As per tradition, there’s a broad selection of the latter. One can fine-tune the search for something that would probably become the perfect companion not just for ripping the trails with friends during the weekend but also saving one’s neck in case of an apocalyptic disaster.
Few nameplates can assume such honor, but Mercedes-Benz’ Unimog is certainly chief among them. After all, the family of multi-purpose all-wheel drive medium trucks has been in production since 1948 and has never backed away from any duty, be it a pleasure cruise or something utterly serious (such as putting on train wheels or assuming firefighter duty).
What we have here is a classic, in more ways than it meets the eye. First of all, it was born way back in 1978, so it’s almost halfway between today’s designs and its original incarnation from before Daimler AG took over. But, as faith had it ordained, it’s no ordinary Unimog either. The 1978 Unimog 416 that can be snatched during the Glendale event sports an almost military green coat of paint on the rather few metal panels it comes with.
Actually, we could call this a dual color since just about the same quantity of elements comes in a contrasting black hue; just to make sure the new owner will be in tune with the latest fashion, probably. Sitting up high in the cabin is a pair of grey seats and an protruding cover for the Type 352 5.7-liter inline-six diesel engine, probably to make sure everyone understands that a forward control vehicle comes with its own compromises.
The engine gets hooked to the four-wheel-drive system through a manual transmission with a grand total of 20 forward and eight reverse gears, which might turn any stick shift purist towards an automatic life after a prolonged session of off-roading! Well, that comes with the rock-crawling territory, which shouldn’t be an issue for the huge tires and the 15,000-lb (6,803 kg) front and 9,000-lb rear dual winches.
And don’t even get us started on the titillating sensations provided by the folding top cab or the shared experience for the passengers sitting in the bed on the six-person bench.