The Citroën 2CV–pronounced deux chevaux, or two horse, after the engine–is the model that most screams “French.” While Detroit was churning out land yachts in the postwar years, Citroën came up with the modest 2CV as an economy model in 1948. They were in production for 40 years. Is that classic or what?
Citroën, are you listening? Bring it back, but electric!
The 2CV might be barebones and simple, for easy maintenance and low gas consumption, it has tons of style.
That curved top, that rolls back for a sunroof! It was designed so people could transport big items, letting them stick out vertically. Practicality plus style–so French. Those round headlights, with visors like eyelids!Those voluptuous fenders and fender skirts!I think my favorites, besides all red, are the two-tone paint jobs that accentuate the curves.If Citroën gets the good sense to bring it back, I hope they don’t do like the VW Beetle and the Mini Cooper and make it too big and blown out, like somebody puffed out by steroids. Keep it small and simple. With flair.If you want to see the 2CV in all its cinematic glory, here are a few films:
Brigitte Bardot drives one very badly in “La Bride sur le Cou” (The Bridle on the Neck–it’s an expression that means doing whatever one wants).In “Eat, Pray, Love,” Julia Roberts’ friends drop her off in Rome in a two-tone 2CV.
In “Red 2,” Mary-Louise Parker drives, with John Malkovich nervously riding shotgun, in a car chase in Paris against a Porsche.
To show how poor the madly-in-love couple (Demi Moore and Woody Harrelson) is in “Indecent Proposal,” they drive an old 2CV.
There are some great moves in this old French movie, “Le Tracassin.” I have witnessed the drive-on-the-sidewalk move in Paris.
Carole Bouquet drives Agent 007 to safety in a 2CV in “For Your Eyes Only,” but then he takes the wheel.
A 2CV figures in “Les Amants,” a film far better known for Jeanne Moreau’s portrayal of an orgasm.There really are too many more to count–which is only to be expected from a car that was produced for four decades.