Currently reading: Greatest road tests ever: Morgan Aero 8
Back in 2001, we got behind the wheel of one of Morgan's first all-new cars in a lifetime

New Morgans had appeared as often as world wars until the Aero 8 arrived, bringing with it a newfangled BMW V8 and aluminium-intensive construction.

The BMW 540i’s V8, exhaust and six-speed manual gearbox were reworked for the Morgan Aero 8, while a limited-slip diff from BTR laid the power down. A glued, riveted and cured aluminium chassis married to an ash frame and an aluminium body weighed only 1135kg. Eibach springs and Koni dampers aimed to produce flat cornering without anti-roll bars. Exterior design — brilliant and shabby in equal measure — was the work of Charles Morgan.

Underwhelming off the line, the tractable Aero 8 managed effortlessly rapid in-gear metrics such as 30-50mph in 3.6sec in fourth. The key was to let the massive torque do the work and leave the long-throw gearshift alone. The exhaust note was disappointingly quiet, though, and the transaxle clattered away, while fade-prone brakes lacked feel.

96 Morgan aero 8

The chassis delivered its best at eight-tenths, limiting roll while maintaining impressive suppleness. The steering lacked self-centring and feel.

The cabin used high-quality materials and offered decent ergonomics, but the fiddly hood let in wind and rain; better to drop it and enjoy the Aero 8 al fresco.

For: Styling, performance, demeanour

Against: Steering, hood, brake feel

98 Morgan aero 8


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Car review

The Morgan Aero 8 has pace and kerbside status in spades, but it's very pricey

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What happened next: Power increased to 333bhp in 2005 then again to 370bhp with the upsized 4.8-litre V8 of 2008, when a six-speed automatic ZF gearbox also became available. The final Aero 8s were built in 2010.


96 Morgan aero 8

Price £55,500 Engine V8, 4398cc, petrol Power 286bhp at 5400rpm Torque 324lb ft at 3600rpm 0-60mph 4.8sec 0-100mph 11.7sec Standing quarter mile 13.5sec at 105mph Top speed 151mph Economy 19.4mpg

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