Darren Cassey profile picture Darren Cassey 9 years ago

The Citroen Centipede Is A 10-Wheeled Tyre Testing Monster

Back in the '70s, Michelin created this monstrous Citroen DS to safely test its truck tyres

Remind me later
michelin_plr In 1972, Michelin needed a way of testing its truck tyres at high speed, but was worried about the danger involved with big-rig blowouts. The answer was this massively modified Citroen DS. ds millepattes 6 Its official name is the Poids Lourd Rapide, which loosely translates as the 'fast truck,' but the French nicknamed it 'milles-pattes' - 'centipede'. Michelin owned Citroen at the time, so they raided the parts bin to create the PLR. Most of the bodywork was stolen from a DS Safari, while the wheels and hubs came from an H van. 0222520ds2520jubile252020052520-2520plr2520michelin25202005-10-07252012-53-01 Naturally, with so many wheels on the ground, a lot of power was needed. This came in the form of two 5.7-litre Chevrolet V8s. One of these engines powered the rear six wheels, while the other powered the mid-mounted truck wheel that was fitted with a test tyre. The front four wheels were responsible for steering. michelin_plr_4 The PLR's top speed was 111mph, which isn't bad considering it weighed an incredible ten tonnes.