Citroen 11 BL (1948)

DE-61-66 (owned from 09-07-1990 until 06-04-1993)


The Traction Avant is the great love of my youth. As a six year old little boy I declared to everyone who was willing to listen that once I would own such a car. It took until early 1990 before I was really ready for one however. One day a collegue of mine came to work with a Traction and the moment I saw it, a 35 year old desire was completely back again. I went searching for a sound example and found a ’48 Légѐre which was rust free, but had dull paint and an ID19 engine. I bought it and this was the beginning of a real drama. Almost everything that could break down, broke down in the subsequent months. But I kept replacing parts, spending huge amounts of money. After all this was the dream of my youth, wasn’t it? But consequently one of my cars had to be sold to raise some money, not an easy decision. I made the wrong choice and sold the Skoda... 

The Traction adventure was gradually becoming a nightmare. I even managed to break the crankshaft of the ID19 engine. Some measurements afterwards proved that the PO never should have mounted it because of too large and unacceptable tolerances. So I had to buy a reconditioned engine as well. But that wasn't the end of the long list of disasters, reports of which kept filling the pages of the Dutch Traction Avant Club magazine. After replacing the exhaust manifold for the third time (!) with a new one, the gearbox gave problems. It kept jumping out of 3rd gear and that marked the end of my patience. It took a while before I succeeded in selling this Traction, with a substantial loss of money though.