THE GROWN-UP DEUX CHEVAUX

Classics Monthly - - Citroën Dyane -

Even Citroën fans are di­vided as to whether the Dyane was a pro­posed re­place­ment for the orig­i­nal 2CV or sim­ply an at­tempt to fill the per­ceived gap be­tween the ba­sic 2CV and the more up­mar­ket Ami, which although based on the 2CV chas­sis and drivetrain was rather more main­stream. Its ge­n­e­sis came with the ac­qui­si­tion by Citroën of Pan­hard in 1964, where­upon the Pan­hard de­sign team was asked to ex­er­cise its flair in up­dat­ing the 2CV. it was also the Pan­hard con­nec­tion which pro­vided the car's name, the firm hav­ing reg­is­tered ‘Dyane’ when nam­ing its own Dyna.

Although the shape was recog­nis­ably sim­i­lar, the de­tails were more con­tem­po­rary, with the head­lights now in­cor­po­rated into the wings and the car now in­cluded a full height hatch­back rear.

Ini­tially the Dyane was of­fered with the 2CV’s 425cc, 22 bhp en­gine, later up­graded to the 602cc ‘M4’ en­gine as found in the Ami, good for 28 bhp. This was later re­placed by the im­proved ‘M28’ unit from late 1968, good for 33 bhp.

To those out­side Citroën cir­cles, it was per­haps dif­fi­cult to see a gap in the range be­tween the 2CV and the Ami, but in re­al­ity the Dyane was a strong seller to those want­ing a car in the spirit of the 2CV but look­ing for a bit more com­fort. As Mike ex­plains, one of the first com­ments from any pas­sen­gers un­used to these cars is their sur­prise at how com­fort­able the Dyane is.

Proof of the Dyane’s pop­u­lar­ity comes with the fact that the car was pro­duced un­til 1983, with the Aca­di­ane van ver­sion cling­ing on un­be­liev­ably un­til 1987. In­deed, it was the pop­u­lar­ity of the Dyane which en­cour­aged Citroën to rein­tro­duce the 2CV here in 1974.

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