André Citroën introduced his first car to the public in 1919, and within two weeks received 16,000 orders for the Type a 10CV. The company steadily grew through the 1930s, and André Citroën became infatuated with front wheel drive automobiles and began developing a mental picture of the next car his factory would produce. The task would be enormous as it would be a new car from the ground up–with a front engine and front wheel drive. Citroën bypassed the established Coachbuilders and hired a sculptor who had not previously done any automotive work–Flaminio Bertoni. The 7CV went from the idea stage to production model in just 14 months and debuted in march 1934. This fast pace did not allow for proper testing and development but improvements were made to satisfy customers.