Photo © John Stringer. Please do not re-post without permission.
Halifax J.O.C. 315, MJX15J, a Seddon Pennine RU with Plaxton Derwent II DP45F body, new in 1970.
A rear view of one of the RU's, illustrating the older style of Plaxton Highway back end favoured by manager Geoffrey Hilditch, grafted on to the newer Derwent II body.
The RU was expected to compete with the Bristol RE. The RE had its gearbox mounted ahead of the front axle with a propshaft passing from the rear mounted engine across the top of the axle into it, the drive then passing back into the back axle, leaving plenty room for the Gardner 6HLX on the rear overhang. Seddon on the other hand elected to cram everything in on the rear overhang, driving via a very short and awkwardly angled drive into the back axle. There really wasn't enough room and the arrangement was the cause of one of its troubles. Note the slight step in the rear panel - I am not sure if this was just a strengthening feature, or whether it was to allow a fraction more clearance.
Dennis later adopted a similar layout for their Falcon H, though they also offered a version with the RE layout. It would be interesting to know how these models fared in comparison, though it is really outside the scope of this site I suppose.
Photo taken by John Stringer, October 1970, St. George's Square, Huddersfield
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