Home / Social media / Cars / Iconic coachbuilders Morgan and Pininfarina collab results in Midsummer - a sublime limited-number roadster.


This Morgan special project, Midsummer demonstrates the flexibility of Morgan's design whilst simultaneously showcasing the rare craft skill of the artisans who hand form every element of the distinctive body. Midsummer is based on Morgan’s latest CX-Generation Bonded Aluminium Platform and features a six-cylinder turbocharged engine and eight-speed automatic transmission. The collaboration between Morgan and Pininfarina emerged from a wider desire for Morgan to create limited-run specials that both celebrate Morgan’s instantly recognisable design, whilst simultaneously evolving it. A shared history of coachbuilding and a joint passion for design were united following a chance conversation between colleagues from Morgan and Pininfarina. Countless hours were dedicated to the exploration of each brand, the result is a model that remains true to the principles of Morgan, yet previews key elements of future Morgan design language, mixed with the flair of Pininfarina design. Midsummer’s presence is most evident in the rear three-quarter angle. From this angle, the proportion, new surfacing, and shoulder line are most apparent. Midsummer’s delicate yet exaggerated proportions imbue an eccentric elegance, reminiscent of iconic Pininfarina designs and evocative of an era of late 30s and early 40s automotive design. New surfacing, particularly noticeable on the front and rear wings, gives a subtle preview of the evolving Morgan design language. Midsummer also introduces a shoulder line to the instantly recognisable side profile of a Morgan, made possible by the introduction of exposed wooden structures and required as one of the defining elements of a Barchetta style. Moving to the side profile, the existing Morgan wing shape is apparent yet introduces subtly manipulated lines. Changes to the wings have been informed by aerodynamic requirements, most notable in the ‘lift’ in front of both the front and rear wheels, the steeper lines of which help to keep turbulent air away from the panel. The aerodynamic optimisation has leveraged the unique competencies of Pininfarina in this field. Featured on the panel is the positioning of the Pininfarina Fuoriserie badge. The front of the wings and the nose are unique to Midsummer, their volume is concentric to the shape of the wheels, respecting a key design philosophy of simple primal geometry, yet differentiating it from other Morgan models. The lightweight forged 19-inch wheel has been designed exclusively for Midsummer, despite being lightweight, the wheel exudes a sense of solidity. Hand-formed stainless steel lower sills give a conclusion to the wings, providing a sense of volume and providing an ‘undercut’. From the front, Morgan’s new signature headlights finished with silver inserts flank the horseshoe grille and feature a half-moon shape at the top of the stone guard. Small vertical vents sit at either side of the horseshoe grille, these further aid air flow and cooling. A longer rear tail is designed to accentuate the elegance of the car. This treatment is reminiscent of iconic Pininfarina designs, evocative of an era of late 1930s and early 1940s forms. New rear lights sit within half-chamfered light pods.

One of the most impactful elements of Midsummer is its use of wood on the exterior. Whilst wood is commonplace within Morgan sports cars, its role has remained exclusively within the body frame of each vehicle, acting as a ‘buck’ for aluminium body panels to be hand-formed over. This use means it has always been hidden from view. Midsummer’s barchetta style provided an opportunity to utilise wood to create a shoulder line, accentuating the perimeter of the cockpit and visibly showcasing the skill of Morgan’s craftspeople. This application pays homage to Morgan’s long-established relationship with wood, a key desire expressed by Pininfarina at the earliest stages of the project. Inspired by marine applications, beautifully sculpted wooden structures surround the cabin and create the necessary shoulder line. Hand-formed using high-quality and durable teak, hundreds of individual layers of wood are delicately laminated together to complete each section. Selected with meticulous attention to detail, each layer of teak is no more than 0.6mm thick. Each vehicle will feature nine individually crafted teak sections, taking more than 30 hours to skilfully create, and utilising 83m2 of sustainably sourced teak. Most notable are the dashboard tops, which feature 126 layers of teak each, and the door top sections which feature 120 layers each. Using multiple layers adds strength and durability. The exposed wooden sections are not just a testament to craftsmanship, a celebration of materials, and a marvel of design, they also reiterate the elevated engineering approach emerging from Morgan. The inspiration behind the name Midsummer is two-fold. Most prominently, the term Midsummer indicates the height of the summer, a celebration of the season which provides optimal weather conditions to experience an open-top Barchetta. Observing the mid-point of the season is a practice that dates to the Neolithic era, a time in the calendar providing the central point to which an abundance of traditions have emerged. As ancient as the solstice tradition is its geographical namesake, Midsummer Hill, which forms part of the Malvern Hills – a sprawling hill range that is woven into the very fabric of Morgan. It is from the summits of these hills that  – looking in a westward direction – you can see the hamlet of Moreton Jeffries, the birthplace of HFS Morgan in 1881. Looking east is Malvern College, where the first Morgan car was invented. And of course, Pickersleigh Road, the historic home of Morgan since 1914. The application of the Pininfarina Fuoriserie emblem is significant. Situated on the side of the vehicle, positioned just behind the front wheels, this specific mark is an immediate demonstration of Midsummer’s unique status. Just 50 Midsummer will be produced, all of which have been sold to customers during a series of exclusive preview sessions. Remaining close to the project, every customer will benefit from individual consultation with Morgan’s designers to help tailor their Midsummer. These creative discussions will help to turn each customer’s vision into reality, ensuring every Midsummer is a true one-off. Production begins in 2024, Morgan’s 115th year, and will conclude during 2025. Prospective customers for Morgan's special projects are invited to submit their proposals to Morgan. Midsummer’s first public debut is anticipated at the 2024 Goodwood Festival of Speed, held in July.

Take a look at the YouTube video that shows off the results of a project that saw two very well-known car builders collaborate to show off coachbuilding skills that set new standards: Morgan and Pininfarina present Midsummer | Launch Film | Morgan Motor Company

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