The first new-generation Unimog U4000 to reach South Africa’s shores has recently been handed over with a full driver training demonstration and vehicle familiarisation session at Sodwana Bay – one of the new owner’s favourite fishing spots. Local foundry entrepreneur, Grant Estman from Vereeniging needed a vehicle to tow his fishing vessel and equipment.
He approached his local Mercedes-Benz dealer, New Vaal Motors, who in turn contacted head office for the solution. Having recently launched the Unimog at the various dealers through a road show, Unimog demonstrator, Ferdi de Beer was quite eager to show Estman what the Unimog was capable of doing. The initial demonstration did the trick and an order for a U4000 double-cab was confirmed. The order takes up to six months from confirmation and is custom built.
The measurements and specifications for the body was given to an accredited Mercedes-Benz bodybuilder, TFM. A suitable drop-side body was manufactured and fitted to the client’s requirements, together with a 15,000lb winch.
“With its unique off-road capabilities, thanks to its flexible ladder-type frame for high rigidity on the road and its amazing torsional flexibility off-road, its superior 4-wheel-drive with differential locks in both axles, as well as portal axles to provide ample ground clearance will make it that much easier for Mr. Estman to traverse any fishing spot in toughest Africa,” says De Beer. Asked for his impressions of the Unimog, Estman responded, “As soon as I drove the vehicle, I knew I had not made a mistake. I was actually more impressed with the vehicle once I discovered and experienced all the extra convenience features such as the quick reverse function, which is of huge benefit to me. Another feature is the CTIS (central inflation system), where you can inflate or deflate the tyre pressure to suit the type of surface you are on, by simply pressing a button whilst on the move. A great time-saver!”