Friday, 30 October 2015

The Legendary Morgan Motor Company

Henry Frederick Stanley Morgan, generally known as "HFS", was an employee of the Great Western Railway, who bought his first car in 1902 at the age of 21. In 1904, he left his railway job and co-founded a motor sales and servicing garage in Malvern Link. In 1909 he designed and built a car for his own use. He began production a year later and the company prospered. Morgan continued to run it until he died at age 77 in 1959.

Peter Morgan, son of HFS, ran the company until a few years before his death in 2003. He was replaced as chairman by Alan Garnett, a non-family director, from 2003 to 2006. On his departure, a four-man management team was set up consisting of Matthew Parkin, Tim Whitworth, Steve Morris and Charles Morgan, (Peter Morgan's son). In 2010, Parkin left the company and Charles Morgan was named Managing Director. In January 2013 Charles Morgan was removed as Managing Director and Steve Morris took that title. In October 2013, Charles Morgan was fired as an employee and a majority of the shareholders removed him from the Board of Directors. At the end of 2013, the shareholders appointed Andrew Duncan, a local solicitor and friend of the late Peter Morgan, as the first company Chairman since 2006.

Since 2011, the Morgan Motor Company and its related companies, (Aero Racing Limited and Morgan 3 Wheeler Ltd.) have been wholly owned divisions of Morgan Technologies, a company incorporated in late 2010.

Founded 1910
Founder H.F.S. Morgan
Headquarters Malvern, England
Key people
H.George Morgan (1910—1933)
H.F.S. Morgan (1910–1959)
Peter Morgan (1959–2003)
Alan Garnett (2003—2006)
Andrew Duncan (2013—)
Products Motor cars
Revenue (All divisions) £34 million (UK Companies House 2012 Financials)
Owner Morgan Family (100%)
Number of employees
163 (UK Companies House 2009 Financials)

Founded in 1909, Morgan cars have achieved fame throughout the world due to their unique blend of charisma, craftsmanship and performance. The Morgan Motor Company has evolved over 100 years into a true icon, a darling of the automotive industry and a brand synonymous with unrivalled excitement. Today, the ethos remains unchanged with a dedication to traditional craftsmanship and bespoke manufacturing.

The Morgan Motor Company Ltd. was established in 1909 by H.F.S. Morgan with the design of the Morgan three-wheeler. A four-wheeled model began production in 1936, and Morgan cars have long become famous the world over for their unique blend of charisma, quality materials, craftsmanship and performance.

The ethos at Morgan remains unchanged: all our cars are coach built and subjected to continual development in order to meet current standards of safety and to offer the responsive thoroughbred performance with which our name is associated. The development of our model-range has taken the marque into the 21st Century, and today Morgan builds in excess of 1300 cars per year. The Aero 8, a major achievement for a small Company, was launched in 2000, and continual evolution of the Aero Range has seen the 8 joined by the dramatic Aero SuperSports and its fixed-head sibling, the Aero Coupe. In 2011 we re-launched the Morgan 3 Wheeler, a modern interpretation of H.F.S. Morgan’s classic design. Our ‘Classic’ range continues to be our flagship vehicle – with models including the 4/4, the world’s longest-running production vehicle, and engine sizes ranging from 1600cc to 4800cc, these famous icons are the models perhaps most associated with Morgan.

Morgan is extremely proud of its heritage. We have established ourselves as a manufacturer synonymous with pure excellence, reinforced over time by our adherence to superior principles, higher standards and the best craftsmanship. Leading design capability, an extensive array of luxurious materials and the latest drive-train technologies combine to create an unparalleled driving experience.

The family atmosphere at our factory in the beautiful spa town of Malvern, Worcestershire, is one we cordially extend to our customers. Prospective owners are encouraged to visit us to watch their car being built and to choose from our wide paint and leather-trim ranges, along with the optional extras that will stamp their own individuality upon their Morgan; whether it be the lively ‘Classic’ range sports car, the extravagant high performance ‘Aero’ supercar or the truly unique Morgan 3 Wheeler, every last detail of a Morgan is tailored to the customer’s specification.

