Wagon Wednesday: 2001 Mercedes-Benz W210 ex-Ambulance

merc_ambulance_2
You often see somewhat run-down Mercedes-Benz W210s in Finland. Due to some quality control issues with the bodywork, coupled with the hard use the W210s saw in their years, as taxis and repmobiles, it’s not uncommon to see significant amounts of rust on the sheetmetal of these turn-of-the-millennium Benzes.
While this 2001 E220 CDI example is pretty mucky, it’s also an example of the variety of Mercedes-Benz platforms, as it’s started its life as an ambulance in some other country. Long wheelbase, tall fiberglass roof: it’s Ecto-1 seen as a Mercedes-Benz.

merc_ambulance
It’s not the easiest thing to figure out good everyday usage for a decommissioned ambulance, but if one were to run a LeMons team specializing in various crappy-condition Mercedes-Benzes, a vehicle like this would actually be pretty suitable. Or you could run it on biodiesel, kitted out with a Ghostbusters theme. The possibilities of shenanigans are endless.
[youtube width=”720″ height=”480″]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y-eckhstakM[/youtube]
Die Geisterjäger!
[Images: Copyright 2015 Hooniverse/Antti Kautonen]

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  1. tonyola Avatar
    tonyola

    It’s interesting that some countries still use car-based ambulances. There hasn’t been an American car-based ambulance since 1979 – they have since been built on van or truck chassis. This is because there has been a shift from just transporting patients to hospitals to providing more on-site emergency treatment, which requires more equipment.

    1. Rover 1 Avatar
      Rover 1

      In much of the rest of the world ambulances are Sprinter based, like our local ones.
      Here, they have just switched from a white-based graphics scheme to this supposedly more visible yellow-green colouring.
      I’m not sure it makes much difference. Red and blue flashing lights on a white base with flourescent decalling strikes me as highly visible. But it no doubt satisfied some middle-management type’s desire for visible change, and hence,’improvement’.
      http://static2.stuff.co.nz/1410985567/142/10513142.jpg

      1. tonyola Avatar
        tonyola

        There are quite a few yellow-green fire trucks and ambulances in the US, too. Some studies done in the ’70s show that color to be most visible at night.

          1. Rover 1 Avatar
            Rover 1

            I’m partially convinced.
            But I note that reflective decalling is noted as just as, or more, important than the base colour. Our highway patrol cars are now colours other than white as well. But not pale yellow.
            http://cdn.3news.co.nz/3news/AM/2013/11/26/322859/new-police-cars-1200SWO.jpg
            http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/9/9e/2006-2008_Holden_VE_Commodore_SV6_sedan_(New_Zealand_Police)_01.jpg

          2. dr zero Avatar
            dr zero

            Over here it’s gotten to the stage where people will slow down on the freeway if there is a brightly coloured Commodore around, since most of them are highway patrol.
            https://farm6.staticflickr.com/5219/5510378141_17786d8464_n.jpg

          3. Rover 1 Avatar
            Rover 1

            And those of us looking for performance bargains in a few years will have quite a colour choice.

    2. Sjalabais Avatar
      Sjalabais

      Here are the two most typical ambulances in Norway; VW and Mercedes based:
      http://www.helse-midt.no/Helse-Midt/Bilder/2012/Ambulanse_Mercedes_VW.jpg
      I definitely prefer the outgoing car based one:
      https://www.volvoclub.org.uk/press/special/images/S80_ambulance.jpg

    3. theskig Avatar
      theskig

      In Italy the more common are VW transporters or FIAT Ducato (and similar).
      Some VW’s in syncro/4motion version.

  2. Rover 1 Avatar
    Rover 1

    Now I have a hankering for the W124 version so that I can complete my set of S124, C124, W124, (although of course, these LWB cab-chassis based versions aren’t ‘W’ but some other letter prefix, that I can’t yet find out.)

  3. mve Avatar
    mve

    I can see this making an amazing RV conversion.

  4. Sjalabais Avatar
    Sjalabais

    Ambulances are often meticulously maintained, but also driven hard. The fact that hardly anyone knows what to do with them, makes their used car prices ridiculously low – even though they often have new transmissions, engines and other parts you wouldn’t update on similar civilian cars. I have long dreamt of getting myself an ambulance, paint in a smooth colour, and make it my quick camper vehicle. Due to living along a beautiful fjord, I have a massive RV allergy – they often make the summerly drive home from work a major PITA. So a camper wagon would be the only acceptable form of “living in a car” to me.
    http://img3.autodb.no/autoimg/7968109_720x0.jpg
    Here’s an ’85 240 V6 that’s more or less ready for that kind of duty – sold.

    1. Krautwursten Avatar
      Krautwursten

      I love the roof-integrated aux lights, they give it a really sleek look.

  5. buzzboy7 Avatar
    buzzboy7

    “LeMons team specializing in various crappy-condition Mercedes-Benzes”
    Don’t try and give us hints

  6. SlowJoeCrow Avatar
    SlowJoeCrow

    The use that leaps out is either camper or delivery vehicle for large lightweight objects. Think tandem bicycles or fiberglass car body parts.

  7. Jofes2 Avatar
    Jofes2

    Am I the only one who’d feel a little wierd about going on holiday in a car that numerous people have died in?

  8. theskig Avatar
    theskig

    I saw this type of CX ambulance many times in Switzerland some years ago. Lovely even in this shape.
    BTW, I want one of this converted LWB W210 Mercedes to make it a camper and go to a tour of Africa!

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