The Unimog is an iconic off-road vehicle which has been used widely internationally, and has played its valuable part in many operations of great diversity.
In 1945, Germany was in poor shape after the war. A food shortage would ultimately lead to the birth of the Unimog. An engineer under Albert Friedrich, who was head of aircraft engine development at Daimler-Benz AG for many years, came up with the first drawing for a vehicle that was versatile, large and that could transport essential supplies to area otherwise out of bounds.
To their disappointment, the board of directors showed very little enthusiasm about the product. Despite this, the blueprints were submitted to the “Production Control Commission” for permission to build 10 test vehicles. Needless to say, approval was granted.
Some 70 years ago, in 1946, the 1st official Unimog test drive took place on 9 October.
The 1st prototype had a top speed of 50 km/h (twice as fast as a tractor), AWD with locking diffs at the front and rear, and a recognisable car-like frame.
To date, there have been 30 different model series and almost 400 000 vehicles sold. No other commercial vehicle in the world can function as a tractor, towing vehicle, truck, fire-fighting and exploration vehicle, bus and working machine.
HAPPY BIRTHDAY UNIMOG!