Delage D6-70 Cabriolet by Letourneur et Marchand

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D6-70 Cabriolet by Letourneur et Marchand





The D6 was introduced in 1930 as a replacement for the Delage DM, but in view of the range of six-cylinder engines with which it was offered it could also be seen as a replacement for the smaller engine Delage DR.

In 1930 the D6 was one in a range of three Delage models on offer. The other two were the slightly lighter (but still six-cylinder powered) DS and, at the top of the range, the very large D8 launched the previous year. All three faced strong economic headwinds in the wake of the 1929 stock market crashes.

The original Delage D6 came with a choice of two chassis lengths, these being 3,149 mm (124.0 in) or 3,289 mm (129.5 in). The 6-cylinder engine had a displacement of 3045 cc. Listed maximum power was 75hp (56 kW), produced at 3,600 rpm.

For 1937 Delage presented the D6-70. The car was effectively a rebadged D6-60S, which in turn was a derivation of the D6-60. The D6-70 sat on the same 3,150 mm (124 in) wheelbase as the D6-60 which was withdrawn from sale a few months after its launch. The car’s straight-six engine was of 2729 cc displacement and was not shared with any Delahaye. Maximum output is listed as 78hp (58 kW) though as before, sources differ. The D6-70 seems to have been the star of the Delage 6-cylinder range at this time, with some particularly elegant bodies provided such as the “Coach Panoramique” 2-door sports saloon from Letourneur & Marchand, a Chapron cabriolet bodied car depicted in the 1937 Delage catalogue and a particularly well balanced “Berline” (saloon/sedan) from Autobineau.

Lastly, most of the D6-70s were equipped with the optional Cotal electromagnetic gearbox, which was an almost automatic transmission system that had four speeds plus reverse. The Cotal system, with its silky smooth operation, was a huge improvement over any other concurrent design. The resulting D6-70 was listed in the Delage brochure as a sport model, as was the higher-level D8-120, and it is widely recognized as the best car built by Delage in the late 1930s.

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