Peugeot 404, Wolseley's and Innocenti's: Copy / paste

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The chimney must also smoke at car designers. What one does not want, you can possibly sell to the next. So had Citroëns BX might as well be the Volvo Tundra designed by Marcello Gandini. The Tundra remained an idea. The BX was a success.

Before that, the Peugeot 203 and the Volvo P544 'Cat's Back' also looked alike, but that was because they both looked like pre-war American cars.

What were now classics, but in fact just off-the-cuff copies of the Mercedes-Benz 540, they were the American Excaliburs and the Clenets. Critical minds are clear about it: “they don't look like anything”.

Where things were really structurally approached according to the copy / paste concept, that was with Pininfarina's work for Peugeot and BMC

The Austin Westminster (1959-1968) and the Peugeot 404 (1960-1975)

These were large, luxury cars for both companies. The British side was larger and more luxurious and featured the same three-liter straight-six engine as the Healey 3 Liter. His mass and motorization made him asked for banger races (demolition derbies) and as a motoblock donor for Austin Healeys in his late days. Few Austins. Wolseleys and Vanden Plas' remain from this family.

That was at the time when badge engineering had grown to great heights with the British

Because in fact, the VandenPlas and the large Wolseley 6/99 and 6/100 were the same cars with slightly different make-up, whereby the brand emblem illuminated from the inside in the Wolseley grille was a very trending topic. At that time, scrolling with brand emblems must have taken up most of the British designers' time.

The Peugeot 404

The predecessor of the Peugeot 404 was the Peugeot 403, also signed by Pininfarina. Funnily enough, the new large Peugeot was a little smaller around its predecessor. But inside he was more spacious. The three liter stroke volume? That did not make the Peugeot. It was available with a 1468 or 1618 cc gasoline engine and a diesel engine of 1816 and 1948 cc respectively.

The Great Britons were clearly cars for notables or people who had no money for a real status-granting Brit - read 'Bentley' or 'Rolls'. They were really large automobiles with a somewhat solemn appearance. The Wolseleys and VandenPlas models were decorated with wood and leather. The Peugeots were cars for GPs, veterinarians, people with a well-running shop or the better kind of 'senior sales excecutives' that were usually referred to as a 'factory representative' at the time. My father was such a person. He worked for the Dutch Sales Office for Chemical Products, which later became part of the AKZO.

Also interesting: Peugeot 405, also classic

De Inocenti Mini approach

Innocenti was once from BLMC. And the Minis went to Italy as CKD (completey knocked down) packages. After some bumps and bumps, those Minis evolved into the Innocenti Mini 90L and 120L redesigned by Bertone and after the actual disappearance of the British (British Leyland retained only 5% of the shares) the party continued as DeTomaso took over Innocenti. Ultimately, the reborn Briton got a three-cylinder Daihatsu engine. Also nice. But by then the Innocenti had already fallen far from its origin.

Also interesting: Innocenti Morris 1300 GT IM3S

Same car, different brand

And then there are the cars that, usually after reaching a certain production period, were simply continued in production. In another country. Under a different name. Those other countries were usually (ex) colonies and Eastern bloc countries. Fiats became Ladas, Renaults became Dacias and until very recently Hindustan Ambassadors were made in India who once came off the drawing boards as Morris Oxfords. Hindustan has in the meantime been bought by Peugeot.

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  1. Nice article, however, see a more logical agreement / comparison of the Peugeot 404 with the Asutin Cambridge / Morris Oxford and their variants.
    The Fiat 1500 / 1800/2100/2300 is said to have fitted in with the story.
    Old cars it is still fun to read about !! So thank you for that.

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