Used for both civilian and military purposes, Mercedes trucks are everything but rare in Syria. The Syrian Arab Army using Mercedes 911s as general purpose transports and L series and NG series serve as tank transporters. Some serve as a basis for something way more deadlier though; As a basis for field howitzers, unguided rockets and surface to surface missiles.
Installing artillery, rockets or missiles on a truck is a good way to make your arsenal mobile without having to buy expensive self propelled howitzers or Multiple Launch Rocket Systems. Countries like Cuba, North Korea and Iran did this trick before. It is also a very good way to conceal your equipment, as seen below you can change a rocket launcher to a civilian truck within minutes.
Mercedes trucks are the ideal type for these conversions, most Iranian and every Syrian conversion is based on these trucks. The Mercedes trucks in Syria were of course imported as civilian trucks and to be used for 'civilian tasks', but after their arrival moved to Syrian Arab Army workshops to be converted for their new, less friendly, roles. If they were directly bought from the factory or second-hand remains unknown.
All except the Falaq-2 version can be seen in the two videos below(Note: the first system seen in the second video and the one at 2:00 are Iranian examples, not Syrian):
|220mm rockets on a modified Mercedes chassis|
This system was first sighted during the rocket and missile exercise in 2011. It's a truck mounted 220mm multiple rocket launcher. The 220mm rockets are being made in Syria. This system, together with the Khaibar, represents the heavy artillery department of the Syrian Arab Army. They have not yet been seen in the Syrian conflict. This doesn't mean they haven't been used though.
|302mm Khaibar rockets on a modified 3340 or 3348 Mercedes chassis|
This system was first sighted during the rocket and missile exercise in 2011. It's a truck mounted 302mm multiple rocket launcher. The 302mm rockets are being made in Syria. In comparision, the famous BM-21 only firing 122mm rockets. They have not yet been seen in the Syrian conflict. This doesn't mean they haven't been used though.
|Double tubed Falaq-2 on a modified Mercedes chassis|
The Falaq-2 is everything but rare now, it even being linked with the CW assault in August. The Falaq-2 is an Iranian designed 333mm unguided artillery rocket. The Syrian Arab Army uses both the single tube version and the double tube version. The latter being seen in the photo above. The single tubed version below.
|Single tubed Falaq-2|
|Falaq-2 being launched|
|Shortly after the launch, the truck gets converted to a more civilian look,|
showing how easy it is to conceal military equipment
|Fateh-110/M-600 on a modified Mercedes 2031 chassis|
This system was first sighted during the rocket and missile exercise in 2011. The installed missile is the Syrian version of the Iranian designed Fateh-110. In Syria its known as M-600 or Tishreen. They form the more accurate part of the Syrian missile fleet. The chassis remains identical to the Iranian one. The missile was seen in action at least one time. The launch can be found here
|A Zelzal-2 on a modified Mercedes 4140 chassis|
The Zelzal-2 was first sighted during the rocket and missile exercise in 2011. The Zelzal-2 is an Iranian designed, unguided 610mm heavy artillery rocket also believed to be produced in Syria. Although not yet been seen in the Syrian Civil War, their usage in the conflict is not ruled out.