When Dave and his twin brother were little, they dreamed of owning a Morgan. As two young lads, they used to look at the car adverts in the Times newspaper every week and there were always a couple of Morgans in there for them to get excited about. Things didn’t go quite according to plan however, and Dave ended up with a BMW Bubble Car as his first vehicle. Still quirky and interesting but definitely not a Morgan.
He kept the dream alive though and eventually got there 45 years later when he bought himself a Morgan 3-Wheeler.
We spoke to Dave straight after he’d test-driven the new Plus Six and, as he told us enthusiastically about how impressed he was with its performance and how exhilarating a ride it had been, he giggled and grinned like he was still that excited young boy.
Dave isn’t alone.
At the Plus Six Demo Day at Krazy Horse Cars in Bury St Edmunds, we spoke to a dozen Morgan owners who were there test-driving the Plus Six and, without exception, they all ended up grinning from ear-to-ear and waxing lyrical about their experience.
So, what exactly is it about the new Plus Six that went down so well?
Everyone we spoke to described the car’s performance as formidable. The acceleration and power clearly made an impression and added to the excitement - the fact it can do 0-60 in 4.2 seconds led some to liken it to a motorbike experience. John, who got into Morgans at a young age because his father had been into them, liked the fact it still felt a little dangerous and fun despite its more modern feel.
And there were lots of comments on how smooth, quiet and refined it felt, without the rattles and vibrations you sometimes get on other cars. The phrase that kept coming up was “exceeded expectations”. Mike said it was one of the most superb vehicles he’d ever driven with a “wonderful purr to a powerful engine”.
What surprised people most about the car was its width, interior space and comfort. They referred to its solidity and plantedness on the road, the fact it came out of corners like it was stuck to the tarmac and the fact its build quality was a step up from other Morgans.
Everyone loved that it still retained its Morgan character, shape and lines even though it has a totally different chassis and running gear. Morgan seem to have struck a good balance between different and familiar that went down really well with our test drivers.
And, of course there were all the of the positive comments about the experience that apply to driving any Morgan.
“It’s not just a car, it’s an experience” Steve told us.
The “experience” was explained to us as being partly about the car, partly about the driving and partly about the people.
What mattered to those we spoke to was that Morgans are different. The recognisable shape and lines of the cars are an important factor but they also like that they’re quirky, eccentric and represent something classic and something British.
There were passionate descriptions of the sensory experience of driving a Morgan: the freedom and fresh-air feeling of being at one with nature, exposed to the elements and seeing everything rush past them with the wind in their hair. People like being able to smell all the outdoor smells as opposed to a car interior and hearing the outdoor sounds like birds singing as they’re driving. This connection with the landscape and world around them is an important part of the experience. And, in particular, they felt the Plus Six gave them more of all this because it was quieter and smoother than other Morgans.
Morgan-owners like the attention their cars get. People notice Morgans. They point and smile. Steve told us they often laugh too, if you happen to be getting drenched in a downpour with the roof down.
But a massive part of the Morgan experience is the camaraderie between Morgan owners. There is a great network of Morgan clubs all over the country - people find that owning a Morgan is just as much about being part of a friendly and supportive community as it is about owning a car. According to John, you end up with friends all over the country that you wouldn’t have if you didn’t own a Morgan.
This article wasn’t intended to read like a massive advert for the Plus Six but as a description of people’s responses to driving it. However, in trying to authentically represent their responses, it’s impossible not to convey the approval, joy and enthusiasm the car generated with every person that drove it.
The only person who didn’t unreservedly sing its praises and laud it as the best Morgan he’d ever driven was Steve, who loved it but rated his Plus 8 even higher due to the noise of its V8 engine.
Perhaps a fitting way to conclude is with the simplicity of Rob’s statement which sums up exactly what everyone was doing when they got out the car after their drive:
“It brings you alive and puts a grin on your face.”
Author: Jo Burnett