Pierre-Jules Boulanger, an architect by profession, ran Citroën after the company was acquired by Michelin, initially along with Pierre Michelin and Robert Puiseux and after the former's death in a car crash in 1937 he ran the company until 1950.
He was the man responsible for the concept of the TPV - it is said that he realised the need while observing local farmers who used horses and carts and bicycles in order to get their produce to market. He envisaged a cheap, minimalistic, low maintenance solution in which all extraneous and unnecessary components were to be deleted.
He was also an astute business man who realised that when Citroën ceased production of the 5CV in 1926, the company had left the bottom end of the marketplace to its rivals, Peugeot and Simca.
In 1934, just before Michelin acquired the company, Pierre Michelin instructed his engineers to build a tyre-testing vehicle on which certain automotive experiments might be undertaken.