Old-timer Morgan has said it will be looking to introduce new hybrid and electric powertrains into its future range of British-built cars.
Morgan is said to be investing £6million into its Malvern factory to enable development of electric and hybrid powertrains, according to an Autocar report.
Funding is said to be coming from the Advanced Propulsion Centre, while Silverstone-based Delta Motorsport and Coventry-based Potenza Technology, the latter of which specialises in electric and hybrid vehicle systems, will lend support.
Morgan says the project will “significantly reduce vehicle CO2 emissions and deliver best-in-class fuel economy” and “will broaden the appeal of the brand and attract new customers in key markets”, leading to what it hopes will be increased customer demand.
Government business secretary Sajid Javid announced the news during a visit to Morgan’s factory.
Morgan Managing director Steve Morris said of the news: “This is a very exciting project for us. We have been involved in the research and development of new propulsion technology since the inception of the LifeCar project almost 10 years ago.”
“We are now ready to develop the best hybrid and electric drivetrain solutions for production implementation before the end of the decade,” he added.
More eco-friendly powertrains are actually something Morgan has been working on already. An all-electric EV3 three-wheeler is set to go on sale in 2016.
The EV3 is based on the standard Morgan 3 Wheeler but offers zero emissions, thanks to a single rear electric motor with 45kw of power. A range of 150 miles is promised, while the overall weight is 450kg lighter than its combustion engine-based sibling.
It may seem like an odd move for Morgan, but changes to emissions could see car manufacturers that stick in the past penalised. Not only that, there’s a definite thirst for low emissions vehicles as registrations reached record numbers in 2015.