History of the Unimog
Unimog is a range of multi-purpose all-wheel drive medium trucks produced by Daimler and sold under the brand name Mercedes-Benz. The name stands for “UNIversal-MOtor-Gerät”, Gerät being the German word for device. Daimler-Benz took over manufacture of the Unimog in 1951.
The first model was designed shortly after World War II to be used in agriculture as a self-propelled machine providing a power take-off to operate saws in forests or harvesting machines on fields. It was designed with permanent all-wheel drive, with equal-size wheels, in order to be driven on roads at higher speeds than standard farm tractors. With their very high ground clearance and a flexible frame that is essentially a part of the suspension, Unimogs are not designed to carry as much load as regular trucks.
Due to their off-road capabilities, Unimogs can be found in jungles, mountains and deserts as military vehicles, fire fighters, expedition campers, and even in competitions like truck trials and the Dakar Rally. In Western Europe, they are commonly used as snowploughs, municipal equipment carriers, agricultural implements, forest ranger vehicles, construction equipment or road-rail vehicles and as army personnel or equipment carriers (in its armoured military version).