Gabriel Voisin was a many of many talents and professions. He was a mechanic, architect, engineer, aerodynamicist, inventor and industrialist. Other talents and skills included poetry, philosophy, music, and art.
In 1902 he built his first airplane and two years later he, along with his brother Charles, opened a factory. During the First World War, he oversaw the production of more than 10,000 airframes and the manufacture of engines, licensed from Salmson and Hispano-Suiza.
When the War ended he was left without aircraft contracts so he returned to automobiles. Former Panhard engineers designed the first Voisin car. They tried to sell the design to Andre Citroen but the offer was declined because it had Panhard roots. The car was given a Knight-type sleeve vale engine that was both silent and smooth.
By 1920 the Voisin automaker introduced the C2 at the Paris Salon. It had a V12 engine that displaced 7.3-liters and four-wheel brakes actuated by compressed air and three-point mounting for the engine. The successes of this design found their way into the C1, C3 and C5 models. The C6 to C16 were mostly four cylinder cars, but there were a few six-cylinder exceptions. The C13 was the exception, which had an eight-cylinder unit.
The experience in the aircraft industry made its way into the designs of the bodies on the Voisin cars. Gabriel Voisin focused on simplicity, with elegant and aerodynamic designs formed from flat sheets of aluminum. Another benefit of the Voisin's were their lightweight characteristics.
The world was introduced to the C25 Voisin at the 1934 Paris Salon. Borrowing designs for its predecessor the C24 Aerodyne, it had an underslung chassis and a 2994cc engine. The engine was modified with higher compression and two carburetors. There was a 2-speed and reverse transmission with electromagnetic gear change.
Only 28 examples of the C25 Models were created. Up to this point, Voisin chassis's were given names like 'Chasse', 'Chasseur' and 'Diane.' The C25 through C27 chassis had an Olympic theme with names like 'Bob', 'Luge', and 'Ski'. The C25 bodies are known in Aerodyne, Cimier and Clariere styles.By Daniel Vaughan | Aug 2011