Just A Car Geek: 1990 Citroen XM

28 Mar 2015 | Author: | Comments Off on Just A Car Geek: 1990 Citroen XM
Citroen C6

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

1990 Citroen XM

Of all the bizarre cars I talk about wanting to own one day, the Citron XM is one that I will own. There is no doubt about that in my mind. They are getting close to that magic 25 year old mark, when I could import one with no problems.

There are plenty of people out there who don’t consider this a real Citroen. It was designed and produced after Citroen was taken over by Peugeot. I look at it as a Citroen anyone could love.

Earlier Citroens were incredibly engineered, but truly bizarre cars. They were an acquired taste. They looked as if they could have been designed on another planet.

Their 4 cylinder engine was almost as old as the planet.

The XM took all the good engineering points that Citroen was known for and wrapped in a modern, wedgy Bertone designed body. A V6, the Peugeot / Renault / Volvo Douvrin engine, was available. (An engine that, by the time it was installed in this car was incredibly durable. Early engines had camshaft problems, which gave the engine a poor reputation. Later engines, like the one in this car, can go 200,000+ miles without problems.)

The XM was the first car to be fitted with a Hydractive suspension, an update of Citroën’s famous Hydropneumatic suspension.

The XM has two additional suspension spheres that can be used to vary the car’s ride. Sensors attached to the steering, accelerator pedal, brakes, vehicle body and gearbox are connected to a computer that continuously varies the both the suspension spring rates and damping to provide a soft ride for comfort and a taut ride for handling and road holding. A switch enables the driver to leave the computer to its own devices or to offer a firmer sport setting.

The interior had many Citroen touches, but was more conventional than any previous Citroen.

The XM was not without problems. The biggest problems were electrical, much of which can be traced to corroded grounds.

None of the above, the good or the bad, matters to me. This is a car I’d buy for the body. I like wedge shaped cars (or cars that are angular and slightly disproportionate, as a friend says) and this is the perfect wedge.

In my eyes it’s a car with presence. It’s classy and sporty at the same time.

This car is located in Mississauga, Ontario, Canada. Being a 1990 model year, it would be tough to title in the US. However, it seems like other people have found ways with other cars to get around this.

The seller is willing to deliver it to Saratoga, NY in June.

Click here to see the eBay listing.

If you go to Saratoga to buy the XM, stop at a restaurant called Hattie’s Chicken Shack.

I was lucky enough to be living in Albany, NY, when Hattie and her husband still operated the restaurant. Hattie opened the restaurant in 1938. By the time I was eating there – 3 or 4 times a month for a couple of years in the early 1980s – Hattie and her husband were in their 80s. (Hattie was not 100% sure when she was born, she thought it was in 1900.) She and her husband had the coolest old – early sixties, maybe – Cadillac convertible, which was always shiny and always parked out front.

Hattie would often lecture me about my dislike of cooked green vegetables.

Hattie and her husband are long gone, but the restaurant and her recipes still live on. I still try to eat there once or twice a year. If you like fried chicken and / or New Orleans style food, you won’t find a better place.

Nope, this is not turning into a food and restaurant blog. I just can’t think of Saratoga without thinking of Hattie, her husband, their Cadillac and great food.

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