Home » The Citroën CX Familiale Holds A Ridiculously Specific Automotive Record

The Citroën CX Familiale Holds A Ridiculously Specific Automotive Record

Cxvisors Top
ADVERTISEMENT

Quick question: is it illegal to love Citroëns? Is it a crime? A capital offense? If so, then send me to the fucking chair, because I am absolutely, unrepentantly guilty. I’m even gonna say some badass shit as they throw the switch like “off to drive my Traction Avant through hell!” or something. Part of the evidence that would be used to convict me in this weird dystopia I’ve built in these sentences where Citroën-love is a crime is my admiration for this particular car, the Citroën CX Familiale. That’s because, alongside all of its other amazing qualities, it also happens to hold an automotive record for something absurdly specific. I’ll tell you if you read on.Untitled Cxfront11

The CX was perhaps the height of Citroën’s spaceship-iness, being introduced in 1974 as a replacement for the iconic DS, a car quite spaceshippy in its own right. The CX was the last Citroën designed and built before their bankruptcy and merger/takeover with Peugeot in 1976, and as a result the CX retains all of the strange, wonderful pure Citroën DNA from cars like the DS: hydropneumatic suspension, dramatically streamlined bodies that were like cybernetic speed-tortoises, odd but glamorous control decisions, sofa-on-a-lake-of-pudding-like comfort goals, the whole baguette.

Vidframe Min Top
Vidframe Min Bottom

Let’s just look at this bonkers-fantastic dashboard a moment, to drink in the essence:

Dash

That helps. There was a wagon version of the CX as well, known as the Familiale, and this is the car I want to talk about specifically, because it’s the car that I believe is a record holder for a very specific automotive metric. It’s not the fastest (the CX used the same engines as the DS, so it wasn’t exactly a rocket, despite the look) or the biggest or the quietest or whatever you usually think of for superlatives. But it did have the more of one particular feature than any other car before or since, at least that I can think of.

ADVERTISEMENT

That feature? Sun visors.

The vast, vast majority of cars have two, up front, for each front seat. A few magical cars, well, one at least, has an extra set for the rear seat, the Porsche 928:

928visors

So, the count is mostly two, one four, maybe there’s a few other quad-visor stragglers out there, but I’m pretty sure there’s only one car with six. The Citroën CX Familiare:

Countvisors

ADVERTISEMENT

Six! Look at that! There’s the two ones up front, and then Citroën engineers, having proven beyond a shadow of a doubt that the rotation of the Earth causes the sun to appear to move across the sky, coupled with the fact that the completely-motile CX could be positioned in nearly any location that admits direct sunlight into any of its windows, realized that every passenger deserves to be able to block the powerful rays of the sun, and as a result, each window gets its own visors.

Well, except the back window. But still: six visors!

You’d think four would be enough, but the Familiale has provisions for a third-row jump seat, and those people have eyes that need visoring, too, so six it is.

Cxcutaway2

Imagine if you owned a CX and then made it big somehow, and decided to treat yourself to some lavish new automobile, like a Rolls-Royce, arguably the Cadillac of motorcars. You get in, admiring the supple leather, the burled walnut, and then look in your rear view mirror as your friends and loved ones flail around in confusion, looking for rear seat sun visors that simply don’t exist.

ADVERTISEMENT

Sobering, isn’t it? Nobody beats the CX. Well, at least about number of sun visors. I mean, maybe one of you in the comments know of some eight-visored car I missed, but until I hear that, nobody beats the CX.

 

(Thanks, Dave!)

Share on facebook
Facebook
Share on whatsapp
WhatsApp
Share on twitter
Twitter
Share on linkedin
LinkedIn
Share on reddit
Reddit
Subscribe
Notify of
49 Comments
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
William Domer
William Domer
1 year ago

For real fun look at the DS Break’s rear hatch hinge. It is truly a masterpiece of thoughtful design and a brilliant way to make sure that there is 100% access to the back of the car. Swoon and I want one, but that suspension is scary to keep in shape most anywhere in America. Guess we have to move to France or Belgium.

Thomas The Tank Engine
Thomas The Tank Engine
1 year ago
Reply to  William Domer

“but that suspension is scary to keep in shape most anywhere in America”

The 1980-1997 Rolls Royce Silver Spirit / Bentley Mulsanne had hydropneumatic self-levelling suspension, which used Citroen components (e.g. the green spheres). Some other cars used it too, including the BMW e34 5-Series Touring.

