Despite what we find wrong with the Morgan’s interior, there’s very little to complain about the pace with which it goes down the road. The sound the Plus 8 makes on start-up is eager. This engine, which has been gradually replaced by turbocharged units in BMW’s range (but which we know from many just-departed ‘50i’ models), offers genuine V8 woofle and character at any revs.
Step-off is brisk. The six-speed manual that comes as standard is heavy but direct, and complements the nature of the car. There’s considerable creep built into the six-speed automatic ZF transmission (which is used to lugging around more than the Morgan’s 1230kg).
However, the gearbox largely does what it’s told if you sling it into its manual-override mode, whereupon it blips a little (although not enough) on downshifts, and changes up on your whim. It’ll still auto-upshift at the 6500rpm rev-limiter, but that’s fine by us. As is the way that, left in automatic, it mooches around at lower speeds.
Straight-line speed? As fast as you’d realistically want, we suspect. We returned 0-60mph in 4.9sec and don’t doubt that, in a manual variant that could hit 60mph in second gear, the Plus 8 would match Morgan’s claim of 4.5sec over the same benchmark. It’s a strong, lusty performer at any revs.
A tickle of throttle at low revs in a high gear is likely to get you where you want to go at a speed you could eventually feel slightly uncomfortable with, for reasons that we’ll come to in the next section.
The servo-assisted brakes are perhaps a touch sharp for easy modulation around town but overall, in the dry, it brakes quite well. In the wet, it is a different matter. There’s noticeable directional instability when you first hit the pedal, and thereafter the stopping distance is poor.