Home Car News Pininfarina, Morgan, convertible, speedster, BMW

Pininfarina, Morgan, convertible, speedster, BMW

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Pininfarina, Morgan, convertible, speedster, BMW

Morgan Motor Company and Pininfarina have unveiled an exclusive two-seat barchetta called the Midsummer. Based on the underpinnings of Morgan’s existing Plus Six model, the sports car is clad with a magnificent new hand-crafted body on which both the automakers’ design teams have worked together.

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  1. New speedster named after a hill near Morgan’s factory
  2. Laminated teak mouldings used for distinction
  3. Barchetta tail reminiscent of some of Pininfarina’s greatest cars

The partners said the car is a celebration of their combined 200 years of coach-building expertise. It is named after Midsummer Hill, which forms part of the Malvern Hills that tower above the Pickersleigh Road factory, where Morgan has been hand-building its cars since 1914. The Midsummer’s production will be limited to 50 units, which have already been sold to well-heeled loyalists of the marque.

Depending on the owners’ specifications, the Midsummer would cost around GBP 200,000 (about Rs 2.11 crore). It is powered by the same BMW-supplied 340hp straight six as the standard car and is expected to broadly match its performance credentials: 0-100kph in 4.2sec and a top speed of 267kph.

The batch of 50 cars will run through Morgan’s existing production process for its Plus models and finish in the early months of 2025. Though the collection is small, Morgan CEO Massimo Fumarola said it adds emphasis to the company’s wider desire to create a series of limited-run specials, an initiative it launched with the Morgan CX-T – the “overland adventure” model – nearly three years ago.

Pininfarina and Morgan are keen to emphasise the role of traditional coach-building skills in the Midsummer: many owners have already visited Malvern Link to view the prototype, holding one-to-one consultations with designers – including the chief design officer Jonathan Wells, who has led the two-year project – to decide their cars’ exact equipment, colour and trim specifications.

Midsummer looks like a Pininfarina-designed Morgan

The car even carries a unique version of the revered body-side badge that reads ‘Pininfarina Fuoriserie’, which indicates that the design is unique and ‘out of series’. While the Midsummer’s relationship with existing Morgans is very clear, almost every detail on the surface has been rethought or redeveloped.

The most striking change is the generous use of beautifully sculpted and laminated teak mouldings surrounding the cockpit; these provide the car with a distinct interior character and a new exterior profile. Creating the teak laminates—in which individual sheets can run up to 120 layers no more than 0.6mm thick—alone takes 30 hours.

As a cruising sports car rather than a performance chaser, the Midsummer does without the usual Morgan flat windscreen, replacing that with a pair of lower, more subtle aero screens. The fascia and instruments resemble the Morgan originals, but the Midsummer’s unique design adds several intricate details.

Outside, everything is recognisable but different. The round headlights are larger and now incorporate both the indicators and the daytime running lights, while the rear lights – made exclusively for Morgan – are also simplified. The radiator has an aero-cheating shroud, reminiscent of past Morgan racing cars, and the long bonnet gains horizontal air extraction louvres redesigned by Pininfarina. The aluminium front wings are subtly reshaped to carry the larger lights and progress the design. In particular, they are fuller behind the front wheels, which helps provide a more purposeful stance and improves aero.

The rear wings have a chamfer on their leading surface for aero reasons, and there’s even a subtle diffuser under the car’s rear to counter-lift at speed. Hand-formed stainless steel finishers along the sills add to the coach-built class. And the uniquely designed wheels are one of the most effective among a suite of measures to keep dry weight under 1,000kg.

For most people, the Midsummer’s crowning glory is its elegant barchetta tail, which elongates the car (again to the benefit of aero) and perfectly blends Morgan’s unmistakable frontal features with a rear style reminiscent of some of Pininfarinas’ greatest cars. This harmonises perfectly with Morgan’s already stated aim of eventually moving the look of some production models forward a decade or two.

How the Morgan Midsummer came about

According to Pininfarina’s chief creative officer, Felix Kilbertus, the Midsummer project grew out of what he calls an “immersive” journey between the two brands. It began with a ‘what if?’ session involving the two companies’ design teams in an English pub and progressed to more specific discussions in Italy over very good coffee, with lots of collaboration sessions in between.

Morgan’s design chief Jonathan Wells said the Italian firm’s young designers, used to working with the latest digital tools in a large community, “really enjoyed seeing how directly we at Morgan can interact with the people making the cars” in the factory nearby. “It was pretty awesome for us to see their digital stuff – their power walls and VR suites. We started discussing whether there was a project we could do together. We were looking for something to provide a bit of a bang, a decent change of direction.” Midsummer is what came up.

Also see:

Pininfarina set to offer one-off, custom-built cars

Pininfarina Battista Autocar India top speed record video

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