Bristol’s new extended-range electric GT is being developed by Surrey-based technology group Frazer-Nash Research.
The car will have twin targets of a 200mph top speed and 100mpg fuel economy in town, according to Bristol’s owner and chairman, Indian-born technology entrepreneur Kamal Siddiqi, who acquired the company three years ago.
The new car is a two-door, four-seat coupé, due in concept form before the end of the year. Siddiqi says production is likely to be “several hundred a year” at a price “under £200,000”.
The new Bristol is intended to be a showpiece for Frazer-Nash’s efficiency-based technologies, designed and developed in house since Siddiqi acquired Frazer-Nash in 1989. Since then, Siddiqi and his 100-strong team have built 150 electric cars of various sizes and capabilities, using the experience to develop modern, versatile electric car platforms.
The car will have separate drive motors for all four wheels, plus an 800cc Wankel rotary engine powering a generator to feed its bank of lithium-ion batteries. Frazer-Nash’s own-design, all-electronic ‘digital differential’ will deploy torque and maintain traction intelligently, as well as providing functions like chassis stability and torque vectoring.
“Our system is entirely our own concept,” says Siddiqi. “The hardware, the algorithms, the software, the battery pack and the multiplexing are all our own. This approach is better than depending on proprietary parts, which are rarely ideal for our particular applications.”
Siddiqi, who trained as a mechanical engineer but learned electronics in the telecommunications industry, is also working on a new hybrid Metrocab, which aims to help cut London’s pollution. “We don’t believe there’s such a thing as specific green technology,” he says. “Our goal, in all we do, is efficiency.”