Forty years ago, in 1980, Citroën launched a special series of 8,000 units dubbed “Charleston”, at a price of 24,800 francs. As noted in the press release issued at the time, “to satisfy the 2CV ‘purists’, the headlights are round, with a red housing.”
In October 1980, Citroën presented the 2CV6 Charleston at the Paris motor show. The brand-new special edition was limited to 8,000 units, and was so successful that it was added to the range catalogue in July 1981, until the 2CV reached the end of production.
With its chic and quirky style, the 2CV6 Charleston embodied the highest degree of finish and power ever seen on the 2CV. After the Spot in 1976, the 2CV6 Charleston rode a new wave of limited editions.
Though its finish was borrowed from the Club, the 2CV6 Charleston stood out with its special upholstery and round headlights, like those on the 2CV Spécial.
The following year, in July 1981, the limited series was so successful that it became unlimited: now mass-produced at the Levallois plant, the model was added to the Citroën catalogue. This version differed from the limited edition with its chrome headlights and grey, diamond-pattern upholstery.
Initially sold in Delage Red and Black, it later came with a Hélios Yellow and Black variant in July 1982, which was then replaced in July 1983 with a version painted in two shades of grey; Night Grey and Cormorant Grey.
Production continued in 1988 at the Mangualde plant in Portugal. The models produced at this site can be identified by their windows, which bear the name of the Spanish glazier, “Covina”.
On July 27, 1990, at 4:30 pm, the last 2CV to leave the Mangualde production line was a Night Grey and Cormorant Grey 2CV 6 Charleston. This was the 5,114,969th and the last 2CV produced.
The 2CV remains an icon of automotive history and a favourite of numerous collectors around the world. The Charleston contributed to this success over the last 10 years of production.
Watch the 2CV Charleston – L’Amour Toujours Commercial — from 1980:
The historic 2CV boasts 10 special editions launched in France and certain European countries:
- 1976 — 2CV Spot
- 1980 — 2CV Charleston
- 1981 — 2CV 007 James Bond
- 1983 and 1984 — 2CV France 3
- 1985 and 1986 — 2CV Dolly
- 1986 — 2CV Cocorico
- 1982 — 2CV Marcatelo
Germany and Switzerland:
- 1985 — 2CV Ente Grün
- 1987 — 2CV Bamboo
- 1988 — 2CV Perrier
In 2008, for the 60th anniversary of the 2CV, a limited-edition Charleston was launched based on another model from the Citroën line, which was also a convertible: the C3 Pluriel Charleston, with the same Delage Red and Black exterior.