Wikipedia : https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hydropneumatic_suspension

So parts *may* be available in the US.

But finding a mechanic who is trained to work on it? Yeah, that’s going to be a struggle.

Bruce Reeves
Bruce Reeves
1 year ago

Rolls-Royce, the Cadillac of motorcars, too funny!

Jakob K's Garage
Jakob K's Garage
1 year ago

A few years now since I sold my two CXes, and since I usually sat at the steering wheel, I completely forgot about the fact that they had four sun visors! (It was the regular most beautiful Berline model both of them) So thanks.
My ’67 DS I sold them to keep only has two, but has a lot softer and floaty suspension than any CX. The design with the blinkers in the fiberglass roof edges and the detatchable panels are also more french and crazy.

Jakob K's Garage
Jakob K's Garage
1 year ago

One of mine was a GTi, in which I reached 200 of those metric speed measurement units in at one time, so they weren’t slow at all.

Thomas The Tank Engine
Thomas The Tank Engine
1 year ago

A CX GTi is on my lottery list. But I’m in the U.K. where they were actually sold, so it shouldn’t be too hard to find one.

Dsa Lkjh
Dsa Lkjh
1 year ago

My dad has a CX Safari (same as the Familiale but without the third row of seats). I loved floating around in that car when I was a kid.

The interior door handles had a trigger to open them. Sat in the back with the child locks on I’d continually pull the trigger shooting at all the boring cars.

My cousin (who is way cooler than me) had a CX GTi Turbo 2. That looked like a spaceship and went like one too.

Dodsworth
Dodsworth
1 year ago

I remember when most cars had four ashtrays. Any chance this has six?

Austin Vail
Austin Vail
1 year ago

What I’ve always wanted to see since childhood is a car that not only has rear seat sun visors, but rear seat sun visors that are padded and extendable so you can use it as a pillow when you want to rest your head against the window and take a nap.

I’ve been on countless family road trips where I wanted to sleep in the car and the most comfortable position my body gravitated towards was to lean against the window. But of course, if you do that, then as the car goes over bumps, your head will rattle on the window and get bonked painfully.

The obvious solution is to try and position your pillow against the window so you can lean on it, but somehow that doesn’t feel like a great posture, and the pillow won’t stay put anyway. So why not give the car cushioned sun visors for the rear seats? That way we could have a pillow to rest our heads on that won’t fall down and gives us a comfortable place to lean for a nice road trip nap.

Mark my words, if I ever get around to starting a car company, I will make my sun visor pillow dream a reality.

VanGuy
VanGuy
9 months ago
Reply to  Austin Vail

The back row of my Prius v has reclining seats. They don’t go back really far, but I’d say almost 60-45 degrees. Considering it’s a factory feature, I feel like it could be more common.
Haven’t slept in them myself, though…

Dar Khorse
Dar Khorse
1 year ago

What a beautiful car and a great piece of party trivia. If I ever strike it rich, I’d love to own a DS and a CX. They’re some of the most beautiful cars ever designed and I love their quirkiness.

Now, serious question – is that the Holy Hand-Grenade of Antioch (sans cross) sitting on the dash above the radio?

Jim Galbraith
Jim Galbraith
1 year ago
Reply to  Dar Khorse

I believe it is an ashtray. Naturellement.

Andy Individual
Andy Individual
1 year ago

Fun fact:

The original design brief specified that you had to be able to take seven fresh eggs across a farmer’s field to market without them cooking in the sun.

Vetatur Fumare
Vetatur Fumare
1 year ago

You got me – I was inches away from angrily sputtering something about that being about the 2CV.

Justin Short
Justin Short
1 year ago

I was struck by the fender skirts on the rear wheels!
And those gauges , Intriguing…

Phil Honeywell
Phil Honeywell
1 year ago

As crazy as the sun visors are, what I really need is to see those gauges in action.

Sigurjón Halldórsson
Sigurjón Halldórsson
1 year ago
Reply to  Phil Honeywell
Vicente Perez
Vicente Perez
1 year ago

Sorry, somebody will have to tell me what the article is about. I start drooling with the first picture and by the time I get to the dashboard, I am hitting the fainting couch.

