Citroën Traction Avant 11 B (1953). Durk sheds a tear away. 

Citroën Traction Avant 11 B (1953)
ER Classics Desktop 2022

Chances are you don't believe this story. It is about 'feeling' and 'understanding', but also about a particularly long-term possession. To start with the feeling, Durk liked to talk about things he loved, and that was the Citroën Traction Avant.

By: Dirk de Jong

We write 1977: Durk attended a classic car event together with his brother Jan and saw this last brainchild of André Citroën that was shining. That proliferated in him the desire to own one Citroën Traction Avant. Visits to classic car events became orientation trips, in which Durk eventually managed to find a copy that deserved a second life. A Citroën Traction Avant 11 B from 1953.


After the purchase, an extensive two-year restoration followed. That is not just anything, every restorer knows that. A considerable amount of knowledge of the technology is required. And not only that, because time, energy, guilders (then!) And skill must all be sufficiently available. Fortunately, Riekje, Durk's wife, was ready with help and understanding. The help consisted of upholstering, her skills made the Frenchman's interior look like new again. The paintwork was outsourced, which later revealed that there were small blisters in the paint. But what's really incredible and unique is that the Citroën After restoration, Traction Avant only saw the sunlight five times over a period of 44 years.

Happy owner

Durk: “It is understandable that I received a lot of criticism about this in my environment. For me it was more about owning the black beauty. I cherish the time when this Traction - in my youth - also determined the street scene. I have a good sense of technique, but I am not a cleaner. And, it turns out, no rider either. But he is a happy owner of a car that became famous for its excellent performance. And as a result, the favorite vehicle was from ministers and police to gangsters. As long as you worry about what others think of you, then you own them. Life has taught me that. "

Feeling and understanding

Inevitably, sooner or later most of us have to get rid of things. The advanced age and the feeling that someone else could still enjoy the Traction was decisive for the sale. Durk's brother Jan was someone who wanted to give priority to reason and he helped him Citroën to let go emotionally. When the car was offered there was immediate interest from Slovenia (Country in the Balkans) and the car has now left the Netherlands. But honestly: Still melancholy as the Citroën Traction Avant 11 B rolls out of the garage, wiping away a tear after 44 years of ownership is still justified?

Also read:
- Citroën 2CV4 that inadvertently dominated a Porsche
- Citroën C6. A look into the future
- A Citroën Rosalie in blue
- The Dutch origin of an inventive man: André Citroën
- A subdued child: the Citroën Axel


Leave a Reply
  1. Beautiful Story of a beautiful car. Nice to read that there are still people who can intensely enjoy a car of any brand, wonderful.

  2. In 1974 I bought a TA from 1948 [a normal after a few years I was forced to sell it. I hope anyone reading this article knows where the UX-61 -36 is.

    • @Henk, because enthusiasts also live in Slovenia, just like those Dutch people who bring vintage cars to our country here and there in the world 😉

  3. Saying goodbye to the earthly goes in steps, if you are lucky that this is possible then you should do it. Respect and absolutely right.
    I want to do it differently, I think. When the time comes, I'll take my passion into the eternal car hobby fields. Because: Enjoying the created design in eternity, tinkering with other spirits on its repair, the rides and the encounters with angels who have the same hobby at fairs and meetings.
    If I succeed, I will let you know. If you don't hear from me again, it may not have worked or I may not be able to let you know that it worked.

    • If there's ever a sequel to Stephen King's Christine or something similar in the distant future, we'll be thinking of you.

  4. My uncle bought a dark green Traction Avant in 1959. A Belgian Sport. An 11BL from 1955, complete with linen registration. With art and flying work the car has always stayed on the road. The car occupied a special position in the family. She served as a support car in my cousin's (Traction) wedding procession in 1980 and in my uncle's (funeral) procession in 1989.
    In 1999, having been in family possession for exactly forty years, the high word came out: she must go. My cousins ​​thought of me. I'd rather sell to me for one guilder (!) Than get 3500 guilders and probably never see her again.
    In the meantime, after all kinds of circumstances with me and the wood / string activities of the late my uncle, she has become a good drivable car again after 21 years. Still, she looks like I've known her from my infancy: 'dans son jus', but then reliable.
    I understand Durk ...

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