Thailand
Page creation 23/02/2014
All rights reserved DSinAsia 2006-2016, except otherwise indicated
This green DS, featuring on a commercial for the petrol company PTT, aired on Thai TV in
the '90s, led us to an amazing character and his no less amazing treasure trove.
The storyline: a man at the wheel of the car, gently cruising on a country road, hums "pump,
pump, pump...", hoping to quickly find a gasolin stand, as the gas meter dangerously edges
towards "empty". You'll notice, of course, that neither the wheel nor the gas meter are
those of a DS. He spots a PTT signboard, and sings "pump, pump, pump" aloud in relief,
when the wheel unexpectedly breaks away...
...the car steers off course, whizzes down a steep hill...
...and crashes through the wall of another PTT gas stand downhill, before coming to a stop.
The unfazed driver exits the car, the wheel still in his hand, shouting "Puuuuuump !". The
final tagline goes: "In case you miss a PTT station, we have 1500 of them to take care of
you wherever you travel".
With the help of Khun
Jour, who found the video
in the first place, I could
locate and visit Khun
Somchai, the owner of
the green DS used in the
ad, in his cavern-like
former garage in
Bangkok. There it was,
a 1974 DS23 to be
precise, covered with a
thick layer of dust, bonnet
open up high, amidst a
throng of cars and parts
defying description.
The video of this ad is available on my Youtube channel, here:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8wbMbhfXmfg
Khun Somchai proudly
admits he has "Citroen
blood in his veins": at the
tender age of 10, he
started to work in his
father's garage,
specialized in this brand
and called "Banjong
Motors" ("banjong"
standing for "meticulous").
He later started his own
garage, "Kaeng Sevice",
and is now retired. Beside
the DS, he still owns a
couple of Traction, and a
Type H van.
Every nook and corner of Khun Somchai's garage reveals a surprise. Above left, one of the Traction still owned by Khun
Somchai. The two others are in running condition, and Khun Somchai says he can repair them "with (his) eyes shut".
Above right: a rare Daimler cabriolet. Below left: a no less unique Dennis "Stork" truck. In front of the DS, a curious
amphibious vehicle from  "Recreatives Industries". And everywhere in between, inside and above, endless rows and
heaps of parts, more or less arranged by type or make. Khun Somchai conscienciously follows his father's advice:
"never throw anything"...
But the biggest surprise was yet to come.
When we enquired as to where he could
still find so many Traction and DS parts,
he explained he also owned a piece of land
in Kanchanaburi, 100 km west of Bangkok,
where he kept a few wrecked cars...
The following week-end we met him there,
only to find about 50 old cars slowly rotting
under the sun, including no less than 11
DS, half a dozen Traction, two Ami, not
forgetting a couple of CX and GS !  
Most DS wrecks laying in Khun Somchai's playground in Kanchanaburi are late-year models, with the exception of the
one above left: a 1967 ID19. On his customers' demand, he regularly comes here to disassemble the required spare
parts: engine, gearbox, trim, dashboard, etc.