1949 Bristol 400 - Mille Miglia Registered to 2026 - NOW SOLD

Transmission: Manual

Chassis Number: 400/1/492

Engine Number: 85A/1400

1949 Bristol 400 - with valid Mille Miglia Registration Certificate to 2026


Entries for the 2024 Mille Miglia have opened here:


WITH CONDITION REPORT by top Bristol specialist : September 2023

The 400 was the most successful Bristol saloon in sporting competition.

We are pleased to be offering this prestige saloon again - improved since we last sold this car in 2017.


The present owner's late husband prepared this car especially for the 2018 Mille Miglia and indeed drove this car all the way to the start of the Mille Miglia in Brescia, northern Italy. Although Mille Miglia registered with valid event passport to 2026, this car was only accepted as a RESERVE entry in 2018 - and did not start - due to all confirmed entries turning up.

Option on £1700 Gauge Pilot Farina advanced table-driven fitted RALLY NAVIGATION COMPUTER - designed for lengthy navigation car events such as the Mille Miglia, Tour Auto, etc. During the event stage elements are displayed in a format representative of that used in the Mille Miglia, which may be edited on-the-fly during an event if elements are modified during a stage. The unique Farina application allows pre-entry of stage information and controls the driver’s dedicated information display (included) reducing the stress in the cockpit and improving results.

VIDEO :- See our 2 minute aerial video of this car in the move - :- https://vimeo.com/239436340

Original bill of sale 18th October 1949 from Bristol Agents University Motors (Mayfair) for one Maroon Bristol 400 Chassis no 400/1/492 invoiced to Eustace Watkins Ltd, 12 Berkeley Street London W1 shows a very expensive car for the times at £1750 plus Purchase Tax of £973 /14/6d = £2723.75 total

In the present family ownership, recent work includes £2520 for completion of leather front seats renovation, seat frame restoration and door cards, £540 for front and rear bumper repairs with painting to offside and nearside chassis legs, and £1920 to repair and paint all four wings.

Total recent bills £4980

Equipped with optional heater

Optional opening rear window which transforms the car's ventilation on a long hot run across country -

Discreet modern indicators fitted under the bumpers (to avoid confusion on the roads today from the original trafficators)

Becker Europa Radio fitted, with Long Wave, AM, Short Wave and FM channels

The previous owner to the present family drove this car to the Swiss Alps and back in 2011 & he also went to Ireland on tour in 2014 and 2016.

According to Thornfalcon Garage, the owners before the above that took this car on the West Anatolia Rally in Turkey in 2001 and 2002. This car has also toured Europe and South Africa.

Mechanical modifications include an oil cooler, Alfin-type alloy front brake drums and thermostatically controlled Kenlowe cooling fan.

This also car appears on the outside front cover of Charles Oxley's “Bristol, The Quiet Survivor” as illustrated

Correct matching number Type 85A Bristol 2-litre six cylinder engine with triple S.U carburettors, 85A-1400.

According to the Bristol Owners Club, at one point this car was fitted with the more powerful 100 engine, engine no. 100A 3008

A truly good looking car in readily usable condition with lovely patina. Owned 5 years

This car was sold via University Motors Limited of Stratton House London W1 and - as usual for them - indeed my Godfather - ex Brooklands race driver - working at University Motors signed for this car from Bristol Cars in 1949

It should be noted that one of the UK's forefront Bristol specialist dealers currently advertising a concours Bristol 400 for £135,000 - OCTOBER 2023 at SLJ Hackett - and a sale agreed on their £115,000 example

With optional unused modern Rally navigation equipment fitted



ENTRIES ARE NOW OPEN for the 42nd re-enactment of the MILLE MIGLIA RETROSPECTIVE EVENT, which will be held from 11 to 15 June 2024. 

An anti-clockwise direction for this edition of the Most Beautiful Race In The World, replicating the choice made in 2021 and as it was in 14 of the 24 editions of the 1000 Miglia speed edition. Absolute novelty is the passage to Genoa, European Capital of Sport 2024. Moreover, after the historic passage of the last edition, Piedmont will become a pivotal region for the 1000 Miglia 2024, and Turin will be a leg city for the first time.

After the start from Brescia in the afternoon of Tuesday 11 June and the crossing through Bergamo, Novara and Vercelli, the first leg will end right in Turin.

