Lot 169

Arizona 2024

1964 Citroën DS 19 Décapotable by Chapron

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$123,200 USD | Sold

United States Flag | Phoenix, Arizona

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Chassis No.
4272040
Engine No.
0213012706
Documents
US Title
  • Offered from single-family ownership since 1977
  • One of the best-known examples of this rare model in the United States
  • Restored and maintained by noted California DS specialists
  • Winner of the 2017 Carmel-by-the-Sea Concours on the Avenue Michael Furman Artist's Choice Award
  • Wonderfully comfortable and a pleasure to drive
  • Believed to be one of fewer than 1,400 examples produced by Chapron from 1960 through 1972
  • The beautifully eccentric and exclusive coachbuilt pinnacle of DS production

Citröen’s magnificent DS reached its zenith with the coachbuilt Décapotable, an exclusive cabriolet built by the famed Henri Chapron shops from 1960 through 1972, of which fewer than 1,400 examples are believed to have been built.

The DS 19 Décapotable offered here was acquired in 1977 by the late owner, a renowned Bay Area architectural glass and stained-glass artist who had appreciated the DS since his college years. He had fallen in love with the Décapotable and, after two years of hunting, acquired this one, which had been traded into Executive Motors by its original owner on a Citröen SM. “I traded my nice low-mileage wagon and all the money I had to buy the Chapron-bodied DS cabriolet…I just had to have it,” he noted in an article in the August 2018 issue of Sports Car Digest. “I was in graduate school at the time and working part-time for architects and interior designers as a draftsman. I had just enough money left to buy a bottle of French champagne as a gift to the owner of Executive Motors as a token of my appreciation, as I had finally bought the car I had dreamed about. It is in my opinion one of the most beautiful four-seat convertibles ever made. An eccentric and beautiful car, perfect for an artist!”

After the car had been used as daily transportation for several years, it was parked in his glass studio, where it remained until he undertook a restoration in the mid-1980s in the hands of well-known Citröen specialists Jacque Abot, Lon Price, and Henry Hanzel. Mr. Price has continued to minister to the DS 19 as needed over the last three decades. With that excellent maintenance it has been regularly enjoyed, appearing at many local and regional shows and events, and being used to shuttle musicians to recording studios and Northern California festivals. Notably, at the 2017 Carmel-by-the-Sea Concours on the Avenue, the Citröen won the Michael Furman Artist's Choice Award, which recognizes "the entry that exudes design and aesthetic excellence that satisfy an artist's eye."

Accompanied by a history file including articles, photographs, and assorted service records from the 1980s to the present, the car is a magnificent pleasure to drive, with its four-speed manual transmission, power steering and brakes, and functional, adjustable suspension. Any DS Décapotable is a rarity, but to find one so consistently well-loved and maintained, in appreciative and caring hands, is quite a treat. This is a car that deserves a fine new caretaker, who will enjoy it exactly as much as one artist did for the last 45 years.