Until the end of 2023, ACT Bus will be revealing the Top 15 buses of all time in the Canberra / ACTION Bus fleet (determined by number in the fleet).

At number 3, is the MAN SL200 with 151 vehicles.

First in service: Bus 410, July 1975
Last withdrawn: Bus 584, January 1995
Years in service: 20

The fourth bus type purchased during the 1974-75 fleet expansion (the other three being AEC Swift, Leyland National and Volvo B58-56) was the MAN (Maschinenfabrik Augsburg-Nürnberg) SL200 (“Standard-Linienbus” meaning Standard City Bus) from West Germany.

The initial tender was for 10 buses in 1974, with a further 86 ordered in 1975. Over half of the final order of 151 buses were delivered in 1976 in which 77 buses delivered.

These buses were in the first in Australia to feature the VöV bus design – a standard developed by Verband öffentlicher Verkehrsbetriebe (the Association of German Transport Companies) in the 1960s. The buses were mostly built by MAN in Munich with final assembly and fittings (including driver’s cabin) undertaken by Commonwealth Aircraft Corporation in Melbourne, except for the final 16 buses (569-584) where the frame was also built by the local bodybuilder – at either Smithfield or Custom Coaches.

DeliveredBodyFleet numbersTotalWithdrawn
1975-79Commonwealth Aircraft Corporation410-449, 451-531, 553-5671351991-94 [1]
1980-81Smithfield Bus and Coachworks569 – 579111995
1981Custom Coaches580 – 58451994-95

[1] – 442 was withdrawn in 1982 following a collision

Buses 500 and 501 were fitted with high-backed coach-style seats, overhead luggage racks and a public address system for use on charters.

In the 1990s, buses in the 500 fleet range were given a body refurbishment including replacement of body panels, floors, seats and the installation of a driver’s cabin air conditioner.

Other than Bus 442, which was withdrawn following a collision in 1982, these buses were withdrawn from service at around 15 years from December 1991 until February 1995, being replaced in the fleet by Renault PR100.2 (Mk2) and PR100.3 vehicles.

Further reading:

This page was last updated on 20 January 2024