For Sale

Bristol 403


Price: £55,000

  • Year


  • Make


  • Model


  • Engine Capacity


  • Engine Configuration

    Inline 6

  • Exterior


  • Interior/Trim




  • Transmission

    4-Speed Manual

  • Chassis no.


  • Engine no.


  • Registration

    138 UYS

  • Recorded Mileage

    87,250 miles

Never more than three made a week.

Tony Crook
  • Produced between 1953-1955, the Bristol 403 was the company’s fourth post-war production model, following on from the 400 & 401 saloons and the exceedingly rare 402 cabriolet.
  • It featured the same 1,971cc BMW-derived pushrod ‘straight six’ as its predecessors, but by enlarging the valve and main bearing diameters, Bristol were able to increase power in the 403 to an impressive 100bhp.
  • This additional power and torque necessitated the introduction of a front anti-roll bar to improve road holding, as well as uprated ‘Alfin’ brake drums.
    • Note: Early production 403s had Alfin drums fitted all-round, but after deciding that this level of ‘stopping power’ was surplus to requirements, later models resorted to standard drums at the rear.
  • In terms of styling, the 403 was largely identical to the 401. Its slippery ‘Carrozzeria Touring’ inspired body was constructed in true ‘Superleggera’ fashion using a combination of steel and aluminium panels.
  • In all, Bristol produced just 281 (or 287, depending on where you look) examples of the 403 during its 2 year production run – a rare thing indeed!
  • This Bristol 403, chassis #1356, was delivered new in 1953 with engine number 100A/3053.
  • As was the case with many 403s, the car’s original engine was later transplanted for a higher performance variant of the BMW-derived straight-six – in this case the 100B2 series (#100B2/4204).
  • The car’s current owner – a knowledgeable and well-known enthusiast, collector and member of the VSCC – has looked after the car for the last several years, carefully maintaining and upgrading it when required.
  • In the last 5 years alone, well over £10,000 has been spent improving the car, with some of the major works including (all invoices can be seen in the Documentation section below):
    • Brake system overhaul
    • Cylinder head rebuild @ Classic Performance Engineering
    • Full interior retrim in premium leather
  • What’s more, the beautiful Burgundy paint has just been treated to a 2-stage paint correction, and so presents really rather well.
  • With only 281 examples ever produced, and certainly fewer on the roads today, these 403s really are a rare and fascinating piece of British motoring history, development and design.

Want total peace of mind? We’ve partnered with WarrantyWise – the UK’s leading used car warranty specialist – to provide complete cover for this 1953 Bristol 403*:

3 Months £
6 Months £
12 Months £

*Single Claim Limit £5,000 | Unlimited Claims | Max Labour Rate £100ph | T&Cs

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