Tag Archives: Friedrich

Test Day – Donington Park

With a sunny midweek day off last Thursday I popped along to a Test Day run at Donington Park.

Dallara F308 VW, Robbie Watts, Donington Park

Among the large variety of machines being given a workout was the #7 Volkswagen powered 2008 Dallara F308 which is being prepared by Team Fox Racing for three time Monoposto 2000 champion Robbie Watts’s challenge for the F3 Cup.

Ralt RT1 BMW,  Rob Hall, Donington Park

In 1977 Eddie Cheever was midway through a three year spell with the Project Four Formula 2 team run by Ron Dennis, that year he drove the BMW powered Ralt RT1 seen above to two top point’s scoring finishes at the Nurburgring and Rouen to finish second in the F2 Championship to Rene Arnoux, 39 years later I believe Rob Hall is seen testing the car above which I believe belongs to Peter Wunsch.

Lamborghini Huracan GT3, Darren Nelson, Adam Carroll, Donington Park

I believe Darren Nelson and Adam Carroll shared the driving of the #18 Lamborghini Huracan GT3 with which they are competing in the 2016 GT Cup, they finished second in Sunday’s opening race of the series.

Tyrrell Ford 001, TBC, Donington Park

So far as I know the Tyrrell family are owners of the original Tyrrell Ford 001 seen above and loaned it to John Delane in exchange for it’s restoration and maintenance. John’s helmet is predominantly white, if you know who is seen at the wheel in this photograph’s please do not hesitate to chime in below.

Aston Martin DB4GT, Simon Hadfield, Donington Park

Simon Hadfield was a busy man driving both Wolfgang Friedrich’s Aston Martin DBR1 and his #10 1961 DB4 GT seen above.

McLaren Ford M23, Scott Walker, Donington Park

Looking for details on who might be driving the 1974 built but now 1976 spec McLaren M23/6 looked after by Hall and Hall I came across someone by the name of Scott Walker who had a similar helmet on what appears to have been his only previous appearance in the car at Jarama way back in 2011, if you know anything else about Scott please do not hesitate to chime in below.

Mini Gen3 F56, James Turkington, Donington Park

All of the above were regularly swamped by many Mini’s in Gen3 F56 spec and earlier JCW R56 spec, James, younger brother of double British Touring Car Champion Colin, Turkington will be completing his first full season of racing in the MINI Challenge with the ExcelR8 Motorsport #61 Gen3 F56 MINI seen three wheeling into Coppice Corner above.

Thanks for joining me on this “Test Day” edition of “Gettin’ a li’l psycho on tyres” I hope you will join me again tomorrow when I’ll be looking at a Concours winning Packard. Don’t forget to come back now !


Universalmotorgerät – Mercedes Benz Unimog 406

As it became apparent that the Allies were going to win the Second World War ideas were sort about what to do with Germany after hostilities ceased. In 1944 United States Secretary of the Treasury Henry Morgenthau, Jr came up with the Morgenthau Plan which sort to split Germany into three sectors with a vision of a deindustrialised, pastoral agrarian nation. It soon became apparent however that such a plan would only be able to support 2/3rds of the German population meaning around 25 million Germans would have to be re-located.

Mercedes Benz Unimog 406, Summer Classics, Easter Compton

The plan for Germany that was eventually agreed by the allies was suitably adjusted to avoid such a migration, but with de militarisation high on the agenda in the immediate aftermath of the cease fire large organisations like Daimler Benz were prohibited from building all wheel drive vehicles.

Mercedes Benz Unimog 406, Summer Classics, Easter Compton

As these events unfolded Albert Friedrich former head of aircraft design at Daimler Benz found his services to be little in demand and so he set about designing an all purpose vehicle that would meet a multitude on demands in the foreseen agrarian economy called the Universalmotorgerät abbreviated to Unimog which translates as Universal Motor Machine.

Mercedes Benz Unimog 406, Summer Classics, Easter Compton

The essential characteristics of the Unimog were that it had all wheel drive for all terrain work, front and rear axles to be equipped with suspension, brakes, unlike conventional tractors, and differential locks for conventional road use, two cab with heating and two padded seats, one ton load capacity, front and rear power take offs with equipment mounting facilities front, back top and sides.

Mercedes Benz Unimog 406, Summer Classics, Easter Compton

To give the vehicles additional ground clearance the axles were fitted with four wheels of equal size and portal gears so that the axle centers were above the wheel centers. The original track width was devised so that the vehicle could stand astride two rows of potatoes in a field. Many of these features can still be found on Unimogs leaving the factory today.

Mercedes Benz Unimog 406, Summer Classics, Easter Compton

The first prototype was built by Erhard & Söhne in 1946 and patents were soon granted so that the vehicle was classed as agricultural vehicle to reduce the tax burden on owners. A huge success from it’s launch 600 Unimogs were built by Erhard & Söhne until all wheel drive restrictions were lifted from Daimler Benz in 1950 when they took over production because Erhard & Söhne could no longer build enough vehicles to meet the demand.

Mercedes Benz Unimog 406, Summer Classics, Easter Compton

Daimler Benz built a new facility which went operational in 1951 producing around 300 vehicles a month. It was not long before variants appeared including military derivatives which were bought by the French Army. In 1966 the 100,000 Unimog was built and the 200,000 in 1977, and as mentioned production continues to this day> Despite not being known as performance models in 2012 Arnie Schwarzenegger swapped his Hummer for one customised by Mertec reputed to have cost US$ 250,000.

Mercedes Benz Unimog 406, Summer Classics, Easter Compton

Today’s featured vehicle seen at Easter Compton Summer Classics show a couple of years ago is a 1965 406, a line that was in production from 1963 to 1988. Originally powered by a 65 hp diesel motor driving through a 6 speed gearbox, this one appears at some point to have been kitted out with snowplough equipment from the Swiss Rolba AG which was acquired by ZAUGG AG EGGIWIL in 2010.