THE CAR THAT IS FRANCE!
Seeking French Insight? Ya better know the Iconic 2CV! Abt half the price of a VW beetle when 1st fully available, the skeletal 2 Citroën 2CV only came in grey & was first sold to farmers & doctors. 1st seen in ’38) as the Très Petite Voiture (very small car) but WWII killed a commercial rollout till ’48. The Nazi’s asked Citroën’s Boulanger for the plans…he said ‘NO’ –despite the offer of a peek at plans for the “Volkswagen”. Pre war, 250 are taken apart. (BUT..tho’ Citroën ordered ALL prototypes destroyed some workers, aware of its historical value, hid some! 3 at La Ferté-Vidame & 1 in some Citroën offices in rue d’Opéra. 3 were discovered in ‘95 at La Ferté-Vidame)! Simply, the 2CV is synonymous w/France! It equaled or surpassed Ford’s Model T. In ‘53 AUTOCAR waxed “the extraordinary ingenuity of this design …most original since the Model T Ford“… & ‘the most intelligent application of minimalism ever to succeed as a car” —L. J. K. Setright.
Twas planned as affordable AND durable (EX: the car had basically 1 screw type!) so, an emphasis on longevity’ vs. performance. From the original specs: “umbrella on 4 wheels” “that would enable four small farmers to drive 50 kg of farm goods to market at 50 km/h” in tough terrain! Cool Info: The designer chose night-school engineering grads vs. top universities as they had a better grasp of reality! (Name: deux chevaux – 2 horses – relates to the car’s tax classification, not engine power)! Nickname: Ugly Duckling, Tim Snail, etc. The last French 2CV rolled off in ‘88, …1990 in Portugal. Timeto bring it back? Home DIY kits?
FOR LOTS MORE FRENCH HISTORY, IDEAS, TRADITIONS, CUSTOMS AND INSIDER PARIS INFORMATION SEE 60SECONDPARIS ON INSTAGRAM..YOU’LL LOVE IT