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A modern adventurer – Sergei Boutenko travelled half the world in his Sprinter.

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The American YouTuber Sergei Boutenko makes films, writes books, gives talks - and travels the world in his Mercedes-Benz Sprinter 2500.

Travelled half the world.

Sergei Boutenko is a modern adventurer. At 32 years of age, the likeable YouTuber from Ashland in the US state of Oregon has already been to 66 countries. His talks and workshops about his books and documentaries about green raw vegetables, healthy living and an active and healthy lifestyle at one with nature have taken Sergei to all 50 states in the US. Always at the ready: his camera. His loyal companion: his Mercedes-Benz Sprinter 2500. “The Sprinter is the most versatile van on the market,” says Sergei. “I use it to transport my camera gear, my sports equipment, bulky outdoor devices and a lot of books.” In the meantime, the jacked up Sprinter, with V6 motor, has become his second home, says Sergei, who naturally has a mattress stowed away inside the van. In addition to space and reliability, the American appreciates the low fuel consumption and the manoeuvrability of his fully-equipped metallic-silver van.

A silver Mercedes-Benz Sprinter 2500 in a winter scene

On YouTube, Sergei Boutenko publishes tutorials that show how you can set up a Mercedes-Benz van for the winter, for example.

The streets are literally paved with creativity.

Being out and about in his van, getting back to nature, inspires the athletic film-maker, YouTuber and author. “I’m lucky that inspiration usually finds me,” explains Sergei. “For example when I’m driving along in my van – suddenly I get these great ideas.” But he has also become accustomed to really listening to the people around him. “Everyone has something they’re passionate about. If you can ignite that passion in the person opposite you – that can be very infectious,” says the 32-year-old. “That’s when I see how new ideas are sparked by the stories I hear from other people.”

I’m lucky that inspiration usually finds me. For example when I’m driving along in my van – suddenly I get these great ideas
In the cockpit of a Mercedes-Benz Sprinter, driving along a snowy road

Sergei Boutenko swears by his Sprinter. The 32-year-old film-maker also appreciates his Mercedes-Benz van for its good driving characteristics.

Curiosity led to YouTube.

So why did he start posting videos online in 2009? Sergei Boutenko can’t really say exactly why. “YouTube was quite new then. I’m an inquisitive type of person and just wanted to know what would happen,” he says. Gradually the US-American noticed that his recipes for raw vegetable and green smoothies and his DIY tutorials were received well by online viewers – and inspired a lot of people. This motivated Sergei Boutenko, who is originally from Moscow, and he stuck at it. In the meantime, “BoutenkoFilms” has around 25,000 followers on YouTube.

Sergei Boutenko on the film set. Two camera men film the American

In 2007, Sergei Boutenko started to make films about diet and fitness. Since then he has continually increased the professionalism of his work.

In the forest, looking for food.

Now Sergei writes books about edible wild herbs, mushrooms, shrubs and even the bark from trees. He provides recipe tips on a healthy lifestyle on YouTube and takes his watchers on a walk or shows followers how he sets up his Sprinter for spectacular winter trips or what kinds of conversions he recommends for outdoor activities. “Just like when I started, I still make videos because I like to learn and try out new things. I’m eager to learn.”

Sergei Boutenko pulls his snowboard boots

Next stop: the mountains. Sergei Boutenko pulls his snowboard boots. The sprinter is used in his travels also as a mobile changing room.

Being healthy means work.

At the beginning, Sergei did not really have any well thought-out concept. He simply filmed things he liked, and talked about things he was interested in – for example a healthy lifestyle. As a child, Sergei was susceptible to illnesses of all kinds and he had to work at his health. “I was always feeling bad,” he said. At some point, his mother forced him on a diet that was based solely on vegetables. “It changed my life,” says Sergei. “My health improved immediately. It really showed me how important it is to be active and eat a healthy diet.” This is the message Sergei Boutenko wanted to advocate. First, he interviewed nutrition experts, presented different diets or took his viewers off in his films on a day full of sports at the coast or in the mountains. His girlfriend and the Sprinter were always with him.

Sergei Boutenko and two friends staying overnight in a Sprinter.

The Sprinter on the left – the open sea on the right: Without his Mercedes-Benz Van the adventurer Sergei Boutenko is nowhere to go.

A multi-talented man with many interests.

Boutenko’s hobbies and videos range from healthy diets and salsa dancing to surfing or even DIY videos about Sprinter conversions. “For a long time, I thought it was a problem having too many interests and wanting to try out all kinds of things,” he says. “It’s not easy to bridge the gap on YouTube between backpacking on the one hand and a green diet on the other. At some point I realized that the most consistent thing about me is my inconsistency.” And that’s where Sergei spied an opportunity. “If you earn your money with videos, books and talks you’ll have months where everything’s going really well and then months during which you have absolutely no idea how you’re going to earn some money.” But that stimulates his creativity and makes him productive. “Because I always have to think about how I can use my talents for new ideas.” According to Sergei, it is all about thinking outside the box.

Sergei Boutenko in front of his Mercedes-Benz Sprinter

Sergei Boutenko has put his Sprinter up to the last detail. For each new tour he adapts the inner life accordingly.

Sergei Boutenko prepares his road bike

Sergei Boutenko always has the racing bikes with him: his girlfriend and Sergei are ready for an extensive tour.

Sergei Boutenko and his girlfriend are preparing for Stand Up Paddling

Warm up for Stand Up Paddling: Even the surfboards and paddle hat Sergei Boutenko housed in his Mercedes-Benz Sprinter.

A woman is reading a book in a Sprinter from Mercedes-Benz

After a long sporting day, you can relax and unwind in Sergei Boutenko’s comfortably furnished Sprinter.

The conversions shown were carried out by independent third parties. The suppliers and conversions were not checked by Mercedes-Benz. The image does not constitute an assessment of the supplier and/or the conversions by Mercedes-Benz.

Photos: Sergei Boutenko

More Links to explore: @YouTube, @Instagram 


Regardless of what job you have to tackle – the Sprinter will make your day-to-day tasks easier. And even if those tasks are weighty ones, together, you’ll move mountains. Thanks to a host of different variants and over 600 optional features, the Sprinter can meet a wide variety of requirements.

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