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Engine options, speed, acceleration and refinement

It’s tough to imagine a situation where you might accuse the Plus Four of feeling underpowered.

With so little weight to shift, the Plus Four accelerates at a rate that, on the road, would certainly trouble any four-cylinder sports car you’d care to name; and with torque being as readily accessible as it is, it does so pretty effortlessly, too.

Plus Four feels more enjoyable at a brisk pace than a press-on or rapid one, but its straight-line acceleration is quick enough to live with most four-cylinder sports cars.

On a dry track, the Morgan managed to hit 60mph from rest in an average time of 5.1sec and the run from 30mph to 70mph was dispatched in 4.3sec. That’s not so far off the four-cylinder Porsche 718 Cayman S we tested in 2016, which clocked an identical 0-60mph time and completed the 30-70mph dash in 3.9sec. With a consistently weighted clutch and the bulk of two road testers sat almost directly over its rear axle, getting the Plus Four off the line quickly wasn’t a desperately difficult undertaking, and its precise, keenly weighted gearbox aided proceedings once up and running.

Still, that’s not to say its powertrain is completely without fault. The power delivery can feel slightly boosty, and although there’s an appealingly rough edge to the motor’s four-cylinder soundtrack, that burble is accompanied by a fair amount of flatulent whooshing and whistling when under load. Slightly more disappointing is the Morgan’s overly long gearing. The car can hit 110mph in third, which seems like overkill in a lightweight sports car that, you’d hope, would promote a certain level of analogue interactivity over and above easy drivability and more palatable CO2 levels.

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Nevertheless, braking performance is vastly improved by the addition of ABS, with the Plus Four hauling itself to a stop from 70mph over a distance of 49.5m. By contrast, the V6 Morgan Roadster we tested in 2004 required 61.3m in the dry and it violently locked its brakes in the process.