I'm trying to find information on an automobile from 50s or 60s, I think French manufactured but not

Discussion in 'General Motoring' started by Wayne, Jun 22, 2008.

  1. Wayne

    Wayne Guest

    I saw this automobile in the late 60s or early 70s in the States. It
    was unusual enough that I walked over and talked to the driver as he
    was putting gas in it.

    It resembled a dune buggy like those built on VW chassis's with
    fiberglass bodies but the man told me it was plastic. At that time I
    wouldn't have known the difference in plastic or fiberglass. The body
    was very open, no doors, a fold up top. The body on this one was red
    and the top black.

    What really stuck with me was he said it was multi fuel. It would run
    on almost anything you could put in it that was petroleum based. The
    engine I believe he said was was 3 cyl and it sounded much like an air
    cooled engine, not as smooth as a 6 cyl or V8.

    He told me he had found it advertised in Canada and had gone there
    specifically to buy it. The best I can remember is he said it was a
    French vehicle and was built for the French Foreign Legion.

    Would anyone have any ideas what the make was or the manufacturer?
    I would guess it could have even been from the 40s era?

    Wayne Thompson
    Wayne, Jun 22, 2008
  2. Wayne

    G.T Guest

    Damn... They use to use the very same vehicles than the whole french Army.
    A picture would greatly help us.

    I'll give a try : could this be a Citro├źn Mehari, which has been exported
    (or planed to be exported, it's lacking in my mind) in whole America (north
    & south) ?
    (there were some of them sold to the french army, with 24V electric system
    as main modification)

    G.T, Jun 22, 2008
  3. Wayne

    Wayne Guest

    I wish I had gotten a picture but I just happened to be at this store
    when that gentleman stopped to get gas. It was on the beach in North
    Carolina at a little grocery/gas store.

    No, it was not the Mehari, though it does look very interesting. It
    looked very similar to a dune buggy (you may have seen something
    similar that the US miliary uses today with a driver, passenger and a
    gunner standing in the back with a machine gun mounted on the roll
    bars) running around in deserts. Or at least in the movies.

    This is close to what I'm talking about. The difference is the one I
    saw was more utilitarian and the door area was cut down level to the
    floorboard... but it was a small vehicle much like this one...

    With the big rear tires and all the tires underinflated, it's an ideal
    vehicle for running on soft sand. I was under the impression that more
    than the French Foreign Legion had them but that they had originally
    been created for their operating environment.
    Wayne, Jun 22, 2008
  4. Wayne

    G.T Guest

    Hi Wayne.

    Damn I can't see such a vehicle in the french army (but I may not know them
    all, not being in the army myself). As light vehicles, the french army
    mostly used Jeeps and US vehicles left aside the road after the WW2, then
    some "custom built" vehicles which were all derivated from a known range (so
    the Berliet GBC8KT truck was derivated from the GBC8 "Gazelle"). There were
    a lot of jeeps I said, which were all replaced, between 1983 and 2001 by the
    Peugeot P4, a kind of, eeer, tasty mix between a Mecedes G-series and a Pug
    engine & drivetrain.
    You really should have had a camera with you :)

    Party on, Wayne !

    G.T, Jun 23, 2008
  5. Wayne

    Surf Guest

    Hi G.T,

    You gotta remember this was between 40 and 45 years ago... My
    recollection of those events might not be perfectly accurate about
    everything (the red plastic (looking) body is an absolute).... and
    it's also possible that the guy was b.s****ng me... but I don't think

    Just looked at my Pilots License and it was issued in 1971 so I did
    have a camera then because I kept it in my shirt or jacket pocket when
    I flew. I know I had it in the plane because I have hundreds and
    hundreds of slides shot from the air but I can't remember ever seeing
    any other pictures I shot with it. Obviously it stayed in my flight
    kit all the time.

    Today, with digital cameras, I almost always have one with me. I never
    had a cell phone with a camera, in fact got rid of my cell phone...

    But I promise you, in my next life I'll carry a camera all the time.
    and maybe a tape recorder too....... ;-)



    BTW I had a Pug for awhile.. a 502.. loved it but the drivers door
    rusted out where the mirrow was attached... then the dealer went out
    of business and there wasn't another dealer within 300 miles of me...
    so I traded it on a Mercedes...
    Surf, Jun 24, 2008
Ask a Question

Want to reply to this thread or ask your own question?

You'll need to choose a username for the site, which only take a couple of moments (here). After that, you can post your question and our members will help you out.