The first factory dealership outside Malvern is now open for business – we went along for a look
By Matt Bird / Friday, January 21, 2022 / Loading comments
Though famously based in the Malvern Hills, for decades London has been significant for Morgan. Specifically Astwood Mews, a delightful little pocket of Kensington that looks as unsuitable for anything car related as it’s possible to be. However, not only were the old stable blocks home to the first VW garage in the UK, Astwood was also where Christopher Lawrence based his Lawrence Tune operation. And it was a Lawrence Tune +4 that won the 2.0-litre class at Le Mans in 1962, the very car recently paid homage to by Morgan with the LM62. Add to that the fact a franchise Morgan garage used to operate from there and basing the first factory-run dealership outside of Malvern in SW5 couldn’t have made more sense.
Morgan Works London is now officially open. To mark the occasion Morgan invited along the great and the good of its sales and customer base (as well as PH) to celebrate a momentous occasion in its history. After all, 113 years is a long time with just Malvern offering factory-based sales. It reflects the renewed confidence of Morgan in 2022; pre-Investindustrial, the notion of a sold-out, £200k CX-T would have seemed fanciful, as would the wild Plus 8 GTR. But they’ve happened, and buyers are lapping up the new Morgan.
The overlanding Plus Four was so oversubscribed a follow-up is being considered, and you can bet more than eight people wanted a GTR as well. Despite the range now starting at a much higher price point than in recent years, 2021 was the best year for four-wheeled Morgan sales in history. All of which makes a prominent presence in London logical; a position vindicated by an early sale of a used Aero GT, at £280k…
The Astwood Mews premises is an ideal little spot for impressing London types, too. There’s exposed brickwork and some nice arty pieces and expensive coffee machines plus, crucially, ample space for three cars to be stored. It’s a nice place to visit, and it’s easy to see why Morgan MD Steve Morris considers it the next chapter for the business.
The timing is ideal, too; what better city runaround for the man (or woman) about town than a new Ford-engined 3-Wheeler? In development since 2019 and due to replace the unforgettable v-twin model later this year, it’s likely to be a very significant car for Morgan, and is primed to take full advantage of a more accessible sales location.
Works London is just the start, too, as plans are afoot for an increased presence at Bicester, giving Morgan an additional outpost in the UK, alongside a planned expansion into North America. And we haven’t even mentioned electrification, which the firm has been considering for some time. So plenty to come. For the moment, Astwood Mews feels just like the cars it’s there to sell – rich with heritage, yet amply equipped for the modern world as well. Don’t plan a trip to London without swinging by.
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