1954 Bristol 405 Four-door - Reader Ride

By: Guy Allen - Words & Photos

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bristol 405 3 bristol 405 3

Robert Van Wegen's 1954 Bristol 405 four-door

"This is the only four-door they ever made – they were generally made two-doors. It’s almost the same wheelbase as every other one, it’s just they managed to squeeze another door in and the way it’s designed is a glasshouse. Some people say they’re ugly but they’re one of the best-driving Bristols of all. "It was their association with BMW, both before and after WWII, that got me interested. They had already been talking to each-other pre-war, and it was ironic that Bristol aircraft probably ended up bombing the BMW plant. Post-war Bristol won the rights to the designs, which had Fraser Nash associations. "Bristol saw a future in car manufacturing and the first two models had kidney grilles, like BMW.

"This generation came out with the distinctive air intake and the ‘fire lighter’ lamp in the centre, and the intake shape was meant to be reminiscent of those on the Bristol Brabazon airliner prototypes "My wife and I were in Bendigo for a business meeting and I stayed back for the Mount Tarrengower hillclimb. One thing led to another, and I came across this and another car for sale as a pair."(Robert and his partner Marilyn were instrumental in organising the rally. Some 37 Bristols rolled up, with a very strong international contingent. See bristolownersclubofaustralia.)


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