The Peugeot 402 was produced between 1935 and 1942. It was during this period that a current of automotive design developed in the United States called Streamline Modern, which can be considered as one of the first attempts to make bodywork more aerodynamic. European manufacturers are therefore eager to follow the example of the Americans, and the Peugeot 402 will apply the aerodynamic recipe, thanks to a more fluid line. The 402 replaced the 401 and the 601. At the 1933 Paris Salon, most manufacturers presented cars with very round shapes and sloping windshields, like the 402. The silhouette is therefore very new, but the technique is very classic (it will be the same case later with the Citroën DS, with the revolutionary line but with the technical characteristics of the Traction avant).
The 402 was a great success due to its attractive aesthetics, its good performance and an operating silence above the average of the time. Production of the 402 stopped in June 1940 when the Germans invaded France. The last models were sold in 1942. As soon as it was marketed, the 402 was available in two chassis lengths and eight body configurations: a limousine with six windows, a wagon, a coach, a convertible, a roadster, an Eclipse, a commercial and a cab.
We can say that the true descendant of the 402 will be the 403, which will only enter production in 1955, if we consider that the 203 does not fall into the same category.