By on April 30, 2012

51 years ago, my beloved Grandfather emigrated from England. Despite being a man of modest means, he immediately went out and bought himself the biggest, V8 powered American sedan he could buy (the exact make remains obscure – it tends to change every time my grandmother tells the story), swearing off British cars and his cursed MG Magnette for life. He would be just as bewildered as I am that there is any demand for the Morgan 3 Wheeler in the United States that would result in U.S. sales.

Based on an American design dubbed the Liberty Ace, the Morgan weighs 1,155 lbs, with motivation coming from an 80 horsepower 2.0L V-Twin engine mated to a Mazda Miata 5-speed gearbox. In the UK, the car costs about $40,o00, but pricing hasn’t been announced Stateside. Liberty, along with two other outlets (likely in California and on the East Coast) will be the sole dealers for the car. Morgan will be promoting the car in the Gumball 3000 rally.

Expect to see Jay Leno and a few others take delivery of what is essentially a glorified Can-Am Spyder. I’ll take an AeroMax, thank you very much.

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45 Comments on “Morgan 3 Wheeler Being Offered To Eccentric American Anglophiles...”


  • avatar
    KixStart

    Does the engine really double as a bumper?

  • avatar
    chuckrs

    What kind of wood is the frame?

    Does it come with the shark eyes and toothy mouth standard?

    • 0 avatar
      TR4

      It’s a common misconception that Moggies have wooden “frames”. In reality the chassis frame is steel. The body however is made from aluminum exterior panels over a wooden inner structure.

  • avatar
    Hank

    Haters gonna hate.

  • avatar
    noxioux

    I like it. But I want mine with a Honda V65 4-banger.

  • avatar
    Landcrusher

    All the value of most super cars at a fraction of the price!

  • avatar
    Feds

    This can not possibly be as terrible as a can-am spyder. Part of me wishes the motor were cooler/more hi-tech somehow but overall I like the package.

    Is it way up on my stupid money list? No, but another 10 or 15 years, and I’d probably prefer dropping into this and donning aviator goggles to throwing a leg over a bike for those just-above-freezing spring and fall rides.

    • 0 avatar
      Syke

      I just finished the warranty paperwork on a couple of Can-Am Spyders (obviously, I’m am work as I read this). Don’t get me started. My first question is: Did they have to take something so inherently simple and make it complicated? Second question is: Why doesn’t it lean? Third question: Where’s the damned front brake lever? This is supposed to be a motorcycle.

      • 0 avatar
        Feds

        Nearly all of my complaints in a nutshell. I also really hated the traction control. I thought the thing was broken when I tried to roll on after turning a corner.

  • avatar

    Can-am Spider? Not at all similar. Its more like a retro styled T-rex: http://www.campagnamotors.com/

    The Can-am spider and every other motorcycle based trike is inherently wrong. The motorcycle works with you perched on top of it because it leans. Trikes don’t lean therefore when you are sitting on top of it centrifugal force tries to throw you off the thing. Imagine trying to drive a Miata fast while sitting on the hood. The Morgan trike or T-rex sit you low, inches above the road, in seats with safety belts to hold you in.

    But, because they only have 3 wheels they do not have to meet automobile safety and emission standards because they are legally motorcycles. So they don’t need bumpers, or airbags, or side impact protection, etc.

    • 0 avatar
      DC Bruce

      A really helpful post in explaining the difference for the uninitiated and unschooled.

      Thanks!

      • 0 avatar
        Hank

        I wouldn’t call it retro-styled. It’s more of a return-to-production.

        http://blog.hemmings.com/index.php/2011/03/03/morgan-unveils-their-21st-century-trike/

      • 0 avatar

        Hank, the new Three Wheeler is based on Ace/Liberty’s three wheeler made under license from Morgan. As I understand it, the new vehicle is substantially different than traditional Morgan three wheelers in that it uses a modern tube frame. The licensing was mostly about using the name and the look, not the original mechanical design.

    • 0 avatar
      mikedt

      Exactly why I didn’t like the Spider. Trying to ride it in a spirited manner was fear inducing. I guess if you did nothing but interstates it might be fun (but at half its asking price). Otherwise give me a 2 wheeled bike or a miata when I can’t ride anymore.

  • avatar
    philadlj

    “the Morgan weighs 1,155″

    Kilograms? A bit of a porker, eh?

  • avatar
    Educator(of teachers)Dan

    I agree with Landcrusher, it is as useful as most Ferraris and Lamborghinis but will be a fraction of the price. Honestly if you gave me the choice between a several hundred thousand dollar toy and this less than $100,000 toy I’d take the Morgan. Even if you were paying for it.

