Forest Find: 1965 Citroen DS19

1965 Citroen DS19

Up for sale is a 1965 Citroen DS19 that currently resides in a wooded area near San Rafael, California. It appears to be quite complete and for a car sitting out for quite a while, with no history provided, the asking price of $3,000 seems tempting. The seller has no miles or VIN listed, but they do claim to have a clear title for this project or parts car. Thank you, Roger, for the tip. You can view more on Craigslist.

1965 Citroen DS19

There is no mention on whether the car runs and drives, but there are photos showing the headlights and taillights on, indicating that it does get power. According to the listing, the engine and transmission are complete, and if it is a true DS19, should have a 116 cubic inch inline 4-cylinder engine. That is connected to a 3-speed automatic transmission. It would be interesting to see the underside of this car, considering the rust eating away on the rear hatch.

1965 Citroen DS19

Inside is a dusty red interior, but it looks like everything is there. The floors appear to be in decent condition from the cabin perspective. There is no direct photo of the dashboard, however, what can be seen in the photos, it looks like it will need some restoring or replacing. A few rips are in the seats and it looks as if moisture might have gotten into the car at some point, with rust on the dashboard.

1965 Citroen DS19

Overall, this car seems to be a fair car at to the right buyer, at a fair price. One could argue that it has rust, would need a significant amount of work, and parts would be hard to source. But, it is not a car you see in person every day, or even once every six months, so surely someone would love to have it. I’m sure they do show up at car shows, and they are very noticeable and memorable, so it might be worth it for the asking price to have something like that.


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  1. Ted

    Leave it in the forest, kinda looks like bear scat anyways………….

    Like 4
  2. CapNemo CapNemo


    Like 3
  3. Classic Steel

    Did they find anyone or blood splatter in the trunk 😉
    Sound like a future CSI episode ..

    I wonder how they got the title on lil red
    riding hoods car in the woods😎

    Like 1
    • local_sheriff

      There are ways of obtaining a title for so-called ‘abandoned vehicles’. The terms for being classified as ‘abandoned’ and also procedures to gain ownership vary vastly from state to state – be prepared for some serious paperwork…

      With that being said, if this DS indeed spent some time in a forest it looks shockingly unmolested; both by nature AND vandals

      Like 4
  4. rpol35

    I don’t get parking an unwanted car in the woods, simply don’t get it!

    Like 6
  5. Spud

    Well, first off, it’s not “parked in the woods” or “abandoned” as the photos in the actual ad show it in a pull off from what appears to be someone’s driveway on a street/road. Plus, someone’s obviously washed that car recently. So yes, it’s a wooded lawn, but it’s within the reach of a hose. There are (many) other posts here on BF that show what cars actually look like when parked in the woods over time. Those rusted heaps with their wheels 50% buried in the ground (“Is this restorable?” Uh, no.) are covered in moss…which is what happens when you leave a car in the woods. Someone’s properly washed this thing off in preparation for selling it.

    Now many would say RUN!!!! as fast as you can from any Citroen of this era…and that might not be a bad idea at all. But if you’re running from this one, you won’t be running in the “forest” as this BF ad implies.

    Like 5
    • Steve R

      Spud is correct. Once you leave the city of San Rafael, many properties are an acre or two. It rains between mid-November until mid-April, then it is bone dry between mid-May and late-October. Unless a car is parked in a shaded valley, it will escape much of the damage normally associated with cars being parked in a “forrest”. This car would be worth a personal inspection for anyone who is searching for a this make and model.

      Nowhere does the ad say the title is missing, it’s stated as “clean”, which doesn’t have a specific meaning. But it’s unwise to assume it’s missing.

      Steve R

      Like 1
  6. DS Fan

    Given the silver chevrons on the trunk, it is probably an ID19, not a DS.

    Like 2
  7. DSFan

    Since the chevrons on the trunk are silver, and it is a manual three speed, it most likely is an ID, not a DS.

    Like 1
  8. James A. Mogey

    I agree that it is, in fact, and ID19. A good investment only if the buyer is in touch with a knowledgeable Ctroen guy. There used to be such a guy near Annapolis, MD, but I don’t knw if he’s still in business. Once restored, this is a comfortable and reliable cruiser.

  9. Lance


    Like 1
  10. Dale Ice

    While some European DSes did have BorgWarner 3sp automatics, IDs and DSes from ’65 did not. They were all 4speeds. Some had hydraulic shift but all had conventional clutches. This ID has a 4speed shift,per photo. Since this ID used a LHS fluid similar to DOT3, most of the hydraulics will likely be frozen or badly corroded. Later cars used mineral fluid LHM that didn’t corrode. Unless you need parts…stay away from this car…I’ve owned numerous Citroens….

    Like 1
  11. Citroen Pieces

    Not a DS19 but an ID19 as the dashboard is the give away. Also – not a 3-speed manual but a 4-speed manual – the earlier 11CV (Traction Avant) used a 3-speed but the DS/ID utilized a 4 speed throughout its production life (the hydraulic shift version was just a hybrid of the manual transmission) although there was also a 5-speed manual version available from 9/1970 onwards,

  12. Jeff


  13. The one

    The ride is so nice! Kinda like, well a cloud, although I have never personally ridden on a cloud, I would imagine it is much like this car. When new…

    Like 3
  14. Peter K

    The inexpensive price often leads to be the most expensive car you will ever own…. The service work to put it back into mechanical and cosmetic condition will far outweigh how much you would spend on one that is fully functional and ready to go.

    Like 2
  15. Del

    This was the car that DeGaulle escaped from France in.

  16. Willowen Member

    There is a very active Citroen club with several chapters in California, and it is not too hard to find people who can work on them. Granted, they all seemed to be hiding when I was trying to get the DS my dad-in-law had given me (mostly because I had garage space and he didn’t), but one of them swapped a nice Alfa to me for it, took it home, got it running, and then sold it to a Mr. Leno …

    The hard part with tired old Citroens is getting them up off the ground! If the pressure spheres are okay and you can manage to get the pump spinning, you can raise it to full height and put blocks or jack stands under it, but if it’s all the way down you’ve got barely four inches to work in. Collapsed on a forest floor would actually be better – you could just dig a trench!

    Like 2
  17. Peter

    Honestly… coming from a Citroen enthusiast, just buy a fully restored ID or DS. It will probably be half the restoration cost of this sad case.

    Like 2
  18. the one

    Citroen SM, quick, awesome and luxurious.

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