We invite everyone to witness the charms and the technology for themselves at our on site visitor centre

Announcement Date : May 1 , 1909
The success of the Morgan Motor Company was founded on an icon, the Morgan Three-Wheeler. This brilliant but simple design by H.F.S. Morgan became one of the most successful lightweight cars of the early days of motoring. The principal of fitting a powerful motorcycle engine and simple transmission into a light-weight chassis and body inspired a new type of vehicle which generically became known as the ‘Cyclecar’. Thus the fashion for ‘new motoring’ introduced the freedom of the open road to those of more modest means. The Morgan Runabout was at the forefront of this movement and therefore Harry Morgan can be regarded as the man who first introduced motoring for the masses.
The prototype was constructed in 1909 and was a simple three-wheeler with a tubular steel chassis fitted with a 7 h.p. Peugeot V-twin engine. One of its main features was the unusual power to weight ratio of 90 brake horsepower per ton, which enabled this little vehicle to accelerate as fast as any car being produced at that time. H.F.S. had invaluable assistance from Mr Stephenson-Peach, the engineering master at Malvern College and Repton School in Derbyshire, in whose workshops much of the development work was carried out. Although not originally intended as a commercial venture, the favourable reaction to Morgan’s machine encouraged him to consider putting the car into production. Leslie bacon decided that this was far too risky and quit the partnership, although the two men remained close friends for the rest of their lives.

Announcement Date : Jan 1 , 1936
In 1936, after a prototype had been tested in trials and on the track, a four-wheeler was exhibited at the London and Paris Exhibitions. The new model was called the Morgan 4-4 to differentiate it from the three-wheeler, indicating four cylinders and four wheels. The car had a Z section full width steel chassis with boxed cross members and the body was an ash frame panelled in steel. The combination provided the durability of a coachbuilt car with the lightness required for a sports car. The car was an immediate success. After the launch of the Morgan 4-4 Roadster a four-seater was introduced, followed in quick succession by a Drophead Coupe in 1938. The three-wheeler remained in production although sales of the V-twin engined cars were in decline. The F-type however, remained popular and 1938 saw the addition of a high performance two-seater version, called the F Super.

Announcement Date : Jan 1 , 1947
In 1947 the Standard Motor Co announced their ‘One Engine Policy’ which meant that after 1949 the 1267 c.c. unit would not be available to Morgan. A prototype for a new Morgan was therefore built in 1949 with the Standard Vanguard 1.8 litre engine which gave a much increased performance. 1950 saw the production of this car as the Plus Four. The engine eventually fitted was the 2088 c.c. Vanguard 68 b.h.p. unit. The Plus Four had immediate success in competition, with Morgans winning the team award in the R.A.C. Rally in 1951 and 1952. H.F.S.’s son Peter Morgan was a driver in both teams. The body styles adopted were an open two-seater, a four-seater and a Drophead Coupe. Due to its very high-power-to-weight-ratio the Plus Four also began to have many successes on the track. In 1954 the pre-war design was significantly updated with the radiator now hidden beneath a cowl and grille to improve aerodynamics, and the following year the TR 2 engine was fitted, raising the power to 90 b.h.p. Although detailed modifications have been made over the years, and many other engines fitted, this iconic design remains in production.

Announcement Date : Jan 1 , 1955
In 1955 the Morgan 4/4 was reintroduced as the Series Two. This was a car of similar design to the Plus Four but fitted with a smaller 10 h.p. Ford side valve engine and integral gear box, the object being to provide a sports car with a lively performance and appearance for the enthusiast with modest means. The 4/4 continues to use a Ford engine today, over half a century later!

Announcement Date : Feb 1 , 1966
In 1966 the Triumph TR engine was nearing the end of its life and a suitable replacement was sought. The Rover Motor Company offered the forthcoming aluminium Rover V8 engine. Mr. Maurice Owen joined the firm to take charge of development on the new car, the Morgan Plus Eight, and this model was announced to the public at the Earls Court Motor Show of 1968 (Photo 49). The Plus 8 maintained Morgan’s reputation on the race track as seen here with the second prototype MMC11 (Photo 50). This proved to be one of the most successful cars that the company has ever built and production continued for 36 years until the model was discontinued in 2004. In the late 1960s the Morgan Motor Company acquired additional factory buildings to the south of the existing site. This allowed a modest expansion to the Pickersleigh Road operations.

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