Xcar experiences a true rarity in the odd Bristol Fighter

Bristol rose to prominence building planes for the British military before getting serious about the performance car business after World War II. While ownership changed hands, the business was still producing a tiny number of new vehicles each year until a bankruptcy in 2011 sidelined the operation. With Bristol potentially making a return with an all-new model soon, Xcar has gotten the chance to drive in one of the brand's extremely rare, final products – the Fighter.

Designed as an exotic rival against grand tourers like the Mercedes-Benz SL-Class or Aston Martin DB9, the Fighter certainly didn't lack for power in the 2000s. Up front, the company mounted the Viper's 8.0-liter V10 and offered variants with 525 horsepower, 660 ponies and even a ludicrous 1,012 hp. There were also rumors of an extended-range, electrified version under development. Bristol didn't exactly mass produce the gull-winged Fighter, though. According to Xcar, total production numbers are likely around nine but could be as high as 14.

With so few on the road, Xcar does a great job of letting viewers live vicariously through its video and experience piloting the Fighter. Unfortunately, the coupe doesn't sound like a world-beater, even against contemporaries, but the quirky GT shows Bristol's excellent understanding of making a vehicle feel special. Hopefully, the brand's upcoming model can keep the same spirit but with a better end result.

Share This Photo X