bubble wrap.
In addition to the satisfying clicking sound from the 360 magnets, the puffy jacket material means these shades are lighter, easier to store, and offer more insulation. They also do a better job of blocking out sunlight – so say hello to midday power naps.
These upgraded window shades are also included with all four MODE adventure van van models.
Fan Cover Now Standard on All Models – The fan cover that we used to exclusively include with the Beast MODE now comes standard with all four MODE adventure van models, including the LT.
Our Beast owners have said they love how this cover not only keeps out sunlight in the morning but also reduces road noise. We’re excited that these benefits will now be standard across the board.
New location for 110 outlet on the Galley – We have heard your plea, and have responded in kind by moving the 110 outlet from the front of the galley up to the C-Pillar above the galley.
This means no more tripping over your power cords on your way out of bed, and no more hitting your hip on a plug when you are trying to use your induction cooktop on your countertop.
Firmware Updates for MODE Comm – The 2023 year model will also include firmware updates that enhance the performance of your MODE Comm. Nothing major with regards to its overall functionality, just continuous improvements on the hardware and software interface side of things.
2023 Pricing Adjustment
We know this is where the rubber meets the road for this conversation. But in similar fashion to our announcement on the Fourth of July this last year – given the new, cold, hard realities of living in a season of intense price inflation related to our bill of materials and labor costs – there will be a necessary price adjustment to our entire MODE adventure van lineup.
The LT, Classic and Stealth MODES will all have an 11.5% increase. The Beast MODE will have a 10% increase.
As we have said in times past, we do not enjoy these price increases any more than you do. As such, we have done all we can to war against them in any way we could for as long as possible. But the simple truth is that these price adjustments are necessary at this point to ensure the health and viability of our company – and through that, the continued health and growth of our shared community.
I can personally assure you that this new pricing is not some cynical “market rate adjustment” or self-serving greedy “capitalist pig” kind of rhetorical nonsense. The reality is that as a result of the constant price increases we have received from our OEM chassis providers, key vendors, and tech partners throughout 2021 and for the first half of 2022, we have actually lost money on 40+% of the vehicles we have shipped since the fourth quarter of last year. That’s simply not sustainable for a company like ours with the kinds of commitments that we have to our people and to our community.
Because of our commitment to Storyteller’s See-Through Pricing and transparency, we have held out as long as possible, but moving forward our prices simply must reflect the rising cost of quality materials and expert craftsmanship.
Through all of this we at Storyteller remain relentlessly committed to ensuring that your MODE will be worth every penny of every dime of every dollar of your hard earned money that you pay for it. And likewise, as it depends upon us, it will also be worth every second of every minute of every day you have to wait for it.
We have learned that the people of our incredible community are the kind of folks that willingly choose adventure, and who relish in the notion of pushing themselves to the edge of their own personal map. We serve a brilliant group of people who choose to overcome obstacles together, because they value growth and community and deeper level living.
It is our commitment at Storyteller Overland that as we likewise overcome hard challenges in this economy, we will continue to fight to support you and give you the best tools and resources available to choose your own adventure and live free, explore endlessly, and tell the best story possible.
We are truly grateful for each and every one of you and everything that you do to make the Storyteller community so life-giving and special for so many others out there. We look forward to seeing as many of you as possible out on the trail for our 2022 Stay Awesome Tour!
Until then… Happy Fourth of July, Storytellers, and cheers to the road ahead!
– Jeffrey Hunter and the Storyteller Overland family