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1921 Le Mans
"Grand Prix de la Consommation"

(Informations and photos : 'Le Sporting', 1921 24 May)

The second Grand Prix de la Consommation organised by the Automobile Club de France on Sunday May 22, 1921 was a high speed economy run that pitched several leading marques of the time against each other, including Citroen, Mathis, De Dion-Bouton, Chenard et Walker, Bignan, Grégoire and La Buire as well as Voisin.
Although production models, each car was fitted with a special fuel tank whose volume was calculated according a formula that took into account the vehicle's weight, engine capacity and body type. The report in 'Le Sporting' elaborates at length about the lessons to be learned from this type of contest at a time when "the high cost of fuel is undoubtedly the main cause of the malaise that currently afflicts our automobile industry" - and that was in 1921!

Cabaillot's Voisin saloon

After singling out Citroen for praise, the reporter continued: "Voisin is another example. The fuel consumption when brand new is around 22 litres per 100 kilometres, reducing to 18-19 litres when run in; yet in last year's competition, the figure was down to 15 litres."

The outcome of the contest was judged by a complicated formula which included overall weight and average speed as well as fuel consumption, and yielded a clear victory for Voisin to boast of:

The first six places were as follows:

Pilot - Marque
Score (points)
1st- Artault - Voisin
3 840
2nd- Cabaillot - Voisin
3 810
3rd- de Marne - Bignan-Sport
3 200
4th- Barateau - Delahaye
3 120
5th- Penaud - Grégoire
3 080
6th- Lacharnay - La Buire
3 065
3 litre to 4.5 litre category ranking :

Pilot - Marque - Carb.
Ran distance
Consumption for 100 kms
Average speed
Cabaillot - Voisin - Zénith
127,864 kms
0,0199 frs
8,100 litres
68,986 kp/h
Artault - Voisin - Zénith
123,754 kms
0,0314 frs
6,430 litres
82,600 kp/h
Convert - Delahaye - Cozette
109,156 kms
0,0403 frs
8,260 litres
62,600 kp/h
de Marne - Bignan - Sport
108,526 kms
0,0418 frs
8,600 litres
Maudiquet - Mors - Solex
96,303 kms
0,0394 frs
8,060 litres
48,200 kp/h
* cost per passenger and kilometer
The consumption concours finished with the follwing ranking :

1st- Milcent - Citroën
2nd- Kuntz -Mathis
3rd- Poulain -Citroën
4th- Sommier - Mathis
5th- Lahms -Mathis
6th- Battaglia - Mathis
7th- Barbier - Citroën
8th- Cabaillot - Voisin
9th- Bocchi -De Dion-Bouton
10th- Léonard -Chenard-Walker
11th- Artault -Voisin
"Penalised by being entered in the large car category, the Voisins could manage no better than 8th and 11th, but they made up for this modest showing in the speed trial, which they finished in first and second respectively."
And so it was that the firm from Issy-Les-Moulineaux lost no time in placing advertisements celebrating the result...
(Informations and photos : 'Le Sporting', 1921 24 May)

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