Monday, June 8, 2009

moto guzzi ‘morgan’

Crazy three-wheeler.
by Pierre Martins

Sometimes people build weird things.

P1007763b Like this Moto Guzzi engined trike that caught my eye at Angela’s Picnic a few years ago.

I have to admit, it wasn’t the type of vehicle that would normally get my attention, but there was something appealing in it’s uniqueness. It wasn’t pretty either. As a matter of fact it was pretty ugly, yet it was one of those vehicles that would make most old petrol-heads do a double-take if you were into Morgan and other vintage British cars from yesteryear.

P1007766 Now, I’m not really into Morgan cars, but I have a secret admiration for their racing accomplishments so I had a look at the car, snapped some pics and looked around to see if I could spot the owner.

Over the years I’ve become attuned to that invisible link that exists between cars and their owners. There’s usually something about a car that says ‘I belong to that guy standing over there’ and vice-versa. The car’s owner will usually watch you from the corner of his eye in appreciation when you’re taking photos of his ride…

P1007760 But this time I failed to make the connection. The owner of the trike was not around, but I noticed it was parked in the Morgan area and things dawned on me – This trike was quite at home in the Morgan genre. After all, the early Morgans were three-wheel cycle-cars that used V-twin motorcycle engines mounted in front and overhanging the front axle, just like this one…

P1007767So in a weird way this home-build jobby was a tribute to the Morgan cycle-cars of old. I take my hat off to the guy who built it. He must be a Morgan fan with passion for a marque that stood the test of time.

As a matter of interest, the Morgan Motor Company is unique in that it’s been building cars in England since 1909 and believe it or not, the company is still privately owned by the Morgan family and only three Morgans have headed the company since 1909, HFS, Peter and Charles.

Morgan started making four-wheeled cars in 1936 and has only built sports-cars since. These cars have always been very strong and light and have won numerous disciplines from hill-climbs, rallies and numerous class wins in LeMans over the years, but we’ll talk more about these Morgans with their wooden chassis and their pronominal racing achievements later. I’m actually a Porsche guy and I’m not feeling so good on the stomach right now.

I guess the moral of the story is not to take another man’s creation for granted. He may just be tuned into a different wavelength and for all you know he knows more than you about what he’s listening to…


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