Bristol 407. Purple coupe from 1962

The Bristol 407 was a sports tourer car produced by British manufacturer Bristol Cars between 1961 and 1963. It was the first Bristol model to be made by the company after separation from the Bristol Aeroplane Company, which had built all previous Bristol models. Outwardly it resembled the 406, on which it was based, and which had been produced between 1958 and 1961.

The Bristol engine was based on an older American engine, which had made its debut at Chrysler’s Plymouth brand in 1956 and originally had a displacement of 260 CID (4.2 litres). Bristol obtained the engine blocks from the USA and had them completed by hand in a Canadian Chrysler workshop. At the same time, a series of far-reaching modifications were carried out to distinguish the Bristol engines from their large-series counterparts: The engine bore was increased from 3.56 inches to 3.87 inches.

This resulted in a displacement of 5.2 litres – with only a marginally changed stroke; Chrysler did not have an engine of the appropriate size in its series portfolio. The engines were given a new cylinder head designed by Bristol, which replaced the original “polyspherical” head of the Plymouth product.

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