DEC 11, 2014

What makes the SM special?

It’s hard to believe Citroen only produced the SM Coupe between 1970 and 1975. Back then, this car was way ahead of its time, it’s such a shame the production run only lasted a measly five years.  

When it was released to the general public the SM certainly caught a few eyes. It was hard not to like the sleek, low-slung bodywork and sporty styling of the car, plus the performance wasn’t too shabby either.

Now, over 40 years later the SM is highly sought-after in the classic car market and it’s little wonder, take a look at one today and it can more or less match any modern designs in terms of style.

What else made the SM popular though?

It has variable assist power steering  

Back in the 70’s there were two options for power steering. If you were lucky and had money your car had it. If you drove a run-of-the-mill motor it didn’t!

The SM offered something different. It had a system known as DIRAVI and this gave the driver a little assistance with the steering at lower speeds, say when they were parking for example, but offered less assistance out on the open road.  

One clever trick was you could release the steering wheel when parking at low speed and it would automatically centre the wheels in a straight line.

Clever eh? And this was 1970!

It had really great handling

Some cars were good at handling in the 1970s, others wobbled around like a plate of jelly. The SM broke new ground in the handling stakes. It was front wheel drive, it turned in and cornered sharply and the brakes were excellent as well. 

It was a pleasure to drive then and it’s still a dream to drive now. If you’re ever lucky enough to get behind the wheel of an SM you’ll know what we mean, even if we are a bit biased at Citroen Classics.

The interior styling set a new trend

From the outside the teardrop shaped Citroen was agonisingly beautiful. Things were just as good inside too. There was a sporty oval steering wheel, funky dials and clocks, a chrome gate for the manual gearbox and brilliant bucket seats that were comfy and supportive whilst being fully adjustable.  

Sit behind the wheel of an SM and you know you’re inside a special type of car.

And the lights turned corners

We kid you not! The lights fitted to the SM were self-levelling and they turned the same way as the steering. Drive a Citroen SM at night and when you turn a corner the headlights follow your exact movement.

These are just some of the amazing features of this classic Citroen. The design might be old but it’s still a current car in terms of style, performance and desirability.

We love them at Citroen Classics. Drive one, bet you do too!  

Created on 11th December 2014
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