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Morgan Motor Company was born in 1909 when its founder, Henry Frederick Stanley Morgan, decided to make his own cars in the town of Malvern, Worcestershire.
That year, he created the company’s first prototype of its iconic Three-Wheeler model – the Runabout, which was initially invented for his own personal use at the time.
The following year, a two-seater Runabout was launched, equipped with wheel steering for the first time and a hood.
In 1912, Morgan Motor Company officially formed as a private limited company, with HFS Morgan as managing director and his father George Morgan, who had invested considerably in his son’s business, as its first chairman. The car maker began flexing its competitive muscle when in 1913 it won the International Cyclecar Grand Prix at Amiens in France, beating strong opposition from many continental four-wheelers. Due to increased demand following these victories, in December 1913 HFS Morgan purchased a large plot of land on Pickersleigh Road – a quarter of a mile from the original Worcester Road factory - and proceeded to build two large workshops on the plot, to this day the site for the current plant and known traditionally as the 'Works'. New models were being added to the Morgan range and in 1921 a four-seater family ‘Runabout’ was available for the first time. Three years later and Morgan’s first four-wheel car, the 4-4 sports car, was revealed at the London and Paris exhibitions.
In 1959 the bespoke British carmaker suffered a great loss when the company’s founder HFS Morgan died. In 1966 the Triumph TR engine was coming to the end of its life and so Morgan struck a deal with Rover to use the aluminium Rover 3.5-litre V8 engine – spawning the Morgan Plus 8 in 1968. The same year production of the Plus 8 ceased, the traditionally styled roadster debuted, powered by a 3.0-litre 24-valve V6 derived from the Ford Mondeo. In 2000 Morgan took a punt launching the Aero 8 – the first new Morgan design since 1948 and the first Morgan vehicle with an aluminium chassis and frame as opposed to the traditional aluminium skinned wooden body tub on a steel chassis.
A limited-run coupe variation of the Aero 8 – dubbed Aeromax – was showcased in 2008 with just 100 examples built up to 2010, each costing ?110,000.
At the 2011 Geneva motor show, Morgan’s iconic Threewheeler returned to prominence, incorporating an 80bhp S&S 1983cc V-twin engine making the Threewheeler capable of nudging 115mph. With the launch of Morgan’s Eva GT 2+2 coupe postponed, news of Charles Morgan’s dismissal and the subsequent loss of his appeal against the decision, lets hope the bespoke British sports car maker can put this uncertainty behind them and continue to grow into 2014 and beyond. The 488's incredible engine and handling and open-top experience make for something very special indeed.
The Isuzu D-Max is starting to show its age; after a drive in the range-topping Blade version, is it still competitive?
The BMW initials stand for Bayerische Motoren Werke (Bavarian Motor Works) and are famous worldwide for building quality and luxury automobiles. BMW was established as a business entity following a restructuring of the Rapp Motorenwerke aircraft manufacturing firm in 1917. The company consequently shifted to motorcycle production in 1923, once the restrictions of the treaty started to be lifted, followed by automobiles in 1928–29. The first car which BMW successfully produced and the car which launched BMW on the road to automobile production was the Dixi, it was based on the Austin 7 and licensed from the Austin Motor Company in Birmingham, England. BMW’s first significant aircraft engine was the BMW IIIa inline-six liquid-cooled engine of 1918, much preferred for its high-altitude performance. With German rearmament in the 1930s, the company again began producing aircraft engines for the Luftwaffe.
The BMW 003 jet engine was tested in the A-1b version of the world’s first jet fighter, the Messerschmitt Me 262, but BMW engines failed on takeoff, a major setback for the Emergency Fighter Program until successful testing with Junkers engines.
Towards the end of the Third Reich BMW developed some military aircraft projects for the Luftwaffe, the BMW Strahlbomber, the BMW Schnellbomber and the BMW Strahljager, but none of them were built.
