Raising a DS from the Dead in Ontario

We’ve been accused of trashing many DS here in Ontario — sending them for scrap after taking a select few bits off them. Cars such as these three — but seriously, if you were here with us, you would have agreed they were too far gone:

We’ll, we are finally pleased to show a success story of one DS Safari that was rescued from the estate of the late John Mazmanian in Ft. Erie Ontario back in 2011.

John Mazmanian (in 2003).
John’s DS (in 2004).
The DS Safari (as retrieved in 2011).
DS Safari (as retrieved in 2011).
DS Safari (as retrieved in 2011).
DS Safari (as retrieved in 2011).
DS Safari (as retrieved in 2011).
DS Safari (as retrieved in 2011).

We were about to write it off at the time, but it caught the fancy of our French mechanic and Citroën guru Bernard Laborde, and was extracted from the property by him. It sat with Bernard for a few years behind his shop in Toronto waiting for when he had the time work his magic on it.

Bernard Laborde

Bernard removed the head a couple of years ago, to discover a dead mouse laying on top of a piston in one of the cylinders. It must have crawled up the exhaust pipe and through an open valve hole! A few days work and he had it running again. (The engine, not the mouse).

When the landlord at Bernard’s shop announced that all old cars sitting outside must be cleared off the property, Bernard was forced to tow the car to his farm near Tweed Ontario. There is sat in a covered stall beside his barn waiting for further attention.

This July, Bernard had some time to devote to the other mechanical aspects of the car and just look at what he accomplished in these two videos.

What an amazing resuscitation! Congratulations Bernard!

The DS has come back to life — and we look forward to see where it goes from here.


  1. Well done Bernard, looking promising. we have a 1970 Safari restored a few years ago and never looking back

  2. What a way to bring a smile to all who view this.
    When there’s so much going on these days that wracks one’s faith in everything, this simple feat is a tonic for the soul. Speaking of which, can you imagine the joy this brings to John Mazmanian who most assuredly is watching over us?
    Bravo Bernard. We eagerly anticipate the day you bring this to the Saratoga Rendezvous! Even if it’s not finished.
    Bill Blaufuss

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