Lot n° 26
25000 - 35000
Result with fees
: 33 600EUR
Avions Voisin C14 1929 / Sans réserve
Bodywork from the Voisin catalogue by Manessius
CHARMANT is the name codified by the genius Gabriel Voisin for his 13hp type C14 chassis equipped with the excellent 6-cylinder engine without valves of 2.326 litres. The type C14, approved by the state department in July 1928, is the continuation of the type C11 released in 1926 and which was the first chassis of the brand with a 6-cylinder engine. This engine was itself derived from competition and more precisely from the 1923 A.C.F. Grand Prix car. With 60 HP at 3000 rpm, the 6-cylinder engine has an excellent output for a touring car. Proud of the quality and performance of his C14 type, Gabriel Voisin offered in October 1928 a bonus of 500,000 francs to the first person who would come up with a strictly production car with similar characteristics and able of the same performance. The prize was never awarded!
The carburettor, like the Knight engine, although not designed by Voisin, fits perfectly into the art deco spirit that Gabriel Voisin wanted.
In 1955, our C14 Manessius was registered in the Doubs region. Judging by the markings on the bodywork, it must have been there before the war. Indeed, the department "Doubs" is painted on the front wing and the weights "PM 800 - CU 500" (dead weight and payload in kg) are also painted on the left side. These markings could show that it may have been used during the Second World War as a pick-up truck.
It is important to note that the body was never converted into a utility vehicle, unlike some others that had the rear part of their body modified with a tailgate or re-bodied as a van or flatbed.
Stored in a dry place for several decades, this 13hp type C14 belonged to the collection of Jacques Antvelink, the amateur specialist well known for his passion for "Avions Voisin".
Fine mechanic, this "doctor" of Voisin did not hesitate to maintain his cars and to rebuild the engine. This example would have had its M11 type engine completely rebuilt around 2005/2006. Carburettor, igniter, double coils... are present and conform. The engine has come from a foundry and bears the date 28 - 1 - 29 on its crankcase. After his death, the car was sold and simply stored.
The dashboard, a Jaeger set, is complete with its instruments which are: watch, speedometer, rev counter, ammeter and oil pressure as well as the control for the lights and the ignition with its key.
The interior is simple, nothing flashy or ostentatious. The side windows, including the quarter windows, are downward, and the windscreen can be opened. The upholstery in beige woolen cloth is all original. It should be noted that one of the two rear seats is missing.
The Manessius bodywork, based in Levallois-Perret, made a name for itself quite quickly by winning various elegance competitions in the "transformable" category. At the beginning of the 1920s, it was also making a name for itself in all-metal bodywork. It grew rapidly and produced ten to fifteen cars a day. In 1928, it had a sawmill in Troyes, workshops in Puteaux for the repair department, a paint factory in Levallois which was destined to become the depot for cars to be delivered, and a very modern factory in Levallois of 20,000m2. Thus equipped, it aimed at a daily production of at least 25 cars and planned to produce 50 cars per day by 1929.
The Manessius company and Gustave Baehr, its director, patented all their inventions (other coachbuilders used them on numerous occasions), to save time in manufacturing, improve the silence, lightness and quality of the bodies, innovate in the devices of transformable coaches, window mechanisms, assemblies of wooden frames, locks, hinges, etc. It was undoubtedly this capacity of Manessius to innovate that pleased Gabriel Voisin. He therefore granted Manessius, the only one who found favour in his eyes, the immense privilege of entering the brand's catalogue with the "Aquitaine" and "Champagne" models. This last version was the 4-door, 6-seat, 6-window interior like the one presented here.
Named "Champagne" in the Voisin catalogue, our coachwork is an elegant 4-door, 6-seat, 6-window interior. The trunk supports and the toolbox drawer locations are typically Voisin. This body has certainly never been restored, well preserved, but it deserves a careful restoration, to keep the maximum of original elements. The paintwork appears to be the original one.
The moleskin of the pavilion, which is almost a century old, should be replaced. The Manessius coachbuilder's plates that should be on the canopy are missing, as well as the radiator cap and the tool drawers on the front wings. On the other hand, the spare wheel protection plate and the fuel cap with its "Téléjauge Voisin 14 cv" are present.
Extrait du catalogue Avions Voisin avec la mention Manessius
The pedals show almost no wear and tear, so the 64,000 km shown could be the original ones.
The C14 catalogue clearly states that a complete car must weigh a maximum of 1350 kg. The body must therefore not exceed 350 kg, including the running boards and luggage. With the different Manessius or Baehr patents used on the "Champagne", our bodywork does not exceed 350kg.
Elitist, silent and powerful, the 2.3 litre C11 and C14 types represent the greatest commercial success of the brand with nearly 4000 chassis built out of a total production of about 11000. Even if some work will be necessary to give it back its former glory, this C14 code "Champagne" approved by Gabriel Voisin fully deserves a new life as a grand tourer and to keep most of its beautiful patina.
Return to catalogue