|1956 Arnolt-Bristol Coupe (chassis 404x3120) - from the collection of the author|
Conceived by Stanley Arnolt, the Chicago industrialist, the Arnolt-Bristol was built upon the Bristol 404 chassis and running gear. Arnolt had been quite taken with the work of the Bertone carrozzeria at the Paris Salon and commissioned Bertone (Scaglione, Bertone's new designer is responsible for the design) to design a spyder on the Aston Martin DB2/4 chassis, after which Arnolt invested heavily in the company. Arnolt choose Bristol (over Aston Martin) to partner with on a production version of the original Aston Martin / Bertone design. The Arnolt-Bristol was available in three versions: the Bolide (a true spider), the DeLuxe (a roadster with heater, carpets, and roll-up windows), and the Coupe (with much of the same features as the DeLuxe).
The car pictured here is chassis 404x3120 - the first coupe built and the only one to wear these unique scalloped front fenders. Priced at $6390.00, this car was sold new off the floor of the Paris Salon to actor Lee Marvin. Originally finished in green and red, the car features the Bristol inline six-cylinder (130hp) engine, independent front suspension, and four-wheel drum brakes. It is said that only six Coupes were produced - I'm not sure how many remain, but this must be one of the finest. The current owners purchased the car at auction for only $51,700 (an incredible bargain) from the 2007 RM Auctions' sale of the Ponder Collection. The car sounds as good as it looks.
|Chassis 404x3120 prior to it's current restoration (photo credit: Special Interest Autos)|