This 1976 Mercedes-Benz T2 fire truck has recently been through a camper conversion and now offers berths for up to four people. It has just 25,000 miles on the odometer due to its earlier life as a fire truck, and it’s been very well maintained.
The current owner bought this Mercedes T2 fire truck from the German Berufsfeuerwehr, or “Fire Defence” in 2020 and commenced the camper conversion process. It’s now in good condition throughout and it’s being offered for sale out of Britain with a price guide of $14,970+ USD.
Fast Facts – The Mercedes-Benz T2 Fire Truck
- The T2’s story began with its predecessor, the L 319 series, introduced in 1955. This range was Mercedes-Benz’s first attempt to bridge the gap between its small delivery vans and heavier trucks. Aimed at the emerging demand for versatile commercial vehicles, the L 319 paved the way for the T2.
- The actual T2 was introduced in 1967 as the successor to the L 319 series. Built in Mercedes-Benz’s Düsseldorf plant, this generation was more refined and came in various body styles including vans, minibuses, and flatbed trucks.
- The T2’s multiple configurations made it popular in a variety of sectors. Public service bodies, such as fire departments and ambulances, chose the T2 for its reliability. It was also a favored option for delivery businesses, public transportation, and camping conversions.
- Throughout its production run, the T2 saw multiple engine offerings ranging from gasoline to diesel options. With each revision, these engines became more efficient and met stricter emissions standards, ensuring the T2 remained competitive in its marketplace. In 1986, the T2 underwent a significant update, including changes in design and improvements in technology.
- The Mercedes-Benz T2 you see in this article was an original German Berufsfeuerwehr, or “Fire Defence,” vehicle for many years. It was sold off into private ownership in 2020 and has since been converted into a camper van, though it’s retained its original fire truck paint scheme.
The Mercedes-Benz T2: A History Speedrun
The T2’s history can be demarcated into two main generations. The first generation, known as the “L 319” series, rolled out from the mid-1950s and continued its run until the mid-1960s. However, when most people think of the T2, it’s the second generation that comes to mind. This iteration began its journey in 1967 and was an integral part of the commercial vehicle landscape until 1996.
Above Video: This vintage Mercedes promotional film shows the multitude of uses of the Mercedes-Benz T2 platform, up to and including a grocery store on wheels.
The T2’s appeal lay not just in its Mercedes branding but also in its adaptability. It was manufactured in a plethora of body styles ranging from vans and flatbed trucks to minibuses and bare chassis versions were available to third-party body constructors for individual bodies.
This adaptability opened the door for its use in various sectors. From the hustle and bustle of delivery routes to the essential tasks of public transportation, the T2 proved a reliable workhorse for countless thousands of businesses. Many municipalities in Germany and across Europe used the T2 as fire trucks and ambulances, and even as prisoner transport vans.
Mercedes offered the T2 with an assortment of engine options that evolved over the vehicle’s production span. The T2 kept up with the times, transitioning from gasoline to diesel options and making strides in efficiency and emissions along the way.
However, like all iconic models, the time came for the T2 to make way for the future. In the 1990s, Mercedes-Benz introduced the Vario, which took the baton from the T2.
Many T2s remain on the road today despite the fact that the model has been out of production for over thirty years, with a significant number now converted into privately-owned camper vans.
The Mercedes T2 Fire Truck Camper Shown Here
The vehicle you see here still looks like a fire truck at first glance. This is what it was of course, for the first few decades of its life, from 1976 until it was bought by the current owner in 2020 during the Covid-19 pandemic and the conversion into a camper began.
The new owner wisely decided to keep the exterior of the vehicle looking much the same as it did when it was in service with the German Berufsfeuerwehr. The red and white paint scheme, the roller side doors, black steel wheels, twin roof-mounted red flashing lights, and the front mounted spot light are all still in place.
Now when you roll open the side roller doors it isn’t hoses and tools but a queen sized bed, wood paneled walls, and even a projector and screen for watching movies with the full cinema experience while in bed.
Under the bed there’s storage space that extends through the full width of the vehicle, and there are both built-in lights and built-in power sockets.
Moving forward to the vehicle’s middle door you’ll find an L-shaped couch and table which can be converted into an additional double bed when needed, so the van can sleep up to four.
At the very front is the driver’s cab with seating for two, a lefthand drive layout, a five-speed manual gearbox, and a hatch for engine access from inside the vehicle. The listing notes that as this is a 3.5 ton van it can be driven on a standard car license, so no special truck or commercial driver’s license is required.
The listing also mentions that the van gets 25 – 30 mpg and it has a dual fuel system that can run on either standard petrol/gasoline or LPG for cheaper running costs. Due to its age it’s classified as an historic vehicle, therefore no road tax or MoT test certificate is required in Britain.
The owner/builder has set it up for prolonged use off the grid, and so it has solar panels on the roof that feed power into a mains battery charger and 220 amp leisure battery with a ABSO split charge relay and 1500w inverter. It also has a 240v mains hook up, 240v isolator and a fuse board.
This unusual fire truck camper is now due to roll across the auction block with Historics Auctioneers on the 23rd of September with a price guide of £12,000-£20,000, which works out to approximately $14,970 – $24,864 USD. If you’d like to read more or register to bid you can visit the listing here.
Images courtesy of Historics Auctioneers
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