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Citroën (pronounced See-Troh-Enn) is a French automobile manufacturer, founded in 1919 by André Citroën, it was the world's first mass-production car company outside of the USA. Since 1976 it has been part of PSA Peugeot Citroën, and its headquarters is on rue Fructidor, Paris.

Originally a mass-market car maker with relatively straightforward designs, Citroën shocked the world in 1934 with the innovative Traction Avant, the world's first mass-production front wheel drive car (1934–56). Other significant models include the H Van (1947–81, "HY"), the 2CV (1948–90, "The Duck"), the DS (1955–1975, "Goddess") and the CX (1974–91).

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2000 citroen berlingoBERLINGO

1992 citroen bx 15BX 15

2008 citroen c-crosserC-CROSSER

2010 citroen c1C1

2003 citroen c2C2

2001 citroen c3C3

2010 citroen c3 picassoC3 PICASSO

2004 citroen c4C4

2012 citroen c4 aircrossC4 AIRCROSS

2008 citroen c4 picassoC4 PICASSO

2001 citroen c5C5

2006 citroen c6C6

2005 citroen c8C8

1981 citroen citroenCITROEN

2010 citroen ds3DS3

2008 citroen grand c4 picassoGRAND C4 PICASSO

2000 citroen jumperJUMPER

2000 citroen jumpyJUMPY

2009 citroen nemoNEMO

1998 citroen saxoSAXO

1993 citroen xantiaXANTIA

2000 citroen xmXM

1999 citroen xsaraXSARA

2000 citroen xsara picassoXSARA PICASSO

1993 citroen zxZX

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Early years

André Citroën built armaments for France during World War I and after the war he had a factory and no product. In 1919, the business started to produce automobiles, beginning with the conventional type A. The Type A was designed by Jules Salomon, Chief Design Officer from Le Zèbre.

Citroën was a keen marketer—he used the Eiffel Tower as the world's largest advertising sign, as recorded in the Guinness Book of Records.[citation needed] He also sponsored expeditions in Asia (Croisière Jaune) and Africa (Croisière Noire), intended to demonstrate the potential for motor vehicles equipped with the Kégresse track system to cross inhospitable regions. The expeditions conveyed scientists and journalists.

In 1924, Citroën began a business relationship with American engineer Edward G. Budd. From 1899, Budd had worked to develop stainless steel bodies for railroad cars, for the Pullman in particular. Budd went on to manufacture steel bodies for many automakers, Dodge being his first big auto client. In 1928, Citroën introduced the first all-steel body in Europe.[citation needed]

The cars were initially successful in the marketplace, but soon competitors (who were still using a wooden structure for their bodies), introduced new body designs. Citroën did not redesign the bodies of his cars. Citroëns still sold in large quantities in spite of not changing the body design, but the car's low price was the main selling point and Citroën experienced heavy losses.[citation needed]

In an attempt to remedy the situation, Citroën developed the Traction Avant. The Traction Avant had three revolutionary features: a unitary body with no separate frame, front wheel independent suspension, and front wheel drive. Citroën commissioned Budd to create a prototype, which evolved into the 7 horsepower (CV), 32hp (24kW) Traction Avant of 1934.

In 1933, Citroën also introduced the Rosalie, a passenger car with the world’s first commercially available diesel engine developed with Harry Ricardo.

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