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French Connection: 1973 Citroen Ami 8 Break

French cars are the Rodney Dangerfield of the vehicle world, there’s no question about it. Some people – a few million of them – swear by them and would own nothing else. Here in the U.S., we never really had them for long periods of time before the various companies pulled out of the market. This 1974 Citroen Ami 8 Break, or estate/wagon, can be found here on craigslist in Downingtown, Pennsylvania. The seller has an asking price of $4,500 or best offer listed for this unique ride. Our own Russell G. found this one, thanks for the tip, RG!

I’m not sure what’s going on with the off-color doors but Captain Obvious thinks that they may have been painted… or maybe they’re replacement doors. The Captain (me) also wonders why there are no photos of the driver’s side of the car other than one with the doors open? Maybe they just didn’t think of that. Despite some wrinkles and paint match issues and a few dings here and there, and sadly, some rust, it looks like a fun project car. I prefer the sedan, similar to the one that these two horrified women are eyeing up. But, a wagon would be great for the storage room.

Did I miss the memo on why almost every single Citroen since the mid-1800s has had loose seat covers? Why is that? No really, why is that? It’s only the grabby fabric seats, not the nice leather seats, but it seems like almost every example with this seat material is in similar condition. It isn’t a big deal at all, that can be fixed easily and fairly cheaply, but I was just wondering if any of you who are French car owners knew why that happens. I don’t want to talk about my Renault GTA yet again for fear of way overdoing it, but that’s my first French car and it’s been 100% reliable and super fun to drive. And, the seats are perfect… All things being equal, though, I would rather have this Ami 8 Break/wagon/estate if it were in similar rust-free condition as my GTA is. I love these quirky Citroens.

This is a Maytag KA806AS suds-saver washing machine motor and it’s… No, this non-engine-looking engine is Citroen’s 602 CC flat-twin with around 32 hp. The seller says that it runs and drives well and with a 4-speed manual, it should be pretty fun to drive despite the low horsepower. There is some rust in the floors and I’m guessing there are bits elsewhere but what a fun project this would be. Are there any Citroen fans or owners out there?


  1. Will Fox

    Uglier than a mud fence. Let’s just say I wouldn’t want to be in one when a Silverado runs a light & cleans your clock.

    Like 1
    • Jesse Mortensen Jesse Mortensen Staff

      There isn’t a classic car I’d want to be in if I were to get broadsided by a Silverado. If it has to happen though, you might as well go out in style!

      Like 17
  2. michael

    There are 4 different shades of white in that paint job …

    Like 3
  3. MikeH

    I like the sedan better as well— because it makes the car even quirkier. The Ami is in a league of its own. It is a 2cv (I think on the same chassis) so parts are readily available. Citroen’s in general, and 2CVs in particular, are marvelously engineered.

    Like 5
  4. Moparman Moparman Member

    It is my hope that I am NEVER broadsided by ANYTHING!! :-)

    Like 7
    • Laurent Herjean

      The sedan you are referring to, with the inverted rear window, is an Ami 6. The car in the ad is an Ami 8, the Ami 6 replacement. The sedan Ami 8 has a conventional sloping rear window.

      Like 3
  5. Mark

    I *think* the handle on the pass side fender is a hand crank for the engine… zombie apocalypse here we come!

    Like 0
  6. Louis Q Phan

    Remember, Citroens are like the original Saabs-quirky and weird looking. On the plus side, it’s comfortable and quite reliable. It would make a good errand run car (short distances not freeway mind you).

    Like 3
  7. James HGF

    Hi Scotty, How about a nice looking green Ami 8 break first registered in January 1970. Although just a few exterior pics although there shouldn’t be any loose fabric on the drivers’ seat. You may first notice the Goodwood decal in the tailgate window before seeing the race seat. Interesting, eh?

    84,500 original kilometers, running-driving with good tires. No note of any needs.

    You can see it in Vaucresson in the ile-de-france just a few kilometers west of Paris proper. Shipping from there to your home will cost….??? Drive on and off or container?


    Click on photos to enlarge.

    Like 4
    • michael

      Looks like you’re still driving this one? The license plate seems to be the new style. It’s a very nice car you have there, Monsieur.

      Like 2
  8. OddBallCars

    The lines on the sedan make it look like the ultra-powerful engine is tearing the car in half because the roof cant keep up with the lower half on acceleration.

    Somehow I don’t think that’s what’s *actually* happening, though…

    Like 4
    • Scotty Gilbertson Staff


      Like 2
  9. FordGuy1972 FordGuy1972 Member

    A car that looks better going than coming, and I like wagons. Doesn’t seem like you could do much to get more horsepower out of this one, the engine compartment being so small. Maybe the engine out of my ’81 Polaris Centurion would fit. That had about 80hp. It’s certainly unusual but can you imagine having only 32hp on the highway? You’d need an entrance ramp about 5 miles long to get up to highway speeds. If it will go that fast at all.

    Like 1
  10. Dominique Legeai

    …corrected earlier: I confirm this to be an AMI 8 Break; these are unbielivably comfortable, quite roomy for their exterior dimensions and they do keep up with your average traffic up to 75mph if no more than 2 aboard on flat terrain…obviously hills, wind, load will affect its performance with a mere 32hp.

    Like 2
  11. Daymo

    All late 60s/early 70s Citroen’s seem to suffer with saggy seat covers. Some sort of problem with the clingy cloth. A friend had a ’77 GS that had the same problem. Nothing that an aftermarket set of seat covers or a retrim couldn’t solve.
    Yes Citroen’s are quirky. And weird. And over-engineered. And comfy. And spacious. And one of my fave marques.

    Like 1
  12. Burger

    I don’t know how anyone gets past the looks of most French cars. “Uglier than a mud fence” is being kind. Give ’em a face like some swamp-dwelling bottom feeder, mount the rear axle under the back bumper, and try to hide the evidence by skirting the wheel openings, proportion the glass and body like a walrus, and you pretty much have the ground rules for styling a French car ! Nevermind the anemic powertrain.

    Had a girlfriend years ago, whose dad had a dozen or more Frenchies. Nothing kinda sporty like a Caravelle, just Citroens and Panhards and Renaults, all styled to look like beached whales or garden slugs, crossbred with a loaf of Wonder Bread. He extolled the engineering with giddy enthusiasm that made me wonder if we could possibly be looking at the same car. He had just acquired an SM about the time the daughter and I went separate ways. He was in 7th Heaven.

    What amazed me most about these cars was that anyone paid full retail to buy one new. It takes a special kind of eccentric to like French cars. To be seen in one is like wearing a wardrobe straight out of a Dr. Seuss book.

    Like 3
    • don

      Most French cars looked they took their design ideas from a 4 year old kids drawing of a car .

      Like 0

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