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French WW2 truck found in vineyard to be sold

A war-time Citroën truck found in a Bordeaux vineyard and painted with symbols associated with the French Resistance is to be put up for auction.

The WW2 truck as it is now. Image: H&H Classics

The truck, which had been converted from a 1924 Citroën B12 9cv car, was found abandoned in a Bordeaux vineyard by a British tourist in the early 1990s.

The owner of the vineyard, Ernest Carrier, said the vehicle had belonged to his father who had used it on the farm and on occasion to transport members of the Resistance.

The van is clearly painted with the liberation cross and the initials FFI, which stands for the French Forces of the Interior.

Image: H&H Classics

Carrier said the car had been converted to a truck to ensure it continued to receive petrol during the German occupation of France. The Germans only issued fuel to commercial vehicles used in essential services such as food production. According to Carrier, the Germans hoped that by providing French vineyard owners with petrol it would mean they would get better quality wine.

After being taken back to Britain, the WW2 truck was restored and used in period film and television productions. However it was later sold on and now requires restoring once again.

It is being put up for sale with no reserve by specialist car auctioneer H&H Classics on 14 April at the Imperial War Museum in Duxford, Cambridgeshire.

John Markey of H&H Classics commented: “Whoever secures this unique and historically interesting vehicle will not only own a very rare converted Citroën but have a truck that was used by the French Resistance and is now in demand by filmmakers. There are not too many like this!”

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