Classic Car Catalogue

Wimille 1946

wb: 2450 mm
R4 cyl.
1911 cm³
56 ch
– Paris (protoype)


Born in Paris to a father who loved motor sports and was employed as the motoring correspondent for the Petit Parisien newspaper, Jean-Pierre Wimille developed a fascination for racing cars at a young age. He was 22 years old when he made his Grand Prix debut, driving a Bugatti 37A at the 1930 French Grand Prix in Pau. Since then he successfully drove various cars at countless races all over the world.
When World War II came, following the Nazi occupation Wimille joined the Special Operations Executive, which aided the French Resistance.
In October at the Paris Motor Show he revealed his 'dream sports car'. The development of the prototype has began shortly after the liberation in collaboration with two famous engineers: P. Leygonie and L. Viel, the former technical director of Bugatti.
The striking coupé body has a tubular chassis and an impressively low drag of Cx=0,23. It adopts many new solutions, including a huge panoramic windscreen, curved side doors and windows, a window in the roof and three front seats with a steering wheel located exactly in the middle. The champion believes that this is the best driving position. There are hydraulic brakes and all independent suspension with torsion bars. Only one thing is missing... The car is intended to have a V6-cylinder 1.5-litre engine which is not ready yet. Instead it is powered by a pre-war Citroën 11 CV unit developing mere 56 horses. Despite this, thanks to its aerodynamic form the Wimille can reach 150 km/h. Teamed with a Cotal 4-speed gearbox it is located behind driver's seat.