The Corpus Christi Old Car Museum Auction

Lot 125
1958 CitroŽn 2CV

Selling on Saturday

1958 CitroŽn 2CV

CHASSIS NO: 02432647

• ďGarage findĒ example of a true motoring phenomenon
• Offered in nice overall condition; low indicated miles
• Vinyl roof retracts all the way to the rear bumper
• Well-preserved original interior

297 cc air-cooled, flat-twin engine, 9 HP, four-speed manual gearbox, front and rear trailing-arm suspension, four-wheel drum brakes; wheelbase 94.5Ē

When CitroŽn introduced the 2CV, short for Deux Chevaux (ďTwo HorsesĒ) in 1948, it is certain that no one thought it would still be in production through 1988 in France and from 1988 to 1990 in Portugal. Rooted in a 1936 brief penned by CitroŽn vice-president and head of engineering and design Pierre-Jules Boulanger to his design team, the TPV (Toute Petite Voiture Ė "Very Small Car") was to be developed in secrecy at the facilities of Michelin, CitroŽnís corporate parent, by the same staff responsible for CitroŽnís revolutionary Traction Avant. The outbreak of war in Europe frustrated the project, as did anticipated postwar aluminum shortages; however, with only an estimated 100,000 of two million cars remaining in operation after the war, the urgency of postwar reconstruction spurred production of CitroŽnís new small car.

While sometimes disparaged as the ďTin Snail,Ē the 2CV was elegantly simple, offering a durable, low-cost way to get farmers away from their horses and economically mobilize the general public. With its minimalistic body, seating for up to four adults, easily serviced air-cooled engine, the 2CV also offered excellent gas mileage. Importantly, its long-travel suspension offered a soft ride while being rugged enough for limited off-road use. These elements and the renowned near-indestructability of the 2CV kept it in demand and production far longer than the most optimistic early forecasts. Today, it continues to rank on many ďGreatest CarsĒ lists and remains a favorite in the collector-car market.

Offered here is a fascinating ďgarage findĒ 2 CV that appears to be complete and nicely preserved. It also features a rare vinyl roof that retracts all the way to the rear bumper. While this feature may be seen as a nod to open-air touring, it was in fact more for utilitarian purposes, allowing larger items to be carried in back. The minimalistic interior reflects the purposeful nature of the car, with simple with upholstered cushions over steel seat frames. The dashboard is also a simple affair with a speedometer set directly ahead of the steering wheel. At the rear is found a spare wheel and tire plus lug wrench. The CitroŽn 2CV is a car that represents a significant milestone in the development of the automobile and this example could be preserved and enjoyed or restored.

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