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Simca Reviews

Société Industrielle de Mécanique et de Carrosserie Automobile was founded in 1935, initially building rebadged Fiats. This it did so well that, during the 1950s, it was able to take over a number of other manufacturers including Ford France, and put that company’s V8 into production, as well as constructing its own rather distinctive designs.

Chrysler, which was seeking a European toehold, took a major stake in Simca in 1963 (as it did with Rootes in the UK), but it had similar problems running the marque as it suffered in the UK. In 1970, Simca became Chrysler France, and was sold to Peugeot in 1978. It soon renamed all the models Talbot; the last Simca, a Solara, came out in 1980.

Good: A great first effort from Simca, competing effectively with Peugeot for the hearts of the French middle classes
Bad: Rust and rarity
Good: US V8 power and refinement
Bad: One for Francophiles
Good: Stylish, inoffensive and unlikely to cost much to run
Bad: Zero profile and image in the UK, corrosion and the usual parts difficulties
Good: Cute, small car with four doors, rear engined layout equals handling fun, Rallye versions are a hoot to drive
Bad: Rust is an ever-present issue, even on a restored example
Good: Pretty Italian styling combined with and excellent French chassis, a real head-turner
Bad: Left-hand drive only, a hidden gem
Good: Solid French saloon with plenty of room and an excellent suspension set-up
Bad: Corrosion can be extensive, survivors are down to single-figures in the UK - so if you really want one be prepared to buy left-hand drive
Good: Practical five-door hatchback was ahead of the game when launched
Bad: Rust, rattles, general apathy