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A Blast from the Past

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On: Tue, Dec 3, 2013 at 7:03AM | By: Karen Cook

A Blast from the Past

It looks like something out of an old movie. You can picture the driver in goggles and a scarf fluttering in the wind. And some of those cool driving gloves. If you drive one, you will see the need for these fancy duds.

It started in the early 1900s. The Morgan Company of England began producing a three-wheeled… um, car… which weighed in at only 1200 pounds. It had no windows and no doors. The windshield was not much bigger than a playing card and was just about as effective at deflecting the wind. It had an enormous 80-hp engine but it could get to 60 mph in less than six seconds. Other three-wheeled vehicles had been produced, but they were prone to turning over in turns. The Morgan company put the single wheel at the back and voila! Problem solved.

The little car was fun to drive, but the 2.0-liter X-Wedge V-twin engine (built by Wisconsin bike-engine maker S&S) was loud. The ride was uncomfortable and, if you weren’t careful, you could seriously burn yourself on the exhaust and various other things. It just wasn’t a practical vehicle for everyday.

Morgan has updated this interesting little piece of machinery in the hopes that it will become more appealing for the everyday driver. The 2014 3-wheeler is much quieter and the smoother and the chassis has been reengineered to improve handling and performance. The exhaust is safer too with less chance of touching it on entry. It has retained its old-fashioned look, though.

It still doesn’t have doors or windows and the windshield still won’t do its duty. You still need the clothing to keep off the dust and the rain. Don’t know if it’s a good date car, but it sure looks fun to drive.

Photo Gallery (click a thumbnail to enlarge)


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