When a Unimog comes on the market, we have to post about it. It’s a rule here at Jalopnik from way back in the Martin Administration and who am I to dispute that? Now, this one is for sale at BringATrailer out of Berkeley, California and I am daring you to daily it.
Unlike many of the Unimogs out there in America, this one hasn’t had its hard-working attitude painted off and replaced with the name of an overpriced surf shop in Venice or Montauk. It’s still got the patina it left the service with. That’s right, the service. The military. The real deal.
This Unimog served in the US Army as an engineering vehicle. Called the Small Emplacement Excavator, or SEE Tractor, by troops, these were ordered with a special 24-volt electrical system and a more powerful engine than standard ‘Mogs got on the German market. Kitted out with a loader upfront and a folding backhoe excavator in the rear, it must have been quite the machine to have at hand when you need earth moved and you need it moved quickly.
The idea of a Mercedes-Benz-built Unimog in American military use sounds a little weird, of course, but it’s not the only Merc to make it with the Pentagon. Just ask the Marines about their G-wagens Interim Fast Attack Vehicles. They were awesome.
But if you look closely at the photos of this ‘Mog, you’ll notice that it isn’t wearing a three-pointed star up front. That’s because it comes from a period when Case Construction Equipment and Freightliner were importing Unimogs for the American market before Freightliner took things totally in-house for a while and eventually stopped selling any at all here in North America. If you need some more info, a 1989 model sold back in 2014 and our man Andrew got all the details.
Now, though, this 1987 Unimog 419 is on the market and it deserves our attention. With a 5.7-litre OM352 Mercedes diesel straight-six under the hood (and between the seats) sending its power to all four wheels through a gearbox with eight forward gears and four reverse, a dual-range transfer case, and locking differentials, it won’t be phased by a little rough terrain or weather. It’s got less than 900 miles (1,448 km) on the odometer, which is pretty nice and the seller says it’s pretty much all functional but the hydraulic lines probably should be replaced by the buyer. That didn’t stop the seller from recording a little video of the backhoe in action, though:
I’d say this Unimog is perfect for daily use. While other, less equipped ‘Mogs might have trouble parking in small spaces, the attachments front and rear on this truck are perfect for moving obstacles (and other cars) out of the way so that finding a spot downtown should be a breeze.
The auction for this truck ends on 6th of March and I dare one of you to pull the trigger on it and give the old ‘Mog the daily-driven. life it deserves. You might want one of those air-ride seats put in though. Just a thought.