The Morgan for the 21st century is now a great British classic – this one looks fantastic
By Matt Bird / Thursday, 25 May 2023 / Loading comments
Has there ever been a better time for Morgan? The Super 3 has fully realised the potential of the three-wheeled Morgan (in some style, too), while the CX-platformed cars are great: better than ever to drive, still a joy to experience and – in Plus Six form most obviously – really very fast indeed. They’re all quite expensive, sure, but the contemporary Morgan lineup has arguably never looked so desirable, with traditional appeal and up-to-date tech.
The Aero 8, launched as long ago now as 2000, feels very much like the beginning of modern Morgan. It marked a huge series of firsts for the brand, with a fresh (if still familiar) design for the first time in decades, BMW V8 power, plus both aluminium chassis and frame. A really significant step forward for Morgan, then, the 21st-century sports car it really should have been offering – and yet all anyone could talk about at the time was the headlights.
The cross-eyed look became infamous in the early 2000s, back when it was considered a real styling faux pas – if only we knew what was to come in elsewhere. The Aero 8 was revised and updated in time – with Mini lights replacing Beetle ones – and the car would eventually become the stunning AeroMax, Aero Supersports and Aero Coupe over 18 years in production, but that original remains as recognisable as ever.
This is one of them, and for a car not widely adored at launch, it looks absolutely brilliant. The Aero 8 is like Morgan’s muscle car, the familiar silhouette bulked up and filled out for real attitude that still has impact more than two decades on. Traditional and modern cues were blended really smartly, and this one is an especially nice spec, too, grey paint over red leather working as well here as anywhere else. For something now 21 years old, everything is looking in great order, too, from the OZ wheels to the soft top and the upgraded sports exhaust to the knurled aluminium dash. It’s not every day you see an Aero 8, and it remains a really cool car just to drink in.
There’s more good news, too, as this one is being sold by a proper Morgan enthusiast. Obviously, any owner of a Malvern-built sports car is an enthusiast of some stripe, but this one is selling two Aero 8s, so they’re properly invested in all that they have to offer. They’re only the third owner, and reluctantly parting ways to help with house building (commiserations etc). You get the sense that going from a pair of Aero 8s to none at all is going to be a big wrench.
Its £48k asking price is right on the money for all sorts of low mileage, early 2000s sports car icons, from TVR Tuscan to Noble M12, or what a new Super 3 would cost with a couple of options. Both new and old Morgan can offer up an unmistakable look, sound, and experience, which is probably why some love the cars so much they end up with two…
SPECIFICATION | MORGAN AERO 8
Engine: 4,398cc, V8
Transmission: 6-speed manual, rear-wheel drive
Power (hp): [email protected],500rpm
Torque (lb ft): [email protected],750rpm
Year registered: 2002
Recorded mileage: 23,000
Price new: c.£60k
Yours for: £48,000
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