The Bolwell Mk IV can be considered the first serious commercial model to be
released, following the previous
The Mk IV was manufactured in component
form and sold as a kit, meaning the purchaser had to
either assemble the car themselves, or pay someone to
This slight draw-back did, however, come with a few advantages, not the least
of which was that the purchaser was then able to choose their favorite engine,
gearbox, and other components they wanted in their vehicle.
Although the car
was designed for a Ford Cortina 1600cc 4 cylinder engine, other alternatives
were available including the Peugeot 4 cylinder, Ford Falcon and Holden grey
six cylinder engines.
The car body was offered in either a gull-wing door hardtop or open convertible
style. In their first year some 55 units were sold, predominantly the open convertible
with a Ford Cortina engine.
Sales would eventually exceed the 200 mark by the
time the Mk IV was pensioned off.
The Bolwell brothers were strongly influenced,
it was said, by Lotus and Elva designs, both marques having secured an enviable
reputation in the UK, in many ways contributable to their dominance of the UK
motor racing scene.
It is difficult to imagine that none of the Bolwell brothers had an automotive
engineering or design background, given that they were able to create such attractive,
low slung, sleek and profiled cars that obviously captured a certain market.
Its design was dominated by smooth flowing wings over the wheels.
The body had one piece lift-up bonnet, in the style of the Triumph Spitfire and
the Jaguar E-Type, underneath which was a tubular space framed chassis, similar
to an Elva of the period.
By the time they had updated the design (the Mk IV/B),
Bolwell had decided that a monocoque design was stronger, simpler, quicker and
most importantly cheaper to produce.
Text and Images courtesy Bolwell
Car Club: www.bolwellcarclub.com.au