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Old 14th June 2011, 16:28   #1
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Default PICS: Citroen Traction Avant cars in India

Hi Everyone,

There were many Citroen Traction Avant's in India from what i gather from people. My Grand father at one point of time owned a 4 Cylinder English Citroen Traction Avant. The main objective of this thread is to see how many cars still exist in India and also to document the pictures.

So i hope everyone will contribute with there info and Photographs.

Some photo graphs of a 6 Cylinder traction Avant from Kolkata which was restored in our Workshop.This car has a racing History behind it. It used to be Regularly raced in the Barrackpore Races. There is an old Gentleman whom i ment in my last visit to Calcutta who said that a lady named Mini Pan used to race this car. He has seen this car being raced against a 56 Studebaker Commander(v8). When they used to start off the commander used to take off like a rocket and be far ahead but at the corners the commander would slow down to maneuver through the corners and the this Citroen used to take the corners much faster and used to catch up with the commanders. There is a magazine i have which i need to hunt out which has an article of this car being raced.
Some pictures of the car During Restoration and some after Restoration.
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Old 14th June 2011, 16:50   #2
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Default Re: PICS: Citroen Traction Avant cars in India

Some pictures from Team -bhp posted by other members.

A 4 cylinder car from Ooty


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4 Cylinder car owned by Dussey

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4Cylinder car from the Karnataka Rally in 2009


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4Cylinder car from the same Karnataka Rally in 2009 but a different car.
Does any one have pictures of the front view of this car ?

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4 Cylinder car from the Delhi Statesman 2011

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There are two more 4 cylinder cars in Calcutta which i know of and have seen but no pictures of them. One of them used to be owned by a Lawyer who has sold it to a collector in Delhi. The car is still in Calcutta. The other one is owned by two brothers who own a Garage near Park Circus.

I believe that there is one 6 cylinder car in Goa that was being offered for sale. Any pictures of that ?

There was another 6 Cylinder car owned by the Bedi family in Bangalore. I believe it has changed hands. Any pictures of that car also?
One more 6 Cylinder was being restored years back in our workshop. Due to certain problems the car was cut to pieces by the car breakers. That car was green in colour.

Regards

Indrojit Sircar
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Old 14th June 2011, 19:21   #3
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Default Re: PICS: Citroen Traction Avant cars in India

Quote:
Originally Posted by IndrojitSircar View Post

There are two more 4 cylinder cars in Calcutta which i know of and have seen but no pictures of them. One of them used to be owned by a Lawyer who has sold it to a collector in Delhi. The car is still in Calcutta. The other one is owned by two brothers who own a Garage near Park Circus.


Regards

Indrojit Sircar
>>>

Indrojit,

I think the lawyer Traction Avant is the one that was owned (around 1999-2000-2001) by a Mr. Mukherjee whom I had met and was driven around for a feel of the car, as a potential buyer. Mr. Mukherjee is a lawyer who probably was in his late forties or early fifties when I met him.

We shared this info. sometime back; also that at that time he wanted the car to go to a home where it would be treated like an honoured family member.

Any way that you can find Mr. Mukherjee?

Regards
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Old 14th June 2011, 19:29   #4
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Default Re: PICS: Citroen Traction Avant cars in India

Cream One belongs to my friends dad, and is getting restored at Chandigarh.

The other maybe from Delhi, offered on sale a few months ago....
Attached Thumbnails
PICS: Citroen Traction Avant cars in India-citroen.jpg  

PICS: Citroen Traction Avant cars in India-vw-pictures-018.jpg  


Last edited by PAVAN KADAM : 14th June 2011 at 19:35.
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Old 14th June 2011, 20:08   #5
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Default Re: PICS: Citroen Traction Avant cars in India

The restoration of the Citroen turned out really well....the workmanship standards at your garage are really very high and its always a pleasure to see cars from your place.

Whats the status on the Study !
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Old 14th June 2011, 21:15   #6
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Default Re: PICS: Citroen Traction Avant cars in India

Wah wah, Indro - whatta thread ! I have a soft corner for Citroens of all eras, and the Traction Avant - with it's raft of innovations- is indeed a technological tour de force of it's time..

