When you think of the ultimate all-wheel drive vehicle in which you could climb mountains, tow heavy loads or simply cruise in, the rugged Mercedes-Benz Unimog should come to mind; it’s unmatched by other all-terrain vehicles.
Born in 1945 and designed by Albert Freidrich, the former head of aircraft-engine design at Daimler-Benz, the Unimog was originally intended to act as a tractor for tending fields, hence its 50-inch-wide stance, the width of two rows of potatoes.
Boehringer, a machine-tool manufacturer, began production of the Unimog in 1948 but couldn’t keep up with demand. Daimler-Benz swooped in and took over in 1951 and adorned these massive vehicles with the iconic three-pointed Mercedes-Benz star.
The Pick of the Day is a 1978 Mercedes-Benz Unimog 416 Cabriolet configured as both a capable rock-crawler and a people carrier.
“’Mogs’ are best known for their ability to traverse terrains of all sorts, and this model has desirable features that set it apart from other Unimogs one might find,” says the Phoenix, Arizona, dealer advertising the vehicle on ClassicCars.com.
The exterior is finished in green and black, which the seller believes is the original color from the factory. A black manual-folding canvas soft top stretches above the bed, which the seller says shows and operates well overall.
Making this massive vehicle ready for intense off-roading are large Continental tires and a dual winch setup.
When you’re not on the trails, this Unimog is also designed to be a personnel carrier, with fold-down sides and bench seats with seatbelts and a storage box underneath. The bed also stores a custom-built toolbox.
“Not known for creature comforts, this Unimog sports a commercial interior with two grey seats, exposed metal floors for easy cleaning, and a large black engine cover hump that lets you know that this is a forward control vehicle with the engine mounted in the cabin,” the dealer says.
Sitting in between the two seats are driving controls, levers and knobs that activate the 20 forward gears and eight reverse gears.
The green painted dash houses instruments with labels written in German. The odometer shows just 10,540 kilometers (6,550 miles).
Power comes from a rebuilt 5.7-liter inline-6 diesel engine paired with a manual transmission.
“With a twist of the key, operation of a hand throttle, and a push of the starter, the diesel comes to life quickly and runs strong,” the dealer says. “The stout motor and drivetrain give the feeling and confidence of a commercial quality and reliability, while still fully capable for personal use around town or out on trails.”
This 1978 Unimog is being offered for $33,800.
To view this vehicle on ClassicCars.com, see Pick of the Day.