Motorsport sponsorshipedit

Formula Oneedit

Gitanes had a long-standing partnership with the Equipe Ligier team. Following the acquisition of the Matra Formula One team’s assets, Ligier entered Formula One in with a Matra V12-powered car, and won the 1977 Swedish Grand Prix with Jacques Laffite. This is generally considered to have been the first all-French victory in the Formula One World Championship.

The Ligier JS11/15 being demonstrated at the 2008 Goodwood Festival of Speed.

In total the team won 8 races, got 47 podiums and earned 373 points during their partnership with Gitanes. In 1996, the sister company Gauloises became the new sponsor, ending a partnership that lasted 19 years.

In 1997 the team was sold to Alain Prost and became Prost Grand Prix in . Prost GP, despite substantial financial backing by large private French companies, failed to make the team competitive and went bankrupt in .

Sports carsedit

After retiring from racing following the death of his friend Jo Schlesser, Guy Ligier decided to found his own team and had engineer Michel Tétu develop a sports car named the JS1 (Schlesser’s initials). The Cosworth-powered JS1 took wins at Albi and Monthlery in 1970, but retired at Le Mans and from the Tour Automobile de France.

For 1971, Ligier had the JS1 developed into the JS2 and JS3. The JS2 was homologated for road use and used a Maserati V6 engine, while the JS3 was an open-top sports-prototype powered by a Cosworth DFV V8 engine. The JS3 won at Monthlery in 1971 but failed to finish the minimum distance in Le Mans. Therefore, it was retired, and Ligier installed the Cosworth DFV in the JS2 road car, finishing second overall at Le Mans in 1975. Guy Ligier then switched his efforts into Formula One.

Dakar Rallyedit

Gitanes also sponsored various teams in the Dakar Rally from its first season in until tobacco sponsorship was banned by the French government.


Gitanes was launched in 1910 in four different versions, all which were filterless. In 1918, Gitanes Maïs were introduced. which were a success in the rural areas of France. In the 1930s, the first graphic ads for Gitanes appeared. In 1956, the first filtered Gitane variant was introduced. In 1981, the «Light» versions are first marketed. In 1986, the first Gitanes Blondes were launched, which had become available internationally in 1987. However, they were a commercial failure. In 1988, the first «Extra light» versions were marketed. In 1991, Gitanes ultra lights were introduced. In 1990/1991, a simultaneous launch of a new version of Gitanes Blondes ultra light were brought on the market.

Gitanes are sold in many varieties of strengths and packages. The cigarette was originally made with a darker or brun (brown) tobacco, in contrast to the more widespread blonde. In honour of the name, the packet shows the silhouette of a Spanish gypsy woman playing the tambourine.

There is a distinction between the «blonde» style of the current Gitanes, and the classic style of Gitanes Brunes, both of which are sold in Europe and South America (most commonly in Argentina and Chile). The classic Gitanes Brunes tobacco achieved its characteristic and distinctive «bite» by using a fire-flued method of curing the tobacco, and a «rice» type of rolling paper which differs from most other cigarettes. The result was a cigarette which had both a strong flavor and a distinctive aroma.

Gitanes Blondes are available, filtered, in Light and Regular. The Gitanes Brunes are available in 70mm versions, filtered and unfiltered. In 2010, the size and content of the regular Gitanes were reduced.[citation needed] Gitanes Maïs (corn) are made with yellow corn paper.[citation needed]

Production in France was halted, with one factory remaining operational in the Netherlands. This was mainly due to the rise on tobacco levies imposed by the French Government in the wake of enforced EU health directives, which has forced up the price of French cigarettes to the level of those in the US, with the more aggressively promoted brands such as Marlboro now taking the majority market share.

The 90s were particularly successful for Gitanes in terms of brand engagement. In an effort to increase awareness, the brand began sponsoring motor-sports such as Formula One racing and the Dakar Rally. These activities helped to attract a wider range of potential customers while avoiding any dilution of the brand image and thus retained the loyalty of its more artistic core customer base.

In July 2016, the French government considered a ban on both the Gitanes and Gauloises cigarette brands because they were deemed «too stylish and cool». The ban would also apply to brands including Marlboro Gold, Vogue, Lucky Strike and Fortuna. It is the result of a new public health law based on a European directive that says tobacco products «must not include any element that contributes to the promotion of tobacco or give an erroneous impression of certain characteristics». Four major tobacco companies have written to the government seeking clarification on the potential law, calling for an urgent meeting to discuss the details of the plan. In the letter they accuse French health minister Marisol Touraine of an «arbitrary and disproportionate» application of EU directives.

Since the 1930s, many advertisements have been made to promote the Gitanes brand.

Popular cultureedit

In cinemaedit

In the 1971 crime film Get Carter, Michael Caine’s character Jack Carter can be seen smoking Gitanes in various scenes throughout the film.

In cartoonsedit

In the original Transformers series, Mirage transforms into a Formula One Ligier racecar sponsored by «Citanes» (altered so as to get past the law forbidding tobacco advertising).

Takumi in the Japanese manga Nana smokes them.

Lupin the Third is shown in various incarnations to smoke Gitanes.

Porco Rosso of Hayao Miyazaki’s film Porco Rosso smokes Gitanes.

In comicsedit

They are mentioned in the DC Comic «Dial H» Issue 7. The brand is also the favorite of «the world’s number one thief» Lupin III.

In musicedit

The cover of the album 1974 Dancing on a Cold Wind, by Carmen, and the cover of the album 1981 Shades, by JJ Cale, both use the Gitanes design. The brand is mentioned in the song «Late Bloomer», from the album The Voyager, by Jenny Lewis: «She was smoking on a gypsy.»[citation needed]

It is noted that John Lennon smoked Gitanes on his last day and a cigarette case containing his Gitanes cigarettes (among other of his possessions) was recovered by German authorities in 2017 after being stolen from Yoko Ono in 2006.

