The Morgan Plus 8 GTR marries an old-school architecture with a naturally-aspirated V8 sourced from BMW to become the company’s most powerful road-going vehicle ever.
Under the long bonnet is a naturally-aspirated 4.8-litre BMW V8. Thanks to a new engine tune and the GTR’s unique cannon-style exhausts, the V8 now makes 280kW, up a few kilowatts over previous Plus 8 models.
The eight-pot drives the rear wheels via either a six-speed manual or six-speed automatic transmission.
Much of the GTR’s aluminium body is unique, including a higher shoulder line, revised wheel arches, aggressive new front splitter, redesigned rear end, extra bonnet vents, and a new hardtop.
To deal with the GTR’s extra power, there’s extra underbody bracing, and revisions to the suspension and braking package. The GTR rides on 18-inch centre-locking alloy wheels from Fifteen52 shod with Yokohama Advan Nedua tyres.
On the inside there are new door cards to accommodate the high shoulder line, bespoke instruments, GTR graphics, and a build sequence plaque. Carbon-fibre race seats with a built-in harness are available as an optional extra.
Production of the Plus 8 and Aero 8 ended in 2018, and the company thought it days of making V8-powered cars were over. Morgan sold the remaining Plus 8 chassis to another company, but when that firm went under, it bought those underpinnings back and decided to use them for a final round of vehicles: the GTR you see here.
If you’re interested in this slice of retro motoring, you’re too late. All nine cars are already spoken for, with four heading to buyers in the UK, and the other five destined for overseas.
According to Morgan, all the GTR models have been customised by their future owners. As with other Morgan vehicles, the Plus 8 GTR is hand made, so production is expected to continue until around March 2022.
Morgan’s regular range of vehicles — the Plus Four and Plus Six — all feature the brand’s signature retro bodies, but use a modern bonded aluminium chassis, and turbocharged 190kW four- or 250kW six-cylinder engines sourced from BMW.