Nearly all the available information on the transient flow behaviour of liquid crystalline polymers has been obtained on model systems, especially on solutions of polybenzylglutamate (PEG) and hydroxypropylcellulose (HPC). The assessment of rheological models has been based almost entirely on these model systems. It is not clear how much of the available theoretical and experimental knowledge can be applied to systems of industrial relevance, which have quite different molecular structures. Here, an industrial lyotropic system, poly(p-phenylenetherephthalamide) (PpPTA) in sulphuric acid (TWARON from AKZO), is investigated. Various techniques to study transient behaviour are used, these include measurements of transient shear and normal stresses after sudden changes in shear rate, dynamic moduli and stress relaxation after cessation of flow and elastic recoil. At all shear rates studied the PpPTA solution is shear thinning, and the first normal stress difference remains positive. For the stress transients a strain scaling applies reasonably well as it did in model systems. The moduli increase with time upon cessation of flow, indicating that the molecules become less oriented in the previous flow direction. This particular behaviour is similar to that of HPC. Transients also resemble more closely those of HPC rather than those of PEG. This latter difference might be attributed to the higher flexibility of HPC and PpPTA chains as compared with PEG molecules.