GB DRIVERS MARKET

The 50th Ans Morgan Plus 8 & The Jaguar Project 7!

By Zayd Navaz

The Morgan Plus 8 and the Jaguar F Type. Two British sports cars, that take two completely different ways in showing British racing heritage and style. One Takes a completely modern approach on a 60-year-old design, and the other brings early 20th century style and coachbuilding to the 21st century. Both cars completely different but share one goal; To show what Britain is capable of.

Now these two cars you see here aren’t your standard Morgan Plus 8 and Jaguar F Type. What you see here is the 1 of 250 Jaguar Project 7 and 1 of 50 Morgan Plus 8 50th Anniversary Edition. Both extremely special and rare versions of two amazing convertibles. Let’s start off with the Project 7.

The Jaguar Project 7 was launched in 2015 and was one of Jaguar’s “Special Vehicle Operations” or SVO for short and was built to hark back to the original 1950s Jaguar D Type; the famous 24h Le Mans race winner. The Project 7 would be made to celebrate the 60th Anniversary of the D Type.

Unlike the D Type however, the Project 7 has more power. A lot more. Based on the 5 litre V8 in F Type R, The Project 7 produces 542 HP and 680 NM of Torque sent through an 8 speed ZF gearbox to the rear wheels and does 0-100 km/h in just under 4 seconds. Top speed? Limited to 300 km/h. Compared to the D Type’s 3.4 litre engine, this is the upgrade.

However, it is not the power that impresses most, it’s the details. This is no ordinary F Type, and subtle yet noticeable differences will make you realise that this is something a little more different. Most noticeably, the singular hump just behind the driver, just like the original D Type. The slightly more angled wind screen, and of course, the lipstick around the grill, the infamous white dot on the side of the car and the stripe going across the front of the car. Not to forget the fixed spoiler on the back and slightly larger intakes on the front. To some, they might see this and think that this is just another loud F type convertible. To those who know what this is, this is something a little more than that.

The F Type is proof that Jaguar reflect on their heritage and show what can be done when a bunch of engineers get together and make something, very special.

Let’s move onto the Morgan. The Plus 8 50th Anniversary edition. As it says in the name, this Morgan was made to celebrate 50 years of the Plus 8.

Morgan started production of the Plus 8 in 1968 however then shortly stopped production in 2004 due to there being a shortage of the Rover supplied 3.5 litre V8 engine. In 2012, the Plus 8 would be resurrected, now with a BMW supplied 4.8 V8 Engine, which is still being used in production to this day. The engine produced 367 HP from the naturally aspirated engine, and while that sort of power is commonly found in 40,000€ hot hatches, the Plus 8 only had a curb weight of under a tonne, which resulted in amazing power to weight numbers. That coupled with crisp throttle response from the N/A engine, the wind in your hair and a manual gearbox, and you would be having one of the most enjoyable driving experiences in one of the most special and iconic cars from Britain.

Although over 6000 units later since 1968, the days for the Plus 8 have now come to an end which the 50th anniversary edition marks. British racing green, special wheels and neon green accents highlight the last of the Morgan Plus 8 Models. For the average person, a normal Morgan is something special to see. To the enthusiast, this is the end of an icon.

The Morgan Plus 8 and Jaguar F Type are two completely different cars. One is a cutting edge, 21st century developed piece of engineering with historical nods back to the 1950s, and the other is cutting edge 1950s technology brought into the 21st century. Both special cars, both rare cars. And both cars that prove to the world that Britain had a strong motoring past.