A package from my other make of car

It's an open secret that my automotive heart doesn't just beat for Saab alone. Brands like Alfa Romeo or Citroën also take a certain part. I have a lot in common with Citroën in particular. Privately and in the company, the vehicle fleet was once firmly in the hands of the brand with the double chevron. If Saab hadn't shown up, I might be writing a Citroën project today. I don't want to rule it out.

Citroën SM
Citroën SM

Citroën, my other car brand

The Citroën story began in early childhood on the red back seat of a DS. That influences a whole life, because anyone who got his automotive imprint in a DS will never get rid of it. Unfortunately, the DS only belonged to my neighbor and not to our family. Nevertheless, I had the pleasure of floating through the world with the DS on a weekly basis. Later, a CX replaced the goddess. Another followed, and it would probably have gone on endlessly if my neighbor hadn't moved back to Berlin in 1989. The Wall had fallen, Berlin was a free city, and the time spent in Bavarian asylum was over.

The neighbor left. But the floating remained.

Many years later I finally started to levitate myself. After I had spontaneously sunk my Mazda RX 7 in a ditch in Upper Bavaria, I ran into a BX. An innovative car whose vision had never been fully understood in Germany. My Citroën dealer recognized the opportunities that arose, and it wasn't just a Citroën. Many more followed, including the odd limited edition model I should never have sold.

Sporty Citroën cockpit
Sporty Citroën cockpit

I still like the brand today as it saved a few things over time which I appreciate. Citroën is far from the premium claim of some manufacturers, but the cars are affordable, unpretentious and have a high utility value. The lack of vanity is something that is hard to find these days. Something that, along with ingenious innovations, has always been part of the core of the brand.

Because which brand already afforded the balancing act between 2CV and DS

Now, after many years, there is a Citroën in the family again. A Berlingo - which a friend said driving it was like a holiday on wheels - enriches our fleet. The decision was a return to basics that we have never looked back on. The Berlingo is an uncomplicated, relaxed car in the best brand tradition. It slows down everyday life, is cheap to maintain and reliable.

Continuous strip of lights at the rear - really special
Continuous strip of lights at the rear - really special

Incidentally, more reliable than my German premium make, which I currently (still) use as a company car.

And now? A few months ago I received a package from my other brand of car. Then came the new building, the move, the package stayed put. It was almost forgotten, other things came to the fore. Now it's back on my desk.

So go ahead, let's finally unpack it

Of course, there is something from Citroën in it, and this week I invite the readers to a short trip to the brand with the double chevron. I promise it will be unconventional, entertaining and pleasantly analogue. Because our friends on the other side of the Rhine always do things differently and come up with good ideas. You just have to want to get involved.

22 thoughts on "A package from my other make of car"

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    If Tom wants to write about Citroen he should do it. I would like to read it.

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    I'm excited like a streak. There is so much that can be said about Citroën. Anyone who thinks the story "only begins" with the DS should read up on the Citroën Traction Avant (1934 — 1957).

    A model variant was the Commerciale with a large tailgate. You can't help but draw parallels with a Saab 9000. There is around half a century between the Commerciale and the Saab.

    Really fascinating.

    I last saw the Traction Avant in person almost 14 years ago on Bornholm. In Rønne there were two specimens in the condition of new cars in a cul-de-sac and at right angles to each other. The setting (cobblestone streets and older buildings) was perfect. Of course I pulled out the camera...

    A very nice older lady came up, spoke to me and revealed that she was the widow and owner.
    The longer black 4-door was the family car. The shorter, reed-green two-door car, which has 90 hp, has also been used in rallies and with great success.

    The lady was very energetic and mentally fit, the conversation was fluent in English. She also complained that her children (probably 60+) were not interested in the cars. I expressed surprise and regret, thanked her warmly for the interview and said goodbye. Today and as I write this, I get the feeling that I've done a lot wrong in several ways.

    I would like one of the two. She probably would have liked to have at least one of the two in the hands of someone who would like to have him while he was still alive. The perfect match. I was totally hooked...

