Paris Match - French Classics in the Classic Driver Market

The Paris Motor Show has developed in recent years to become one of the world’s major automotive shows. In the week that the 2012 Paris show opens, we look back at the French motor industry’s past to choose a selection of the finest French cars of yesteryear from the Classic Driver Market.

 



Bugatti Type 57C Corsica Style Special Roadster from 1938

Paris Match - French Classics in the Classic Driver Market

The phenomenal success of the Bugatti Type 35 racing car of the Twenties and Thirties established the marque as a respected builder of competitive machinery. The Type 57 was a new and very different design from the Type 35, however, created by Ettore Bugatti’s son Jean and built from 1934 to 1940. The relatively late model – from 1938 – shown here was rebuilt in the Sixties, and is now a ‘matching numbers’ example with a body in the style of the famous ‘Corsica Roadster’ of Colonel GM Giles, the Bugatti known by the nickname of ‘La Petite Suzanne’... See advert >>





Delahaye 135 from 1938

Paris Match - French Classics in the Classic Driver Market

Delahaye never made its own bodywork but, as with the likes of Delage and Talbot-Lago, relied on such famous coachbuilders as Figoni & Falaschi or Saoutchik to clothe its chassis. The Delahaye 135 was the work of the young engineer Jean François, and wore many different body styles; such as the 2-seater coupé shown here... See advert >>





Talbot-Lago T26 Record from 1947

Paris Match - French Classics in the Classic Driver Market

One of the last dazzling automobiles to emerge from the post-War French luxury brands was Talbot-Lago T26 Record. The design was reminiscent of the pre-War Alfa 6C2500 convertibles, with a body that came from Graber in Switzerland. The Talbot-Lago T26 was not only beautiful, but under its bonnet hid a 4.5-litre six-cylinder engine straight out of a Grand Prix car. This was one seriously fast motor car. The 1947 specimen shown here sports a particularly sensuous colour combination... See advert >>





Citroën 2CV 6 Charleston from 1991

Paris Match - French Classics in the Classic Driver Market

The legendary ‘deux chevaux’ is another sort of classic entirely. The hugely popular and successful economy car, the Citroën 2CV, was produced for more than 40 years (1948 to 1990) – although the example at RM Auctions’ 31 October sale wasn’t registered till 1991. And it’s a bit of a special model to 2CV cognoscenti – the 2CV 6 Charleston... See advert >>





Citroën DS19 from 1968

Paris Match - French Classics in the Classic Driver Market

With its streamlined design and other-worldly hydropneumatic suspension on all four wheels, the DS19 was way ahead of its time. Fusco Automobile of Germany has a rather fine specimen from 1968, boasting two-tone paint and a large folding roof... See advert >>





Alpine A110 from 1973

Paris Match - French Classics in the Classic Driver Market

The Alpine A110 is a French rally icon, listing among its successes the 1971 Monte Carlo Rally. Anyone wanting to have fun in today’s historic rallies might be interested in taking a closer look at this example from Avro Motor Cars, which is said to be fully prepared for regularity events, and comes complete with a spares package... See advert >>





Peugeot 504 Convertible 2.0 from 1982

Paris Match - French Classics in the Classic Driver Market

Peugeot is another marque that has built a great many beautiful and exclusive cars. The 504 Series is one of them. The coupés and convertibles built between 1979 and 1983 are now a rarity, as a result of the lack of corrosion protection in those days… and their rarity means prices have gone up. But they can still make for a sound investment... See advert >>






Photos: Classic Driver Dealers



 

You can find plenty of French classic and modern cars in the Classic Driver Market.