The car restored at your place is looking outstanding.. The interiors are terrific, and I could eat off that engine bay !Please pass on my compliments to all those invlolved in the restoration.

Meanwhile, here's a Mumbai car, owned by an aquaintance. I have had the pleasure of many rides in this 1946 (??) "Lucas" model, as he calls it.

These photographs are from the 2010 VCCCI Fiesta, and have been taken by our own Karlosdeville.
Attached Thumbnails
PICS: Citroen Traction Avant cars in India-traction-1.jpg  

PICS: Citroen Traction Avant cars in India-traction-2.jpg  


Last edited by SuperSelect : 14th June 2011 at 21:16.
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Old 14th June 2011, 22:53   #7
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Default Re: PICS: Citroen Traction Avant cars in India

Quote:
Originally Posted by issigonis View Post
>>>

Indrojit,

I think the lawyer Traction Avant is the one that was owned (around 1999-2000-2001) by a Mr. Mukherjee whom I had met and was driven around for a feel of the car, as a potential buyer. Mr. Mukherjee is a lawyer who probably was in his late forties or early fifties when I met him.

We shared this info. sometime back; also that at that time he wanted the car to go to a home where it would be treated like an honoured family member.

Any way that you can find Mr. Mukherjee?

Regards
Yes you are correct. Its the same car. The car was seen by my father last month. It is lying in a yard with a Vauxhall Cresta. Both belong to the same owner now. If you give me his full name there is a way i can try and get his contact details for you.

Quote:
Originally Posted by PAVAN KADAM View Post
Cream One belongs to my friends dad, and is getting restored at Chandigarh.

The other maybe from Delhi, offered on sale a few months ago....
Thank you sir for your contribution. Can we have some more pictures of the dash board if possible of the cream colored car? The bumper on this car appears not to be correct on this particular car.

Quote:
Originally Posted by wasif View Post
The restoration of the Citroen turned out really well....the workmanship standards at your garage are really very high and its always a pleasure to see cars from your place.

Whats the status on the Study !
Thank you so much for your feedback. Please also point out whenever you feel that something is wrong. That would give a scope for improvement.

Which Study ? There 3 Study's now


Quote:
Originally Posted by SuperSelect View Post
Wah wah, Indro - whatta thread ! I have a soft corner for Citroens of all eras, and the Traction Avant - with it's raft of innovations- is indeed a technological tour de force of it's time..

The car restored at your place is looking outstanding.. The interiors are terrific, and I could eat off that engine bay !Please pass on my compliments to all those invlolved in the restoration.
Thank you Ravi for your compliments. The interiors are of Stanley leather. You should hear the Exhaust note of the car. You wouldn't like any other car's exhaust note after that.

The Traction Avant's were the most modern car's of their times first front wheel drive steel monocoque production car. Also the gearbox's in these cars used to fit from the front of the engine. They didn't have a problem of having a propeller shaft going to towards the rear end of the car to propel the differential. Instead they had drive shafts with double U Joints where you didn't have bellows unlike modern day drive shafts. Now the ones with the Bellows are also available for these cars.


Quote:
Originally Posted by SuperSelect View Post
Meanwhile, here's a Mumbai car, owned by an aquaintance. I have had the pleasure of many rides in this 1946 (??) "Lucas" model, as he calls it.

These photographs are from the 2010 VCCCI Fiesta, and have been taken by our own Karlosdeville.
The owner might not be knowing that this is called the French Citroen and not an English Citroen/ Lucas. The English Citroen's were all 4 Cylinder mainly The 6 Cylinders where French mainly but there were a few English ones as well. Some points of difference between the English Citroen and the French 4 Cylinder Citroen's-

