PH fleet: Morgan Plus 8


There are two canvas flaps on the Plus 8 roof, one remains inside the door frame, the other must be hooped over the metal frame and its positioning requires some dexterity. It is worth the effort though, sandwich both inside the door-close and you invite water into the cabin - when moving or when stationary. I know this because I have tried it.


Roof down, trundling to Cardiff and back last weekend in the winter sunshine, the car was being used as intended: burbling, executing the odd burst of speed and being admired by all who saw it.

If I have one reservation right now, it's the spring rates. The car is just too stiff and it causes problems in every area of chassis dynamics. The Plus 8 is too easily deflected by bumps of any sort - in a straight line or in the middle of a turn - and working with a very fast steering rack it can make the car feel quite nervous. Of course this is a development car right now, so I will be lobbying Charles and his team to try some softer springs and dampers. I think it would make the car much more pleasant to drive.

Character study
It would also fit the character of the powertrain more closely. The BMW V8 does its best work from 3,000-5,000rpm, at which point you have the option to hang on for the full face-bender or you can retain some deportment and shift up for another woofle of exhaust noise. It's not a frenetic engine, in fact the flywheel effect is a little irritating when shifting quickly from first to second, so you enjoy the surges rather than invoke the last few rpm. Whichever method you choose, it is very, very fast.


I do adore the way this car looks. It stopped traffic at Heathrow last week and, best of all, it was my transport for a visit to McLaren's HQ in Woking. Parking it next to an MP4-12C made me feel enormously proud of the UK automotive industry - and I'm not normally outwardly patriotic about such things. I wonder what Ron Dennis would make of the Morgan's timber body supports, or its roof mechanism?

The MP4-12C feels like it comes from a different dimension. It does things a Ferrari 458 cannot do, let alone the Plus 8. But in the single discipline of charm, like everything else I've driven over the past six months, it has to defer to the car from Malvern.


FACT SHEET
Car:
2012 Morgan Plus 8
Run by: Chris Harris
On fleet since: January 2012
Mileage: 1,680
List price new: c. £80,000
Last week at a glance: Jiggly, a bit damp at times, but huge fun

 

 

 

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Comments (68) Join the discussion on the forum

  • RosscoPCole 02 Mar 2012

    rolando said:
    Snowman23 said:
    Me and my Dad were on the Morgan stand at an NEC motorshow in the the early to mid 90's, my dad was chatting to a guy on the stand for ages, at the end of their discussion the guy hands my dad his card, it was Charles Morgan. Incredibly nice man
    Same thing happened to me back in 1973, but it that time it was his father, Peter Morgan. Something I'll never forget.
    Visited the Morgan factory in the early 1990s with my dad. When I rang the doorbell on the front door Charles Morgan answered and showed us around. Fantastic experience.

  • rolando 02 Mar 2012

    Snowman23 said:
    Me and my Dad were on the Morgan stand at an NEC motorshow in the the early to mid 90's, my dad was chatting to a guy on the stand for ages, at the end of their discussion the guy hands my dad his card, it was Charles Morgan. Incredibly nice man
    Same thing happened to me back in 1973, but it that time it was his father, Peter Morgan. Something I'll never forget.

  • DJRC 04 Feb 2012

    mr_tony said:
    EH?

    Aero supersports and Plus 8 will have same footwell as same chassis surely?

    Yep I meant Aero Supersports, not 4/4 +4 3 wheeler etc....

    I'd take a 3 wheeler as a Sunday blat motor though to go with my aeromax...
    Yes Tone, see my comment above about footwell issue still exists. Not viable option for me these days with that cramped footwell and the wife will still object to the more claustrophobic nature of the interior frown I was hoping at some point Morgan would release an SV-esque chassis.

  • Its_a_Minkey 04 Feb 2012

    I have had a fair selection of PH material over the years but the Aero is a unique car and a total keeper.

    Skyline GTR33V, first release of VR6, first release of Golf16V, 968CS. Loved them all, sold them. Whilst waiting for a GTR35 I purchased an Aero because it was so much fun during the test drive and nothing like anything I have ever driven before. I expected to sell it prior to GTR arriving. I cancelled the GTR because I loved the Aero more.

    I cannot make my mind up about the new Plus 8, the Aero chassis and engine is a wonderful thing. I like the Trad shape. I will wait until I see one in the flesh.

    Yes the age is a bit older than some car clubs but these are not cheap toys. They are the best toys.

  • mr_tony 03 Feb 2012

    EH?

    Aero supersports and Plus 8 will have same footwell as same chassis surely?

    Yep I meant Aero Supersports, not 4/4 +4 3 wheeler etc....

    I'd take a 3 wheeler as a Sunday blat motor though to go with my aeromax...

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