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Homepage. This page: Will this tasteful and extremely rare French classic get its second chance?

Case No.3
Make: Simca
Model: 1501 Special
Year: 1973

Sold on: eBay
Category: Classic Cars
This Simca 1501 car needs saving ASAP
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Project description.

On the one hand it's perhaps unfair to include this 1973 Simca 1501 Special in the "Crumbling Classics" section of the site, as - from the photographs at least - it looks to be far from crumbling, on the outside at any rate. On the other, it will require work and invariably more than is initially expected. However the 1501's extreme rarity, in the UK at least, warrants its inclusion, if only to further spread the news of this car's existence in the hope that its saviour can be found. While looking reasonably good for now, this (at the time of writing) 39 year old French classic won't suffer too many more bad winters left outside, so wants to be rescued and undercover ASAP. I don't think I've ever seen one of these understated yet attractive four-door saloons in the metal.
The exterior paintwork has faded but looks to be original, for the most part. Most of the brightwork is present, apart from the windscreen wipers and the strip on the offside front wing. The front end's lofty stance instantly suggested a car minus its engine, and indeed the 1,475cc motor - which apparently has had work done, and is all there albeit in part-dismantled state - has been out for some time. I'd imagine a few evening sessions spent on French car parts websites would secure any new bits and pieces that are required - and its purchase could be just the excuse for a holiday touring the scrapyards of France, to enable the fettling of this Gallic charmer.
The body and chrome trim looks remarkably straight, and fiddly items such as badges, hubcaps, and the original full-width wheel trims are still present. Is that the original supplying dealer's sticker, still affixed to the rear window? The underbonnet shot, as well as revealing that yes, the motor is out, also allows a distant inspection of the Simca's front end structure. It certainly looks quite sound from here, and is probably far more solid than most contemporary Cortinas, Victors and Princesses. So far so good, the signs point to this being a worthy resto project for someone.
The inside of the cabin doesn't look half bad either, the dash - not unlike that found inside Triumph Dolomites - looks to be all there, right down to a period wireless over to the passenger side of the cabin. Even the trim around the inside of the door opening looks well, and the A-post doesn't appear to be riddled with rust, which is always a bonus and tallies with an indicated mileage of just 55,251 miles. A few more photographs would be welcome showing the seats fore and aft, the door furniture, and the headlining, but the signs are encouraging from what is on display.
The current owner holds his hands up and admits to not getting around to this intriguing old car, after two years' ownership. He admits that while being "tatty", the body is in eminently restorable condition, and the photographs do back that up. While there's no substitute for having a crawl around a potential project in person, this one looks like it ticks enough boxes to make it a very worthwhile proposition, especially as it starts at just 399 GBP, with no reserve. Even if the sills, floors and boot floor need metal replacement, the exterior condition would appear to suggest that the required structural work would in the main be out of sight, enabling a new owner to perhaps preserve the time-warp appearance of the car - or is this being too fanciful?
As I type, there are only two days remaining and I am the 1,001st person to view the listing. Will it get a bid? and will it be restored, or broken for spares? Hopefully this inexpensive slice of 1970s French motoring will find a worthy new home, where it can live under cover and be re-commissioned in time for future show seasons.
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