MB Truck vs Unimog

joeblack5

Active member
Sorry diplostrat, not sure where my glitch came from,

Thank you Charlie, a limited search under atlas and temp sensor did not show information.. I will do some more searching?

Johan
 

Victorian

Approved Vendor : Total Composites
Hi Bean

I also love Unimogs to drive, great fun, but something no-one has mentioned here is that they are very tall, which makes climbing in and out of the cab and the habitation a chore, travelling in the bush a pain and driving across inclines scary.

I have an 814 DA which is a bit too slow, but does what I need.

I think a truck is better suited to what you want. But whatever you get, being on the road is the thing!

Bruce
I'm 100% with you on the height. Once at camp it started to get old very fast to climb the stairs to get into the camper. Several times I was wondering how painful it would be to loose balance with my hands full going down...
 
The first time my wife got out of the U500 in Germany she went the wrong way (facing out) and fell. Fortunately no fractures. My fault for not instructing her.
Now at age 72 with bad rotator cuffs I grunt a bit climbing up. But always hanging on correctly. If I want to move stuff in or out I always put it on the floor or seat, climb in or out and then recover it.
 

Sitec

Adventurer
Our problem is the cab... I have made self supporting steps for entering the hab box which has a floor level approx 1.2m above ground level. Having 1 step well inside the hab box has helped no end. It was something we had to work out early in our build as my wife is short in the legs... I can't do this in the cab!! The Unimog is actually a better bet in this respect as the door base is behind the front wheel. I'm looking at how I can extend the hanging steps without them getting in the way when on rough terrain. The truck looks better with the front height now matching the rear ride height, but the 40+mm lift on the front springs, the slightly larger tyres, the 75mm lift under the cab using parts from the donor truck and the 50+mm lift gained due to there being less weight on the front axle than there was with the crane has cost me with cab accesibility! :unsure:
 

zackchien

New member
Hi all,

My wife and I have decided to sell everything and live on the road permanently and we are at the point of deciding on a vehicle. We are pretty much set on a Mercedes Truck or Unimog as we plan on being outside the US for the majority of the time (we are planning 2-3 years to visit the US and Canada then heading south). We are about six months away from seriously shopping for a vehicle and I'm attempting to narrow it down between these two choices.

My main question is "Why do many people pick a truck over the Unimog?" The way I understand it, both the MB truck (NG/SK I haven't been able to keep them straight) and the Unimog (435 series) have very similar disadvantages (55mph max speed, not sold in NA, loud, poor fuel mileage), but the Unimog has a significant off road advantage. So, what is the advantage in choosing the NG/SK truck.

Secondly, where can I find more information about the trucks? There is so much more Unimog info out there than there is for the trucks. Like the transmission in the truck, I've read in a thread here that there are 2 options, a 5 and 6 speed, neither have OD, BUT I've seen a picture of an 8 speed, a video of a 6 speed with an air shifted auxiliary, and another video of some electronic thing (EPS?).

Finally, we will be at Overland Expo East this coming weekend and would love to be able to look through someone's build and/or get some guidance. I can tell you exactly what I would want in terms of North American manufacturers, but I haven't a clue when it comes to these Germans machines.

Thanks a million
I just ordered a new 2022 Mercedes Arocs, delivery expected in late April. Believe it's such a huge advantage than a new Unimog. If you want to do serious off-road why not tow a jeep wrangler behind.
 

laproscopic

New member
I just couldn't help commenting here. I tried to stop myself.

I also have fantasies of expedition travel after retirement in the next few years . I have looked at the newer (2005 +) unimogs and I also want one of these newer mogs. I dont think i would overland one.
I currently have a heavily modded 419 mog and take it to the moutains often. I used it to travel the rubicon trail a couple years ago. this is my favorite off road machine and I have had a lot of off road machines. I daily drive a dodge megacab 6.7 with 37s and dual ARB's. I take this truck everywhere. I have an ultra 4 race car. I have had modified humvees, jeeps, and the like. I have broken most of these machines in pursuits for which they were not designed.

The problem I have with using a mog as an overlander is that it seems like the design of a mog is not optimized for the job of overlanding. Or at lease other rigs seen to be better designed for the job. When I read the trip reports out there I have come to a few conclusions based on my observations. foremost is that overlanding is 95 plus percent OVER LAND and the truck should focus on that fact.. Lets say that last 5% of the trip needs 4wd. That 5% is important because those places that need the offRoad capability are the funnest. The problem is that the Mog sacrifices the 95% in chasing the 5%. The special thing with a mog is that it has a few skills that make it the most capable trashed road/rockcrawling heavy truck in the world. Specifically it has 3 attributes that nothing else of its size can match: Portal axles, CTIS (not just mog), and a 4 coil suspension. (vs leaf springs) Those 3 attributes are cool and I want the truck. But how mucharethose things helping the mog as an overlander?

If one needs an off road machine capable of carrying lots of weight over distance on poor roads while offering a comfortable ride (off road heavy camper) it needs the following:

Adequate ground clearance (and what good is it to have a mog with portals when the truck has tool boxes on the sides that are hanging lower than the portals)
larger tires with good traction. (40" plus would be great). holes, mud, sand, obstacles, and rocks all get smaller with big tires.
CTIS. I my mind this is the most overlooked benifit. The ability to air down and up painlessly off road makes up for so much.
gearing optimized for BOTH low speed as well as high speed traversing. (must have low gearing)
4 wheel drive with lockers. MUST HAVE lockers. not so much to get there but to get OUT if you get stuck
big powerfull winch
A strong reliable drivetrain that is as easy to service as possible. Ideally it has readily available parts and is recognized so available mechanics are familiar with its problems.
as low a center of gravity as possible while maximizing ground clearance. You dont need "flexy suspension" or high uptravel in this application because the wheelbase will flex.

so there i said it
couple pics of me toys
 

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