Citroën 2CV

citroen-2cv-1

Rarely has a car been so ridiculed as the Citroën 2CV. At its launch at the 1948 Paris Salon, journalists lashed into this defenseless runabout with vicious zeal, and everyone who was near Paris at the time claimed to be the originator of the quip, “Do you get a can opener with it?”

Citroën Traction Avant

citroen-traction-avant

Loved by politicians, poets, and painters alike, the Traction Avant marked a watershed for both Citroën and the world’s auto industry. A design prodigy, it was the first mass-produced car to incorporate a monocoque bodyshell with front-wheel drive and torsion-bar springing, and it began Citroën’s love affair with the unconventional.

Citroen C3 Pluriel – 2003

Citroen-C3-Pluriel - 2003

The iconic all-purpose Citroen 2CV had a roll-back roof that was ideal when its owner wanted to take a sheep to market, and the 2CV’s modern great-grandchild has inherited the feature — though it’s unlikely that much livestock will be transported in the three-door Pluriel. This is a chic, cheap and cheerful way to experience … [Read more…]

Citroen GS – 1970

Citroen-GS-1970

Better late than never — the arrival of the GS in 1970 plugged a gap that had cost Citroen dear over time. This four-door family car belatedly slotted between the Ami and 2CV economy cars and the luxurious DS — a vital market segment where rivals had been cheerfully cleaning up since Citroen discontinued the … [Read more…]

Citroen CX – 1974

Citroen-CX-1974

Voted European Car of the Year in 1975, the Citroen CX was the last car built by this quirky French maker before a forced merger with Peugeot ended the company’s famed independence of thought and deed. In common with Citroen’s other new offerings in the early 1970s, the CX was designed in house by Robert … [Read more…]

Citroen SM – 1970

Citroen-SM-1970

Citroen had purchased Maserati in 1968, with a view to combining its own advanced suspension system with Maserati engines to create a GT version of the upmarket Citroen DS. The result went on show at the Geneva Motor Show in 1970 as Citroen’s headliner, destined to keep the company’s name in lights alongside the likes … [Read more…]

Citroen DS – 1955

Citroen DS - 1955-1

The debut of the Citroen DS series at the Paris Salon in 1955 was sensational. Some humorously suggested Flaminio Bertoni’s design was so futuristic that aliens must have invaded his drawing office and sketched out a 23rd-century machine, but the point was well made.

Citroen 2CV – 1948

Citroen 2CV - 1948

If you must drive this one (you must, you must!) the place to go is rural France. For this was not so much the French ‘People’s Car’ as the ‘French Country People’s Car’. This versatile little machine was a godsend for rural folk, many of whom were still following a 19th-century way of life after … [Read more…]

Citroen Traction Avant – 1934

citroen-traction-avant-1934

The name of the game for Citroen in the mid-1930s was ‘frontal traction’, for the phenomenally successful Traction Avant was launched in 1934 and over three-quarters of a million would be sold before eventual discontinuation in 1957.