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Unimog is the ultimate camper

2010-06-01 06:40

Unimog reliability is a given, so your adventuring is purely up to how far beyond the mobile phone network you are willing to go. There’s even a nice big compass painted on the side in case you get lost…

Planning on taking the really long route to Etosha this winter? A Unimog U 4000 expedition camper should be your vehicle of choice.

The latest derivative of Mercedes-Benz's hugely successful off-road commercial vehicle is simply an outdoorsman’s dream rig.

In terms of mechanical specification the U 4000 camper is pretty much standard fare from Michael Bocklet and his team in Koblenz.

Solid obstacle clearance is 500mm, thanks to the Unimog’s ingenious torque tube and coil sprung suspension at each wheel corner – which enables 30-degree wheel articulation, guaranteeing forward momentum over even the severest cross-axle terrain.

If you encounter a treacherous substrate surface en route to your fantasy camping location the U 4000 boasts pneumatically selectable front and rear axle lockers for optimal traction security.

Powering the U 4000 camper is a 4.2l four-cylinder turbodiesel engine worth 160kW and around 700Nm. Drive is apportioned to all four wheels via an eight-speed electropneumatic transmission which, despite being a tri-pedal set-up, features an automatic override function for use in heavy traffic.

Cabin looks like something from a cheap decor magazine (especially the peach coloured bedding), yet it's better than most camping facilities out in the bundu.

A little house with two axles

The U 4000’s pièce de résistance is not its awesome off-road ability though – it’s the Bocklet accommodation module.

Dimensionally the camper section is 4.35m long, 2.2m wide (with a generous standing height of 1.95m) and features all manner of camping comforts which are sure to make you miss your urban lifestyle less and less as the weeks in the bush become months.

For hygiene purposes a cassette toilet, wash basin and shower are configured behind the driver’s seat with hot water courtesy of a 10l capacity Truma gas/electric boiler.

Food and beverage facilities extentd to a corner kitchen which occupies the rear of the Bocklet accommodation section - complete with a dual-burner gas stove, sink and drainer.

Refrigeration is serviced by a 110l compressor fridge. The ‘Mog camper’s fluid capacity is rated at 300l of fresh water on-board along with a 200l grey water tank.

Cabin seating and sleeping appointments tally a double bed 2m long and 1.35m wide, with two bench seats (upholstered in less than appropriate soft-wearing alcantara) surrounding a dinette set in the centre of the floorspace.

Arctic circle certified

For those potential U 4000 owners keen on adventuring in colder climates, a diesel-powered Eberspächer heater ensures temperature regulation. The U 4000 camper’s electrical system is primarily reliant on a 220Ah battery pack (augmented by 260W solar panels) and 1.2kW inverter.

Guaranteeing the lowest possible energy consumption U 4000’s cabin illumination is LED equipped throughout, whilst the infotainment screen (DVD player and satellite TV reception) is a TFT unit.

It’s hardly cheap at €248 300, but then again – what price would you put on the ultimate Cape-to-Copenhagen mobile?


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