Wednesday, September 9, 2009

1964 Bristol 408 Mark I

Here's a car you don't often see in America... Or anywhere else for that matter.

The Bristol 408 was a hand built car. It's been said that no two Bristols are alike, as they were built to the buyer's specs.

According to the seller, "the vehicle underwent a complete body restoration in Wales, UK in 1992. This was supervised by noted Bristol expert Spencer Lane Jones." After arriving in the US, this car was fitted with a Chrysler 360ci V8. Originally, the 408 had a Canadian built (supposedly to Bristol specs) Chrysler 313ci V8. The transmission is a Chrysler TorqueFlite automatic with push button controls to the right of the steering wheel. The current owner bought the car in 2001 "and has since made many upgrades", although those upgrades are not listed.

Interestingly, even the high end small volume car manufacturers raided the bigger manufacturers parts bins. The tail lights and toggle switches on the dash look like they came from the Rootes Motors parts bins.

The aluminum body of this car appears to be in great shape. The interior is also well restored and is a great example of old-school British luxury... Lots of wood, leather, deep carpeting and full instrumentation. Oddly, the engine bay, more specifically the engine itself, is not up to the standards of the rest of the car. If you're picky, you'd want to clean it up and repaint the valve covers.

This is a nicely restored driver. It is not a Concours d'Elegance car. With the Chrysler drivetrain, you could drive this car often and it would most certainly be a hit at any local or regional car show.

Click here
to see the listing for this car.


Jason said...

I'd take a Jensen Interceptor over this car.

Richard said...

Its amazing these guys are still in business, all these small scale manufacturers are dying off, but 62+ years and Bristol marches on. Visiting there website is like taking a trip back to the mid-90's, viewing there line of new cars looks like the early 80's with some amazing price tags (Blenheim 3 is still $250k!!).

I have even heard that the chairman of the company knows all the Bristol owners on a first name basis!