Citroen Ami Super
Reviewed by Unique Cars and Parts
Our Rating: 3
The Ami Super was a flat-4 variant of the original Ami, powered by the engine
of the GS and produced between 1973
. At the launch of the GS, its original flat 4 cylinder air-cooled
1015cc 55 bhp DIN engine was considered to be under powered. With surplus engines available, Citroen
decided to fit the engine into the Ami 8
in January 1973
The car, which became the Ami Super, then easily reached 140 kmh. From the outside, it had a new front grille with six additional vents underneath. On the sides of the front wing there was a badge marked 1015 in reference to the new engine. The body
was the same as the Ami 8
apart from changes to inner front wings, bonnet, front panel and bumper mountings.
The chassis was also modified from the standard Ami 8
with alterations made to accommodate the 1015cc engine
. Other changes included thicker wire in the suspension springs
, to give a tauter ride and front, along with rear anti roll bars - these fitted from 1974 onwards until the end of Ami Super Production in 1976
The Ami Super and Ami 8 Break (Wagon) were fitted with 135 15 ZX Michelin tyres
as standard while Ami 8 sedan retained the Michelin 125 15 X although 135 15's could be ordered as an option. Also on the Ami Super headlamps with built in Quartz iodine fog lights were offered as an option, other options included heated rear screens.
Behind the Wheel
Inside, the gear change was floor mounted, in place of the dashboard mounted gear lever
of the Ami 6 and 8 and to accommodate this the hand brake of the Super curved up instead of down. The speedometer was also specific to the Ami Super differing slightly to allow higher speed numbers to be shown. The Ami Super was offered in the same 3 trim levels as the Ami 8, Luxe, Confort and Club on Saloon and Luxe and Confort on Break (wagon) versions.
These trim differences were fairly minor with Luxe models having bench front and rear seats and vinyl floor matting. Confort trim offered reclining front seats in place of the front bench. The Club models were considered the Pallas of the Ami range, featuring sound proofing pads on the floor and bulkhead, carpet including boot (trunk) lining, stainless steel trim on the window frames and side rubbing strips on the doors and rear wings.
Club trim was only available up to the end of the 1973
model year, after that point Ami 8 and Ami super were only available in Luxe and Confort specification. From 1974
Ami super models were revamped to feature a double line graphic along the exterior of the body
sides, either in black or silver depending on body
colour, with slotted wheels and double line detailing on the hubcaps. The rear window also featured a graphic in white stating "Ami Super 1015cm3"
As the Ami Super looked very much like an Ami 8, and could surprise many by demonstrating its dramatic performance advantage compared to the Ami 8 (55 hp compared to 32 hp). Quoted by Autocar magazine in the UK as a "Q car par excellence" sadly in France its 5CV tax rating made little sense in a small car and as a result sales were low compared to the Ami 8 - which itself was not a huge success. In the UK, free from the onerous tax penalties, the Ami Super enjoyed better sales.
The Ami Super production reached close to 42,000 in sedan and station wagon by February 1976
. The Ami 8 continued until early 1979
and reached in the region of 722,000 production. A small series of prototype coupes, the M35 were produced as test vehicles for loyal customers - testing the single-rotor Comotor Wankel engine
, as also seen in the NSU Spider. A twin-rotor version of this engine
reached production form with the NSU Ro 80
and GS Birotor. Today they are a rare sight on the roads of Europe, mainly because of their poor corrosion resistance - typical of many vehicles of this era.