1949 Bristol 400 Sports Saloon  Chassis no. 400/1/563

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Lot 270
1949 Bristol 400 Sports Saloon
Registration no. NNU 312 Chassis no. 400/1/563

£ 50,000 - 60,000
US$ 67,000 - 81,000
1949 Bristol 400 Sports Saloon
Registration no. NNU 312
Chassis no. 400/1/563
*First of the Bristol 'aerodynes'
*Extensively restored
*Professional engine rebuild. Fitted with overdrive

Footnotes

  • The Bristol Aeroplane Company obtained the rights to BMW's automotive designs as part of Germany's post-WW2 reparations. Thus it came about that the Bristol 400 was effectively a synthesis of three pre-war BMWs, with a chassis derived from that of the 326; the advanced 2.0-litre six-cylinder engine from the 328 sports car; and an aerodynamic bodyshell similar to that of the 327 coupé. But Bristol did more than simply copy the work of its German counterparts; the application of aviation industry standards to its manufacture resulted in a car more refined and considerably better constructed than its Teutonic forbears. The most significant changes made by Bristol's designers were metallurgical, their utilisation of the highest quality materials contributing to increased engine life. A maximum output of 80bhp at 4,200rpm was claimed, which was good enough for a top speed of around 95mph.

    The 400's aerodynamically efficient body was constructed of steel panels on a wood frame, with the doors, bonnet and boot-lid skinned in aluminium. Beneath the skin the chassis boasted independent front suspension by single upper wishbones and lower transverse leaf spring, while torsion bars located within the chassis members controlled the live rear axle. Contrasting with the exterior's modern appearance, the traditional wood-embellished interior harked back to an earlier age. In total, 474 Bristol 400s were made between 1947 and 1950.

    The previous owner purchased this pristine example some years ago in Northumberland where it had been in storage for over 40 years. Its subsequent restoration involved stripping the body back to bare metal and repairing it where necessary before re-spraying it in the factory colour of duck egg blue. Additionally, the brightwork was re-chromed; sealing rubbers replaced; new Lucas P700 headlights fitted; and the sidelights modified to serve as indicators. The engine was rebuilt and fitted with a later cylinder head, a recognised improvement that liberates more power, and the gearbox overhauled. Other notable features include electronic ignition; a new clutch; a stainless steel exhaust system; and a refurbished and re-trimmed interior, the latter still in immaculate condition.

    Following his purchase, the current vendor had the Bristol thoroughly inspected at Charles Russell Classic Cars in Wiltshire. The result was a lengthy workshop report listing works required, not the least of which was another engine rebuild costing £12,600. The gearbox and brakes received attention also, and all bills are available. Most importantly an overdrive unit was fitted, with overdrive now on 3rd and 4th. The mechanical works by Charles Russell also included the fitment of uprated high compression pistons, a Steve Stainton high torque cam, new inlet seats, exhaust valves for unleaded petrol.

    Expertly prepared and beautifully presented, this has to be one of the best examples of Bristol's iconic 400 currently available.
Contacts
1949 Bristol 400 Sports Saloon  Chassis no. 400/1/563
1949 Bristol 400 Sports Saloon  Chassis no. 400/1/563
1949 Bristol 400 Sports Saloon  Chassis no. 400/1/563
1949 Bristol 400 Sports Saloon  Chassis no. 400/1/563
1949 Bristol 400 Sports Saloon  Chassis no. 400/1/563
1949 Bristol 400 Sports Saloon  Chassis no. 400/1/563
1949 Bristol 400 Sports Saloon  Chassis no. 400/1/563
1949 Bristol 400 Sports Saloon  Chassis no. 400/1/563
1949 Bristol 400 Sports Saloon  Chassis no. 400/1/563
1949 Bristol 400 Sports Saloon  Chassis no. 400/1/563
1949 Bristol 400 Sports Saloon  Chassis no. 400/1/563
1949 Bristol 400 Sports Saloon  Chassis no. 400/1/563
1949 Bristol 400 Sports Saloon  Chassis no. 400/1/563
1949 Bristol 400 Sports Saloon  Chassis no. 400/1/563
1949 Bristol 400 Sports Saloon  Chassis no. 400/1/563
1949 Bristol 400 Sports Saloon  Chassis no. 400/1/563
1949 Bristol 400 Sports Saloon  Chassis no. 400/1/563
1949 Bristol 400 Sports Saloon  Chassis no. 400/1/563
1949 Bristol 400 Sports Saloon  Chassis no. 400/1/563
1949 Bristol 400 Sports Saloon  Chassis no. 400/1/563
1949 Bristol 400 Sports Saloon  Chassis no. 400/1/563
1949 Bristol 400 Sports Saloon  Chassis no. 400/1/563
1949 Bristol 400 Sports Saloon  Chassis no. 400/1/563
1949 Bristol 400 Sports Saloon  Chassis no. 400/1/563
1949 Bristol 400 Sports Saloon  Chassis no. 400/1/563
1949 Bristol 400 Sports Saloon  Chassis no. 400/1/563
1949 Bristol 400 Sports Saloon  Chassis no. 400/1/563
1949 Bristol 400 Sports Saloon  Chassis no. 400/1/563
1949 Bristol 400 Sports Saloon  Chassis no. 400/1/563
1949 Bristol 400 Sports Saloon  Chassis no. 400/1/563
1949 Bristol 400 Sports Saloon  Chassis no. 400/1/563
1949 Bristol 400 Sports Saloon  Chassis no. 400/1/563
1949 Bristol 400 Sports Saloon  Chassis no. 400/1/563
1949 Bristol 400 Sports Saloon  Chassis no. 400/1/563
1949 Bristol 400 Sports Saloon  Chassis no. 400/1/563
1949 Bristol 400 Sports Saloon  Chassis no. 400/1/563
1949 Bristol 400 Sports Saloon  Chassis no. 400/1/563
1949 Bristol 400 Sports Saloon  Chassis no. 400/1/563
1949 Bristol 400 Sports Saloon  Chassis no. 400/1/563
1949 Bristol 400 Sports Saloon  Chassis no. 400/1/563
1949 Bristol 400 Sports Saloon  Chassis no. 400/1/563
1949 Bristol 400 Sports Saloon  Chassis no. 400/1/563
1949 Bristol 400 Sports Saloon  Chassis no. 400/1/563
1949 Bristol 400 Sports Saloon  Chassis no. 400/1/563
1949 Bristol 400 Sports Saloon  Chassis no. 400/1/563
1949 Bristol 400 Sports Saloon  Chassis no. 400/1/563
1949 Bristol 400 Sports Saloon  Chassis no. 400/1/563
1949 Bristol 400 Sports Saloon  Chassis no. 400/1/563
1949 Bristol 400 Sports Saloon  Chassis no. 400/1/563
1949 Bristol 400 Sports Saloon  Chassis no. 400/1/563
1949 Bristol 400 Sports Saloon  Chassis no. 400/1/563
1949 Bristol 400 Sports Saloon  Chassis no. 400/1/563
1949 Bristol 400 Sports Saloon  Chassis no. 400/1/563
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Vehicles must be collected from the sale venue by 12 noon on Monday 20 September 2021, at which point all remaining unpaid lots will be uplifted by E.M.Rogers to their store at the buyers expense. If the buyer is South of London their car will be uplifted to a store near Fleet. If the buyer is North of London or overseas the car will be uplifted to a store in Northampton (please see Guide for Buyers).

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