|Founder(s)||H.F.S. Morgan, OWNER (1910 - 1957)|
|Headquarters||Malvern, Worcestershire, England|
Peter Morgan, Chairman (1957 - 2003)|
Alan Garnett, Chairman (2003 - 2006)
Charles Morgan, operating director (2006 - present)
|Revenue (turnover)||Estimated 20 million GBP|
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 a few years before his death in 2003. The company is currently run by Charles Morgan, the son of Peter Morgan.
Morgan is based in Malvern Link, an area of Malvern, Worcestershire, in England and employs 163 people. All the cars are assembled by hand. The waiting list for a car is approximately one to two years, although it has been as high as 10 years in the past.
Morgan produced 640 cars in 2007.[citation (source) needed]
Early cars: three-wheelers and 4-4s Edit
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) Edit
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.
1928 Morgan Super Aero at Goodwood Festival of Speed 2009
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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.
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) Edit
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 alongside the 4-4 until 1952.
Postwar four-wheel cars Edit
Morgan +4 Edit
- Main article: Morgan +4
The Morgan +4 was introduced in 1950 as a larger engined ("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 (1950–58). Later +4s used Triumph TR2 - TR4 engines (1954–1969). +4 production was suspended in 1969 but brought back in 1985 with a Fiat engine (1985–1988) and then a 4 cylinder Rover engine (1988–2000). Production was again suspended and the Plus 4 returned once more in 2004 with a 155 bhp (116 kW/157 PS) Ford 4 cylinder.
- Main article: Morgan +4+
A version of the +4, designated the +4+, was made from 1964 to 1967 with a contemporary fibreglass 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 Edit
- Main article: Morgan 4/4
The 4-4 was replaced by the 4/4 in 1955. The 4/4 now uses the +8 chassis and a Ford engine.
Morgan +8 Edit
- Main article: Morgan Plus 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 engine displacement jumped from the 2.3 L of the Triumph TR4 engine to 3.5 L, then 3.9L (1990), 4.0 (1998–2004) with an optional 4.6L (1996–2000) all based on the same Land Rover block. However, the V-8 was no longer than the Triumph. These features made the +8 accelerate much more quickly than the early +4 and also improved its road-holding capability.
Horsepower (143-204 bhp), weight and performance varied with emission and structural laws through its history. In its final form, the GEMS Land Rover V8 produced 190 hp (140 kW). Thus powered, the car could accelerate from 0-60 mph in 5.6 seconds. Many enthusiasts work on the engine, exhaust, carburettors or EFI systems and improve this figure.[citation (source) needed]
In 2004, Morgan came out with a traditional model to replace the departing Plus 8. The new model, named the "Roadster" is powered by a Ford UK Mondeo V6 producing 212 bhp (158 kW/215 PS). In 2007, the Mondeo engine was replaced by a US version of the same engine in the Roadster II.
Morgan Aero 8 Edit
- Main article: 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 weighing less than a BMW Z4 and considerably less than a BMW M3, is even faster than the Plus 8, delivering what Autoweek magazine termed supercar performance. The newest Aero 8 (Ser. IV) puts out 367 hp (274 kW) at 6100 rpm giving it a top speed of over 170 mph (270 km/h). Due to the Aero 8's light weight it can do 0-62 mph (100 km/h) in 4.5 seconds.
Morgan AeroMax Edit
Morgan Aero Super Sport Edit
Morgan Aero Supersports at Goodwood Festival of Speed 2009
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The Morgan Aero SS is a mix between classic Morgan design and the technology of today. It is in production in the UK and Europe. It came to America in 2009 and debuted at the 2009 Pebble Beach car show in Florida, but it will not go on sale until early 2010.
Availability to the United States Edit
For part of the 1950s and 1960s, the USA provided the company with its largest market worldwide, taking up to 85% of all production. This ended with the first wave of US safety and emission regulations in 1971. For many years (1974 to 1992), all Morgans imported into the United States were converted to run on propane as fuel to pass the U.S. emissions regulations. However, this conversion, along with bringing the cars into compliance with US vehicle safety leglislation, was carried out by the dealership, and not by the factory, making the cars grey market vehicles.
However, when the Rover Group re-certified their V-8 engine for use in the Range Rover 4x4 sold in the U.S., Morgan was able to use the same engine for a fully US compliant stock Morgan from 1992 to 1996, and again from 1998 to 2004.In 2005, the engine was replaced with the US version of another traditionally-shaped model (with a V6) called the Roadster.
In 2002, Morgan centralised its international compliancy development and regulatory interaction in-house. In 2005, its right to import its classic models ceased when supplies of its necessary airbag were exhausted and no replacement was developed. In 2006, a request for an airbag exemption to the NHTSA was refused, and the importation of classic Morgans ceased.
In 2005, the new Morgan Aero 8 model (vers. 2 and 3) received a 3 year exemption from rear impact non-compliance, along with a separate exemption for compliance with "advanced airbag requirements." The rear-impact exemption lapsed in May 2008 without further application. Morgan has indicated to its US dealers that it plans to re-apply for US certification for some model at as yet an undetermined date in the future.
General characteristics Edit
In spite of their traditional design, Morgans have always had sporting or 'sports car' performance, due to their extremely low weight.
Among their enthusiasts, Morgans are affectionately known as "Moggies".
H.F.S. Morgan's 1909 Runabout used an independent front suspension system with each front wheel mounted on a kingpin mounted to slide along a fixed pillar and located by a spring. Morgan used developments of this suspension system throughout its existence and it is still used on Morgan's "classic" line, although not on the Aero 8 or its derivatives.
- 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
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Morgan cars can be found in many areas of motorsport, from club and historic racing to more prominent examples, including the Le Mans 24hr race and the Morgan Aero 8 GT3 car. Another notable Morgan racecar was the Aero 8 GT car that campaigned in 2008 Britcar races and the 2008 Britcar 24hrs at Silverstone, prepared and ran by Mark Bailey Racing.
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Media Appearances Edit
Per www.imdb.com, in the 1968 film The Party, Peter Sellers' character drives a Morgan Sports Model.  Dr. Mallard (portrayed by David McCallum) drives a silver Morgan in one of the popular CBS Primtime shows, NCIS.
- ↑ - How The Morgan Began
- ↑ 2.0 2.1 - The Morgan Three-wheeler Models
- ↑ - Engines used in the Morgan Three-wheeler
- ↑ - Technical Details of the Morgan Three-wheelers
- ↑ 2006 Morgan Aeromax
- ↑ Laban, Brian. Morgan: First and Last of the Real Sports Cars. London: Virgin Books, 2000, page number not cited.
- ↑ Reprint of Car & Driver article, January 1977.
- ↑ Federal Register: NHTSA Denial of application for a temporary exemption from air bag provisions of Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard No. 208, Occupant Crash Protection.
- ↑ Federal Register: NHTSA Grant of application for a temporary exemption from Part 581 Bumper Standard
- ↑ Federal Register: NHTSA Grant of application for a temporary exemption from FMVSS 208 for Advanced Airbag Requirements
- ↑ http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0063415/trivia
- The Morgan Motor Company
- The GoMoG Morgan Workshop Manual
- Morgan Memorabilia Museum - world's largest collection of Morgan memorabilia
- Morgan 3 Wheeler
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