Morgan to get racy in Geneva with Aero GT launch

A teaser image for the Morgan Aero GT. — Handout via AFP
A teaser image for the Morgan Aero GT. — Handout via AFP

LONDON, Dec 5 — Eccentric British boutique sportscar builder Morgan is getting ready to reveal something very special at the 2018 Geneva Motor Show — its most hardcore, track-inspired road-going car in history.

Called the Aero GT, it is equal parts Morgan Aero 8 (its current flagship offering) and racecar know-how. The car has been developed and is set to be hand-built based on everything the brand learned while competing as a team in the GT3 race series in recent seasons.

As such the car, which will be capped at exactly eight bespoke examples, will be capable of going from 0-100km/h in 4.5 seconds and on to a top speed of 170mph. Its power comes courtesy of a turbo-free 4.8-litre BMW V8 engine with 367bhp on tap and mated to a proper six-speed manual transmission.

Although it will be based on the existing Aero 8, Morgan guarantees that this car will still stand out when it’s officially revealed, thanks to a completely reimagined body which, just like all Morgan cars, is going to be hand formed and shaped from aluminium.

But while other Morgans are designed with visual aesthetics at the top of the list of exterior priorities, this car’s panels are all about boosting aerodynamics and increasing downforce. The car will boast handmade wing-top louvers and a diffuser.

Of the new car, the company’s head of design, Jon Wells, said: “The Aero range has always offered Morgan the platform to explore the boundaries of mechanical and styling design and I am delighted the [Morgan] family has allowed one of our wildest ideas to become a reality.”

As well as showing off the company’s metal working and customisation capabilities, the new model is also a way of saying goodbye to the Aero 8. It has been Morgan’s halo car for over a decade and has been crucial in introducing Morgan to a new generation of admirers but now that its work is done, it’s time to develop its successor.

And the next flagship could well be the first Morgan to boast a turbocharger. As well as the Aero 8, the Aero GT is a farewell to that wonderful 4.8-litre BMW V8. Thanks to new emissions and fuel economy regulations, BMW has stopped making it, favouring instead to go with engines with a lower capacity but with hefty doses of turbocharging to up the horsepower.

The 2018 Geneva Motor Show will open its doors to the public from March 8. — AFP-Relaxnews

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