2 Seater French Coupe: 1959 Simca Sport “Open Sky”

Over the years, I’ve come to love the lure, history – and yes, style – of many of French automobile manufacturer Simca’s offerings. Their Simca Sport models, like the one found here on eBay, is no exception – with its clean lines, long hood leading to a simple grill and bug-eyed headlights, and plucky little rear fins that were the rage of the mid-century times.

The Simca Sport models (coupe and convertible) were introduced in 1952 as a sporty two-seater that shared its engine, components and its wheelbase with the companies 4 seater – the Aronde, which had been introduced a year earlier. The one offered by this seller is the hard-top – called the Simca Sport Plein Ciel (Simca Sport Open Sky) – ironic considering it’s sister soft top was named the Simca Sport Océane (a French female name for “Ocean”).

The Sport Coupe shown here is said to be a 1959 model, titled in 1960 – which means little difference in design or components since no appreciable changes were made to Sport models after 1957. Digging through all the pictures, towards the end you can see the “Flash Spécial” engine marking – an engine that a 1959 MotorSport magazine article described as “rather noisy when accelerating”, but did go on to say “The output of the Simca “Special Flash” engine…is greater than that of many engines of a full 1-1/2-litres capacity and is reflected in its excellent performance.”

This particular survivor seems to be loaded with a majority of the hard to find parts, and the interior is packed to the brim with seats, trim and other bits. The most glorious original, however, has to be the signature art deco 4 band steering wheel – an iconic detail that seems to be unique to the Coupe and Convertible Sport models. Sure, you’ll meet plenty of la résistance during this rebuild – but keeping the end in mind, it could be “ça vaut le coup” (well worth the effort!)

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  1. Adam Clarke Adam T45 Staff

    That’s a sweet little car that definitely deserves restoring. I doubt that there are many kicking around now.

    As an aside, when I was looking at the ad I noticed one pic with the bumper lying on the ground in front of the car. The first thing that popped into my head was this shot of Fred out of the movie Cars. I think that I may be losing my mind!

  2. Beatnik Bedouin

    Finally, a Simca model I haven’t had hands-on experience with. It’s quite a rarity, compared with the Aronde sedan (which I have a bit to do with).

    Hope someone restores it back to showroom condition.

  3. James HGF

    That the glass is all good is probably the most important item in add unless you happen to have a perfect spare tucked away. Windshields were bespoke for the Plein Ciel and Ocean. There are no new ones and Plein Ciel’s have been parted out to supply a windshield for the more desirable Ocean. These cars were built by Facel and you want to find the best one w/o serious body work needs. As the Simca by Facel page states – top right corner – to restore one is Not Simple.


    Click on the to restore page link and ask M. Google to translate for acceptable English.

    These Facel built coupes do look great when restored. The French wire wheels are Robergel not “Roberal”.

  4. Roarrr

    Simca made several very nice coupe’s and convertibles the mechanicals were decent, I recall Sports car Illustrated prepared one for road racing, I had a Moretti Simca Tour Du Monde cute and fast!


    I bought a Simca Aronde which was a great little car but I gave it to my young brother after about 3 weeks as being 6 ft 2 in, just about every time I let the clutch out I would sound the horn as it’s situated UNDER the steering wheel, as seen in the pictures. There is a lot of talk about rust in USA but in what was then Southern Rhodesia, my brother managed to shoot an amber light and get tagged on the right rear fender. Not too serious as it didn’t affect the rear axle, however, he never had the fender panel beaten and 2 years later, when he sold it, the exposed steel still showed no sign of rust!


    This guy has a stable of cool odd cars. Lots of room for a bigger engine in that bay.

  7. Maestro1 Member

    Lovely cars, difficult restoration regarding parts and general knowledge.

  8. JTNC

    Beautiful car, with the possible exception of the pseudo-55/56 Dodge taillights. Isn’t this the same garage that housed the Isuzu 117 Giugaro coupe the other day? (I recognize the old Nissan XTerra.).

  9. JoeBazots

    Love that steering wheel. Just a really cool touch to a pretty rare car. Hope it finds the home it deserves and doesn’t end up cannibalized as a parts heap.

  10. Pete

    That is a loverly little car. Reminds me of a Tiger. My buddy had a Simca Bagheera while we were stationed in germany. It was a beautiful car and drove well when it ran. But many a night I had to give him a ride home because it was dead in the water. For some reason I could never pursued him to sell it and buy a BMW or Opel or something. He was just stuck on that damn car. LOL.

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