1954 Arnolt Bristol Bolide Roadster Coachwork by Bertone  Chassis no. 404X3042 Engine no. BS1 Mk2 244

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Lot 1067
1954 Arnolt Bristol Bolide Roadster Coachwork by Bertone
Registration no. LAS 765 Chassis no. 404X3042 Engine no. BS1 Mk2 244

Sold for £ 45,500 (US$ 61,738) inc. premium
1954 Arnolt Bristol Bolide Roadster Coachwork by Bertone
Registration no. LAS 765
Chassis no. 404X3042
Engine no. BS1 Mk2 244
Having made his fortune during WW2, American industrialist Stanley Harold 'Wacky' Arnolt was able to indulge his lifelong love of automobiles and by 1952 was a regional BMC distributor and US distributor for Bristol cars. In 1952, a visit to Bertone led to Arnolt buying a stake in the Italian company and arranging manufacture of Bertone-bodied Arnolt MGs. His next venture made use of the Bristol connection, the UK manufacturer's 404 getting the Bertone treatment in 1953. Despite being based on a pre-war BMW design, the Bristol possessed one of the finest chassis of its day and its 2-litre six-cylinder engine was one of the most efficient around. The latter could be tuned to produce in excess of 150bhp and before long the pretty Arnolts were making their mark in production sportscar races in the USA. After class wins at Sebring and Le Mans in 1955 the works team was disbanded, returning to Sebring in 1960 to capture class and team awards yet again. Production ceased in 1963 after a total of 130 cars had been sold.
One of a mere handful of survivors, chassis number '3042' was delivered new in the USA in de luxe form with fixed glass screen, hood and leather upholstery. The car was club-raced in the USA until the 1980s when it was laid up by historic racer Joe Dickerson, and featured as the centrefold in Automobile Quarterly 1977 Vol 15 No 4 (copy supplied). Maryland numberplate 'ARNOLT' accompanies the car, which is now UK-registered. Arnolt '3042' is newly restored, race prepared and painted in the spirit of the Sebring 12-Hour races in which Team Arnolt Bristols were notably successful. The road race engine is fresh, newly run-in and on the button.
This car, the 2003 Bristol Owners' Club Concours class winner (2nd overall) is HGPCA drum-brake series eligible and comes with full FIA papers, FIVA passport, restoration invoices, road fund licence/MoT to October 2004 and Swansea V5.

Saleroom notices

  • The estimate for this vehicle should read £40,000 - 50,000.
1954 Arnolt Bristol Bolide Roadster Coachwork by Bertone  Chassis no. 404X3042 Engine no. BS1 Mk2 244
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25% of the hammer price of amounts in excess of £10,000 up to and including £450,000;
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