The Frenchman, Adolphe Kégresse, was not only the head of the Soviet Tsar Nicholas II’s in-charge of the imperial garage but also the personal chauffeur to the King. To improve the mobility of the Tsar’s many vehicles, he designed the half-track and dual-clutch concepts in 1911. But after World War I, he had to return to his native France, where he was employed by Citroen in 1919.
It was at Citroen that he developed this Citroen metal and rubber half-track (Autochenille, in French) model. Known as P10 in the beginning, further improvements led to this model being called P17 in 1921. Aimed at the civilian market, Citroen also sold the model to the French army, which bought around 1500 of them during the years 1928-1935.
To popularise this model abroad, Citroen undertook a series of expeditions. The first one was called "De La Croisiere" and was undertaken between Toggourt, Algeria and Timbaktou, Mali and traversed he entire length of the Sahara desert. The second one by the same name travelled the entire length of Africa, from the North to the South.
The last expedition (Croisière Jaune) from Beirut (present-day capital of Lebanon) to Peking (present-day Beijing, China) was a distance of 13,000 km. Two routes were taken by a team of people consisting of André Citroën's best friend, Georges-Marie Haardt*: his deputy, Louis Audouin Dubreuil; a French naval officer, Lieutenant Victor Point; painter Alexandre Jacovleff; philosopher Pierre Teilhard de Chardin; archaeologist Joseph Hackin; and American photojournalist Maynard Owen Williams.
One of the routes passed through Syria, Iran, Afghanistan, and British India (through Srinagar), while the other was a long detour that took them through Agra, Allahabad, Benaras (Varanasi), Calcutta (Kolkata), and Imphal (Manipur) before reaching Imperial China.
This scale model is a rendition of the vehicle invented by Adolphe Kégresse.
* Haardt contracted pneumonia during the last expedition and died in Hong Kong
|- Premium collectible|
|- Licensed product|
|- Material: ZAMAC (zinc alloy), Rubber and Plastic|
|- Non-opening model|
|- On plinth (platform base)|
|Box Dimension (in inches)||12 x 4 x 6|