Myth-busting: Morgan chassis are made of wood, true or false?

False. One of the great urban myths of the motoring world is that Morgan chassis are made of ash, but they’re not. Morgans have – and have always had – conventional steel chassis, but ash is used for the frame: the structure that supports the body...

What isn’t a myth, however, is that Morgans are built up through time-honoured, time-intensive methods that demand real craftsmanship, following patterns that haven’t changed since the 1930s. The video above – intriguingly titled ‘This is How We Do It’ – shows each stage in the manufacture of a modern Morgan. First, it covers the creation of that ash frame; and then the steel rolling chassis. After the highly skilled work of shaping, hammering and folding the aluminium panels to fit the ash structure is complete, you can see the familiar shape of the traditional Morgan emerge. 

A classic coming-together

The chassis and body are united, and the bonnet is ‘rolled’ and fitted to the car. Still no paint, of course, the Morgan softly shining in its bare aluminium skin, and before the paint can be applied there is the painstaking work of sanding out every tiny imperfection. But even that’s not the end of the story because, to quote from the video, “The great thing about Morgans is that we have 40,000 colours to pick from.” And if none of those 40,000 take your fancy, “We can even match any colour possible.”

A Morgan is born

Off to the trim shop. Leather, carpets, brightwork, windscreen, side-screens, seats – and of course, the Morgan ‘weather equipment’. Or ‘hood’, as the rest of us would call it. The hoods of classic Morgans were always notoriously tricky to raise and lower, but if the owner could see the care and time invested by Morgan craftsmen in individually tailoring each hood to each car, they might think twice before having a grumble.

After what the Morgan craftsmen call ‘final finish’, it’s time for the road test. Hood down, sun shining (if they’re lucky), and engine revving – that’s when the fun starts. Assuming all is well, the brand-new Morgan is handed over to the customer, a full three weeks after the start of production. 

Photos / video: Morgan Motor Company

You can find numerous Morgan cars for sale in the Classic Driver Market.