We already know about Citroën’s gorgeous curves and superior engineering, so it’s no surprise that some select models have been featured in more than a couple of appearances on the silver screen. With a Citroën, film directors don’t just get that classic, adventurous, old-school European look; they get the brand’s signature reliability and agility as well. Nowhere are these characteristics more apparent than in our first example on the list:
1. Citroën 2CV – For Your Eyes Only (1981)
Who can forget James Bond and Melina making a quick getaway in a yellow Citroën 2CV? Talk about iconic. Apart from being arguably one of the greatest car chases to ever be filmed in the 80s, the scene also took place on a beautiful country road near Madrid in Spain – at least, that’s where the scene supposedly took place. According to James Bond Lifestyle, it was actually filmed on an island in Greece.
Melina drives at first, but then crashes the car. So with his characteristic charm and calm-under-pressure, Bond takes the wheel and says, “You don’t mind if I drive, do you?”, after which they speed away from their pursuers. What follows are several scenes that truly put the 2CV’s capabilities and toughness to the test. Roger Moore is considered one of the most iconic portrayals of the Bond. Although he is seen as less of a killer, and more of an international playboy, Lottoland in their infographic ‘How to Fight Like James Bond’ note that he was the third most combative Bond, even ahead of Sean Connery. The Citroën chase perfectly displays Moore’s Bond’s resourcefulness and humor.
Check out Citroënvie’s gallery for a closer look at the 2CV.
2. Citroën DS – Thelma, Louise, et Chantal (2010)
From the suave stylings of Roger Moore’s Bond, we shift gears to a somewhat obscure French comedy that borrows its title from an American classic: Thelma, Louise, et Chantal. It’s about three women who set out on a road trip across rural France to attend the wedding of an ex. While the movie currently holds a rating of 5.6 out of 10 stars on IMDB, you’ll get to enjoy plenty of shots of a Citroën DS being driven through the gorgeous French countryside.
Check out Citroënvie’s gallery for a closer look at the DS.
3. Citroën HY-Van – Haute Tension (2003)
The hardworking HY-Van is perhaps the most unique out of all the Citroën models in that it’s the only large vehicle produced by the company. We won’t give away too much about this movie as it is a thriller with a twist. What we can say is that here, the HY-Van’s potentially menacing look is put to good use.
Check out Citroënvie’s gallery for a closer look at the HY-Van.
4. Citroën SM – The Longest Yard (1974)
This classic American action film stars the legendary Burt Reynolds as a pro quarterback who gets sent to prison, but not before the audience is treated to a car chase in which Reynolds outmaneuvers the police by thoroughly mistreating what started out as a pristine Citroën SM. And because it was the 70s, the entire chase plays out with Lynyrd Skynyrd’s Saturday Night Special cranking in the background.
Check out Citroënvie’s gallery for a closer look at the SM.
5. Citroën Traction Avant 11 Légère Cabriolet – Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade (1989)
This list wouldn’t be complete without the world’s first front-wheel drive steel monocoque production car: the Traction Avant – arguably the best car out of Citroën’s lineup to be used in an Indiana Jones movie. With Harrison Ford at the wheel, the Traction Avant speeds through a dirt road and into a tunnel as they are chased by Nazi planes. As they exit the tunnel, the car bursts through the flaming wreckage of the plane that followed them, and then gets bombed out of commission by a different plane. No wonder the movie garnered an amiable review from Roger Ebert back in 1989.
Check out Citroënvie’s gallery for a closer look at the Traction Avant.
Just curious… did they really dump the SM into the harbour? It was only slightly dented!
Yes the SM went into the water, but if you look carefully as it drives away, just after it drops off the bridge, in the shot showing the rear of the car you can see that on the back hatch there is a plaque that IDs it as an “Automatic”. As it approaches the bridge – no rear plaque.
It’s hard to see in the resolution of the video trailer for the web, but it stood out like a sore thumb to me in the theatre.
And in the two chase shots showing the rear of the car just before and after it drives around the fountain, the latter when it shifts into reverse, you can see the plaque.
If you look at the shot just after the park chase where the SM goes on the sidewalk in front of the building under construction, you’ll see there is no plaque on the back.
Of course, there are close-up shots showing Burt shifting a manual gearbox, so that means they used at least 2 SMs and one of them was a 5-speed manual.
So the SM that went off the bridge then into the river has no body-side molding nor does the other one used for the chase shots. (One with a rear plaque and one without). However, at the beginning where there is the first shot of the SM shot with Burt driving it out of the garage and down the driveway, you can see that there is body-side molding on that SM.
This means there must have been at least 3 SMs used for the chase sequence!
– George Dyke