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The Morgan XP-1 previews the brand’s electrified future

A quirky electric three-wheeler with touches of the past

The famous Morgan three-wheeler gets electrified. PHOTO FROM MORGAN

British boutique sports carmaker Morgan may seem a little antiquated at times, but the men and women who have been using aluminum and wood to make vehicles for 113 years now also have one eye firmly on the future.

That future is, maybe predictably, electrified, and can now be seen in the shape of the recently unveiled XP-1 prototype.

As its name implies, this is an experimental prototype. PHOTO FROM MORGAN

Morgan has always had a bit of a thing for three-wheelers, and while the current ICE version is now on the way out, we may see these quirky vehicles survive as EVs.

So far, the XP-1 is only an experimental prototype and a test bed for Morgan engineers to go wild on and try out new ideas. It’s the first in-house developed electric vehicle by Morgan, designed to help the firm learn more about these types of cars and how to build its own production version in the future.

There's a lot of clever engineering in this to squeeze out as much range as possible from the tiny battery. PHOTOS FROM MORGAN

Powered by a 134hp electric motor supplied by UK firm iNetic that sits where the transmission tunnel would normally be, it promises to squeeze out 240km of range from its comparatively small 33kWh battery.

That power pack is at home where you would usually find the petrol engine, with the inverter installed under the passenger seat. Weight is always a big issue for EVs, and Morgan states that this machine is only around 50kg heavier than the internal-combustion engine version.

Perhaps the ill-fated EV3 will live on in future iterations of the XP nameplate. PHOTO FROM MORGAN

Hopefully, those figures will ensure Morgan-typical levels of driving fun, which will be crucial for commercial success. Created over the last 12 months, the XP-1 started as a spare-time project between two engineers before company bosses gave them more time and resources to do things properly.

This also isn’t the first time Morgan dabbled with the idea of an EV. Back in 2016, the automaker already unveiled a concept at the Geneva Motor Show, but the EV3 never made it to production. Maybe this little number will fare better and lead the grand old name into an exciting and newly electrified future.

Frank Schuengel

Frank is a German e-commerce executive who loves his wife, a Filipina, so much he decided to base himself in Manila. He has interesting thoughts on Philippine motoring. He writes the aptly named ‘Frankly’ column.