Intact Gallic Sedan: 1968 Peugeot 404

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Looking remarkably good for it’s years (the seller says “92% intact”), this unusual mid-60’s French sedan is residing in Oceanside, California, and is being auctioned off here on eBay where bidding is just over $1,000 but the reserve has not yet been met.

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If you look closely at the front fender in this shot, you’ll see some of the 8% damage the seller is speaking of. I’m also a little curious as to the “0” in “404”–it looks awfully dark in there! There’s some trim obviously missing as well.

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Another spot with issues is the rear, although it looks like someone has made an effort to at least grossly push this back into shape. A lot more work in necessary, however. The seller tells us that “The car comes with all the spares I possess (worth many hundreds of dollars to someone who plans to keep this car running) , including all side glass and rear window (no extra windshield) chrome trim, knobs, complete second set of carburetors, hydraulic rebuild kits, OEM roof rack and dozens of things you will have to figure out.” I love that last phrase–it sounds like the miscellaneous boxes in my garage.

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The interior looks about what you would expect; well-used but serviceable, especially for what I’m guessing would be a driving classic. Nothing to be used every day, but something different for the local get-togethers near you.

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The seller tells us that the engine has been replaced with a later model XM series engine/transmission and a new clutch. This engine was used in the later 504 and 505 models; I drove a 505 wagon over 80,000 miles and loved every one of them, so I’ve got good things to say about this drive train. I think this would make a quirky but great driver as long as the price stays down. What do you think?

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Comments

  1. RichC

    You’re playing with my head. I rushed to take a look at this Intergalactic Sedan.

  2. David Frank David Member

    Great universal pun! Duck tape included? These often had sunroofs, but the pictures just miss the spot. Why not a daily driver? Just add AC.

    • Jamie Palmer Jamie Staff

      Gotta give Josh credit for the title pun (WISH I had thought of it…) :-)

  3. Howard A Member

    While probably as exciting as watching paint dry, I think this would make a great driver. I doubt the local “Zone” has parts for this one, but I’m sure someone on ebay has everything you need. ( might just take a while) French made outstanding cars back then, and Peugeot made some of the best. ( my old man called them “Poo-joes”)

  4. Jean Lecointe

    Great find,
    The 404 Peugeot has a very good reputation for reliability and long life.
    The double carburetters are strange, they never have been fitted on original 404.
    I had a 404 for years and I enjoyed it.
    The position of the stering wheel which is not in line with the car looks strange but is no problem for driving.
    The oil in the rear axle is very particular and no other oil must be used.
    Good luck to the buyer.

  5. Francisco

    I drove one of these in college. It had a sunroof and Hella fog lamps. I think it was a 4 on the column with a strange shift pattern. A fantastic car in every sense of the word. It was like a little Mercedes. Years after I sold it in PA, I saw it in Port Everglade, FL. There was no mistaking those fog lamps. It’s probably still on the road today.

  6. John

    My first c was a Hillman Minx – Peugeot 404 clone.
    I gave it away in 1990 – it is still running.
    Simple , basic engineering done well.

  7. Mark Mosley

    I used to have a Peugeot 404, 1963 model, that a older gentleman from my hometown in NC brought back from a European vacation in 1963. It had been originally insured by LLoyds of London, and it still had all the original import and insurance paperwork. It was a great car and had a crank handle under the hood that could be used to start the car in case of dead battery. It was a great little car, though mine did not have the extremely rare option of winshield wipers on the headlights. I loved that car.

  8. charlie Member

    In Cairo, only 4 years ago, these (and a few 403’s and 405’s) comprised most of the taxi fleet – hundreds of them and a few Lada’s of similar age. We basically hired a cab by the day, it was a 404, 40 years old, ran like a champ, driver did not use 1st gear since “it used too much gas, and clutches are cheap” except starting on an uphill. On a down hill he let it roll and then engaged 3rd. Wiring under dash caught on fire one afternoon, he was back on the road in the morning. Only one window crank left, we passed it around. Government made a deal with Korean Chevrolet to replace the fleet with new small Korean made Chevies,our driver was distressed since he could not afford to buy one, and only the corporate fleets would be left on the road. Trucks were big, slow, smokey Russian vehicles left from the l960’s and lightweight Chevy trucks made in Korea but not sold in the US.

  9. Paul B

    Classic Farina design, and a very pleasant ride. These rusted out in the northeast, but if they’re not in a rust belt state, they can go on forever. Acceleration: modest. Steering: a tad heavy but accurate. Interior comfort and ride quality: superior, with long wheel travel that soaks up bumps, as the French designed their cars in those days. Magnifique! And I love the color.

  10. MountainMan

    I would drive it. You probably would not pass yourself very often. The extra parts the seller is including would be a big plus in my book. Does anybody have recent experience with obtaining parts? I am wondering what cost is like to keep one of these on the road. I have heard good things from people who have owned them but never driven one myself. Simple good looks and just enough French funkiness to make it odd

  11. Rex Kahrs Member

    Yeah this is just the kind of oddball car I love. I wouldn’t care if it weren’t fast.

  12. Marty M

    Had a 64 that I drove to high school, it was a quirky shift pattern – it seemed nothing could stop that slant 4 hemi.

  13. Paul Newbold

    I’ve had a few 404s. Very long legged, cruise all day at almost top speed. The hole in the centre of the 404 badge is a punch out disc to allow the bonnet (hood) to be released if the cable breaks. Brilliant!

  14. Al

    Note the alternator. Mine failed on my 1970 504. Replaced it in my driveway with one off a Chevy Vega (?). $25. Only mechanical issue in eight years and 100k Miles.

  15. Jerome Sanson

    For the French people like me, this car is part of our culture. It was very popular. This car enjoyed a reputation for durability and value in europe. It was styled by Pininfarina, who create the 250 GTO Ferrari during this period.
    1968 model has also front disc brakes. Now, in France, this car may be negociate near 6000 $ in good condition. Look at this site: http://www.leboncoin.fr/voitures/897842143.htm?ca=12_s
    This French website is the most popular car sales. If you would like to find french cars parts at the french price, it’s the right place. In French only, but it’s easy. Click on “Offres” (Offer) on the bottom, write the name of the car on the first input box, Choose “Voitures” on second input box(Car), “Toute la France” (all the french countrie) on the third and click on “Chercher” (Find). If you have a problem with it, send me a mail.

  16. Buster

    Just an update. this car is still for sale – now on San Diego Craigslist for $3000 (obviously, the reserve was not met). I had a ’73 504 with the XM engine and loved, loved, loved it. Quirky tools to replace the sparkplugs and engine oil and timing chains that gave out at 60,000 miles and all.

    I saw the car in person (it is literally on the next block over from me – just temping me to plunk down the $3000 for it) and it is quirky, and so beautiful.

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