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Legendary Citroen 2CVs hit New York streets

Citroen 2CV cars line a block by Washington Square Park ON July 15, 2012 during the 13th Annual Bastille Day Rally and Rendez Vouz of the Greater New York Citroen & Velosolex Club in New York. ©AFP PHOTO/Stan HONDA

(NEW YORK-AFP) – New York fans of the Citroen 2CV got a treat Sunday when 20 owners of the iconic French car cruised through Manhattan along with drivers of other Citroen models in honor of France’s Bastille Day holiday.

“To drive to New York with a bunch of Citroens — it’s not a thing you see and do every day. It’s just an unbelievable experience,” raved George Tavares, 46, a Portuguese immigrant living in New Jersey.

Tavares was out to impress with his red and white 1987 2CV.

The car, manufactured by the French automaker from 1948-1990, was considered an economical choice for consumers. Its Bauhaus-inspired curves, designed by Italian Flaminio Bertoni, won generations of fans.

And its modest motors spawned jokes like: “Zero to 60 (mph) in one day.”

Yet for its biggest fans, there is no other car like it.

“I bought it for the 60th anniversary of the 2CV, in 2008 and that year I came here for Bastille Day,” said Mark Paulhus, 58, who came from Connecticut in his 1974 blue 2CV.

“They are crazy. It’s a unique car, a technological car. It was advanced for its time — and it’s still very relevant today. They run well, they ride well, it’s a great car to have,” he smiled.

Bastille Day, France’s national day, is on July 14.

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