  • avatar

    http://www.petersen.org/default.cfm?DocID=1008&cat=French%20Curves:%20The%20Automobile%20as%20Sculpture&ID=307&index=3

    at least the Morgan AeroMax is a poorly copied Talbot Lago …

    … methinks I hear Ozzie Osbourne yoodling Pavarotti …

    what does the the Trike have going for it again?

  • avatar
    aristurtle

    I can come up with several V-twin engines off the top of my head that would produce more than double that power, but I guess then it wouldn’t be British enough.

  • avatar
    SlowMyke

    I have wanted one of these since they announced them a couple years ago. Now all I need to do is get $60,000 spare cash, or however much they decide to charge.

  • avatar
    Downtown Dan

    If anyone is interested in how wood is actually used in the construction of a Morgan, watch the recent episode of the British show Wheeler Dealers on YouTube– Mike buys a Plus 4 roadster with a mangled chassis, and Edd does a complex frame-off restoration, mating a replacement chassis with the existing body. Highly recommended– I learned more about Mogs than I ever wanted to know.

  • avatar
    Zackman

    $40,000 for this in the UK? How? What is it about this that is worth the price? For my money, I’d buy an over-inflated 1964 Chevy Impala SS convertible like I had 40 years ago. I’d even pay a bit extra to have it painted Goldwood Yellow, as they should all be!

    Seriously, I think it’s kinda neat, but a vehicle like this just wouldn’t do for me, but if I were that guy, a three-wheeler would serve my needs just fine. Be probably safer, too. BTW, I like the Can-Am trike.

  • avatar
    texan01

    I’d drive it.

  • avatar

    I am not a motorcycle guy. Rode a dirt bike once or twice, been known to mount a moped at times.

    I spend most of my motoring hours in-town on big surface streets at commute times, aka prime motorcyclist killing time. As such, I’d be unlikely to grab one as a commuter despite my short commute being a good match.

    A 3 wheeler solves a lot of my problems with a bike: no need to change clothes/gear, a place to carry people or stuff and a pile of safety advantages over a bike. While it’s no armored Suburban, a 3 wheeler offers some side protection and eliminates the problem of going down and/or sliding into/under something.

    All that said, they only make sense in a $10-20k compact car alternative price range, not as a $3k0++ luxury plaything.

    • 0 avatar
      noxioux

      This is precisely why 3-wheelers like the Can-Am are so dangerous. The idea that because you don’t have to balance them, they’re somehow safer than a motorcycle. Nothing could be further from the truth.

      Try a quick counter-steer on a 3-wheeler, and you’re going over the bars. Maybe with the thing on top of you.

  • avatar
    Sinistermisterman

    I was a bit dubious about this 3 wheeler when I first heard of Morgan’s intentions of building it, but having seen the enormous fun Richard Hammond had in one, I changed my mind.
    However considering the mechanical parts it is actually made of, and who built it, I’m sorry but $40k is a bit too much.

  • avatar
    wmba

    Well, at least Morgan got rid of the sliding pillar front suspension, designed, I think, in 1908. Amazing, the tradition is broken.

    I’m sure the vehicle will make the Can-Am seem like the poorly conceived bag of bolts it really is when it comes to handling. Having said that, this Morgan interests me not one bit. Cannot imagine who would be interested.

  • avatar
    crm114

    I want it, I want it, I want it.

    But I’d never pay anywhere near $40k for one.

  • avatar

    It’s insanely overpriced because it’s badge engineered Ace Cycle-Car.
    I have been looking at this site with interest
    http://www.blackjackzero.com/mainindex.htm

  • avatar
    T2

    My sister and her friend were discussing the guy up the street who happened to own a Morgan.

    “What is that car he has ? It’s strange. ”

    ” It’s called a Morgan ” I assisted.

    “Oh” they said.

    And then one of them added “Well, I would NEVER get in the car of

    any guy, that only had one wheel at the BACK !!”

  • avatar
    Ryoku75

    I’d rather have this over a Can-Am, it feels more like a car than a bike with training wheels since you sit IN it rather than ON it.

    Though for the price I’d rather just buy an old MR2.

  • avatar
    panzerfaust

    I have a few rules on what I spend my money on, and one of the key rules is to never buy something that looks like I could have made it myself. 60 grand for a vehicle that looks like it was made in someone’s back yard for a paraplegic Harley rider? I don’t think so.

  • avatar
    theonlydt

    I want one of these more than I want to get laid for the rest of my life (I’m married and if I got one of these I think the sex would stop). Hilariously good fun, good looking, so lightweight the engine could have 50bhp and it’d still be fun. Great big V2 up front. In a way I wish they’d tried a Triumph inline 3 up there, less torque, but over 100bhp and a really unique sound, a v2 over here is just another v2…


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