    As a mitigating circumstance, I can only cite the fact that I was the new father of a firstborn and the family planning was not yet over. Acquiring a classic car in exceptional condition was beyond my imagination. And yet, it will rankle me for life that I didn't even ask for a price.

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    My father had a BX, it's really unfair, in hindsight it was not unlike a SAAB. But since you could still get a new SAABe back then, we would never have thought of keeping it. Today we think a little differently about it. Otherwise my/our Citroen world was influenced by the films with Louis de Funès.

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    It's probably because of my young age that I can't do too much with the vintage French cars, even though I think a DS is beautiful. But since I like rare cars that you can't find on every corner, I would really like a C6, Vel Satis or even Avantime. I also find the new DS models quite beautiful and I would prefer them to a German everywhere car. Therefore gladly more about Citroen.

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    (Almost) daily a fine SAAB menu and now as an intermediate course an amuse-gueule from Citroën - just great Tom!
    Our own automotive world started with an MGA 1600 Mk II Bj. 1962, which I as a student soon could no longer afford because of the many repairs.
    Then followed almost the entire Renault range from R4 to R17 Coupé and then came the hydropneumatic Citroëns: 3 x BX from 90 - 150 hp and as the crowning glory the XM. So there were no more bad roads. However, the reliability of the two SAABs that accompany us today was lacking.
    I am already very excited.
    Greetings all around.

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    Lizi also comes out as a big fan of Citröen. In the family there were various ZX, BX and CX Turbo with all the stories that went with them. A Xantia accompanied me personally for a few years. Then it became quiet around the double angle….
    And today - with all my love for Saab - I find it very difficult to look away from some XM or C6 ads.. Unthinkable, one day I will find a lemony workshop that lives the brand with the same passion as our Saab companies do.... Personally, I also find the path of DS very exciting.

    Have a nice rest of the Sunday

    The Lizi

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    I like Citroën too. I'd like a C6, but I'm a bit afraid of the follow-up and maintenance costs.

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      Your fear is not unfounded Stefan. The C6 is technically almost a space shuttle. But a beautiful one.

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    Great how many Citroenists or sympathizers are on the road here. Didn't Tomm think Volvo would be the second topic for the blog? I'm just assuming now that Citroen would have the more interesting intersection. Or?

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      Probably yes. I'm still very surprised at the reactions. Positive.

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      I see it that way too, Stefan Paul.

      Also and although I also have an affinity for Volvo. Saab and Citroën fits. And even before the Gothenburgers, I would rather read about Alfa Romeo ...
      Saab, Citroën and Alfa, it would be a really great, European international festival of automotive engineering.

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      With so many positive comments, what else is there to say? As for the interface, I agree completely.

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        mobile always notifies me when an ID or DS is newly advertised,
        preferably pastel colors!
        But which one should I give up so as not to get into conflicts at home?
        And again all the effort, also financial, until such a good piece is reliable and visually attractive again?
        Meanwhile I keep dreaming......

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    Weird parallels...
    In GDR times there were long waiting lists for cars. At that time, my grandfather had an order for a Lada and in 1981 he had the opportunity to exchange the Lada order for a Citroën GSA order. In addition to Mazda 323 and VW Golf, the GDR had just ordered a contingent of Citroën GSA to internationalize the streetscape.
    This car was like from another planet. With hydropneumatic chassis, magnifying speedometer, double carburetor, satellite controls, a single windscreen wiper!, plush sofa inside and the robust 4-cylinder boxer sound, I was blown away by this car as a little boy of 8 years old.
    When my grandfather died in 1985, my father took over the Citroen and sold his Trabbi.
    Apart from the status, driving such a car in the GDR was incredibly convenient compared to other vehicles. After reunification, our family kept buying Citroens and I still have a great deal of sympathy for the brand. Unfortunately, the avant-garde of the brand has fallen by the wayside in recent years and is no longer noticeable.
    I had known SAAB as a brand since 1985 and after the reunification I kept glancing over at these unusual cars.
    I remained loyal to Citroen until 2015 and I was about to buy a used C6 when I came across a beautiful 900 convertible.
    The time was right to change, also and precisely because of the demise of SAAB Auto in Sweden a few years earlier.
    It then became a great 9-3 OG Limited Edition. A beautiful car with the classic SAAB line.

