Morgan Plus 4 celebrates 65th birthday with bonkers 225hp special edition

27 July, 2015


Morgan’s Plus 4 may be turning an incredible 65 years old this year, but it’s still got plenty of life left in it. So much so that the team at Morgan have unveiled a special limited edition, called the ARP4.

After being fettled with by the renowned engineer team at Cosworth and AP, the ARP4 features a Cosworth-tuned 225hp 2.0-litre engine — a jump of almost 100hp over the standard Morgan Plus 4. An uprated braking set-up, adjustable shock absorbers, and a new five-link rear suspension will aim to keep the spritely ARP4 in check. These features will complement the Morgan’s already energetic chassis, and minimal weight of 927kg.

Aesthetic changes to the ARP4 include LED headlights, exposed aluminium elements in the interior, improved soundproofing under the hood, and revised instrument clusters.

Founded in 1910, Morgan is one of the few remaining companies who solely produce handmade vehicles, and the Plus 4 is their most famed platform. Throughout its shelf life, the Plus 4 has been pulled in and out of production on several occasions. But despite some significant changes in its tenure, the Plus 4 looks almost identical to its original iterations

Fittingly, the ARP4 was launched at the 2015 Silverstone Classic in England on July 24–26, an event devoted to historic motor racing. Morgans have always been synonymous with exploits on race tracks, and continue to be associated with them via the popularity of the Plus 4 at track days throughout Europe. 

There will only be 50 examples of the AR P4 built, with pricing starting at £54,995, or NZ$129,599.

Travelling companion

It’s easy to see why the Morris Minor Traveller was one of the best-loved variants of the Morris Minor. Introduced in 1953, it was equipped with the same independent torsion bar front suspension, drum brakes, and rack and pinion steering as its saloon sibling but, with their foldable rear seat increasing versatility, many Travellers were used as trade vehicles, says Derek Goddard. Derek and Gail Goddard, the owners of this superbly restored example, have run Morris Minors since before they were married in 1974.
“Our honeymoon vehicle was a blue Morris Minor van — it was a rust bucket,” says Derek.

Super Leicht Gullwing

It’s fair to say that nothing much in the classic Mercedes world gets past Mercedes-Benz Club stalwart Garry Boyce so it wasn’t surprising to learn that around 15 years ago he had sniffed out an extremely rare 300SL lightweight Gullwing as well as a 1958 300SL Roadster hiding away in the Waikato. The cars were not for sale but Garry eventually managed to persuade the owner to allow him and his restoration team to take a look at the Roadster. They discovered a very distressed but largely unmolested car. The car was so original that the body had never been off the chassis, meaning most of the parts and fittings were still present and correct, as they had been fitted by the factory.