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1952
Tojeiro Bristol

Bristol Tojeiro

Chassis # 401-1207

Engine # 100B3056

 

The name Cliff Davis and Tojeiro are synonymous with the early MG Tojeiro JOY500, then the famous Tojeiro Bristol LOY500. Club racer and London car dealer Cliff Davis commissioned John Tojeiro, to build another chassis, this time a bit longer to accommodate the longer Bristol as found in the later AC Ace. The car was an instant success, which didn’t go unnoticed. Cliff being ‘in the trade’ was soon approached by the Rolls brothers and a deal was done, LOY500 had a new owner. It is well documented that one of the Rolls brothers had a road accident and the car was badly damaged. Replacement parts, including a chassis, were supplied by Tojeiro to rebuild LOY500. The bodywork was also replaced. As a racing car LOY500 remains wholly original.   

Tojeiro Bristol is the spiritual “Grandfather for the AC Ace and Cobra”….

Moving to the DNA of KOU406, the history file contains a letter dated 4th June 1988. This, along with the book Toj by Graham Gauld are my points of fact and the basis for this write-up. A dated letter signed by John Baker reads, “Cliff Davis had re-acquired LOY500 from Geoffrey Marsh of Marshplant, this included a second chassis, steering, suspension brakes, and wheels. (photo of the spare chassis with axles propped up against a tree at Marshplant, appears in Auto Enthusiast magazine dated March 1972 in an article on LOY500 and the AC Ace). Cliff, short of space at home stored the spare chassis in the loft above LOY500, it is said he had to cut it in half to fit it in there!

John Baker had heard about Cliff’s spare Tojeiro chassis, so went to visit him at his London showroom in 1982, to see if he could acquire it. One can only assume this is the same chassis photographed against the tree at Marchplant in March 1972. A deal was agreed that day, and John Baker was the new owner of an almost complete original Tojeiro Bristol kit comprising of chassis, dismantled engine and gearbox, suspension and brakes along with a set of Turner alloy wheels shod with 1950’s Continental 500/15 racing tyres, and a radiator of interesting design.

The chassis was correctly repaired using a jig, then the hard work ensued. Due to other life commitments, John Baker never did manage to complete the restoration he started. During his time working on the car, he managed to get the chassis inspected by John Tojeiro, who confirmed it was most defiantly one of his, which one he couldn’t remember! So whether this is the original chassis of LOY500 or another one can’t be said, but it’s still a compelling story.

In 1987/8 KOU406 was sold by John Baker along with an unfinished body, styled close to that of the original LOY500. The new owners Kevin Webb and Barry Salmon continued with limited funds and pushed the car through to completion in circa 1992. Taking time to recondition all the suspension components, replace leaf springs, service the braking system, make and install a new wiring system. Also sourcing the correct instruments.

In 2015 KOU406 was acquired from Messrs Webb and Salmon by our client, who had shared competition drives with Steve Stanton from Stanton Motorsport. Steve then spent a couple of seasons developing the car and its engine for the new owner building one of his most powerful Bristol engines. The car was enjoyed by the pair at many competitive events with Motor Racing Legends and the AMOC always doing very well in class, and also at Silverstone Classic in 2016. Over the last 18 months, the car hasn’t been used as intended, due to a work injury of our client, so the car is reluctantly offered for sale.

Viewing is by appointment only near Northampton, where the car and history file can be viewed. FIA HTP papers aren't currently available for this car but with some alterations to the body then there is more than a strong chance of obtaining them. I recommend you doing your own research into this.  

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