With an original SM Mylord fetching a hefty € 528,000 at the recent Artcurial Retromobile auction in Paris, there is renewed interest in these rare SM variants.
Only 5 Mylords were built during the SM’s production run in the first half of the 1970s. In each case the SM shell was transported to Henri Chapron’s workshop in the suburbs of Paris where the car was cut and strengthened before being sprayed in primer. Then it was sent back to Citroën’s Quao de Javal factory for installation of the engine, running gear and electrics prior to moving the car back to Chapron’s Levallois coachworks for paint, interior fitting and final stages of detailing and testing. This resulted in the SM Mylord selling at at price of 130,000 Ffr at the time, double the price of an already expensive standard SM, which sold for about twice the price of a DS.
Classic & Sports Car Magazine ran an article and photo-spread in their February 2014 issue where they took to streets of Paris one night in the SM Mylord that was to be sold at Retromobile.
Fresh on the heels of the auction, Vanity Fair published an article on the Mylord on Feb 25:
In it they mention that André Pol at Citroën André in The Netherlands has been granted an official license to create a “new” series of five authorized Chapron SM Mylords. Each will be built on the chassis of an existing SM, and will be customized to their owners’ specifications. We wanted to know more so we contacted André Pol who was happy to share the following insight:
Citroënvie: How long did the authorization deal take to negotiate? Was it quite an elaborate process?
André: This was never an issue. There are not many companies on this planet who can accomplish such a project. I already knew the Chapron family for decades so it was only a question of finding customers who wanted to own a Mylord II. Each car we do will get a Chapron #, all the correct Chapron tags and will be added to to the official Chapron production book.
Citroënvie: Are you going to be cutting the tops off relatively nice SM’s or do you have some “rougher” restoration candidates standing by?
André: It does not makes any sense to take a cheap SM. Poor condition SM’s are too expensive to fix/restore if you do it correct and perfect. So the cars to start with will be good restoration candidates or cars that are in perfect condition already.
Citroënvie: Will you be doing the same modifications that Chapron did? Making further improvements? What will that be?
André: All our restorations are exact copies of the originals. We will work with the original 1:1 scale drawings. And we have restored already one Mylord (see our website). During that process we have taken already many sizes and reference points. We also made some moulds. Only differences are the materials we use like primers, caulkings, sealers, sound dampening and coatings. Modern stuff is far superior. And there are always small modifications that customers want. Like a third brake light, rear heater, different compressor, different ignition etc. All reversible.
Citroënvie: How long do you anticipate the conversion of each one to take?
André: We estimate that most Mylord II restorations will take a year to a year and a half.
Citroënvie: What is the anticipated price of a “new” Mylord?
André: That’s impossible to tell. It depends on the basic car. And do we have to buy it or is it a customer car?
Citroënvie: Of the 5, are any already sold?
André: One. We are working on #2.
Citroënvie: The Vanity Fair article says the cars will be customized to their owners’ specifications. What sort of customization do you envision?
André: I don’t know where he got that from. In fact it does not mean anything… I think every car can be customized to owners specs! Even any brand new car… There were very few options in the seventies. One Mylord was delivered with a hardtop. We are investigating if it’s feasible to make a mould and a small series of hardtops. We have the drawings.
Top up does take away from the cabriolet elegance.
For a more info on an original Mylord and pictures check out:
* UPDATE: Aug. 15, 2020 — Noëlle-Eléonore Chapron-Paul of Chapron International who is the daughter of Henri Chapron, and represents the brand’s name as well as being the archives’ safe-keeper, contacted us to clarify the arrangement Andre Pol has to construct new Mylord SMs. She writes: “André Pol has, so far, the authorization to build 2 cars, NOT 5! I gave André the authorization for 2, 1 at a time. Right now, I am discussing the possibility of building a Mylord in California.”