Thursday, August 17, 2006

Mystery Car V — Revealed

According to Wikipedia, the Citroën DS was a first of its kind in 1955.
After 18 years of development in secret as the successor to the venerable Traction Avant, the DS 19 was introduced on October 5, 1955 at the Paris Motor Show. The car's appearance and innovative engineering captured the imagination of the public and the automobile industry almost overnight. 743 orders were taken in the first 15 minutes of the show, and orders for the first day totalled 12,000.
The article goes on to say that "the DS managed to remain ahead of its time." It was noted most for its unusual hydropneumatic suspension system which allowed the car to be raised or lowered to various ride heights. Its braking system was also unusual with front inboard disc brakes. Instead of being located at the wheels, they were located near the transmission.

Something so unconventional caught the attention of the public, but the cost was more than most could afford. Despite the cost, it survived for 21 years (1955-76) and caused many heads to turn and wonder what it would be like.

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