Body style: Coupé (two-door)
Production years: 1953, 1954, 1955
Bristol introduced the 404 in 1953, and it was the first vehicle built by the British carmaker with an aviation-inspired look. It was known as the "Gentleman Express."
After WWII, Bristol was looking for new business opportunities, and the car industry was a great one. The idea was to create a personal luxury coupe but in British style. Since the company already had many aviation engineers on its payroll, it put them to work. The 404 was one of the results.
Despite its very short wheelbase of just 8 feet (2,438 mm), the bodywork was streamlined with curved panels and flush doors and fenders. The hood sported a center-mounted air intake with a headlamp in the middle. But the main headlights were placed on the fenders. The air-scoop on the hood was functional and helped the car get fresh air into the carburetors. Its curved greenhouse took its inspiration from WWII aircraft, while the rear end sported a sloped panel. In addition, the rear quarter panels were adorned with fins to enhance aerodynamics.
There were just two bucket seats inside the cockpit, but the trims and materials were top quality. Bristol used leather, wood, and metal to create a luxurious cabin, fit for those who could afford to buy one of these sporty coupes. Unfortunately, only 50 units were built before 1955 when the carmaker replaced the model with the longer, four-door 405.
For the drivetrain, Bristol used BMW's inline-six engines that developed either 105 hp or 125 hp. The latter was powerful enough to propel the light vehicle with speeds up to 119 mph (191.5 kph), which was extremely high for those times.
ENGINE SPECS - 2.0L 4MT (107 HP)
|Power:||78.7 KW @ 5000 RPM|
107 HP @ 5000 RPM
106 BHP @ 5000 RPM
|Torque:||112 lb-ft @ 3750 RPM|
152 Nm @ 3750 RPM
|Fuel System:||3 Carburetors|
|Top Speed:||110 mph (177 km/h)|
|Acceleration 0-62 Mph (0-100 kph):||14 s|
|Drive Type:||Rear Wheel Drive|
|Tire Size:||6 X 16|
|Length:||173.2 in (4399 mm)|
|Width:||67 in (1702 mm)|
|Height:||54.7 in (1389 mm)|
|Front/rear Track:||52.4/54 in (1,331/1,372 mm)|
|Wheelbase:||96.3 in (2446 mm)|
|Ground Clearance:||6.5 in (165 mm)|
|Unladen Weight:||2292.8 lbs (1040 kg)|
FUEL ECONOMY (NEDC)
|Combined:||21.4 mpg US (11 L/100Km)|