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Citroën SM Marocco

The Citroën SM was not designed as an all out sports car. It's refined, long distance and luxurious profile means an unfavorable power to weight ratio in motorsport terms. Citroën chose to exploit the "Citroën" qualities of the SM for it's competition program. Long distance events over rugged terrain were chosen to demonstrate the car's potential.

Première sortie, première victoire

"Première sortie, première victoire" (first outing, first win) that's how Citroën announced the victory of the SM in the Morocco rally of 1971. This rally, were Citroën was very successful with the DS for a number of years, was chosen for the competition debut of the SM. 2 cars were aligned at the start. One SM piloted by Jean Vinatier-Pierre Thimonier started the race aggressively trying to lead from the start. They realized very good times but were forced to retire with transmission problems. The other SM driven by Jean Deschaseaux-Jean Plassard took a more conservative approach and won the event. The car behaved impeccably only requiring brake and tire changes. Both SMs were equipped with the new Michelin RR (roues en résine) wheels, later offered on the production SM as an option. Both cars were entered under group 4 rules and were very close to the production models. The engines (2,7 liter) had a slight power increase (5hp DIN) due to a redesigned exhaust system. The cars were lightened by stripping out the interior but driveline protection plates and a substantial rollcage brought the weight to 1680 kg. Citroën produced a film by Claude Caillet celebration the SM's first victory.


Citroën returned to morocco in 1972 with three SM's. That year the event was particularly grueling and only 9 cars reached the finish line. The DS piloted by Robert Netret won, but none of the Sm's finished.

For the 1972 TAP rally in Portugal Citroën prepared anSM prototype (group 5 version). The car had a shortened chassis with special fiberglass bodywork reducing weight to 1200kg. The car was equipped with a special 3 liter engine and Weber 48 IDA carburetors delivering 250hp. The race was run under torrential rains. In the second special stage the SM was heavily penalized by suspension trouble. A heroic comeback made the car finish 3rd overall and first in group 5 class.


The Bandama rally (or the Ivory Coast Marathon) is a very grueling event run over a distance of 3897 km of which 3540 km of tracks. A prototype SM finished the race 6th overall, another famous comeback after early electrical problems..

Citroën SM group 5

These group 5 prototype SM's owed much to a special SM development program run by Jacques Né. Searching for the upper limits of front wheel drive this man created some very special SM's. More about these cars soon...

Private efforts

  • Although Citroën concentrated it's motorsport efforts in the Rally's, some privateers entered the SM in other events...

  • 1972 Le Mans 24 hours. An SM with race number 55 with a 3 liter engine prepared by Ligier participated in tests at Le Mans. Under pressure from Citroën the car did not participate in the race. Sm's were on the track that year when the French president Pompidou is his SM présidentiëlle opened the track escorted by 3 other white SM's. Later that year the Le Mans SM was entered in the "tour de France auto" were it came first in it's class.

  • 1971, 1972 and 1974 24 hours of Spa Francorchamps. Privately entered cars participated in these races, but none of them finished.
  • The SM WORLD race SM holder of several land speed records is documented in the SM WORLD pages...

  • In the recent editions of the "tour de France historique" Thierry Quignard campaigns an SM. His best finish so far: eight.