Peugeot 504 to be celebrated at Salone di Padova 2018

The Peugeot 504 is 50 years old in 2018 and will be represented at the Salone di Padova by international Peugeot fan club L'Aventure Peugeot

There's plenty of automotive milestones to celebrate this year, with three big birthday models from Jaguar, the first Lotus, Porsche’s 70th, not to mention Land Rover’s 70th anniversary. A significant model that has been slightly edged out of the spotlight is the Peugeot 504, which turns 50 this year. L'Aventure Peugeot is doing their bit to give the 504 its moment, paying tribute at Salone di Padova 2018.

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If you’re a fan of the French car and are attending the event, you’ll want to head for Hall 4 as L'Aventure Peugeot, in conjunction with Club Storico Peugeot Italia, is displaying a pair of pristine examples. A great opportunity for club exposure, it also gives the 504 some much deserved attention. The club itself is also celebrating its own anniversary, having been founded 20 years ago.

Peugeot saw huge success with the 504 from its launch in 1968 when introduced with a 79bhp carburetted 1.8-litre four-cylinder engine. This was a push upmarket for the French brand, with the 504 featuring some luxury car equipment. It proved very popular and even netted the coveted European Car of the Year award in 1969.

If the 504 was all about changing perceptions of the Peugeot brand, the coupe and convertible designed by Pininfarina certainly did that. Both elegant models proved to be highly aspirational while also more attainable than some rivals. By 1970 there were seven derivatives of the Peugeot 504, with the car being produced in Europe until 1983 — a long production life indeed.

Even after European production ended, the 504 was still built under license in kit form in countries including Nigeria and Kenya until 2006, taking its lifespan to an incredible 38 years. It proved particularly popular in the Chinese market as a pickup truck.

Peugeot also recently paid homage to the 504 with its e-Legend retro concept car presented at the Paris Motor Show, which brand CEO Jean-Philippe Imperato has said might even make it to production, should potential buyers express enough interest. Perhaps the 504's story isn't simply in the past after all.

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