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    Tom and Citroën. That's a surprise. I wouldn't have believed it. I would have guessed he was secretly putting a Porsche in the garage. But, ok, I find that inspiring. I like the double angle brand, so give it to me.

    By the way: Lemon or Citroën 🙂

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      There are too many Porsches in my area, I'm sure that won't happen 😉

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    brand sacrifice

    It's great that the blog and readers aren't counted among them. For me personally, this is exactly what makes the enthusiasm for Saab really credible.

    And Citroën? Of course, if I had an SM, a DS or both, I would never give them back. And the Berlingo? For me, in a current car, it embodies everything that used to be a Volvo Duett in Sweden, which I've already raved about here...

    However, I still didn't think that Tom could have a Berlingo. Really funny 😉

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      Of course, Citroen and Saab go very well together. Brands for non-conformists and individualists.
      I drove 2 Ducks and 2 GS until I bought a new 900 Turbo convertible in 1989 which I still have.
      I no longer have the Citroens, but I do have a Volvo V40 T4, the other kindred spirit to Saab.
      What I never had and never wanted: VW, BMW, Mercedes (except possibly Unimog). I had a Ford bathtub (P3) when I was a student.

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    Agree 100%. I have driven two C5 Tourers. One with steel springs, one with Hydractiv chassis. The driving comfort of the latter was a little better than in my current SAAB 9-3 Vector, but you could tell that Citroën didn't know what to do with its unique selling point. The C5 was a beautiful car! The middle trim level contained everything you could wish for, even the “night panel”; plus comfortable seats and plenty of space. With the clarity of the operation, one could have learned from SAAB.

    The design of this series was pleasantly tidy and hardly French, as has been experienced time and again over the past 25 years. In addition to the Easter egg that describes RoLand, Renault also had the Vel Satis. It used to be different, the XM with its distinctive wedge shape bears witness to this. But also the BX, which was originally drawn as a Volvo model. Practical, spacious, modern. Bonnet and tailgate were made of fiberglass because of the weight. Our neighbors drove a red TRD.

    I am very excited about the lemon series! And I allow myself a link to a wonderful little film with which the brand made fun of itself: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2rA-BSuog7o

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    Citroen, I can keep up with that, I grew up with 2CV and Ami 6! The trips to Italy and England in the Ami 6 are unforgettable. The 602cc big block 2 cylinders with 26 or 29 hp worked at the front and the children whined at the back. Four people and luggage, the Ami 6 Break managed it without any problems.
    It was logical that my first car was a 2CV, the nickname duck was not present in Switzerland, with us it was a Döschwo. Later I drove a CX 2400 Pallas, wonderful vehicle, with a magnifying speedometer and a spherical ashtray.
    The Citroen brochures I collected in the 70s and 80s include around 50 pieces, including the rare glossy brochure from the SM.
    SM....., look at the spaceship today and think that this incredible car came out in the 1970's. A car like from another planet. For me only comparable to the Saab 9-5NG!

    Imagine a cooperation Citroen / Saab!? What kind of cars would that have produced…..

    Happy Sunday everyone!

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    How surprising is that today? Citroen would be the only alternative I can think of next to Saab. And now Tom comes out and has a Berlingo in the family. Awesome - I'm really excited!

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    oh how gratifying :)) Now that I've already driven the 7th Citroen, I'm looking forward to the coming week. There were many nice models and some very practical (but I mean ugly ones). My old Xsara Picasso was one of those - room for 2 washing machines in a row, but that egg shape - horrid. Unfortunately (because Peugeot wants it that way) there is still no convertible from the double angle. What I also never understood – this mega-button-operation-thingy in the Visa… never mind… May the new week start soon :)))

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