Our Search for the Elusive North American Peugeot 404 Owner: A Report from the Front!
Through the help of le Club 404 Global Registry and Mike’s years of work in tracking down Peugeot 404’s and owners worldwide, a historic database existed for us to try and document and connect North American owners. Recently, we created an english language support website for le Club 404 (www.peugeot404na.com) and formed a network for existing 404 North American owners and enthusiasts to help find one another. As part of this effort, we reached out to and contacted a large portion of the relatively few existing 404 owners in North America. From these efforts, a great deal has been learned about the remaining cars, the interesting owner stories (filled with details of delight and hardship) and trends in North American.
Next Generation of Peugeot 404 North American Owners? - Lets hope so!
The Original USA and Canadian Peugeot 404 Importation:
Importation of 404s started here in 1961 and continued through 1969 with approximately 26,135 being sold in the USA and 8,320 in Canada.
The Sedan or Berline models were the first to arrive in 1961 followed by the station wagon and convertibles later around 1964. The Coupes were never imported into the US for mass distribution and very few models were sold in Canada, but were available there. The USA Cabriolet or Convertible production consisted exclusively of the Carbureted version vs in Canada where they imported the KF injection model with the sporty Nardi floor shifter added as standard for Canadian 404C models.
How many 404’s Exist in North America Today?
Our numbers are surely underestimates and hopefully widely off with more of us hiding out there! Hey, we found a “new” 30 year cabriolet owner last week! But alas, through le Club 404 Registry, State Department of Motor Vehicle searches, and extensive networking - we have documented only 115 likely existing Peugeot 404s in North America.
There are 99 in the USA and 16 in Canada. Also, we have found fourteen European models that have been imported from Europe since the original period and fifteen USA models that have been exported back to Europe. So, of the approximate 34,500 Peugeot 404s imported, just 0.3% of that total still exists here today.
We have contacted or verified existing ownership of approximately 70 of these owners recently. The current North American model count consists of the following:
55 Sedans or ‘Berlines’
38 Convertibles or ‘Cabriolets’
17 Station Wagons or ‘Breaks’
There are a total of 42 known Peugeot 404 C models currently in North America (36 in the USA and 6 in Canada). There continues to be a small amount of flux. A few cars have been scrapped (Ugghh, one recent Coupe was scrapped last year. Just before we got to them!). As mentioned above, some 404Cs have been sold and shipped back to Europe and others purchased in Europe and imported here.
In the USA, we have identified 36 known Peugeot 404 C models (34 Cabriolets and 2 Coupes) with thirty of these owners being known to us and six owners whose contact information we still seek. Of these models located in America, 22 are carbureted models and 14 are injected models imported from Canada or Europe where they originated. In Canada, we know of six 404C models (4 Cabriolets and 2 Coupes) of which half are carbureted and half injection.
404Cs were found in 13 States and 3 Canadian Provinces (BC, Ontario, Quebec). Half of the NA 404C’s are found in just two states: CA (15) and FL (4)! The remaining in MA (3), OR (3), IN (2), NJ (2) and 1 in AZ, CT, GA, ME, MO, NH, TN.
We need your help! If you know of a Peugeot 404 owner, let us know so we can add them to our support network list.