Citroen/Michelin PLR - Interesting Engineering

Citroen/Michelin PLR

This is Citroen DS, passed through heavy modification to be able to test tires. It is made by Michelin in 1972 and weighs more than ten metric tons. PLR comes from Poids Lourd Rapide or Fast Semi Truck. Inside this machine have enough space for a mid-mounted tire testing machine along with the crew. This a bit freaky car (or whatever it is) holds also two small-block Chevy V-8 engines (350 cubic inches), one to power the rear six wheels and another to spin the tire testing machine mentioned above. PLR is steered by all four front wheels and reaches nearly 180 km/h And absolutely deserves its nickname – “mille-pates”, or centipede.

PLR is made with purpose to test truck tires at high speeds without the risks of using trucks. If a tire blows they don’t have to worry about losing control of their vehicle. The ten wheels and hubs come from an HY van, also produced by Citroen. At this time Citroen is owned by Michelin and that is why they use Citroen models to create this tire tester.
For comparison, the “simple” Citroen DS uses flat six cylinder engine with air cooling and volumetric displacement of 1911 cubic centimeters. The DS had the gearbox mounted in front of the engine with the differential in between, so that DS is considered to be a mid-engine front-wheel drive car.


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