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To stay magical, the tourist 2CV becoming electric


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From the outside, nothing differentiates this 2CV to the millions of others produced by Citroën. But its silence betrays a secret: it was converted to electricity to continue to carry tourists to Paris, without polluting.

At the origin of this initiative, the company "4 roues sous 1 parapluie" that has developed its business since 2003 around an automobile treated worldwide to France. Thirteen years later, the company boasts 20,000 customers annually and maintains a forty 2CV park, which take turns driving a hundred drivers.
"We do a lot of custom things: the eternal Paris of famous monuments, the little known Paris, Paris by night, shopping excursions ... Paris is a fantastic playground," says Florent Dargnies, CEO of the company that pulls name the specifications of the 2CV. "When people see the car, they immediately smile. This is a car that facilitates the exchange and encounter, "says Mr. Dargnies, showing its ambition to make 2CV in Paris' equivalent to the gondolas in Venice."
He began to dream of a fleet of 400 "Deuches" acid colors. Produced more than five million copies, they are not rare even if the rating goes up: from 5 000 to 6 000 for a model in good condition.
"Our wish is really to work with the City of Paris for this vehicle is not only accepted but participates in the picture, to the art of French living," he argues. He notes that "the 2CV ticks all the boxes" to welcome tourists. In particular, "it is convertible, so we have a very good view of the monuments." Only problem: the "problem of the engine" gasoline rather pollutant.


The origins of the two cylinders of the 2CV air cooled back indeed to the 1940s is due to emission standards that Citroen had resigned himself to cease production of its fetish model in 1990 after 42 years. Now the mayor of Paris Anne Hidalgo manifest the will to get rid of polluting vehicles, with a gradual entry into force banning traffic of older models.
The conversion of the electric 2CV could be the panacea, argues Mr. Dargnies who launched the project five years ago, leading from the front "research and development, production and administrative" or a real assault course before getting a license, a registration and a registration document, the end of 2015.
Having benefited Citroën green light, the electric 2CV Mr. Dargnies, which currently exists only one copy has a 16 kilowatt powertrain derived from the defunct Mia Electric Car Company, based in the Deux-Sèvres.
The battery allows a range of 80 km, which is "more than enough for city traffic," notes Dargnies. It recharges in three hours via a household mains. The car retains its gearbox with the lever "coat rack" and can reach 110 km / h. A battery of electronic gauge has found its place under the dashboard passenger side, as well as the integrated power plug, instead of the tip of the fuel tank. Green, electric 2CV is adorned with a sticker "21", a nod to the World Climate Conference (COP21), the margins of which it was submitted. A silent 2CV is it still a 2CV while vocalizing its small engine marked generations of French? Mr. Dargnies agrees that "noise is part of the charm of the car," as well as its round shape and elastic suspensions. It provides work to "recreate the sound depending on the speed of the car" through the speakers, as already exists on some BMW and Renault. "It does not seem to be the most complicated," he said.