Citroën SM Pick-Up

Citroën SM Pick-Up - 1973

Private Collection

Model

SM Pick-Up

Make

1970-1975

Year

1973

Body type

Pick-Up

Color exterior

Bright Red

Color interior

Black

Description

Pickup & Trailer

When the team’s regular pickup and trailer was stolen, Jerry had the idea of creating a bespoke SM pickup and trailer to tow the record car, both finished in matching bright red livery. The Citroën pickup may well be the only one of its kind in the world, while the double-axle trailer is evenly unique. Having to move some of the hydraulic components from the engine bay to the rear of the racer in order to accommodate the turbocharger
had shown Jerry that these same components could be used in stand-alone form in a self-contained trailer. The latter had to be built from scratch, there being nothing on the market that could be adapted to accommodate the Citroën hydro-pneumatic, self-levelling suspension system. In many ways the latter is ideal for a trailer, being adjustable for laden/un-laden operation, as well as ride height to make loading and unloading easy.

The hydraulic pump is normally driven by the engine, but in the trailer’s case is powered by an electric motor connected to a pair of 12-volt batteries, which are kept charged by an additional alternator in the pickup. There are no fewer than nine spheres in the system: one main accumulator; two braking accumulators; and six suspension spheres. Neither electrical nor pneumatic, application of the brakes is handled by Jerry’s own ingenious mechanical system. Only Citroën components were used throughout and this engineering tour de force abounds in other interesting features: tilting (rather than de-mountable) loading ramps; brake cooling ducts in the mudguards; integral spare wheel; winch; halogen backup lights: auxiliary battery charging socket, etc. Amazingly, this immensely complicated ensemble’s debut outing was a coast-tocoast trip from California to Massachusetts and back, during which it performed faultlessly. There are few, if any, automotive engineers capable matching Jerry Hathaway’s achievements, and in 1989 his unique contribution to the Citroën story was recognised by the ‘Award for Dedication &
Achievement’ from Automobiles Citroën, France.

Public Appearances
Called ‘The Rig’ by the Hathaways, the trio has been displayed at numerous prestigious shows and events since
its retirement from competition, including Rétromobile in Paris in 2003 (record car only) and at the Petersen and
Mullin museums in the USA.

 

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