1). The English Citroen's were all Right hand drive where as the French cars where mostly Left hand drive.
2). The English Citroen's had a wooden dash board with lots of instruments where as the french cars had one meter with everything built into it like the one that was restored in our workshop.
3). The English car's has leather Interiors where which didn't come in the French Citroen's originally.
4). The English car's had 12V electrical system and the French cars had a 6V electrical system.
5). The Bumpers on the English car were chromed and didn't have over riders and some what flat where as the bumpers on the French cars were a bit pointed in the center like the mumbai car, had over riders and were painted.
6). The English car had a Chromed Radiator grill where as the french cars had them painted.
7). The English cars had Lucas headlamp's where the headlamps where smaller in size like the silver car in Delhi MYM 7320 where as the French cars had Marshall Headlamps like the black car in Mumbai.
8). Parking lamps/indicators one the English car were Lucas and resembled the ones on the MG TC where as the ones on the French cars resembled the one like the VW beetle on the fender.

These are what i remember off hand. So the Mumbai car is a French Citroen and not a English Citroen.

One major problem in the 4 cylinder Citroen's where that the gearbox housing were made of aluminum and used to crack easily during a fast downshift in the gear. So there are many people whom i know say that they have changed the Gearbox's on their cars more than twice. My Mother's paternal uncle also owned one 4 cylinder French Citroen. I remember him telling me stories of him trying to race my Paternal Grandfather in his Ford V8 and how he once broke the gearbox while racing.

Last edited by Technocrat : 15th June 2011 at 01:05. Reason: Updated post as per request, thanks
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Old 15th June 2011, 02:33   #8
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Default Re: PICS: Citroen Traction Avant cars in India

Has anyone included the one I spotted in Bangalore?? She was MINT!!
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Old 15th June 2011, 06:29   #9
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Default Re: PICS: Citroen Traction Avant cars in India

indrojit, you have provided a very good information. But only one thing, please do check up this was not the first car with the front wheel drive. Though this car can be termed as first mass produced front wheel drive car.
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Old 15th June 2011, 07:14   #10
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Here is a rare French Citroen Traction Avant Familiale which is owned by the Khodays and was last seen the Bangalore Club Rally. This car is a post 1953 as it has a boot. Very few cars with this body style can be found surviving in India.

The pictures are from the Bangalore Club Rally

Ajmat's snap of the front
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The Rear which shows the boot
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The Side
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In the 80's we used own a 4 Cyl. Traction Avant (MYK 407) which we had to unfortunately scrap as our trusted mechanic Putta died of a sudden heart attack after he had completely dismantled the car. We could not put it back together as parts could not be located post his death.

Cheers

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Old 15th June 2011, 10:48   #11
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I think both the body styles co existed (wheel on the boot and plain boot). On the post-war models, the buyer initially had the choice between the two different bootlids. From about 1950 onwards, all of them were fitted with the bootlid the model renders in KPS post. Also the style of Bumper and Wheel cap also differed between the two designs.
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Old 15th June 2011, 10:54   #12
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Default Re: PICS: Citroen Traction Avant cars in India

The ones with the boot were the long wheelbase models.

There was a very rough Tractionin Hyderabad too that would com to all the events. It was the type with a lot of vent doors on each side of the bonnet instead of cooling louvres

Th ones built in UK were called light 15 and the LWB was the big 15 an the Six cylindr ones were the Big Six

Last edited by wasif : 15th June 2011 at 10:56.
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Old 15th June 2011, 12:39   #13
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Default Re: PICS: Citroen Traction Avant cars in India

Quote:
Originally Posted by Cyrus43 View Post
Has anyone included the one I spotted in Bangalore?? She was MINT!!
Why don't you add the pictures if not added already ?

Quote:
Originally Posted by IndrojitSircar View Post
The Traction Avant's were the most modern car's of their times first front wheel drive steel monocoque production car.


Quote:
Originally Posted by manishalive View Post
indrojit, you have provided a very good information. But only one thing, please do check up this was not the first car with the front wheel drive. Though this car can be termed as first mass produced front wheel drive car.
Manish, i might have put in in a wrong way. I did mentione though that they were the First front wheel drive production cars.

Quote:
Originally Posted by KPS View Post
Here is a rare French Citroen Traction Avant Familiale which is owned by the Khodays and was last seen the Bangalore Club Rally. This car is a post 1953 as it has a boot. Very few cars with this body style can be found surviving in India.