By the year 1959, the automotive division of BMW was in financial difficulties and a shareholders meeting was held to decide whether to go into liquidation or find a way of carrying on. The controlling majority shareholder of the BMW Aktiengesellschaft since 1959 is the Quandt family, which owns about 46% of the stock. In 1992, BMW acquired a large stake in California based industrial design studio Designworks USA, which they fully acquired in 1995.
Chief designer Chris Bangle announced his departure from BMW in February 2009, after serving on the design team for nearly seventeen years. In July 2007, the production rights for Husqvarna Motorcycles was purchased by BMW for a reported 93 million euros.


Apart from their single-cylinder models (basically to the same pattern), all their motorcycles used this distinctive layout until the early 1980s.
In 1982, came the K Series, shaft drive but water-cooled and with either three or four cylinders mounted in a straight line from front to back. In the early 1990s, BMW updated the airhead Boxer engine which became known as the oilhead. BMW has been an innovator in motorcycle suspension design, taking up telescopic front suspension long before most other manufacturers.
Most modern BMWs are truly rear swingarm, single sided at the back (compare with the regular swinging fork usually, and wrongly, called swinging arm). BMW Group, on 31 January 2013 announced that Pierer Industrie AG has bought Husqvarna for an undisclosed amount, which will not be revealed by either party in the future. The New Class (German: Neue Klasse) was a line of compact sedans and coupes starting with the 1962 1500 and continuing through the last 2002s in 1977.
Initially a family of four-door sedans and two-door coupes, the New Class line was broadened to two-door sports sedans with the addition of the 02 Series 1600 and 2002 in 1966. Sharing little in common with the rest of the line beyond power train, the sporty siblings caught auto enthusiasts’ attention and established BMW as an international brand.
The 3 Series, a compact executive car manufactured since model year 1975, is currently in its sixth generation (F30); models include the sport sedan (F30), and fourth generation station wagon (E91), and convertible (E93) and third generation coupe (E92). The 5 Series is a mid-size executive car, available in sedan (F10) and station wagon (F11) forms.
The all-wheel drive X5 (E70) was BMW’s first crossover SUV (SAV), based on the 5 series, and is a mid-size luxury SUV (SAV) sold by BMW since 2000.
BMW produce a number of high-performance derivatives of their cars developed by their BMW M GmbH (previously BMW Motorsport GmbH) subsidiary.
The circular blue and white BMW logo or roundel evolved from the circular Rapp Motorenwerke company logo, from which the BMW company grew, combined with the blue and white colors of the flag of Bavaria. The logo has been portrayed as the movement of an aircraft propeller with the white blades cutting through a blue sky—first used in a BMW advertisement in 1929, twelve years after the roundel was created—but this is not the origin of the logo itself. The one-seater Runabout was not originally intended as a commercial venture until the promising reaction to Morgan’s creation encouraged him to put the car into production. Powered by a 7bhp Peugeot V-Twin engine mated to a tubular steel chassis, the light nature of the car meant it had a unique power-to-weight ratio of 90bhp per tonne; making it one of the fastest accelerating vehicles at that time. The car even attracted interest from the managing director of Harrods; as a result the car appeared in the shop window – the famous store becoming the first Morgan dealer to sell all Runabout models. That same year also saw a Morgan achieve the fastest time at the celebrated Shelsley Walsh Hill Climb at an average speed of 22mph. Rather than the tubular steel chassis, the four-seater F-4 used a Z-section steel ladder-frame chassis mated to a four-cylinder Ford Sidevalve engine used in the Model Y.
The 4-4 – indicating four wheels and four cylinders – was an immediate success with four-seater and Drophead coupe versions arriving shortly thereafter. Initially powered by a 2088cc Vanguard unit that developed 68bhp, later Plus 4s used Triumph TR2-TR4 engines from 1954 to 1969.
Known as ‘Harry’ by family and friends, he was one of the great innovators of motoring and highly respected throughout the industry. By 1983, the Rover EFI V8’s power was up to 204bhp, which allied to a kerb weight of 851kg, made for a 0-60mph time of 5.6sec for the Plus 8 – enough to give Porsche 911 owners of that time a sweaty brow. The resultant shoehorning of said lump helped the roadster accelerate from 0-62mph in 4.9sec and onto a top speed of 134mph.
