The Charron marque took its name from Fernand Charron, the 'C' in CGV. Established at Puteaux, Seine in 1901, CGV took its initials from those of its three founders, the others being Léonce Girardot and Émile Voigt, all of whom had been successful racing drivers for Panhard. Of the trio, Charron had enjoyed the greatest success, winning the Marseilles-Nice and Paris-Amsterdam-Paris races in 1898 as well as the inaugural Gordon Bennett Cup of 1901. Prior to the foundation of CGV, Charron and Girardot had been partners in a Panhard dealership and CGV's first automobiles were designed along similar lines, albeit noticeably lower-slung.
CGV soon acquired a reputation for quality and an equally distinguished clientele, which included the King of Portugal, various lesser European royals and members of the British aristocracy. It was imported into the USA and sold there as the 'American CGV' while a limited number were actually assembled in New York and delivered with locally built coachwork. Despite CGV's success, the partnership was in crisis: Girardot and Voigt left to pursue other projects and from 1907 the cars were badged as 'Charron', continuing as such when Fernand Charron left to join Clément-Bayard in 1908.
Rescued by financier Davison Dalziel and now nominally a British company, although its factory remained at Puteaux, Automobiles Charron Ltd offered a range featuring Renault-style dashboard radiators for 1909, by which time most models had shaft drive. An important addition to the range for 1914 was the Charronette cyclecar. Produced initially with an 845cc four-cylinder engine, it gained a 1,057cc unit and front-mounted radiator after WWI. Although the Charronette was relatively successful, the firm's larger models fared less well and by 1930 Charron was no longer in business.
Displaying a wonderful patina, this charming French light car runs and drives well by the standards of its day; the only known fault concerns reverse gear, which does not engage. The car is offered with an original sales brochure, Swansea V5C document and a complete spare engine (albeit one with a porous block) to be collected from Aylesbury, Buckinghamshire after the sale.