In Mutants & Masterminds (3rd ed), how does one make a PC vehicle (pg 221 of core) that has a large crew (e.g. a submarine, the S.H.I.E.L.D. Helicarrier, etc.)? Can I just say it has a large crew for flavour, or do I have to buy ranks of the Minion advantage and give the crew stats, or is there another way of handling this?
Are the crew just for flavor? Or do they give you a mechanical advantage? If the former, just handwave them much like you would an engine in the vehicle. Otherwise, my impulse is the 1 pp for Staff as for headquarters, maybe another 1 pp to let it operate on some level without the PC as they either relay orders to the crew, or the crew acts on their own. If some crew members are characters in their own right (like a First Mate or Number Two always by their side), build them as a Minion or Sidekick, but otherwise, there's no need to stat out Roger the Cabin Boy.
M&M makes you pay for effects, not aesthetics. Given that nobody cares exactly how many people are really on the S.H.I.E.L.D. Helicarrier, as opposed to the effect of the people on the Heilcarrier, I'd say Feature: Autopilot [Crew], with a hero point granted if a large part of your crew dies. There could also be security bought as a Feature: Security System [Crew], and they could pilot the vehicle without you as Feature: Autopilot [Crew].