Let’s talk about a car. Not a new one, not a fast one. No not even a concept or futuristic car. I want to talk about a classic, you might say a mythical car. It’s the Citroën 2CV. A car that’s still around, but you don’t see it as much as some years ago. I don’t know about countries outside Europe, but back in the days in Europe that the 2CV was still in production it was very well known and quite popular.
2CV is ‘deux chevaux’ in French and stands for ‘two steam horses’ [deux chevaux-vapeur]. The Citroën with its ‘two tax horsepower’ is a front-engine, front wheel drive, air-cooled economy car. It was introduced at the 1948 Paris Mondial de l’Automobile and manufactured by Citroën from 1948-1990 in a single four-door body style.
Furniture that honors the Citroën 2CV
You might say, in honor of the Citroën 2CV, Dutch designer Jeroen Weaseling created this stunning and unique piece of upcycle furniture called ‘Cabinet 2CV‘. When he saw this very old and neglected 2CV he got an idea for using those nice doors. He took these two old 2CV doors, restored and combined them with Medium-Density Fibreboard (MDF) to create a fantastic cabinet. The curved enclosure with several shelves can be openend on the front by two blue doors that open outwards. Due to windows in the upper part of the doors we’re able to see inside the top of the cabinet.
Back in October I was happy to see Jeroen exhibiting at the Dutch Design Week. When I visited him there I was even happier because he was also showing his Cabinet 2CV. And there’s one thing that really amazed me, a thing that a picture can’t tell or show you. It was the sound of closing a door, it’s just as closing the door of a real 2CV. Wow, so incredible.
Photos © Jeroen Wesselink
The idea behind the car was to motorize the large number of farmers still using horses and carts in 1930s France. The 2CV is known for a minimalist combination of innovative engineering and straightforward metal bodywork. According to WikipediA: “The 2CV featured a low purchase cost; simplicity of overall maintenance; an easily serviced air-cooled engine; low fuel consumption; and an extremely long travel suspension offering a soft ride, light off-road capability, high ground clearance and height adjustability via lengthening/shortening of tie rods. Often called ‘an umbrella on wheels’, the bodywork featured a distinctive and prominent full-width, canvas, roll-back sunroof, which accommodated oversized loads and until 1955 reached almost to the car’s rear bumper, covering its trunk.”
This Cabinet 2CV still has the look and feel of that incredible car that ones in a while pops up in traffic. And it still gets lost of admiring glances. As it deserves.
Another stunning and fun upcycle design by Jeroen is Hot!, a zig-zag chair made from a radiator.
Design by Jeroen Wesselink