Citroën History: The Citroën automobile was created by André Citroën and is now a subsidiary of PSA Peugeot Citroën, a French consortium. The first Citroën was built in 1919 and they were the first auto manufacturer to use the assembly line outside the United States.
Citroën has a reputation for innovative engineering such as front-wheel drive, automatic hydraulic suspension and disc brakes. It was also one of the first companies to make bodies totally out of steel.
Citroën went broke over the development of their "Traction Avant" automobile in 1934 but the car sold well and they survived with the help of Pierre Michelin, who became chairman of the board. André Citroën died the following year.
Citroën supported France's war effort during World War II and afterwards their innovative aerodynamic designs and advanced technologies kept the company alive. In 1968 business was good and Citroën bought Maserati and Fiat became a major shareholder. However the oil crisis in 1973 made things difficult for both Citroën and Fiat and the company was merged with Peugeot. Then in 1975 Citroën sold Maserati and the next year Peugeot took over under the "PSA Peugeot Citroën" name. Citroën was banned from the U.S. market in 1974 for failure to comply with NHTSA ( National Highway Traffic Safety Administration) bumper regulations and has yet to return.
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