Bonhams : 1968 Citroën DS21 Décapotable Chassis no. 4609606 Engine no. 0318007358
1968 Citroën DS21 Décapotable  Chassis no. 4609606 Engine no. 0318007358

This lot has been removed from the website, please contact customer services for more information

Lot 12
1968 Citroën DS21 Décapotable
Coachwork by Henri Chapron Chassis no. 4609606 Engine no. 0318007358

Sold for € 207,000 (US$ 228,217) inc. premium
1968 Citroën DS21 Décapotable
Coachwork by Henri Chapron

Chassis no. 4609606
Engine no. 0318007358
• Open headlight version with desirable green LHM hydraulic fluid
• All matching numbers (chassis, body, engine)
• Fully restored to concours condition 1990-1993
• Restoration bills available
• Registered in France

Footnotes

  • Just as it had done 21 years previously with the revolutionary Traction Avant, Citroën stunned the world again in 1955 with the launch of the strikingly styled 'DS'. Beneath the shark-like newcomer's aerodynamically efficient, low-drag bodyshell there was all-independent, self-levelling, hydro-pneumatic suspension plus power-operated brakes, clutch, and steering.

    The project had been initiated in the 1930s by the company's managing director, Pierre-Jules Boulanger, and would be brought to fruition by designers Andre Lefebvre, previously with Voisin and Renault, and Flaminio Bertoni, who had worked on the styling of the pre-war Traction Avant. Part of Boulanger's brief had been that the proposed 'VGD' (Voiture de Grand Diffusion or Mass Market Car) should be capable of affording a comfortable ride over sub-standard rural roads while remaining stable at sustained high speeds on the Autoroutes. The solution to these seemingly incompatible requirements was the famous hydro-pneumatic suspension, suggested by Citroën engineer Paul Mages. No European car would match the DS's ride quality for several years, the fundamental soundness of Citroën's ahead-of-its-time hydro-pneumatic suspension being demonstrated by its survival until recently in top-of-the-range models.

    In September 1965 the DS's original 1,911cc, overhead-valve, long-stroke engine – inherited from the Traction Avant - was replaced by a short-stroke 1,985cc unit, also available in 2,175cc and 2,347cc versions, while other DS developments included swivelling headlights, fuel injection and a five-speed gearbox. Other models offered alongside the original DS were the ID (a simplified, cheaper version), the cavernous Safari estate and the two-door Décapotable (convertible), the latter boasting coachwork by Henri Chapron. Chapron's first convertibles had been produced independently of Citroën but the factory eventually gave the project its blessing. Built by Chapron, Citroën's own Décapotables were erected on the longer, stronger chassis of the ID Break (Estate). In total, 1,365 usine (factory) convertibles were made with either the DS19 or DS21 engine between 1960 and 1971, while Chapron built a further 389 of his own, the last in 1973.

    Built in 1967 and first registered in 1968, this matching-numbers DS 21 Décapotable has the most desirable hydraulic semi-automatic gearbox and retains its original registration, '6394 UY 75'. We're advised by the vendor that this DS remained with the first owner until 1988 when it was sold to a Parisian professor of psychology, Mr Ike Benzakein. This car has belonged to only two families since it left the factory.

    In 1990, Mr Benzakein commenced a restoration to the highest standard; the chassis, body, engine, transmission, hydraulics, interior, and convertible hood all being restored to 'as new' condition, while the car was repainted in Bleu Antartique, a colour that was available in 1967. Today, this DS remains in outstanding condition; fastidiously maintained, it runs and drives superbly. Restoration bills are on file and the car also comes with its original plates and a French Carte Grise. An eye-catcher at any gathering, this magnificent and rare piece of French motoring history is 'on the button' and ready to be enjoyed.

