LONDON -- UK niche automaker Bristol Cars said its first new car since it was bought out of bankruptcy will use a BMW engine.
The London-based maker of low volume luxury sports cars will launch the model in the autumn. The car will be a grand tourer with a hybrid powertrain.
Founded as the cars division of the Bristol Aeroplane Company in 1947, Bristol Cars went through a succession of owners before it collapsed in 2011 and was bought by Kamkorp research and development group in the same year.
Bristol Cars developed a reputation as a company run by eccentrics for eccentrics, who didn’t mind that its V-8 coupes with Chrysler engines were outdated compared to the competition. English actor and comedian Peter Sellers was among celebrities who owned a Bristol vehicle.
The automaker has a historical link to BMW. Before switching to Chrysler power in 1961, Bristol used BMW engines following an agreement with the German automaker made just after World War Two.
Kamkorp also owns engineering firm Frazer-Nash Research, which will supply the future Bristol model with range-extended electric power.
“The future of Bristol is away from traditional engines to range-extended powertrains,” Bristol Cars’ director Sheban Siddiqi told Automotive News Europe.
Bristol declined to give details of the powertrain but said the engine will not be the 1.5-liter engine used in the BMW i8 plug-in hybrid sports car.