Dogisbadob
Dogisbadob
1 year ago

The US banned Citroen just before the CX came out. They were fucking scared. And they would’ve freaked OUT if they ever saw a CX!

Too bad we never got the CX wagon here 🙁

MaximillianMeen
MaximillianMeen
1 year ago

Hmm, my Mini Cooper has at least 4 visors for the front seats: traditional ones for straight-ahead and dedicated side visors. I’ve never even sat in the rear seats (not sure I’d even fit), so I don’t know off-hand if there are side visors for rear passengers. I’ll have to report back later this evening.

MaximillianMeen
MaximillianMeen
1 year ago

Nope. No side visors for rear seat passengers. The little leprechauns that ride in the back of Minis will just have conjure up sun glasses.

Nic Periton
Nic Periton
1 year ago

I am late to the party, but I did have to outside to check, the Tissier Loadrunner has not six, but a frankly mind boggling, ten sun visors! Also, and rather fun, mine is in two counties, yes, that means two postcodes!
This joke is not as funny if you park a LandRover in same place, sorry.

Cool Dave
Cool Dave
1 year ago

This is like one of those stupid football statistics.. “This guy has caught more passes on Sundays when it’s been between 68 and 70 degrees and he’s facing east than anybody else!”

Chris with bad opinions
Chris with bad opinions
1 year ago
Reply to  Cool Dave

Not sure why you’re out here dogging Hines Ward, but whatever.

PL71 Enthusiast
PL71 Enthusiast
1 year ago

Do double fronts count? Some VAG cars have 2 for each front seat (I think this is pretty common, you can swing the main one to the side and still have one for the front) and a tiny one above the mirror. I would consider this 5 sunshades. Maybe there is a vehicle with this setup and additional ones for rear seat passengers? Probably not? Idk.

Jay Vette
Jay Vette
1 year ago

I think what he means is the car with the most passengers who have a sun visor. In your example, the driver and front passenger get two each, but the rear passengers get none. But this car has sun visors for six out of eight possible occupants.

PL71 Enthusiast
PL71 Enthusiast
1 year ago
Reply to  Jay Vette

Ah. Makes a lot of sense when you put it this way. I’ve been reading all day and my brain is feeling a bit mushy so thanks for the explanation.

Michael Beranek
Michael Beranek
1 year ago

My 2004 Maxima had doubles up front. As for VAG, I find their visors very small and kinda useless.

Mike
Mike
1 year ago

“a Rolls-Royce, arguably the Cadillac of motorcars”

We need to unwind this.

MiniDave
MiniDave
1 year ago

Still not enough, the front passengers should have side visors too!

Canopysaurus
Canopysaurus
1 year ago

A Swedish acquaintance once suggested the six visors in the CX were in aid of disguising the identities of driver and passengers to avoid embarrassment for owning a Citroen. I rejected this notion as I have found the French, to their credit, to be impervious to shame in all things, especially fashion, cars and sex. Vive la difference!

EricTheViking
EricTheViking
1 year ago
Reply to  Canopysaurus

Definitely the COTD!

Thomas The Tank Engine
Thomas The Tank Engine
1 year ago

Hi Jason, thanks for posting this so quickly. As soon as I saw this amazing sun visor detail I knew that you would love it.

For I am the reader who sent this to tips@TheAutopian.com

Full credit to the source : the @addict_car account on Twitter.

David Tracy
David Tracy
1 year ago

Thank you for sending that in!

Data
Data
1 year ago

It’s the Cadillac of mini-vans.

Slow Joe Crow
Slow Joe Crow
1 year ago

The CX is also the only car to ever emerge from Grace Jones’ head
https://youtu.be/57OO9EGgdtg

OverlandingSprinter
OverlandingSprinter
1 year ago

I thought the record might be wheelbase-to-length ratio. Also appears the front overhang exceeds the rear, which looks odd in a wagon.

Everything about the CX is so French.

Vicente Perez
Vicente Perez
1 year ago

Those unashamed screws peppering the dashboard! I had totally forgotten about the legendary French disdain for fit and finish. Nothing left to the imagination.

And good for them, I say!

10001010
10001010
1 year ago

Do those cars with the little screen that raises and lowers electronically count?

Matthew Parsons
Matthew Parsons
1 year ago

Never a truer automotive article has been written.

49
0
Would love your thoughts, please comment.x
()
x