About 10 years ago I remember seeing one of these. It was parked in front of a strip mall and was painted up with Little Caesars Pizza logos. It was an effective sign, but one day it disappeared. Up until that point, the car just seemed like an oddity to me. I’ve since learned that these little French cars were actually something special. They may not be fast or even beautiful, but these Citroens are unique and well engineered. The seller claims that this is one of the earliest 2CVs imported to the United States. It has been in their possession since 1998 when they bought it as a restoration project. That never happened, but they did store the car inside all those years. The seller is throwing in an extra engine so you can decide if you’d like 2 or 4 horizontally-opposed cylinders. It’s located in Hinton, Iowa and is listed here on eBay for $2,500 or best offer. Let’s just hope that doesn’t wind up at a pizza joint!
This 1965 Citroen has been sitting in this garage since 2004, when it was imported from France. The seller tells us it ran “real good” at the time and they have put a new exhaust on it since then but done nothing else. The garage is in Cleveland, Ohio, and the 2CV is listed here on eBay where bidding is currently at $3,850 with no reserve. There were a lot of comments on the rusty 2CV we featured recently and I’m wondering what you think of this little truck, which seems a lot more solid. It was used as an electrician’s work truck while in France, and the seller suggests that it would make an interesting promotional work vehicle if refurbished. They are certainly quite simple to work on, and based on the previous comments parts can be had. Anyone need a small Gallic truck? Special thanks to Jim S for this tip!
I had to look up what “Aronde” meant in French; it’s “dovetail,” very fitting for a car company whose symbol was a bird in flight. This stylish little coupe is located in Auburn Hills, Michigan and is for sale here on eBay, where the buy-it-now is $3,500 and the opening bid (below reserve) is $2,000. The little car is said to run and drive “beautifully” and certainly appears solid in the pictures. The brakes have been rebuilt and even the period radio works! Yes, there’s some rust and crinkles, and I have no clue where you’d get replacement body parts, but I did find some mechanical components available in the US. Although the Chevy wheel covers aren’t original, they are period and the owner has painted the centers to camouflage their origin. Want to be different? The entry price is $3,500!
We haven’t featured a Citroen SM for a while, so I thought this one deserved a mention. The hydropneumatic suspension, Maserati engine, and French styling scare a lot of people off, but these are awesome machines. They competed with the best luxury cars in the world. The suspension made you feel like the car was floating on air and the high performance V6 made traveling at triple digit speeds a breeze. This one is going to need a lot of help before it is going to do any grand touring, but by the looks of all the action here on eBay, more than a few people want to try. The engine has been rebuilt, but the transmission is bad and there is no telling what else will need to be fixed. The seller states that the car is currently non-operational, but that it could be converted to operational status easily. I’m not so sure about that, but for those who understand these cars, this is quite a find. Thanks goes to Jim S. for the tip!
I’m honestly not sure if this 2CV is worth restoring, and it’s awfully rusty, but it sure looks fun just the same! It’s currently in Medway, Massachusetts, and is being auctioned here on eBay where bidding is substantially less than $1,000 but the reserve is not met. With what I would call terminal rust on an MG, and there are lots of good pictures of it to verify it, I’ve got concerns about this one ever being totally safe. However, I know very little about 2CV’s, so maybe someone that knows more can give us a more educated opinion in the comments. I do know that whomever painted it Plum Crazy had a sense of humor! Can you imagine this with a Hemi? Just kidding – or maybe not! Read more »
I mentioned in last week’s Jeff in the Junkyard round-up that my trip to Amish Country offered more than enough fodder for a few weeks’ worth of posts. We’ll move onto new territory next week, but for now, I still have plenty of material to work with from this Pennsylvania forest. There are a few more unknowns thrown in, so make your answers known below! I fear my last few quizzes have been a bit too easy, so hopefully these will challenge even our most knowledgeable followers! Read more »
When I think of French cars, I typically think of tiny cars with odd angles and quirky looks, but when I saw this Peugeot that Mike H found here on eBay, I was surprised by how conventional it actually looks. If you didn’t know better, you might even mistake it for a ’50s American built classic. Of course once you start to study it closely, you can tell it wasn’t built on our shores, but it will surely create a stir at local car shows! And if the looks don’t cause some interest, this car’s history should! It has traveled all over the globe, from Sri Lanka to Kenya and then somehow to Virginia! The seller has done a lot to this car to get it running and safe to drive, but they have decided it’s time to find a new project. They have started bidding at the odd amount of $4,826.12. Special thanks to Mike for the tip! Read more »
