PEUGEOT 203

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Built in 1955, this Peugeot 203C Berline the Luxe was a small car for the common people. It's got a 1290cc engine and its top speed is about 120 km/h (70 mph). Lots of them were built, but the majority didn't stand the test of time. That's why they are getting hard to find these days.
This one's got an enormous sunroof; once opened, you could almost get the convertible-feeling! It's got heating too, which was not standard in the 50's on most European cars. At that time, it was a well-equipped car (to European standards).

This IS a nice car. You can't possibly compare it to a modern car. Oh yes, It has four wheels, brakes, an engine... but driving this thing is an adventure. Don't expect it to start from the very first push... sorry, pull of the button! It has no automatic fuel pump, so the fuel has to be pumped up first. Once that's done, the engine starts willingly. It runs surprisingly smooth, considering its age.

The places we've been to with this car would impose a major problem to a normal (lower) car. Since the 203 has a very good suspension and a high ground clearance, we don't have to worry a bit. It behaves like a regular off-road vehicle; an MPV avant la lettre...

Driving the 203 is fun. Cars like these have become rare. Everytime we hit the road, everyone looks at it. People can't help staring at us, sometimes they wave or give us a big smile. It feels great: like we're giving them something to dream about, something to think about.
Looking through its old windshield always gives us the feeling we're cought in a timewarp. We've gone back in time; nothing looks the same anymore.
Believe it or not, but this is the ideal medecine for people who want to relax and stop the time (at least, for a litle while...) Works pretty good for us!
Belgian people are always in a hurry. They think old cars are slow, primitive things... and they're ALWAYS eager to pass, if they're not already sticking to our bumper to push us. No matter if we drive at a normal, legal speed. I don't get it. The only thing we can do, is to ignore them. They're constantly driving like if time is running out on them.

Is it jealousy, perhaps? We might think so. What other reason could there be? Why do they want to pass us at all cost? Gosh, it must be hard for these people to be so frustrated... They gave an arm and a leg for their brand new, exclusive car and no one looks at it! No, thanks. The pleasure and fun we have with our 203 can't possibly be replaced by anything else.
This car even got us some new friends, some far beyond the limits of our small country. When travelling to South Africa, we spotted a green Peugeot 203 on the parking of a shopping mall. The owner, Carl Van Der Merwe, was very pleased to talk about it. This guy drives it every day and doesn't need a new car!
Some other 203's we encountered on the French roads...
     
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