Morgan Plus 8 GTR
The Morgan Plus 8 GTR is raw, noisy and low, and represents what Morgan Motors can create when its design and engineering teams allow their imagination to develop. A production limited car to nine examples, it marks the first in a series of special Morgan projects that will begin this year.
Plus 8 GTR explored design themes, such as high shoulder lines, which have not been found on traditional Morgan bodies for decades. Its five-spoke wheels with central locking resemble the '90s Morgan Plus 8 racing cars, perfectly framed by subtly redesigned wheel arches. Other design elements include a modified rear end, front wing and front splitter, and hardtop installation. Since Morgan Plus 8 officially completed production in 2018, the model has also benefited from the company's learning and expertise.
A special design inspiration is the Plus 8 racing car that participated in the GT series in the late nineties, often referred to as the "big blue". This car served as a testing ground for Morgan's first bonded aluminum chassis, which will be the basis of the Aero 8 and "Aero-chassis" Plus 8 models. Following the recent launch of Morgan's latest CX-Generation bonded aluminum platform, to take this opportunity to pay tribute to a car that pioneered the use of aluminum structures by Morgan.
The project was made possible because of the recent availability of multiple Plus 8 rolling chassis that have been re-acquired from a third party as a result of an abandoned project. These were all built by Morgan before 2018 and were never used for its intended purpose. All of these will be put back into service and will benefit from the upgrade of selected mechanical components.
As part of the transition from a rolling chassis to a finished car, each GTR will be handcrafted using traditional Morgan bodybuilding techniques. In a break from more than a century of Morgan's tradition, much of this work will be completed at the nearby Morgan Design and Engineering Center (M-DEC). Morgan Plus 8 GTR runs alongside core programmes and is one of several Morgan special projects announced this year. It follows many special Morgan models in recent years, such as the Aero GT, SP1 and Aeromax.
These "Aero-chassis" Plus 8 use Morgan's first-generation bonded aluminum chassis originally developed for Morgan Aero 8. Previously, from 1968 to 2004, the Plus 8 model used Morgan's traditional steel chassis and was powered by the Rover V8 engine.
All "Aero-chassis" Morgan Plus 8s are powered by the BMW N62 4.8-liter engine, and the GTR is no exception. In its original specifications, the engine produced 362 bhp , but the exact power output of the GTR has not yet been confirmed. You can choose six-speed manual or ZF six-speed automatic transmission.
Only nine Morgan Plus 8 GTRs will be built, and production will begin in the summer of 2021. The modified special project will be sold in certain global markets, but it will comply with local regulations on European vehicle imports. As part of the special project plan, customers will be invited to commission the customized Plus 8 GTR with Morgan's design team.
Morgan’s design director Jonathan Wells said: “For a manufacturer focusing on new platforms and powertrains, it does not seem to be an obvious choice to revive a V8-powered Morgan. However, when the opportunity arose to get several rolling chassis back up and running and create an exciting special project like the Plus 8 GTR, we fully embraced it. This project allowed Morgan’s design and engineering team to revisit some of the favorite elements of previous Morgan models and try to use some of the features, we hope these features will appear in Morgan cars in the future".