With Mardi Gras, perhaps France's greatest contribution to American culture via New Orleans,
fast approaching we have been thinking of France's automotive contributions. In the same
way that Mardi Gras is a compilation of contrasts, joyful debauchery in celebration of a very religous
event, the French contribution to the automotive world has been a compilation of contrasts.
The Citroen DS21 Chapron convertible
The Citroen DS has been descibed as an automotive answer to an automotive question that was never
asked. That said, the DS is the epitome of French design both aesthetically and automotive design
with advances that were only later copied by other car makers.
1971 KV Mini1 On the other hand, the KV Mini1 will go down in the automotive annals as a curiosity with very
little to be copied. The KV's origami styling as well as it simple one cylinder engine stands in
sharp contrast to poetically beautiful DS. It is difficult to imagine that the same country and culture
produces these two cars; but then again the French are filled with contrast and contradictions.