I’ll be the first to admit that I’m not a good candidate to own a Jeep. I’ve got nothing against them, personally, but I just don’t quite have the bravado to use one to its full potential. And it’s not an elitist thing, at all – I just have way too much appreciation for the weird and quirky to ever do a Jeep justice when pulling up to the fire pit on the beach. Now, a Citroen Mehari on the other hand, would plaster a goofy grin on my face 24/7. This 1985 example is here on eBay with a price-tag of $12,900 (thanks to Barn Finds reader Robert R. for spotting this) and you’ll need a boat to get it home, as it’s in the Netherlands. I know a Citroen of all things doesn’t scream Americana and is far from patriotic, but when I consider the Mehari, all I can think of is a design team that understood the universally-appreciated sentiment of a beach buggy: it’s slow, but beach traffic always is; the roof and windows disappear to let in that salty, humid air; the colors are bright, something much-needed after a long New England winter; and you can just hop out of the thing to get to the water faster – no doors needed. It may not be a Jeep, but if your taste in people carriers errs on the side of eccentric, a Mehari may be just what you need.
Often, cars are not all that different from those of us that own them: as we get old, systems and the body that houses them can slow down and become vulnerable to forces that never used to affect us, like the arrival of winter. This very original 1973 Peugeot 504 here on eBay with the reserve currently unmet reminds me of almost every older neighbor I have here in New England: when the time is right, they pulled up roots from a northern state and headed south to the more hospitable climate of Florida, where this car currently resides after being purchased by the seller from the original owners in New Hampshire. However, he didn’t get it out of our salt-encrusted climate soon enough and it will require some rust repair and patching along the floors and other low-hanging points to stay watertight. But with the interior already done and decent original paint, this seems like an example where some bodywork would be worth the investment.
The guys over at Lucky Auctions just let us know about a 1963 Facel Vega Facel II that was recently pulled out of a garage in Hollywood. It may not look it in the photos, but when this car was new it was one of the fastest four-seaters around! The styling was unique, but the mechanicals were fairly common. Power was provided by a Chrysler 383 V8 and shifting was handled by a Torque Flight automatic. Apparently, when fitted with a four-speed, these could easily outrun a Mercedes Gullwing! The combination of exotic good looks and reliable American muscle attracted quite a few celebrities so the company enjoyed some notoriety until it eventually went belly up. This particular example needs some help, but the engine is claimed to have been rebuilt and much of the chrome redone. It will cross the block during Lucky’s Spring Classic auction at the end of month. Keep reading for more photos. Read more »
If you open almost any book about achievements in automotive history, the Citroën Traction Avant will likely grace at least one page. These front-drivers were considered revolutionary in their day, both for the drivetrain configuration and the ample space within the interior. Although the car effectively bankrupted Citroën to produce, it gained notoriety for its durability and comfort. This 1952 example here on craigslist looks dusty but solid, and has some interesting garage mates – a vintage hot-rod is not what I’d expect a Citroën owner to have parked nearby! The seller’s asking price of $30k is high, in my opinion, but he does stress that reasonable offers won’t be refused. Would you make an offer on Andre Citroën’s creation to see if the seller would bite?
Update 4/17/15 – Looks like this Facel Vega is still on the market. It has been relisted a couple of times, but is having a hard time generating a bid much higher than $20k. That’s a lot of money, but considering how unique these are, you would think it would be worth it?
From 6/10/14 – French cars just have a certain character and flare that not even Italian cars can claim to have. Of course they aren’t fast, loud, or high strung stallions like what comes out of Italy, but they are quirky and unique. Facel-Vega was one of the few French brands that aimed to build a French car that could rival the Italians on the style and class front, while still retaining its French character. This 1964 Facel III is highly original and was under the same ownership for over 40 years. It needs some work, but looks to be in solid shape. It is one of only a dozen or so in the States and is definitely worth taking a closer look at. Be sure to check it out here on eBay. Read more »