Only 32,000 kilometres from new,1926 Voisin C7 ‘Lumineuse’ Saloon  Chassis no. 15262
Lot 139
Only 32,000 kilometres from new, 1926 Voisin C7 ‘Lumineuse’ Saloon
Chassis no. 15262
€ 90,000 - 160,000
US$ 100,000 - 180,000

Lot Details
Only 32,000 kilometres from new,1926 Voisin C7 ‘Lumineuse’ Saloon  Chassis no. 15262 Only 32,000 kilometres from new,1926 Voisin C7 ‘Lumineuse’ Saloon  Chassis no. 15262 Only 32,000 kilometres from new,1926 Voisin C7 ‘Lumineuse’ Saloon  Chassis no. 15262 Only 32,000 kilometres from new,1926 Voisin C7 ‘Lumineuse’ Saloon  Chassis no. 15262 Only 32,000 kilometres from new,1926 Voisin C7 ‘Lumineuse’ Saloon  Chassis no. 15262 Only 32,000 kilometres from new,1926 Voisin C7 ‘Lumineuse’ Saloon  Chassis no. 15262 Only 32,000 kilometres from new,1926 Voisin C7 ‘Lumineuse’ Saloon  Chassis no. 15262 Only 32,000 kilometres from new,1926 Voisin C7 ‘Lumineuse’ Saloon  Chassis no. 15262 Only 32,000 kilometres from new,1926 Voisin C7 ‘Lumineuse’ Saloon  Chassis no. 15262 Only 32,000 kilometres from new,1926 Voisin C7 ‘Lumineuse’ Saloon  Chassis no. 15262 Only 32,000 kilometres from new,1926 Voisin C7 ‘Lumineuse’ Saloon  Chassis no. 15262 Only 32,000 kilometres from new,1926 Voisin C7 ‘Lumineuse’ Saloon  Chassis no. 15262 Only 32,000 kilometres from new,1926 Voisin C7 ‘Lumineuse’ Saloon  Chassis no. 15262 Only 32,000 kilometres from new,1926 Voisin C7 ‘Lumineuse’ Saloon  Chassis no. 15262
Only 32,000 kilometres from new
1926 Voisin C7 ‘Lumineuse’ Saloon
Chassis no. 15262
On ne connaît de nos jours que trois Voisin C7 à carrosserie « Lumineuse » : une au Musée National de l’Automobile-Collection Schlumpf, une dans un musée autrichien et celle-ci, illustrée dans l’ouvrage de Pascal Courtault, « Automobiles Voisin ». La carrosserie entièrement tôlée en aluminium est typiquement Voisin avec ses vitrages démontables, trois coffres à bagages et un superbe intérieur
« Art déco ».

La voiture sur châssis n° 15262 sorti d’usine en 1926 fut achetée neuve pour son usage personnel par Mme R… résidant dans un château près d’Orléans qui conserva cette Voisin toute sa vie. Après son décès, la voiture qui affichait au compteur 30 000 km seulement fut vendue par la famille en 1979 à un grand collectionneur.

Revendue il y a quelques années, elle ne fut repeinte que partiellement là où c’était nécessaire. Ce travail fut accompli avec compétence et savoir-faire par les Ets Tessier. Elle a conservé son intérieur d’origine et doit être considérée comme un authentique témoin de son temps d’une rareté exceptionnelle à tous points de vue. Survivante d’une marque ayant produit les automobiles parmi les plus originales de tous les temps, cette C7 « Lumineuse » qui affiche un état d’origine introuvable est la parfaite expression du génie créatif de son légendaire concepteur.




Gabriel Voisin was perhaps France’s greatest aviation pioneer. In 1907 he built the first practical aeroplane capable of leaving the ground under its own power, and his Avions Voisin company was the first mass producer of aircraft in the world. But the end of WWI in 1918 brought a halt to Voisin’s aviation ventures and forced him to look elsewhere to provide employment for his workforce.

After experimenting with motorised bicycles and a light two-seater economy car, Voisin decided to produce an automobile that would be unrivalled for prestige, comfort and speed. Developed for André Citroën from whom Gabriel Voisin purchased the design, the resulting Knight sleeve valve-engined 4.0-litre Voisin M1 appeared in 1919. It was one of the first truly modern cars to be delivered after the Armistice and in 1920 was re-designated ‘C1’ in honour of Gabriel Voisin’s dead brother Charles, though the mechanical specification remained the same. A special version took part in speed trails and hill climbs to demonstrate the speed and economy of the Voisin chassis, and in 1921 a C1 chassis taken straight off the production line and fitted with a skimpy aluminium body, beat the legendary Blue Train from Paris to Nice by six hours.

Voisin kept faith with the sleeve valve engine, developing the design himself and extending it to the smaller models in the range. The work of his engineer, Marius Bernard, the first of these small Voisins was the 1,243cc 8CV C4 of 1921, which was later enlarged to 1,328cc (C4S) and finally to 1,550cc, in which 10CV form it was known as the C7. Although the C4 had only three speeds in the gearbox, this was more than compensated for by the sleeve valve engine’s torque and the fact that lightweight coachwork was another of Voisin’s obsessions. These attributes made the smaller Voisins highly effective competition cars, and one of them was driven by Dominic Lamberjack from Paris to Milan, beating the Orient Express to provide its manufacturer with much valuable publicity.
One of Gabriel Voisin’s many famous design innovations is the ‘Lumineuse’ (‘luminous’) style of coachwork that combined unusually large window openings with striking angular contours. The aircraft-inspired construction used aluminium panels attached to a multiplicity of wooden ribs, making the body strong yet exceptionally light in weight. Many associated patents were filed, including for the door and window mechanisms and the horn controls.

Locating the luggage compartments at either side, well within the wheelbase, helped to centralise the mass of the car, increasing stability. The centre of gravity’s location and the role of aerodynamics were of the utmost importance to Gabriel Voisin, who, thanks to his prior aeronautical experience, was among the first to take them into consideration when designing an automobile. It is said that couturier Paul Poiret designed the first Art Deco-style fabrics specifically to be used in Voisin’s Lumineuse-bodied models.

The Voisins’ advanced technology, unconventional looks and necessarily high price made them particularly popular with royalty, artists and other celebrities. The Lumineuse style was favoured by some of the most famous artists of the day, including Rudolph Valentino, Maurice Chevalier and Josephine Baker. Radical architect Le Corbusier often included his Lumineuse in photographs of buildings he had designed; indeed, it is even said that its turning radius influenced the layout of his Villa Savoie.

Today, only three Lumineuse-bodied Voisin C7s are known: one is in the Schlumpf Museum, another in an Austrian Museum and this one, which is featured in the book ‘Automobiles Voisin’ by Pascal Courtault. The bodywork is constructed entirely of aluminium in the Voisin manner, featuring removable windows, three luggage compartments and a lovely Art Deco interior.

Chassis number ‘15262’ left the factory in 1926 and was purchased new for her personal use by a lady (‘Mme R’) who lived in a chateau near Orléans and kept the Voisin for her entire life. After her death, the car, which had only 30,000 kilometres on the odometer at that time, was sold by the family in 1979 to a prominent collector. It was sold again a few years ago and only partially repainted wherever necessary, this excellent work being carried out by marque experts, Établissements Tessier. It has retained its original interior and must be considered as a ‘time warp’ example of an already exceedingly rare motor car.

A rare survivor of a marque responsible for some of the most original cars of all time, this rare and completely original C7 Lumineuse is, in many respects, a perfect automotive expression of its legendary designer and engineer’s creative genius.
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