Michelin, a longstanding partner to Citroën, supports the International Gathering for the 60th anniversary of the DS
A few historic landmarks
Michelin has always maintained very strong relations with Citroën since the carmaker’s founding in 1919. In 1934, the Group was Citroën’s majority stakeholder before passing the reins to Peugeot SA in 1974.
During this period some highly original models that have since become cult collector’s items were created. These include the revolutionary TUB utility vehicle in 1939, the popular 2CV in 1948 as well as the innovative DS in 1955. Never would a carmaker have taken the risk to begin series production of such vehicles without the backing of Michelin's unrivaled spirit of innovation.
Michelin’s senior executives during this period (Pierre Michelin between 1935 and 1937, Pierre Boulanger between 1938 and 1950, Robert Puiseux between 1950 and 1958, then François Michelin) felt very strongly about automobiles and were personally involved in defining and developing vehicles. They also encouraged atypical engineers to devise original solutions that revolutionized the way cars were designed and used.
The DS, such as it appeared in 1955, was the inspiration of Robert Puiseux who was looking for the roomy, comfortable, safe “car of his dreams.” He took the risks needed to attain this ambitious goal, introducing new technology on a series-produced car. Motorists needed to relearn how to drive and garage mechanics needed special training to repair and maintain the new model. It was an incredible, risky wager but one that completely redefined the standards of automobile comfort and safety.
The DS was the first car with a suspension system designed for the radial tire, thus enabling it to deliver outstanding performance. The combination of Citroën and Michelin technologies gave birth to a vehicle that was exceptional at this time. The DS has always been fitted with Michelin tires and adopted successive generations of tires, including the X and XAS. The first versions of the DS also featured a Michelin wheel with a central fixing point that made it easier to change in the event of a flat tire.
Michelin and the DS have three powerful character traits in common:
- Bold technology.
- Motorsports, from the original DS to the DS3 WRC with which legendary driver Sébastien Loeb won several world championship titles.
- Research and development. The DS’s adjustable suspension system has made it possible to conduct very precise trials and Michelin has transformed many of these systems. This creative spirit is reflected in the Mille Pattes (or centipede) used to test truck tires at high speeds, which is on display at L’Aventure Michelin in Clermont-Ferrand.
Tires still produced for proud owners of older DS models.
For decades, Michelin has continued to manufacture and market tires for DS fitments, most of which involve separate front and rear wheels and may vary depending on the month of production and the country of destination. This Classic range is available in 18 countries around the world.
Also available are all tires in the following sizes mounted on the DS and ID produced between 1955 and 1975:
- 165 R 400 X
- 155 R 400 X
- 180 HR 15 XAS
- 185 HR 15 XVS-P
- 155 HR 15 XAS
- 165 HR 15 XAS
To help owners find the right tire, a dedicated website is also available: http://www.michelinclassic.com/fr/tireselector/search.
Michelin, the main tire supplier to the current DS lineup
Today, almost the entire DS lineup is fitted with Michelin tires, from the DS3 and DS3 Cabrio to the DS4 and DS5 (excluding 19-inch tires, which represent 7% of the range). Engineers from the Clermont-Ferrand-based tire manufacturer are working closely with PSA Peugeot Citroën teams to create tires that correspond ever more closely to carmaker and motorist expectations.