2019 Shannons Melbourne Summer Classic Auction
1948 Citroen Light 15 Saloon
This lot is no longer available
A landmark in the history of the motor car, Citroën's Traction Avant was launched in 1934 with a long list of innovative features. From its front-wheel drive layout, monocoque construction, hydraulic brakes, independent front suspension, rack and pinion steering and torsion bars to the modern, low-slung styling devoid of running boards or superfluous ornamentation, the new model was a trendsetter that ultimately remained in production for more than two decades. Although offered in a myriad of different body types and mechanical specifications, the original 11CV (or Light 15 as it was dubbed in England) with the 1911cc four-cylinder engine and Berline (saloon) coachwork proved the most enduring. Post-war cars were updated with wing-mounted indicators, a larger boot and straight bumpers in 1952, while the 11D model of 1955 had 60 horsepower thanks to repositioned rockers, improving acceleration and top speed. Tractions were also built in Belgium and in England at Slough, the latter with Lucas 12-volt electrics, leather upholstery and were regarded as better equipped than their French counterparts. With a cult following around the world, the Traction Avant is an excellent proposition as a classic car today - the excellent ride, handling and braking mean it can be enjoyed in company with modern traffic - while a healthy club scene in Australia ensures plenty of events and support for the owner.