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 CitroŽn Dauphin 180 K  and 350 K, 450 K and 480 K

By the mid 1960s , French truck maker Berliet had seen its market share decline with the creation of Saviem, a subsidiary of State owned Renault.  It also lost important military contracts and sought membership of a more dynamic and powerful group.

In June 1967, CitroŽn bought Berliet.

At that time, Michelin owned CitroŽn and had just acquired Panhard.

Furthermore, CitroŽn was considering the acquisition of  Maserati and had significant research costs, especially with the Comotor subsidiary, shared with NSU to develop the rotary engine.

The acquisition of Berliet, would, it was hoped, permit a reorganisation of Michelin’s investments.

CitroŽn had an ageing truck range comprising the Type 23 and Type 55 both of which had been introduced in the 1950s, and of course the Belphťgor range launched in 1965.  But the truck business was a relatively low level activity for CitroŽn. 
It was felt that Berliet would be able to compete with Saviem and generate extra income which would allow CitroŽn to carry out its many projects while leaving a residual profit.

For Berliet, however, the acquisition of the CitroŽn truck division had no real advantage except that of taking control of a competitor and strengthening its market share. Alongside its own range, Berliet manufactured the Belphťgor range trucks at its plant in Venissieux and together with CitroŽn developed a new small truck, to be called Dauphin.  The chassis and cabin came from the Berliet Stradair with a shortened bonnet and was originally only available with the CitroŽn badge and then between 1970 and 1971, it could be bought with either Berliet or CitroŽn badges.  The CitroŽn contribution to the design was to use the Belphťgor’s fully powered, LHM based braking system and to use the DS21’s four cylinder petrol engine.  A Perkins diesel was also available.

After a short career wearing the CitroŽn badge, the Dauphin continued as a Berliet.

In 1976, PSA sold Berliet to Renault.

180 K

350 K, 450 K and 480 K

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