Unimog is a range of multi-purpose auto 4 wheel drive trucks produced by Mercedes Benz.
Unimog is an acronym for the German “UNIversal-MOtor-Gerät”, Gerät being the German word for machine or device. Daimler Benz took over manufacture of the Unimog in 1951 and they are currently built in Wörth am Rhein, Germany.
Another Mercedes-Benz plant assembles Unimogs in Aksaray, Turkey. According to Wiki, Unimogs were also built in Argentina until the first years of the 1980s.
Bottom line is they are one of the best go anywhere trucks.
Meet our Unimog Camper called Mowgli
Mowgli is our Unimog Camper. She started life in the ’80’s as a flat bed German defence force truck.
As far as we can tell, she left service in the late ’90’s with 45,000 kms on the clock. We’ve only found records from 2006, so if anyone can shed any light on her past we’d love to hear from you.
We do know she had the camper body built & fitted by Willinghams of Thorngumbald, Hull and she’s had several fit outs for 3 trips to Africa since then.
Drop us a line if you have any info on Mowgli’s history
Unimog Technical Specification
The Unimog has 0.45m ground clearance courtesy of portal axles. These allow the gearbox and the diff lock casings to be located above the centre line of the wheels.
A very sturdy four-wheel drive, Mowgli has massive torque at the expense of speed from the 5.4-litre turbo-diesel motor.
With a top speed 53 mph down hill with a following wind, she cruises nicely at 46mph. Fuel is also a bit of nightmare; we reckon we’re 15mpg or 6.4 kpl.
Kerbside weight is rated at 7.5 tonnes, although the factory plate rating are 8.5 tonnes.
She’s fitted with a 400 litre second fuel tank and a 250 litre water tank. At her last MOT at VOSA , she came in at 6.7 tonne with an empty 400 lt fuel tank.
So when full of fuel and Angela’s shoes, we will be hitting 7.2 tonnes.
The 12v power is provided by two x 125 Amp Hour leisure batteries charged by a separate alternator to run the lights, fridge etc.
We have a 2,000 watt inverter in addition to a Sine Wave inverter for running the laptops in the living area.
She’s fitted with 3 big solar panels that kick out 30 amps on a really sunny day to help trickle charge the leisure batteries.
There’s a shore power hook up but we don’t see many places to hook up to once we’re out of Europe.
You can check out everything you ned to know about camper solar panels in this post, including a complete installation guide and wiring diagrams.
Read more about our electric set up
No Unimog camper is complete without a permanent double bed, a key requirement for us, railway style seating and table for four.
This arrangement can be dropped into another double bed. The galley is fitted with sail boating equipment from Streamline with a fridge and icebox, oven and four-ring gas stove, indoor wet-room with power shower and portable cassette loo.
Clean water is provided by an integrated water filtration system, hot water is heated by the engine exhaust as well as an additional immersion heater.
We took out the air conditioner in the living area and replaced it with a big air hatch. For cold days we have a diesel fuelled Eberspaecher air top heater, which has proved to be perfect on winter outings.
Fortunately, Mowgli has lots of internal and external storage, draws, cupboards and 2 garages for out door gear, spares, tools and even more shoes!
Read more about Mowgli’s layout here
So that’s our Unimog Camper called Mowgli and home!
Saturday 27th of March 2021
Hi Guys Nice write-up. It's been interesting following the Mog around the world. I lived in Scotland and had her for 3 years, did a lot of work on her... Do you know where she is now?
Angela and Graham
Saturday 27th of March 2021
We loved her & she was perfect for our West African adventures. She wasn’t the right truck for South America though and we sold her in 2017. Sadly, about a year later, she became a bonfire on the M4 while her new owner was on a 1 day expedition to Weston-Super-Mare.
The insurance company wrote her off, but Atkinsons recovered her remains, saved the living accommodation and transferred it to a new vehicle. What was once Mowgli (at least to us), has since become an American citizen. Her soul though will forever be in Africa :-)
Can you tell we’re still grieving?
Friday 12th of February 2021
Interested in Unimog purchase in a bare bone condition, a clean slate to work on
Adventure Overland Show 2016 | Escape route
Sunday 25th of September 2016
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