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Morgan Three Wheeler Spitfire Concept

Flag United KingdomMorgan Three Wheeler Spitfire Concept | M3WSC

Concept Vehicle by Sebastian Motsch   |   Featured by MotorPunk Magazine


Time did not fly – until it hit warp speed in seconds

Hello, it’s Rich from MotorPunk. Are you available for a project on short notice? Please call me back.

MotorPunk-Issue-4-2019 120px Cover Page by Sebastian MotschThis call could’ve meant anything and I was looking forward to creating another photoshop cover image for the MotorPunk print magazine, after the Morris Marina Brexit Edition received such positive feedback. What theme would it be this time? Time really does not fly when you have to sit in meetings for hours on end, but eventually Feierabend was announced and I had a couple of hours on the way home to return the call. Rich came straight to the point, asking if I was familiar with the Morgan Three Wheeler, WWII Spitfire aircraft and Triumph Speedtriple motorcycle.

Of course, but not in this unlikely (at first thought) combination. What do these mighty machines have in common you might ask – and so did I. He replied that he had a bad dream and wanted to combine them for a show car project. Being a guy with weird, unusual ideas and having 300+ photoshop chops to prove it, my mind clicked instantly and the above mentioned combination totally made sense (at second thought).

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Not unlike a top fuel dragster, the project accelerated from casual chat to warp speed in seconds, when Rich mentioned that he needed the finished images just a couple of days later for a meeting in Malvern. This is the tightest of deadlines for such a project and luckily it was possible to cancel all activities planned for that weekend. Arriving at home later that evening, I had paper on the table and pen in hand before even taking my shoes off, because I didn’t want to forget any of the ideas that popped up during the three hour drive. A couple of quick sketches and off to bed I went.

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Rich and Daryll went to the 2019 Goodwood Revival that weekend, hence not being available should I need any further information or feedback. Being used to working on projects alone, I went ahead and included all the quirky features. If cost would prevent any them from being included, they could be deleted later without disturbing the overall concept.

Design | Delete | Repeat

Based on the first set of sketches, I went ahead and refined the ideas using pens and pencils on low saturation prints. Proper old school way of doing it, because it is quicker and easier than any photoshop or CAD attempts. The super tight timeline didn’t allow for fine line drawings or 3d CAD modeling.

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Heart transplant for more power

The images show the S&S 2-cylinder engine, but the concept idea was swapping it for a 3-cylinder unit from a Triumph Speedtriple. The distinctly different sound would set this Spitfire-themed Morgan Three Wheeler apart from all the stock ones.

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The aero scheme goes very well with the lightweight three wheeler and using a steering yoke instead of a steering wheel frees up some much needed space in the cabin. An item from the Messerschmidt Kabinenroller could be a possible candidate. However, the canopy and all other parts must be custom made items.

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Keeping the timeline in sight, I had to decide which of the possible viewing angles I should develop to a more refined finish. Quickest and easiest most often is the side view, instead of a 3/4 angle perspective. Step by step, the project took shape and the proportions eventually didn’t look too goofy any more. Mind you, the wheelbase on the Morgan Three Wheeler is very short and part of the briefing was, that it must retain the stock chassis and dimensions without any modifications whatsoever. This would make it easier to get it on the road legally in the UK without too much hassle.

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It took many iterations to go from the initial sketch to the final render. Now all that’s left is to find somebody who actually builds it. Or to be more precise, fund the build as we already have the craftsmen lined up.

In hindsight, I probably should have proposed a true monoposto layout with the steering wheel, seat and canopy centered. But since no attempt has been made yet to build it, this idea can still be realised. As quirky as the offset canopy looks, it would actually make more sense to center it for two main reasons: the Spitfire aircraft doesn’t have an offset canopy and the driver would have more room for his arms and elbows. Registering for road use could be more complicated, though.

All in all the project was quite a challenge and huge fun. If you want to do something similar, don’t hesitate to contact me.

Sebastian Motsch
instagram @drivebysnapshots | @photoshopchops


Modifications

Body

  • Aluminium body with aircraft style rivets and Dzus fasteners.
  • Nose tilted and reshaped for more aggressive look and better aerodynamics.
  • Passenger side closed with a cover, passenger seat removed (monoposto).
  • Upper part of cover supported by a brace. Canopy hinges are mounted on brace.

Canopy

  • Lexan canopy with brushed aluminium frame, mounted offset to accommodate driver only.
  • Canopy hinges mounted to support brace, front slots / rests in regular 3‐Wheeler window mount.
  • Canopy rotates around support brace and tilts towards
    passenger side.
  • Canopy is removable for regular open top driving

It might be necessary to add vents in canopy to allow air circulation.

Passenger Side Cover

  • Aluminium cover for passenger side. Mounted around regular tub opening with Dzus fasteners.
  • Removable to install passenger seat (biposto). May be used independently from canopy (open top monoposto).

Possible aftermarket part for regular Morgan 3‐Wheelers?

Aircraft Elements

  • Aluminium wings, winglets and rudder. Position lights integrated in wing design (aircraft parts, left red, right green).
  • Wings mounted on lower part of the tub, angled upwards and rounded off to resemble Spitfire wings. Marked with stenciled NO STEP markings.
  • Rudder and ailerons movable, activated via cables by steering (rudder) and gas/brake pedals (ailerons).
  • Wing profiles inverted to create downforce.
  • Prop cone w/o propeller to tie the motor into the aircraft theme (if stock HD motor is
    used).
  • Exhaust design, material and finish similar to Spitfire aircraft. Exhaust pipes end in front of A‐pillar, under the wings.
  • Steering wheel resembles aircraft part. Use either genuine aircraft part or modified steering wheel.
  • If possible, replace factory seat with aluminium aircraft or racing seat. Add Spitfire‐style headrest.
  • Fit tub / cabin with visible structural parts and tie in with rollbar.
  • Underside and front of wings will be damaged from stones / other debris and should therefore not be painted (brushed or polished aluminium / stainless steel?).

Wheels

  • Billet aluminium wheels resemble early Spitfire 3‐spoke design.
  • Three lugnuts, possibly mounted on Smart ForTwo or vintage Renault Alpine 3‐lug wheel hubs.
  • No fenders.

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