Cold Start: Wait, How Did You Get Here, Again?

Cs Pugeot

The Peugeot 504 Coupé and convertible were really cool-looking cars, and one of those cars where the coupé version looked pretty radically different from the sedan form. What I like about this picture from a 1973 brochure for the 504 Coupé and Convertible is how understandably uncomfortable that woman looks as the dude pulls up to her in his 504 while she’s walking on a rocky beach, in an area where you really wouldn’t expect a car to pull up.

Her whole body language reads “wait, what are you doing here?” though she is still smiling and hopefully is amused by it all. I mean, it is a cool car, after all. Especially with those strange above-the-bumper rubber-block bumper guards there.

The very distinct body differences between the Coupé 504 and the Sedan 504 – here, I’ll show you that one now:


…made me realize another common example of this, only we never think of it that way: the Volkswagen Beetle and Karmann Ghia. They share a whole chassis and drivetrain, and really, the Ghia is the coupé version of the Beetle, but we rarely consider it that way in our minds.

Fascinating, right?

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26 Responses

  1. The car is fascinating but I’m fixated on where their hands are. Is he driving and opening the door at the same time? Is she using both hands to scratch her back? Is it an early form os sign language?

  2. Postwar Peugeots were always such gorgeous cars. They have such clean, thoughtful designs.

    Italian exotics made Pininfarina famous, but through Peugeot, some of their greatest designs were made accessible to ordinary people.

    Even today I would gladly take a Peugeot-styled Pininfarina design over all the random scribbles you get from just about every other car maker.

    The 504 has always been a personal favorite of its era. I’d love to see a modern 504, wider and lower, but with the same punchy attitude and no-nonsense lines.

    1. They’re a classic design, in the same way the Volvo 240 is. I’ve always had a fantasy about taking one of those classic, understated euro-coupes and dropping a more powerful powertrain into it. Imagine a beige Volvo 240 coupe with a souped-up 350 Chevy and a 4-speed hidden in it. Talk about a sleeper!

        1. Nice! I was thinking about the relative economy and ease of maintenance of the 350, but this one definitely takes it up a couple of notches.

          I really like how the beige paint job is basically invisible if you took off the stickers. The wheels and the car’s stance are a bit of a giveaway to what lurks beneath, but most people wouldn’t look that closely once their brains moved on to other things.

  3. He’s saying “but there is no way she COULD EVER know, she’s in Paris with her sister! C’mon… just get in the car…”

    Don’t do it, Bridget, he’s just toying with you. He’ll never leave her so long as her dad runs the company.

  4. Actually the Volkswagen beetle and the Carmen Gia don’t share the same floor pan. The Karmann Ghia floor pan is somewhat wider and is in fact shared with the Volkswagen thing, which of course looks even less like the Karmann Ghia.

  5. I saw one of the convertibles at a car get-together in Arlington, MA. It was imported from the south of France not too long ago. If I remember it was missing one of the door cards but otherwise was a gorgeous car!

  6. To me, the 1973 Peugeot 504 convertible looks like a 1968 Chevy Corvair convertible with the headlights changed from round to square. And presumably the engine liquified and moved from rear to front.
    I do like the look too.

  7. So far the Renault Bus that holds 35. (which looks like it would ba an excellent camoing conversion) Le Car LOL, also I had the R5 when it was here and loved it and its’ quirkiness. The rust and seeing a very large Buick decide not to stop behind me while I was at a red light was the end of our relationship. Now I want a Citroen DS 21, a Renault Avantime, that Peugeot convertible and if I had an unlimited supply of $$$$ one classic Renault Alpine and the Citroen SM. But none of those till I get my Bigeye Sprite

  8. I saw that photo and went ‘Doesn’t an Isuzu 117 look like that?’ and as it turns out, it’s awfully close – right down to the front-end treatment with the tapering nose, the slightest hint of coke-bottle hip, and delicate pillars. Oddly enough, they were designed by different Italian designers, and seems like an extreme example of convergent evolution.

  9. This immediately brought to mind a coversation from many years ago;

    Me, “Excuse me, but could you direct me to Carrickfergus?”
    Helpful local, ” Well, if I were going to Carrickfergus I wouldn’t be starting from here”

    1. In case you are curious, as I was…

      Carrickfergus is a large town in County Antrim, Northern Ireland. It sits on the north shore of Belfast Lough, 11 miles from Belfast. The town had a population of 27,998 at the 2011 Census. It is County Antrim’s oldest town and one of the oldest towns in Ireland as a whole.,+UK/@54.7220524,-5.8468703,13z/data=!3m1!4b1!4m5!3m4!1s0x48619850c51ab037:0x36ab31cdaaadf6bb!8m2!3d54.7261871!4d-5.8101207

      They have a lovely castle there.

        1. Yes! Carrrickfergus is about 11 miles from the Stena Line ferry terminus in Belfast, Llanfairpwllgwyngyllgogerychwyrndrobwllantysiliogogogoch is a 19 mile drive from the Holyhead ferryport.

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