Saleroom notices

  • Please note that information on file from Citroen and Chapron separately conflicts as to the year of manufacture and whether it is a 1968 or 1969 car.
Contacts
1968 Citroën DS21 Décapotable  Chassis no. 4609606 Engine no. 0318007358
1968 Citroën DS21 Décapotable  Chassis no. 4609606 Engine no. 0318007358
1968 Citroën DS21 Décapotable  Chassis no. 4609606 Engine no. 0318007358
1968 Citroën DS21 Décapotable  Chassis no. 4609606 Engine no. 0318007358
1968 Citroën DS21 Décapotable  Chassis no. 4609606 Engine no. 0318007358
1968 Citroën DS21 Décapotable  Chassis no. 4609606 Engine no. 0318007358
1968 Citroën DS21 Décapotable  Chassis no. 4609606 Engine no. 0318007358
1968 Citroën DS21 Décapotable  Chassis no. 4609606 Engine no. 0318007358
1968 Citroën DS21 Décapotable  Chassis no. 4609606 Engine no. 0318007358
1968 Citroën DS21 Décapotable  Chassis no. 4609606 Engine no. 0318007358
1968 Citroën DS21 Décapotable  Chassis no. 4609606 Engine no. 0318007358
1968 Citroën DS21 Décapotable  Chassis no. 4609606 Engine no. 0318007358
1968 Citroën DS21 Décapotable  Chassis no. 4609606 Engine no. 0318007358
1968 Citroën DS21 Décapotable  Chassis no. 4609606 Engine no. 0318007358
1968 Citroën DS21 Décapotable  Chassis no. 4609606 Engine no. 0318007358
1968 Citroën DS21 Décapotable  Chassis no. 4609606 Engine no. 0318007358
1968 Citroën DS21 Décapotable  Chassis no. 4609606 Engine no. 0318007358
1968 Citroën DS21 Décapotable  Chassis no. 4609606 Engine no. 0318007358
1968 Citroën DS21 Décapotable  Chassis no. 4609606 Engine no. 0318007358
1968 Citroën DS21 Décapotable  Chassis no. 4609606 Engine no. 0318007358
1968 Citroën DS21 Décapotable  Chassis no. 4609606 Engine no. 0318007358
1968 Citroën DS21 Décapotable  Chassis no. 4609606 Engine no. 0318007358
1968 Citroën DS21 Décapotable  Chassis no. 4609606 Engine no. 0318007358
1968 Citroën DS21 Décapotable  Chassis no. 4609606 Engine no. 0318007358
1968 Citroën DS21 Décapotable  Chassis no. 4609606 Engine no. 0318007358
1968 Citroën DS21 Décapotable  Chassis no. 4609606 Engine no. 0318007358
1968 Citroën DS21 Décapotable  Chassis no. 4609606 Engine no. 0318007358
1968 Citroën DS21 Décapotable  Chassis no. 4609606 Engine no. 0318007358
1968 Citroën DS21 Décapotable  Chassis no. 4609606 Engine no. 0318007358
1968 Citroën DS21 Décapotable  Chassis no. 4609606 Engine no. 0318007358
1968 Citroën DS21 Décapotable  Chassis no. 4609606 Engine no. 0318007358
1968 Citroën DS21 Décapotable  Chassis no. 4609606 Engine no. 0318007358
1968 Citroën DS21 Décapotable  Chassis no. 4609606 Engine no. 0318007358
1968 Citroën DS21 Décapotable  Chassis no. 4609606 Engine no. 0318007358
Auction information

This auction is now finished. If you are interested in consigning in future auctions, please contact the specialist department. If you have queries about lots purchased in this auction, please contact customer services.

Buyers' Obligations

ALL BIDDERS MUST AGREE THAT THEY HAVE READ AND UNDERSTOOD BONHAMS' CONDITIONS OF SALE AND AGREE TO BE BOUND BY THEM, AND AGREE TO PAY THE BUYER'S PREMIUM AND ANY OTHER CHARGES MENTIONED IN THE NOTICE TO BIDDERS. THIS AFFECTS THE BIDDERS LEGAL RIGHTS.

If you have any complaints or questions about the Conditions of Sale, please contact your nearest customer services team.

Buyers' Premium and Charges

Buyers' Premium and Charges for Motor Cars & Motorcycles

Buyer's Premium Rates
15% of the Hammer Price

TVA at the current rate of 21% will be added to the Buyer's Premium and charges.

Bonhams is the guarantor of the customs duties and taxes clearance: consequently, these motor cars cannot be released to the buyer or his transporter immediately after the sale.

Shipping Notices

For information and estimates on domestic and international shipping as well as export licenses please contact Bonhams Shipping Department.