AEC Armoured Car Mark II

This AEC Armoured Car Mark II was on display at The Tank Museum, it is armed with a 6 pounder gun. AEC Armoured Car is the name of a series of British heavy armoured cars built by the Associated Equipment Company (AEC) during the Second World War.

AEC tried to build an armoured car with fire power and protection comparable to those of contemporary British cruiser tanks. The first version used the turret of a Valentine Mk II infantry tank complete with the 2 pounder gun. Subsequent versions received a 6 pounder or a 75 mm gun in a custom-built turret.

The AEC came about following British experience in the Western Desert against Italian armoured cars. British armoured cars were only armed with light and heavy machine guns and the army was fitting captured Italian and German 20mm or larger autocannon to have enough firepower when meeting enemy reconnaissance vehicles.

The Mk I was first used in combat in the North African Campaign late in 1942, where a few vehicles were reportedly fitted with a Crusader tank turret mounting a 6 pounder gun. The Mk II and Mk III took part in the fighting in Europe with British and British Indian Army units, often together with the American-supplied Staghound armoured car.