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MORGAN PLUS 8
Paul Katsus loves sports cars and sometimes loves to share information on little known car manufacturers
and rare car models. Paul Katsus has not owned or driven many of these cars but has at least seen every
car he writes about. The British car manufacturer, Morgan Car Company has been building cars for one
hundred years. The Morgan Plus 8 model is a sports car built in Malvern, Worcestershire, England by the
specialty car maker beginning in 1968. The Morgan Plus 8 gained an instant following and its enduring
popularity has been credited with saving the company and keeping the company famous. There Morgan
Plus 8 doesn’t look like any other sports car being built today. It is a carryover of the long lost era of
basic, road legal race cars. Its appeal lays in the fact it is unique and very British in character.
In its present form, it is powered by a BMW sourced V-8 with 362 horsepower and 370 ft. lb. of torque.
With its advertised curb weight of 1,876 lb., it is easy to see why the Morgan Plus 8 is one of the fastest
British sports cars. It has an advertised 0-62 mph of 4.2 secs and an electronically limited top speed of
155 mph. On top of all that performance, the Morgan Plus 8 can still return a 32.2 mpg rating on the
North America was the largest market for Morgan production during the 1950’s and 1960’s because the
local market demand in the UK and Europe had greatly fallen during that era. The honeymoon in North
America ended with the introduction of the strong emission and structural laws which began in 1968.
Luckily for Morgan Motors, the arrival of the powerful Plus 8 rekindled interest in the home market and
in the whole line and is credited with saving the company.
Determined US Morgan fans were not deterred by US Emission standards roadblocks to buying their
beloved Morgan’s. As a result, from 1974 to 1992 cars were converted to run on propane as a way to pass
the strict US emissions standards. In 1993 when Rover Group had re-certified their V-8 engine for use in
the Range Rover SUV sold in the U.S. Morgan decided to use this engine in the same tune and with the
same anti-emission devices. But, as US safety regulations continue to change, Morgan was again
challenged in 2006 to meet stricter structural requirements which were announced by the NHTSA in
2000. The final nail in the coffin came when the law on airbags would not be exempted for Morgan and
their appeal was denied and the importation of traditional (classic) Morgan’s ceased.