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Morgan - marque/manufacturer information

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The Morgan Motor Company is a British motor car manufacturer. The company was founded in 1909 by H.F.S. Morgan and was run by him until 1959. Peter Morgan, son of H.F.S., ran the company until his death in 2003.

The factory is located in Malvern Link (an area of Malvern, Worcestershire) and has 155 employees. All the cars are assembled by hand. The waiting list for a car can be up to a year. Production is nine cars a week and each car takes three months to build.

Early cars - three-wheelers and 4-4s

The early cars were two seat or four seat three-wheelers, and are therefore considered to be cyclecars. Three-wheeled vehicles avoided the British tax on cars by being classified as motorcycles. Competition from small cars like the Austin 7 and the original Morris Minor, with comparable economy and price and better comfort, made cyclecars less attractive.

V-Twin three-wheelers (1911-1939)

H.F.S. Morgan's first car design was a single-seat three-wheeled runabout which was fabricated for his personal use in 1909. Interest in his runabout led him to patent his design and begin production. While he initially showed single-cylinder and twin-cylinder versions of his runabout at the 1911 Olympia Motor Exhibition, he was convinced at the exhibition that there would be greater demand for a two-seat model.

Morgan built his cars' reputation by entering them in competitions. One of his racing cars won the 1913 Cyclecar Grand Prix at Amiens in France. This became the basis for the Grand Prix model of 1913 to 1926, from which evolved the Aero, Super Sports, and Sports models.

A four-seat prototype built in 1915 for Morgan's personal use evolved into the Family Roadster model sold from 1917 to 1937.

These models used air-cooled or liquid-cooled variations of motorcycle engines. The engine was placed ahead of the axis of the front wheels in a chassis made of steel tubes brazed into cast lugs.

The V-Twin models were not returned to production after World War II.

F-Series three-wheelers (1932-1952)

Beginning in 1932, a new series of Morgan three-wheelers began with the F-4. The F-4, and its later siblings the F-2 and the F-Super, used a pressed-steel chassis and the four-cylinder Ford Sidevalve engine that was used in the Model Y. Production of the Ford-engined three-wheelers would continue until 1952.


Morgan's first four-wheeler was the 4-4, for four-cylinder engine and four wheels. The first production 4 wheeled Morgan was released to the public in 1936 and is known as the Morgan 4-4 Series 1. Three-wheeler production continued along side the 4-4 until 1952.

Postwar four-wheel cars

Morgan +4

The Morgan +4 was introduced in 1950 as a larger ("plus") car than the 4-4. The +4 used the 2088 cc Standard Vanguard engine, while the 4-4 used a Standard Special 1267 cc engine. Later +4s used Triumph TR3 - TR5 engines, and then Rover 2.0L engines. The +4 used Fiat engines when Rover discontinued their four-cylinder engines.


A version of the +4, designated the +4+, was made from 1964 to 1967 with a contemporary fiberglass coupe body. The light weight and reduced drag characteristics improved the performance of the +4+ over the regular +4 in every aspect. However, the traditional Morgan enthusiasts did not embrace this departure from Morgan custom, and mainstream enthusiasts did not embrace the seemingly archaic +4 chassis. Only 26 +4+ cars were built.

Morgan 4/4

The 4-4 was replaced by the 4/4 in 1955. The 4/4 uses the +4 chassis and a Ford engine.

Morgan +8

Faced with the decreasing availability of large four-cylinder engines for use in their +4 models, Morgan began to install the recently-available Rover V8 engine in their cars in 1968, giving these cars the model designation +8.

The V-8 engines were much wider than the big four previously used, and the engine displacement jumped from the 2.3 L of the Triumph TR5 engine to 3.5 L, but the V-8 was no longer than the four, and its aluminium-block reduced weight to the extent that it was lighter than the four. These features made the +8 accelerate much more quickly than the +4 and also improved its road-holding capability.

In the +8's final iteration, the Rover V8 was fuel-injected and produced 196hp. Thus powered, the car could accelerate from 0-60 mph in 5.6 seconds. Enthusiasts work on the engine, exhaust and electronic chip management to improve this figure.

Availability in the United States

For years (from 1974 to 1992), all Morgans, (of which 98% were Plus 8s) imported into the United States were converted to run on propane as fuel to pass the U.S. emissions regulations.

When the Rover Group certified their V-8 engine for use in the Range Rover SUV sold in the U.S., Morgan made a gasoline-powered +8 available with the same engine in the same tune and with the same anti-emission devices. As safety regulations continue to change, Morgan is again challenged to meet the requirements and is limited in its ability to import cars into the United States. In 2006, a request for an airbag exemption to the NHTSA was refused, and the importation of classic Morgans ceased. The new Aero 8 model can presently (November 2007) be imported but they have not proved as popular as the earlier models.

Morgan Aero 8

In 2000, the Morgan Aero 8 was introduced and, as always, the wooden body substructure was ash. (Contrary to popular myth, however, the chassis is metal; aluminium for the Aero 8). The Aero 8, with a BMW V8 engine in a car half the weight of the BMW, is even faster than the Plus 8, delivering what Autoweek magazine termed supercar performance.

Morgan Aero Max

The Morgan Aero Max is the latest Morgan car,it is to be unveiled at the Geneva Motor Show. There is a limited production of 100 cars. The cars cost £110,000 each and have already been sold, including one to Richard Hammond, and one to Rowan Atkinson. The designer is Matthew Humpheries, who designed it 3 years ago on a work place attatchment to Morgan, and has stayed with the company ever since as the main designer.

Morgan Roadster

When the Rover Group discontinued production of their V-8 engine, Morgan replaced the +8 with the Roadster. Introduced in 2004, the Roadster was powered by a Ford 3.0L V6.

General characteristics

In spite of their traditional design, Morgans have always had sporting or 'sports car' performance, due to their very low weight. This is especially true of their V-8 powered models, the +8 and the Aero 8.

Among their enthusiasts, Morgans are affectionately known as Moggies. Their owners tend to be very traditional in their approach to sports cars; the failure of the +4+ is generally used as an example of this.

Morgan LIFEcar

In October 2006 Morgan announced it would produce a fuel cell based sports car called the LIFEcar and based on the Aero 8 as an experiment. It is being built in collaboration with the UK Department for Trade and Industry (DTI), fuel cell maker QinetiQ, BOC, and OScar, and educational institutions. Morgan will present the car in 2-3 years time. This car along with the Morgam Aero Max, has been designed and styled by Morgan designer Mathew Humpheries.


  • 1909 Runabout
  • 1911-1939 V-Twin 3 wheeler
  • 1932-1952 F-Series 3 wheeler
  • 1936-date 4/4 Two Seater and Four Seater
  • 1950-1969 Plus 4
  • 1964-1967 Plus 4 Plus
  • 1968-2004 Plus 8
  • 1985-2000 Plus 4
  • 2000-date Aero 8
  • 2004-date V6 Roadster
  • 2005-date Plus 4
  • 2008 Morgan AeroMax
  • 2008 Morgan LIFEcar


List of all Morgan cars

Source: Wikipedia


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