AEC Regal VI
|This article does not cite any sources. (December 2009)|
The AEC Regal VI was first seen at the 1960 Commercial Motor Show and was intended to be a purely export chassis. It was really just an updated version of the underfloor-engined Regal IV, having an 11.3-litre AH690 engine instead of the Regal IVs 9.6-litre AH590 engine. It was available in both left and right hand drive versions, other options included power assisted steering and air suspension. South America saw the largest orders for the Regal VI, two orders totaling 150 were destined for the Montevideo area of Uruguay and a larger order of 500 came from Buenos Aires, Argentina.
The Regal VI had a strong following, vehicles being exported to Uruguay, Argentina, the Netherlands, Belgium, Portugal and Australia. One of the vehicles operated by Metropolitan Transport Trust (MTT) in Perth lasted as late as April 1987 when Mercedes-Benz O305s were becoming the normal mode of transport.
Regal VI's variant
South Africa engineered its own style of Regal, the Kudu. This was made up of a Regal VI chassis, an AV690 (11.3-litre vertical engine) mounted on the front overhang instead of under the floor. This allowed a reliably clean flow of air to the engine. There was still sufficient space to allow a front entrance ahead of the front axle, allowing the driver to supervise passenger loadings as on the 'normal' Regal VI.
The Kudu was assembled from Complete knock down (CKD) kits at the Durban factory which had recently been acquired by AEC. By 1964 AEC (South Africa) Ltd had followed up the order for 100 with a repeat order for another 100, to be sold to operators all over South Africa. By 1974 over 1,500 were in service.