Peugeot 402 Eclipse E4 Coupé Cabriolet 1936
Chassis no. 601504
•One of Peugeot's most expensive and exclusive cars
•One of only 36 Eclipse models known to survive
•One of only three two-seaters with electric roof known
•Delivered new to Nice, France
•Modified by Carrosserie Brandone
•Off the road since circa 1960
•Offered for restoration
One of Peugeot's most expensive and exclusive models, the Eclipse is extremely rare, with only 36 known today. The Eclipse register lists only three two-seater E4 models, the other two being in France. Of the two-seater models from the 80/E4 series, with the 5.0m wheelbase and electric roof, only three further examples are known.
Belonging to the Peugeot 402 first series, '601504' has matching numbers for the chassis, engine, and body, as confirmed by the Peugeot Archive. '601504' was built in March 1936 but not delivered, to a dealer in Nice, until 30th June 1937. It seems unlikely that the car was stored during the intervening period; possibly it was used by Peugeot as a demonstrator or motor show car, and perhaps was exhibited at the Geneva Salon and Paris Motor Show. After the delivery to Nice, it is not clear where the car went, though six owners (list available) are known.
Believed modified in the late 1940s by the Nice-based coachbuilder, Carrosserie Brandone, this car's front end differs from that of a standard 402. Apparently it was not changed following an accident, as there are no signs of any associated damage. This car is the only one of its type modified in this way by Brandone.
Records in the 'Bundesarchiv Bern' show that between 1950 and 1960 this car was registered in Lucern, Switzerland as 'LU 5851'. In 1964, the Peugeot was bought by Messrs J Neubert and H Grieger and brought to Germany, though it was never registered there. The new owners then commenced a restoration of the car, which was discontinued for unknown reasons in the 1970s.
A friend of Mr Grieger confirms that the Peugeot was probably last moved in 1980, to a garage in Heuchlingen, only re-emerging when Grieger passed away in 2005. The current owner bought the car from Mr Grieger's estate in 2007. Dating from 1975, a video on file shows the car in the condition that it is still in today.
Requiring a complete mechanical and cosmetic restoration, '601504' is virtually complete: the Eclipse-specific fittings are present and the mechanical roof's electrics work. Original wooden parts, seals, etc that had been replaced by previous owners are mostly present. The current owner has found the few missing parts, while the engine has been overhauled (for €2,000) and tested in a 402 saloon. There is no rust, and the car's condition is described by the vendor as 'honest', without any nasty surprises.
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