Launched in 1936, Morgan ‘Fours’ have changed little in 76 years, but owners will likely tell you that’s the charm of the beast: British craftsmanship, a beautifully crafted wooden frame and all the ‘wind in the hair’ goodness you could wish for.
Morgans are treated like a family heirloom by many of their owners, bought new, handed from generation to generation, allowed to grow tatty before being restored back to life. This philosophy means that they suffer less from the depreciation and fluctuating residuals that can afflict other machines.
But one person’s positive is another’s negative. Yes, Morgans offer old-fashioned charm like nothing else you can buy new, but they also offer a driving experience that has changed little.
The Z-section steel chassis flexes, the cabin is cramped, the ride is poor and some of the early cars aren’t even particularly quick.
We would avoid some of these potential issues by opting for a later Ford CVH-engined car, which are said by owners to be simple, reliable, rapid and perfectly balanced. All of which sounds good to us.
There’s no need to just take our word for it, of course, because Morgans have picked up a fair few fans in their time, many of whom can be found at morganhistoryinfo.sharepoint.com, morgancarnews.com and gomog.com.
If you’re in the market for one this example may not be Ford-engined, but its 2-litre Rover unit no doubt gives it a decent turn of speed. It’s also been subject to some light tuning, which should mean it both sounds and rides better. It even comes ready for touring, complete with a luggage rack. It seems like rather a lot of car for under £20k, with just over 50,000 miles on the clock and 12 months’ MoT.
But what are the potential pitfalls of buying a 30-year-old Morgan? Well, engines should be durable – the lightweight Morgans meaning they’re understressed. They also tend to be subjected to relatively few miles. Definitely worth checking is the wooden frame, though. Morgan didn’t start using a preservative until 1982 and rotten ones can cost a fortune to put right.
You could avoid any of these problems by opting for something a bit newer such as this – a 2011 example. For £39,950 you get a car that looks as old as any other Mog. It even comes with the remainder of its warranty and has covered just 1020 miles.
So, if you want a sports car that is classic in every aspect except age, or want a machine that is genuinely British, fun and relatively frugal, we think there can be few better choices than a Morgan. If you’ve come to the same conclusion, take the first step to ownership by downloading our free buyer’s guide.