A targa-roofed version of the Aeromax, called Aero Supersports, was launched at the prestigious 2009 Pebble Beach car show in California, with a price tag of ?126,000. With its distinctive steering and handling, bags of character and superb engine response, it has cemented itself as one of our favourite lightweight cars.
It’s headquarters are in Munich, Germany and the company also owns and produces Mini cars, and Rolls-Royce Motor Cars.
After the end of World War I in 1918, BMW was forced to cease aircraft engine production by the terms of the Versailles Armistice Treaty. It was decided to carry on and to try to cash in on the current economy car boom enjoyed so successfully by some of Germany’s ex-aircraft manufacturers such as Messerschmitt and Heinkel.


It was reputed that the acquisition was mainly to gain access to Glas’ development of the timing belt with an overhead camshaft in automotive applications.
In 1994, BMW bought the British Rover Group (which at the time consisted of the Rover, Land Rover and MG brands as well as the rights to defunct brands including Austin and Morris), and owned it for six years. The MG and Rover brands were sold to the Phoenix Consortium to form MG Rover, while Land Rover was taken over by Ford. Featuring a unique design copied from the Zundapp KS750, its sidecar wheel was also motor-driven. Shortly after, BMW also started making the chain-driven F and G series with single and parallel twin Rotax engines.
It features an engine producing 167 hp (125 kW), derived from the company’s work with the Williams F1 team, and is lighter than previous K models. The generation of anti-lock brakes available on the 2006 and later BMW motorcycles pave the way for the introduction of electronic stability control, or anti-skid technology later in the 2007 model year.
Some BMWs started using yet another trademark front suspension design, the Telelever, in the early 1990s. Powered by BMW’s celebrated four-cylinder M10 engine, the New Class models featured a fully independent suspension, MacPherson struts in front, and front disc brakes. The 5 Series Gran Turismo (F07), debuted in 2010, created a segment between station wagons and crossover SUV. Typically, BMW introduces many of their innovations first in the 7 Series, such as the somewhat controversial iDrive system.
Marketed in Europe as an off-roader, it benefits from BMW’s xDrive all-wheel drive system. The three-wheeler model used became the basis for the Grand Prix, Aero and Sports models between 1913 and 1926. The F-4 was supplemented by the two-seater F-2 in 1935 with production of the Ford-engine three-wheelers continuing until 1952. Still in production today, the Morgan 4-4 holds the record for the world’s longest production run of the same model.
A lull period for Plus 4 production occurred in 1969 and didn’t resume until 1985 when a 2.0-litre inline-four cylinder Fiat engine was used for three years, followed by a four-cylinder Rover engine.
Peter Morgan, son of HFS, took over the reins of the company until a few years before his death in 2003. The Morgan Plus 8 proved to be one of the most successful cars for the company and production continued for 36 years right up to its discontinuation in 2004. All development, sales and production activities, as well as the current workforce, have remained in place at its present location at Varese. Combined with a lockable differential, this made the vehicle very capable off-road, an equivalent in many ways to the Jeep.
Innovations include electronically adjustable front and rear suspension, and a Hossack-type front fork that BMW calls Duolever. The 7 Series Hydrogen, featuring one of the world’s first hydrogen fueled internal combustion engines, is fueled by liquid hydrogen and emits only clean water vapor. A 2-seater roadster and coupe which succeeded the Z3, the Z4 (E85) has been sold since 2002.
The Plus 4 returned again in 2004, this time with a potent 155bhp 2.0-litre Ford unit dropped into the body.
Despite lowering employee expectations, the assembly line still proved effective in amplifying product output. These two components (more goods, lower prices) , fostered by the assembly line, resulted in mass production. Basically, mass production is led by price drops that lead to an increase in popular interest.



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