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Homepage. This page: Two examples of the ripple-bonnet 2CV of the late 1950s.

Citroen 2CV.

This photograph was taken somewhere in Spain I believe, during the late 1950s. It shows a number of cars parked in the shade of some trees, with an early-ish Citroen 2CV parked nearest the photographer. The one chap fully visible in this photograph is stood next to a little donkey, which appears to be storing the entire contents of a market stall on its back (jewellery and various jugs seem to dominate the goods on offer). A number of small Fiat 600s are visible, but the 2CV is most prominent in this shot.
Citroen 2CV car parked in Spain
The design for the 2CV dates to before WW2, when designs and a number of prototypes were created at the Citroen factory. Their design brief was to come up with a cheap car with exceptionally supple suspension, to enable farm workers, who previously may not have been able to afford a motor car, to transport their produce to market, over bumpy fields and unmade tracks. With the advent of WW2, the test cars and their designs were hidden away from the Germans, in the hope that they could be resurrected when the dust had finally settled. The world got its first look at the 2CV at the 1948 Motor Show, in readiness for sales to the public in 1949. Creature comforts were few and far between but, as an affordable and useful vehicle for the French public still piecing their country back together, it would be looked upon very favourably indeed, if not by all journalists of the time.
The basic design was proven to be spot-on, and changes throughout the 2CV's production would be evolutionary, rather than revolutionary. Citroen tried to come up with acceptable replacements to the 2CV, closest being the Dyane, but the 2CV had carved its own niche in the market and would continue to sell, right to the end of production in 1990, when the final cars rolled off Citroen's Portuguese production line. The car shown in the photograph above dates to the late 1950s I'd estimate, note the lack of a rear quarter window that would feature on later cars.

A British-registered Citroen.

Firstly my thanks to Brian for emailing over a number of car photographs, featuring vehicles he owned in the early years of his motoring career. Below is his ripple-bonnet 2CV, registration NBO 34. According to the "BO" registrations page here at OCC, this Cardiff series first came into being in November 1956, making the Citroen a 1956 or early 1957 example. Cars were assembled at Citroen's UK plant in Slough from 1953 to 1960. Note the single wing mirror, and also what looks to be an externally-mounted semaphore indicator, fitted to the scuttle just ahead of the front door.
(Please click the thumbnail to view the full-size 2CV image.)
A 1956/1957 car
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