MORGAN Aero 8
Generations Timeline, Specs and Pictures
Classic-styled open top roadster with modern tech underneath, that’s what you get from the fifth generation Morgan Aero 8, which got unveiled at the Geneva International Motors Show 2015, 15 years since the launch of the original model.
Styling wise, the 2015 Morgan Aero 8 remained quite conservative, coming with the same long, fast and low shoulder lines, a slightly bigger grille, Mini headlights, slightly reshaped bumpers, LED lightning and clam shell boot lid that hides the luggage compartment as well as the fuel filling cap.
The reshaped interior comes with a new dashboard arrangement, wood trimmings, fine leather upholstery and a new air conditioning unit. Optionals include a touchscreen infotainment system, low slung carbon fiber seats as well as bespoke detailing packs.
Mechanically, the 2015 Morgan Aero 8 gained a stiffer aluminum chassis, all new suspension, an anti-roll bar and a new BMW limited slip differential. ABS, power steering, cruise control and airbags are also present to ensure more comfort and safety.
In 2008, Morgan Motor Company celebrated a century of existence and car manufacturing with an upgraded Morgan Aero 8.
When Morgan introduced the Aero 8, it was a revolution for the small British carmaker. Its chassis was no longer entirely made out of wood. The engineers decided to give aluminum a chance and bonded to the old-school frame made out of real ash wood. In 2008, the carmaker decided to take a step further and improve the vehicle.
From the outside, the car’s curved retro-style look remained almost unchanged, but an important change was made at the front. Morgan’s designers re-positioned the headlights so they won’t look like they were cross-eyed. There were some larger air-scoops when compared with its predecessor and a restyled back. On the front fenders’ sides, the designers cut six vents to release the air trapped in the wheel well and decrease the aerodynamic lift of the front end. The side exhausts remained in the same place. In the rear, the trunk lid was slightly lifted and enhanced with a duck-tail. These resulted in a larger trunk and increased downforce.
The interior featured the same old-school style with the dials mounted in the dash panel, not into a separate cluster. Depending on the options, the panel could have been made from aluminum or covered with leather. Morgan offered the Aero 8 as a luxurious roadster or a more spirited one.
Under the hood, the British engineers installed a 4.8-liter engine from BMW, which replaced the previous 4.4-liter V8 from the German carmaker. It was paired to a 6-speed manual or to a 6-speed automatic.
Morgan made another step into the new technological era and introduced a facelifted version for the Aero 8 in 2004.
In 2004, the British manufacturer decided to set foot in the U.S. market. It introduced the Aero 8 facelift at the Los Angeles Auto Show and promised to deliver 50 cars per year. It was a unique vehicle for a market where the retro-design theme started to catch-up and made more customers happy.
Despite its cross-eye look, the Aero 8 featured a unique design on the market. Its recessed grille, behind the front fenders, was unusual for any car. But the carmaker didn’t take its inspiration from the world outside its factory but from the past British roadsters. The car was available as a coupe and an open-top roadster.
Inside, the manufacturer took its inspiration from the past. It installed the instrument cluster in front of the driver, not in the middle of the dash panel. The carmaker didn’t want to use plastic to mimic wood and installed a solid wood trim at the upright windshield base. Some naturalists would scream against the use of genuine leather. The designers sacrificed some cows for the sake of the luxurious, yet sporty, bucket seats. Morgan Aero 8 was not only a luxury car; it was a fast one.
Under the hood, Morgan installed a 4.4-liter BMW V8 engine used on vehicles such as the BMW X5 SUV. Since the car was very light, it could smoke many high-performance cars such as a Porsche 911 or a Mercedes-Benz SL500.
With a liquid-metal looking bodywork, the Aero 8 is arguably one of the best retro-future looking sports cars out there.
Primarily notable for being the first new Morgan design since the 40’s, the Aero is built on a lightweight resistant aluminum alloy chassis unlike Morgan’s previously released vehicles which sport a flexing steel base. The 2-door convertible was launched with a BMW-supplied 4.4-liter V8 power unit linked to a 6-speed manual transmission made by Getrag. The new Aero 8 got criticized for its “crosseyed” headlights, with the automaker saying it wasn’t a design error but a solution to decrease air resistance.