The Morgan Motor Company is marking the end of production of one of its most well-loved models, the 3 Wheeler, with the announcement of the P101 edition. The 3 Wheeler — which was introduced in its current form in 2011 — will cease production in 2021, once type approval on its S&S V-twin engine finishes.
P101 stands for Project 101, the internal name given to the project to revive the 3 Wheeler when development began more than a decade ago. Limited to just 33 examples, the P101 was conceived by Morgan’s in-house Design and Engineering departments to celebrate their original project, and its resulting model success throughout its production run.
The current 3 Wheeler has been one of the company’s most popular models of all time, with more than 2,500 examples having been made since its launch in 2011. The 3 Wheeler is exported to all corners of the globe, and has received countless motoring accolades from across the industry. This recognition, the popularity of the car, and the numerous ‘stand out’ road trips undertaken by owners confirms that the spirit of adventure and individuality is alive and well, both at Morgan and within the wider automotive industry.
Characterised by a purposeful and utilitarian aesthetic, the P101 features a range of unique components and bespoke detailing, many of which have been inspired by the prominent design features of Morgan’s three wheeled models.
A striking single-leaf tonneau cover – first seen on Morgan’s EV3 concept in 2016 – has been deployed to exaggerate the asymmetrical theme, and is intended for single occupant use. The composite resin cover exhibits a natural translucent golden colour, not dissimilar to materials witnessed on engine shrouds for 1970s race cars. The tonneau is lightweight, streamlined, and honest in both its design and manufacture.
The Aero-disc wheels – painted to match the main body colour –– provide a further streamlined visual and define the look of the P101, making it instantly recognisable as a unique model. The low-drag Aero-disc wheels work together with low-slung Hella 9-inch spot lamps, positioned to reduce turbulence around the suspension and wishbones, whilst also giving the car a more forward-leaning aesthetic.
Adding to the asymmetry and split identity of the P101, alternated black and white ceramic coated exhausts contrast left to right of the model. Further detailed additions include torque markers on each front tyre, straight-cut exhausts, a fly screen, additional louvres, exposed rivet details, and unique P101 markings. Together, they evoke the sense of excitement felt around the company when the original prototypes were being developed.
Each 3 Wheeler P101 is available in Deep Black or Satin White Silver paint, with appropriate decals to suit. Further to this, four P101 art packs will be available for customers to choose from, each with their own unique identifiers and vivid graphics:
The Belly Tank – Referencing liveries found on belly tank racers and ‘lakesters’ that were inspirations for the 3 Wheeler initially, The Belly Tank graphic pack features a distressed effect in the vinyl.
The Dazzleship (vehicle shown in photography/video) – The Dazzleship is the boldest of the art packs. Its striking black and white design is inspired by the graphic camouflage of period military vehicles.
The Aviator – Evoking a sense of aviation spirit, The Aviator graphic pack is an extension of similarly themed graphics currently offered on the 3 Wheeler. This art pack is inspired by nose art found on RAF planes in WWII.
The Race Car – Three wheeled Morgan vehicles were competing in motorsport almost as soon as the first example was created. The Race Car graphic pack features stripes and roundels, paying homage to the liveries that adorned early Morgan race cars.
The limited-edition P101 is priced from £45,000 plus local market taxes and on-the-road costs, and all 33 production slots have already been allocated to Morgan dealerships in the UK, Europe and USA. Production of the model will begin immediately and continue alongside ‘bespoke’ 3 Wheelers during 2021.
The importance of three wheelers in Morgan’s history cannot be underestimated. From the original Runabout built by HFS Morgan in 1909, through to the latest version in production today, thousands have been built in Morgan’s factory in Malvern, Worcestershire. Through various iterations, the original three wheelers were made until 1952, when the factory began exclusive production of four-wheeled cars until the launch of the 3 Wheeler in 2011. Details of a potential successor to the 3 Wheeler are yet to be announced, and while Morgan can confirm that “the Morgan 3 Wheeler will return”, there will be a break in production.
Steve Morris, Chairman & CEO, Morgan Motor Company, said: “Production of the most recent 3 Wheeler has been a thrilling and exciting chapter in Morgan’s history. The significance of the original Three Wheeler is undoubted, however the introduction of the ‘current’ 3 Wheeler in 2011 proved to Morgan, and the world, that fun cars still have a place and that the ‘why not’ attitude is sometimes best. The P101 celebrates the raw and stripped back nature of the 3 Wheeler, and provides us with the perfect opportunity to draw an incredible chapter of Morgan’s history to a close. Once the 33 examples have been created, the opportunity for an exciting new chapter for three-wheeled Morgan vehicles begins.”
Jonathan Wells, Head of Design, Morgan Motor Company, said: “I vividly remember the walls of the Morgan Design studio in 2010, adorned with images of drop tank racers, motorcycles, aircraft and various other slipstream, go-fast machines, all of which inspired our original project.”
“As a part of the small team responsible for delivering the 3 Wheeler in 2011 — and having seen so many wonderful iterations over the years — it was a huge privilege to help assemble this special salute to everything the Morgan 3 Wheeler product pillar has given us so far.”
“An essence of the enthusiasm, and the spirit of Morgan’s modest prototype teams both past and present, has inspired the curation of the 2020 P101. A vehicle that is visually striking and unapologetic in its delivery, the P101 encapsulates the best features of three wheelers throughout Morgan’s history. I particularly love the driver-focused asymmetry. This is delivered with the colourways and lightweight composite tonneau cover. The external graphics draw their inspirations from early century motorsport or camouflage liveries and serve to prove the flexibility in design specifications a Morgan offers. The low-slung running lamps aid aerodynamics, and in lowering the nose visually, add to the dramatic stance of the P101.”
Morgan 3 Wheeler P101 standard specification list:
- Choice of Deep Black or Satin White Silver paintwork
- Flat base leather steering wheel
- Rubber floor mats
- Black soft grain leather
- Twin needle box stitching
- Solid Aero-disc wheels in body colour
- Brass ‘knock ons’
- Translucent honey colour hard tonneau cover (covering passenger area)
- White ceramic exhaust (left side) and black ceramic exhaust (right side)
- Black exhaust heat shields
- 9” Hella spot lamps
- P101 markings on dashboard and exterior
- Shallow body colour flyscreens with black roll hoops
- Optional ‘art packs’ as listed above
- Optional ‘aero pack’ – removal of passenger roll hoop and flyscreen