Britain’s oldest surviving motor car company – the Morgan Motor Company – has confirmed that only 50 examples of its new Plus 8 50th Anniversary Edition will be sold, following the model’s unveil at the upcoming Geneva Motor Show.
As well as celebrating 50 years since the prototype Plus 8 was first unveiled by company founder Peter Morgan at the 1968 Earls Court Motor Show, the latest edition of Morgan’s “crowning vehicle” will also be the last to use BMW’s 4.8-litre V8. The ‘N63’ eight-cylinder will also be decommissioned as Morgan moves away from natural aspiration.
“the anniversary edition of Morgan’s ‘crowning vehicle’ will be the last to use a naturally-aspirated V8”
Though the company remains tight-lipped on specifics, Morgan has confirmed that the anniversary edition will weight just 1100kg – built as it is atop a lightweight aluminium chassis – and will run from 0-100kph in 4.5 seconds en-route to a top speed of 250kph. The hand-built bodywork will also be showcased with blue lacquered paint finish, much like the original Plus 8 (MMC11). Hand-painted yellow detailing will be featured around the front grille, across the bonnet and around the taillights.
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Named in honour of the Rover V8 that powered it, more than 6000 examples of the Plus 8 were sold before the model was discontinued in 2004, a result of the Rover eight-cylinder production also coming to an end. The model would return in 2012 though, now featuring an updated chassis and powertrain as used by the company’s headlining Aero range.
“Weighing just 1100kg, the anniversary edition will run from 0-100kph in 4.5 seconds”
Aptly, the 50th Anniversary Edition will be unveiled in Geneva alongside the brand new Aero GT, a race-inspired edition of the Aero 8 sports car in what has already been confirmed to be the model’s swan song.
Only eight units will be produced, each of which will feature the same 4.8-litre BMW V8 as the Plus 8 (each with 367bhp on tap) and an aggressive re-work of the retro-styled bodywork, including new wing top louvres, deep side impressions and a drastic rear diffuser. Prices have yet to be confirmed, but customers purchasing the “most extreme road-going model to date” from Morgan can individually tailor their Aero GTs.