David Bowie smoked these in his persona of The Thin White Duke.

Serge Gainsbourg was a heavy Gitanes smoker and always appeared in public with his packet of Gitanes in his hand. The book A Fistful of Gitanes is about his life and career.

Slash, guitarist for Guns N’ Roses, smoked the brand and has a tattoo of the Gitanes logo on his back.

In booksedit

The cigarettes appear prominently in Marc Behm’s 1980 The Eye of the Beholder.

Gitanes are mentioned often in Roland Topor’s novel, The Tenant, where the main character Trelkovski is coerced into switching to this brand from his usual Gauloises.

Gitanes are also frequently mentioned in Harry Turtledove’s alternate history novel, «Hitler’s War.»

In Meg Cabot’s popular young adult series The Princess Diaries, the Dowager Princess Clarissa Renaldo is known to smoke multiple packs of Gitanes per day.

Виды и вкусы

В настоящее время есть несколько разновидностей сигарет Gitanes.

В первую очередь, выделяются:

  1. Brunes («брюнетка») – первая версия Gitanes с черным табаком Virginia, редко применявшимся в производстве сигарет. Терпкий аромат и фирменный вкус табака с горчинкой Brunes достигался особым способом его сушки и обжарки. Закручивание в рисовую бумагу придавало особенное послевкусие. Сигареты Brunes представлены в черных и синих пачках. Их насыщенный вкус и стойкий специфический аромат молочного дыма отличает Gitanes Brunes от аналогичных марок.
  2. Blondes («блондинка») – более мягкий вариант, появившийся в 1986 году. Изготовлены из светлого табака с меньшим содержанием смол и никотина, обладают менее насыщенным вкусом и ароматом. Они понравятся тем, кто любит горьковатый вкус и стойкий запах классических Gitanes Brunes, но предпочитает легкие сигареты. Упакованы они в белые или белые с синим пачки.
  3. Mais («кукуруза») – крепкая версия из темного табака, закрученная в кукурузную бумагу, с сильным вкусом и ароматом. Представлены в продаже только во Франции. Выпускаются в темно-синей пачке.
  4. Internationales («интернациональные») – версия люкс с темным табаком (смесь французского табака и Kentucky Dark), созданная для импорта. Продается во многих странах Европы, Южной и Северной Америки.

В России представлены не все виды Gitanes. В продаже можно найти:

  1. Gitanes Plain Non filter — крепкие сигареты без фильтра, имеющие естественный вкус и табачный аромат без примесей и ароматизаторов (содержание никотина 0,8 мг, смола 10 мг).
  2. Gitanes Filter – крепкие сигареты, которые отличаются насыщенным вкусом и ароматом темного табака, с фильтром, снижающим вредное воздействие смол и никотина на организм (содержание никотина 0,8 мг, смола 10 мг).
  3. Gitanes Blondes light – сигареты из светлого табака, содержащие меньше вредных веществ (содержание никотина 0,7 мг, смола 8 мг).
  4. Gitanes Blondes Super Light — максимально легкая версия с наименьшим количеством вредных компонентов в составе (содержание никотина 0,35 мг, смола 2.9 мг).


Формирование дизайна

Исторически французские солдаты переняли привычку курить в Испании, и французы начали выпускать сигареты с 1842 года, часто давая им названия испанского происхождения: Les Espagnoles, Les Hidalgos и Les Madrilènes. Марка Gitanes была создана в 1910 и также имеет испанский намёк: на пачке изображена танцовщица фламенко с веером и тамбурином.

Стиль и идею первой пачки Gitanes создал в 1927 году Морис Жио. Именно он поместил в пачку испанскую символику: веер и тамбурин.

Во время марку представляла танцующая цыганка, которую создал дизайнер А. Моллюсон. Эту идею развил дальше Макс Понти, который выиграл в 1947 году конкурс на лучший дизайн для торговой марки, сегодня это единственная в мире марка сигарет, созданная по мотивам картины. С тех пор менялся размер изображения, но основная линия оставалась неизменной. Известная всем цыганка изображена с тамбурином, поднятым над головой, на фоне тёмного неба и в волнах дыма.

Хронология развития бренда

  • 1910: Первое появление Gitanes без фильтра, доступные в трёх вариантах (Gitanes Caporal ordinaire, Gitanes Vizir, и Gitanes Maryland)
  • 1918: Первое появление Gitanes Maïs — отличаются тем, что вместо рисовой бумаги использовалось листья маиса, что обеспечивало сильный вкус и жёлтый цвет сигарет. Пользовались успехом в сельской местности
  • 1956: Появление первых Gitanes с фильтром (Gitanes Vizir)
  • 1966: завершение выпуска Gitanes Maryland
  • 1976: SEITA вместе с маркой Gitanes выступила генеральным спонсором команды «», которая с тех пор называлась «Équipe Ligier-Gitanes»
  • 1981: На рынке появляется легкая версия
  • 1986: Выпущена первая версия Blondes, которая стала провалом в коммерческом плане
  • 1988: Первый выпуск extra light версии
  • 1991: Выпущены Gitanes ultra light
  • 1990/91: одновременный выпуск новых версий Blondes и ultra light.
  • 1999: слияние SEITA и Spanish Tabacalera, которые вместе образовали Altadis
  • 2005: производство Gitanes полностью переместилось из Франции в Россию и Испанию из-за роста налоговых сборов на табачную продукцию
  • 2008: британский концерн купил за 16.2 миллиарда долларов

Список источников

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