HISTORY OF UNIMOG AND MUSEUM OF GAGGENEAU

Originally from the Daimler-Benz AG factories in the immediate post-war period, Albert Friedrich began in 1945 the development of a compact and universal agricultural vehicle which he already had in mind during the war.
Very different from conventional agricultural tractors, this one had to be universal : integral 4x4 transmission with differential locks, four equal wheels, 25 hp, which must act as a tractor with front, back and side tool holders, standardized thereafter, load space and front, rear and center power take-offs. It had to be able to move at a speed of 50 km /h, relatively high, to transport on its board various products, which already made a small truck. It will therefore be equipped with a suspension with helical springs and shock absorbers with long deflection but also with portal axels ensuring a good ground clearance. Metal casing enclosing the transmission shafts were integral with the axles and articulated by ball joints at the output of the power take-off. The vehicle was modest but really stands out from the traditional agricultural tractors of the time and bought transport solutions with very good off-road capabilities. This is its strong point. It will later be used more as a forestry tractor than as a farm tractor, when agricultural tractors will be improved with driving front axles.
Erhard & Söhne, a manufacturer of gold and silver products in Schwäbisch-Gmünd, has been involved in the development and production of the first U1 prototype, which began with Heinrich Rossler, also of Daimler-Benz AG, as production manager in January 1946. The U1 proto had an M 135 petrol engine, a four-speed ZF gearbox. Engineers like Karl Rank, Hans Zabel are then hired. The first prototype rolls on October 9, 1946.
The three following prototypes with petrol engines were also built in Schwäbisch Gmünd in 1946-1947. In 1946 Hans Zabel was named UNIMOG: Universal-Motor-Gerät, universal motorized vehicle. After a few tests and a public presentation in the spring of 1947, a new OM 636 diesel engine developed by Daimler-Benz's Julius Witzky marine engine designer was suitable for the vehicle and the last the two U 5 and U6 prototypes with this diesel engine and a specially designed 6-speed gearbox, were gradually built in the Boehringer Brothers machine-tools factory in Göppingen. In 1948, Unimog was presented to the public at the Frankfurt Agricultural Fair, which registered 150 orders. The production started in August 1948 in Göppingen and 600 vehicles 70200 were built in two years. Not only the farmers but also the foresters, the municipalities and administrations, contractors, firemen, the armies were interested.
Daimler-Benz including the interest of this vehicle took over the entire project, including the newly created patents, designers and distribution department and moved manufacturing to Gaggeneau in the former Mercedes truck factory. Consequently, the large investments needed to increase production were possible.
The small vehicle with its typical silhouette, with its plunging hood, high on legs, big wheels and very off-road, began to spread in Germany and later in many countries.

In 1972, a new truly agricultural tractor, the MB-Trac, combined Unimog technology (equal wheels 4x4) with a tractor silhouette : the long, tapered engine hood precedes a square driver's cab that rises in height and, unlike traditional tractors, is installed between the axles and completely closed. The MB-Trac is the car among the tractors.
On the basis of the original MB-Trac 65 and MB-Trac 70 (later 700), a wide range of tractors extends to the very powerful MB-Trac 1800 in a few years. However, this model did not meet the expected success and Daimler-Benz later added MB-Trac to the farm machinery business of Deutz. The reduction in the number of farms and a somewhat higher price compared to the competitors will overcome this concept. The MB-Trac production stopped in 1991.

To return to Unimog, after many years, the manufacture was transferred from Gaggeneau to Wörth am Rhein in 2002, about forty kilometers North of Gaggeneau.
Nowadays (December 2016), only the light series : 405 : U 216, U 218, U 318, U423, U427, U 430, U 247, U 530 and the heavy series 437,4 : U 4023, U 5023 are manufactured. The new diesel engines meet Euro VI standards. Apart from agriculture where they are relatively few, Unimog are used in forestry, armies, rescue organizations, maintenance of roads, expeditions, fighting forest fires, rescue missions or maintenance work in the energy sector. The Unimog U 4000 / U 5000 move forward where its competitors abandon. http://www.mercedes-benz.com/content/france/mpc/mpc_france_website/en/home_mpc/trucks_/home/special_segment/energy/newunimog/technical_data.0002.html

 

Unimog, Albert Friedrich

The inventor of the Unimog, Albert Friedrich and his daughter Ursula at an exhibition.

 

 

 

 

 

Unimog proto 1

The first prototype Unimog U1 on October 9, 1946, without cabin or bodywork. Behind the wheel, Heinrich Rössler, responsible of the technical side of the project. To the right, Hans Zabel, which gave the name : 'Unimog'. At the center is probably Albert Friedrich, father of the Unimog. Built by Erhard & Söhne / Schwäbisch-Gmünd.

Unimog proto 4Upper right and above, the first prototype with cabin finished in December 1946. Fitted with gasoline engine and truck tires. Built by Erhard & Söhne / Schwäbisch-Gmünd.

 

 

Unimog protoUnimog 3

Unimog U6

The U6 prototype belonging to Daimler AG is loaned to the Gaggeneau Museum. 

 

 

 

Unimog U5 1In the summer of 1947, the move to Boehringer GmbH in Göppingen was initiated and the prototypes U5 (above) and U6 (left) were fitted with an Om 636.192 diesel engine and a specially designed 6-speed gearbox, until the end of 1948. The proto U 5 is now At the Museum of Agriculture in Stuttgart Hohenheim.

Unimog 70200Unimog 70200 from the Boehringer Company in Göppingen built August 1948 to January 1951 to 600 units with the diesel engine 25 hp. This model is in the museum of Gaggeneau.

Unimog 70200 chassis 1Chassis of the model 70200. Engine OM636.912. Large travel suspensions with helical springs.

 

 

Unimog 2011

On 4 June 1951, the first Unimog series 2010 U 25 (06-1951 to 07.1953, 5813 copies). In 1953, the 2010 / U 401, U 402 (1953-1956, 11446 copies, LWB) comes out of the Gaggenau chains with the Mercedes star.

Unimog 2010 U 403

The 2010 U 402 series receives a closed cab

 

 

Unimog 404 s 1

Unimog S series 404/405 built from May 1955 to 1980. It is a small elongated wheelbase truck intended for military use. The Bundeswehr and other armies, such as the French Army, in addition to civilians, have made it a bestseller at 64,242 copies. Gasoline engine 82 then 110 hp.

Unimog 404 SUnimog 404 S

1 unimog u 404 shttps://fr.pinterest.com/pin/167407311126723751/

Unimog 404 S

 

 

 

 

IN CONSTRUCTION !!!

 

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