Morgan Aero 8 GT #73 – Spark

aero 8
2002 Morgan Aero 8 GT
Pilots: R. Hay, R. Stanton, S. Hyde
Team: Race Sports Salisbury / DeWalt
Race: DNF (GT class) at Le Mans in 2002
Spark - S0366 (resin)

Published 10/11/19

Henry Frederick Stanley Morgan founded the Morgan Motor Company in 1910, in Malvern Link, UK. The company became famous for their 3-wheelers, but after WWII they specialized in convertible roadsters. Another characteristic of Morgan is that to this day they use wood for framing the body shell. In 2000 Morgan introduced the Aero 8, the first new car from the manufacturer since 1964. It was also the first Morgan with an aluminum chassis.

You just can’t look more retro than this…

To power the car Morgan used a 32 valves 4398 cm³ V8 from BMW, the M62 engine. To deliver the power to the rear wheels, Morgan used a 6-speed Getrag transmission. The engine delivered 329 hp, that was good enough for a top speed of 270 km/h. With a manual gearbox, the Aero 8 accelerated from 0 to 100 km/h in 4.3 seconds. So not bad for a car that looked as if it was made in the 30’s.

aero 8
A modern Le Mans car that uses wood in it’s construction? No, it’s not a joke.

The last time a Morgan raced at La Sarthe was in 1962. That year, a Morgan +4 came in first place in the 2.0 class. For 2002, Race Sports Salisbury, with sponsorship from DeWalt, had one Aero 8 GT in the race. Car #73 had a Mader-tuned BMW M62, downsized to 3998 cm³. Unfortunately though, even starting out strong, in the early night it abandoned due to engine issues. Despite the lack of success, the Aero 8 GT was the most striking car of the whole grid. 

aero 8
The black & yellow livery works well on the Aero 8.

You just don’t see a car that looks like a 1930’s roadster at La Sarthe anymore. Heck, in my eyes it looks like something that raced against a Bugatti 57G. Therefore, it’s absolutely unique looking. And, Spark did a great job on the model, it really looks the part. However it’s pretty hard to come by nowadays. I only got one with the help of British Royalty, thus I was pretty lucky. But if you are a Le Mans nut, this sure is nice to have in the collection.

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