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For many car enthusiasts, reports of Bristol Motor Cars filing for Chapter 11 earliar this year was very sad news indeed. Now its time for fans of this British marque to rejoice as the company has just been saved and brought back to life.
The new owners are Kamkorp Autokraft, a Swiss company that is part of the Frazer-Nash group.
Frazer-Nash had in recent years shown an all-electric sportscar called the Namir. Could the next Bristol models get motivation from green energy!
“Over the next few months we will start to reveal the details of our plans to combine Bristol Cars’ tradition and iconic marque with Frazer-Nash’s pioneering technology to showcase our cutting-edge electric and range-extended powertrains,” said William Chia, the group’s director of operations.
Chia also assured current Bristol owners that service and parts for their existing cars will not be disrupted and they are committed to fulfilling their needs. No word yet of the fate of Bristol workers who were let go when the company went into administration.
Eccentric British car firm Bristol has run its business unlike any other car company. They have no dealer network, so all the sales are handled by the factory owned store in Kensington, near London, U.K. They also don’t give out cars to journalists for reviews, stating their customers know what they are buying and that the cars speak for themselves.
Well it seems their old-fashioned ways of doing business (not to mention the out-dated technology found in these vehicles) has caught up to them. According to latest reports out of U.K., Bristol cars has gone into administration – a fancy legal term that essentially means they’ve run out of money. A last effort to save the company is being explored at the moment, but it seems the company will end up being reduced to running just the service and parts side of the business. For now, the administrators are confident that a new investor will come and save the company.
For the longest time, Bristol Cars was owned by the eccentric racing driver Tony Crook, who was famous for his arrogance and his lack of interest in modernization of the brand.
Bristol Cars was then sold to Toby Silverton in 2001, who had tried to modernize the brand with cars like the Fighter (pictured above), while retaining their aeronautical roots (they made fighter airplanes that were used in World War Two). Despite being a capable supercar, the Fighter could not shake-off the fact that its V10 engine came from a much cheaper car, the Viper SRT-10.
Will the company be now scooped up by one of the German automotive giants (like pretty much all of the British car industry) or will it be consigned to the history books? Time is running out on this 65-year old brand.