A dream drive in the iconic Morgan Plus 4

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A delighted Boundless member took this classic sports car for a fairytale spin

Hitching a ride in a Morgan Plus 4 was a ‘Cinderella’ moment for 70-year-old Liz Bedford.

"My fairy godmother waved her magic wand and the Morgan was mine!” As dream drives go, pressing the pedals of the iconic Morgan sports car must come top of many a list. We arranged for Liz to go to Morgan HQ in Malvern to take a Plus 4 for an hour’s spin around the Worcestershire country lanes with a Morgan driver for company.

She has been a Boundless member for over 40 years and has had a passion for the Morgan brand for as long as she can remember. “You look at a Morgan and you think, ‘Take me on an adventure.’ Driving in a Morgan with the hood down gives you such a sense of pleasure,” says Liz. “When you look at another car, like my Toyota Verso, your thoughts are much more practical: how does it get me from A to B?”

Dream drives Morgan countryside

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The reality of a dream drive

So how was it for Liz when she came face to face with her longed-for reality – a burnished Morgan, door open before her, ready to hit the road? “I did have a ‘Mr Toad moment’ [as when the beloved character from Kenneth Grahame’s The Wind in the Willows sees the gleaming car that knocks his horse and cart off the road and declares it a ‘glorious, stirring sight! The poetry in motion! The real way to travel!’]. But I was anxious – it was hard to relax with the responsibility of driving such an expensive vehicle through narrow rustic roadways, with a photographer hanging out of the car in front, shouting instructions. I drove like an old lady and I’m not normally an old lady driver!”

Of course, Liz was able to overcome her nerves and appreciate her experience: “I don’t do a lot for myself. With a husband, Dave, two daughters, Lucy and Sarah, grandson Charlie, and Ralphie the big-hearted cockapoo, my constant companion, there’s always something to do. But this was just for me and I really made the most of it.”

The history of the Morgan Plus 4

This legend of the road has over 80 years of history behind it. Stepping into the seat must be a stirring experience. “The Morgan 4x4 was first produced in 1936 and is the longest running production car in the world. This was the year of the Berlin Olympics and Jesse Owens’ heroics. It was also the year the Malteser was invented!” reveals Liz. “It is such a classic car. Elegant and stylish – not at all flashy. Even the welding is beautiful.”

‘Cinderella’ Liz certainly got that princess feeling as she took charge of her prize motor. “I did feel like I ‘went to the ball’, but the clock struck three and the car turned back into a Toyota Verso – I had to give it back. I felt a bit deflated letting it go,” says Liz. “I would have loved to have driven it all day and given it some welly on the open roads. Driving it back without the photographer in front was amazing, much less nerve-wracking, and Jason the driver then let me drive it around the car park, which was fun.”

Dream drives Morgan mirror

The view from behind the wheel sounds like it made a big impression too. “My car was painted in a police panda car blue. The seat was low and you’re wrapped around by black leather. The clutch felt heavy and I had forgotten how it felt to drive and turn a car without power steering. It’s kind of old-fashioned – I don’t think it’s changed much since the 1930s. It’s an incredible piece of styling and with the roof down, you get such a great view of the roadsides, alive with flowers. I love the roads across the Quantocks in North Somerset. That would be a great drive.”

Liz’s dream road trip

Taking the Morgan away for the weekend would be another extra special experience, and you’d have to choose your drive carefully to get the full A-list experience. “The A-road from Fort Williams to Mallaig is special – I love this part of Scotland,” says Liz. “An alternative route off the main A-road takes you along the coast, past beautiful beaches with white sand and a view of the islands of Rum and Eigg. Perfect for a run in a Morgan.”

Dream drives Morgan road

And on this fantasy drive, Liz would have a chosen passenger – with the approval of husband Dave, of course. Who would that be? “I thought Harrison Ford at first but, to be honest, my designated Morgan driver Jason was so lovely, I’d happily take him. We shared a passion not only for the Morgan but for Worcester porcelain china, too. He paints it when he’s not working for Morgan. Apparently, it takes 12 hours a plate and five firings. Otherwise, it would have to be someone who made me laugh – maybe Michael McIntyre. Although he’d probably make me crash.”

How would Liz sum up her dream-come-true drive in one word? “Glorious! Thank you.”

The Morgan Plus 4 specs

Power: 115 kw (154 bhp) @ 6000rpm

Acceleration: From 0-100kph (0-62 mph) 7.5 seconds

Combined MPG: 39.8 mpg (7.1 litres/100km)

Combined CO2: 215g/km>

Price: From £44,106, including UK VAT

Photos © Joby Sessions

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