The pictures are from the Bangalore Club Rally

Ajmat's snap of the front
Attachment 560796



The Rear which shows the boot
Attachment 560797

The Side
Attachment 560798
This seems to be a LWB model. If you notice that it has another rear quater window after the read door and the body is much longer.

Quote:
Originally Posted by KPS View Post
In the 80's we used own a 4 Cyl. Traction Avant (MYK 407) which we had to unfortunately scrap as our trusted mechanic Putta died of a sudden heart attack after he had completely dismantled the car. We could not put it back together as parts could not be located post his death.

Cheers

KPS
Where did that car go after that ? Do you still have the tremains lying around ? We could do something with it if its still there.

Quote:
Originally Posted by manishalive View Post
I think both the body styles co existed (wheel on the boot and plain boot). On the post-war models, the buyer initially had the choice between the two different bootlids. From about 1950 onwards, all of them were fitted with the bootlid the model renders in KPS post. Also the style of Bumper and Wheel cap also differed between the two designs.

A little correct here manish,During WWII, the Tractions were a favourite of the French Résistance because of their agility and road holding. That's why it's quite difficult these days to find a pre-war Traction in reasonable condition. Most of them 'died' for the French people. In wartime, the production at Citroën was practically non existant. As far as possible, they produced for the French armed forces as well as many utility vehicles, and later on, during the occupation, the factory was forced to produce for Germany. In 1946, after the factory was reconstructed, production restarted slowly. The 'luxury' versions, 'Cabriolet' and 'Faux Cabriolet', were discontinued. Tires on the wheels were an extra cost! Only three models were available: the 11CV Légère, the 11CV Normale (Large) and the 15/6, all in a colour that can be described as 'nearly black'.
This was the situation up until 1952, except that Citroën was able to deliver a true black. In this year the range was 'modernised' and the only major body change took place: a big boot was added, similar to what all other cars already had. This was also called the Bustle back on American cars like the Buick's of the 30's. Similar to the one that KPS has just upload pictures of. Two pictures for comparison-




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In 1954, even the colour choice grew - you were able to order 'gris perle' (grey) and 'bleu R.A.F.' (dark blue). Two body styles from the pre-war cars were reintroduced: the 11CV Normale in the Familiale and Commerciale variant (but now with a one piece hatch). The 15/6 was available as a Familiale.

The rims and hubcaps between the english the french citroen were also a bit different.


Quote:
Originally Posted by wasif View Post
The ones with the boot were the long wheelbase models.

There was a very rough Tractionin Hyderabad too that would com to all the events. It was the type with a lot of vent doors on each side of the bonnet instead of cooling louvres

Th ones built in UK were called light 15 and the LWB was the big 15 an the Six cylindr ones were the Big Six
Here are two pictures that show the difference in the Dash board and instruments of the English Citroen and the French Citroen.

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PICS: Citroen Traction Avant cars in India-img_5794.jpg
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Old 15th June 2011, 12:48   #14
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Default Re: PICS: Citroen Traction Avant cars in India

Indrojit, thanks for the wealth of information - felt good reading it !!

There is a long wheelbase model in Mumbai - with the rear quarter glass, and thick bootlid - white in colour, belonging to Mr. Jasdanwala - restored about 3 years ago. I had seen this a few times on the roads. Does anyone have a photograph of it ?

Meanwhile, here's a nice black one, belonging to Mr. Cyrus Gandhy in Mumbai. This photo is taken during the VCCCI event in 1999 or 2000.

Fairly regular at events, this car made an appearance in the VCCCI event in 2008 (or 09), not seen after that.
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Last edited by SuperSelect : 15th June 2011 at 12:49.
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Old 15th June 2011, 23:59   #15
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Default Re: PICS: Citroen Traction Avant cars in India

A lot of parts for the Citreon Traction Avant are available, including complete steering, entire front suspension, grille, head lights etc. Any one interested may contact Mr.Charanjit Singh +91 9990019900.

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