Terminal Pig Nose? 1967 Citroen HY

With our choices limited to what some people would call “credit card money”, there are some vehicles that simply won’t show up on these pages. Ferraris, Rolls Royces, and Tatras are among the cars that are desirable, rare, luxurious, or a combination of those that makes base prices for a desirable example start at the five figure level. While it’s not as luxurious or exclusive as some of the exotics, the Citroen HY is very desirable for its quirky looks and innovative approach to a box on wheels. However, if you’re willing to live with a little (perhaps a lot) of rust, you can pick up this 1967 Citroen HY van in Willits, CA, a couple of hours north of San Francisco, for a mere $3900.

1967 Citroen HY left front

The French called these nez-de-cochon, or pig nose, and it’s surprising the name didn’t stick in English as well. Innovative Citroen engineers applied technology from cars and airplanes to design this van; namely, the engine, lights and speedometer came from Citroen’s own cars, while the corrugated paneling was inspired by German Junkers aircraft, according to internet lore. The van is said to run well, and comes complete with a primitive motorhome interior, including wood paneled floors and a cast iron cooker.

1967 Citroen HY rust

So what’s the catch? Well, here’s a picture to give a hint of that. The seller says the rust in the floorpan may well be terminal. And it’s tricky, because some of the subfloor is corrugated metal. Could it be possible to do a quick-and-dirty with corrugated stock from the hardware store? This one appears to be far gone enough that even if you cut some corners, it’s still a victory over the cancer.

1967 Citroen HY right rear

It’s anti-style, like someone took a tin shed or a quonset hut and put it on wheels. Isn’t it funny how vehicles that have no deliberate effort at styling end up being icons? Since you’re spending all your time on beating the rust monkey at its own game, you won’t have much left for the exterior – so why not stick on a couple of La Poste French postal service stickers on the sides and call it good?

1967 Citroen HY interior

The interior is pretty interesting, with seats that recall the 2CV. It sure looks crusty, to the extent that sanding and a careful rattle-can tidy up (how many car interiors can you do that in, anyways?) would have to help. With 50hp you’re not going to go very fast, so perhaps structural integrity is not as crucial. The seller has also included engine shots, but since the radiator dominates the engine shot, the only thing that’s informative is the yellow overspray. Would the allure of an H-van get you to take this on?


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2 Responses to “Terminal Pig Nose? 1967 Citroen HY”

  1. kww Says:

    It could be worse, there could be ‘Fred Flintstone’ brakes…

  2. Ulli Zesch Says:

    Interested in it. Contact details are ullizee@gmail.com

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