On the second day, the convoy will head south down the Langhe and through the centre of Alba before stopping for lunch in Genoa. After the stop, the race will leave the Riviera di Levante in the direction of the Tyrrhenian coast, and will arrive in Viareggio, for the finish of the second day of the race.       

The third leg will pass through Lucca, then return to the coast at Livorno and continue until the lunch break in Castiglione della Pescaia. In the afternoon, the cars will pass through Grosseto and descend along Lake Bolsena before ending the day with the traditional parade in Via Veneto in Rome.         

On the fourth day, the crews will drive up to Orvieto before stopping for lunch in Solomeo. From here, they will depart towards Siena and Prato. Before reaching the leg finale in Bologna, drivers and navigators will cross the Futa and Raticosa passes. From Bologna, the final leg will pass Ferrara, and again Lake Garda with the Valtenesi and Salò before the classic parade in Viale Venezia in Brescia. 

In order to apply for entry, cars must be in possession of, or have applied for, a certificate from the Registro 1000 Miglia and may only be admitted if the certificate is obtained. Our car HAS THIS CERTIFICATE

Entries will close at 16.00 on Tuesday 16 January 2024. Acceptance will be confirmed by 12 April.     Press Office mailto:[email protected] +39 331 6133162

You can log in here : https://login.1000miglia.it/login.php?login_language=en_us


THE BRISTOL AEROPLANE CO. LTD 's original brochure states:

ABRIDGED SPECIFICATION : Close coupled four-seat fixed head saloon, with framework welded to the chassis, making it a strong one-piece unit. Inter-axle seating. The main body panels are in sheet steel, the door and bonnet panels are in light alloy. Doors have sliding windows and are recessed to increase interior width. Fixed, two-panel “Vee” windscreen in laminated safety glass with electric wipers, self-parking. Windows of toughened glass with quick operation. Hinged quarter lights for draught free ventilation. Large curved rear window. Commodious luggage locker at rear with spare wheel housed in the lid. Two point jacking system. “One shot” chassis lubrication system by foot-operated pump.

SEATING AND INTERIOR FITTINGS : The individual front seats have normal to-and-fro adjustment and independent adjustment for the angle of the back rests. The natural position of the driving seat is enhanced by the wide , V-shaped and well-raked windscreen. The rear seating is deep and comfortable, with a high back rest, and is positioned well forward of the rear axle. Distinctive upholstery covering is in a combination of first quality beige hide and wool fabric, with brown piping. Ashtrays are fitted to each door and to each side of rear seat. Generous sized windows, providing maximum clear vision for all occupants and providing good ventilation in conjunction with large-size scuttle ventilators. Glove box incorporated in the well-appointed instrument panel. Three spoke adjustable steering wheel. A Radiomobile radio receiver is part of the standard equipment. Heating system is an optional extra.




1949 Bristol 400 2-litre Saloon

Wheelbase 9’6”

Track front 4’3 ¾”

Track rear 4’6”

Turning circle left to right 37’6”

Overall length 15’3”

Overall height 4’11”

Overall width 5’4”

Luggage boot capacity 9.1 cu.ft

Kerb weight 23 cwt

Minimum ground clearance 7”


A luxury car from the outset - made to aircraft standard by the Bristol Aeroplane Company. They formed the Bristol Car Company after WWII and based the 400 on the BMW 328 engine and the BMW 326 frame. The bodywork was then inspired by the BMW 327. With a top speed of around 92mph, the 400 has impressive acceleration even today.

The curvaceous 400 was the only Bristol to be fitted with a steel body, but it had flat glass all-round, making use of the vee-screen arrangement for the windscreen. With independent front suspension with a transverse front spring, the live rear axle was located by an A-shaped bracket at the differential casing with longitudinal torsion bars and transverse arms and brackets at the rear.

Launched the same year as the Jaguar XK120 at the 1948 London Motor Show, the Bristol 400 found just under 600 customers. Rarer, and with such style - the Bristol has 4-seats and a large boot for 4 people too

Please enquire


Although we attempt to ensure accuracy of any statement or detail, the customer must make his or her own judgement in purchasing this car. The purchaser of the above car understands that he or she is purchasing a historic motor car with components that are up to 74 years old and sold as a collector item. There is no warranty given or implied due to the age of the car.




Call 07973 731508