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Lot 418: Morgan F-4 Tricycle

Motorcycle and Motorcars, Bonhams & Butterfields (14 November 2009)

Morgan is typical of small British idiosyncratic specialist manufacturers. Founded in 1909 and still owned by the same family, it has made three and four-wheel sports cars since its beginnings. Part of the reason to have three wheelers was because under the British vehicle taxation system, they were taxed as motorcycles and thus cheaper to license than cars. Well known for long production runs with grudging improvements over the years, Morgan has developed an almost fanatical following, allowing it to survive for a century. The three-wheelers were mostly 2-seaters, although four-seaters were in the line and one van was made as well.

The F-Series trike was introduced in 1932 and continued in production until 1952. It used a simple pressed steel frame. Front suspension was by sliding pillar, derived from one of Morgan's earliest patents. A version continues on the four-wheelers today.

The subject Morgan is an F-4. These began production in 1933. The four refers to the seating capacity. They used the Ford four-cylinder flathead E93A engine. This engine was so robust that one of the most popular beginners classes in British racing was for specials using this engine. The first Lotus was an 1172 Ford special. The car is finished in blue with black fenders and upholstery with silver wire wheels. The bodywork has the typical cork-in-bottle spare tire. Prior to Sam's ownership, this Morgan was part of Bill Harrah's famous collection.

This model continued in production until 1952, when the company decided to concentrate on 4-wheel cars.

Lot Details
Auction Motorcycle and Motorcars
Bonhams & Butterfields, Los Angeles
TypeCar
Lot Number418
Estimate$12000-$15000
Outcome SOLD
Hammer Price$17000
Hammer Price (inc premium)$19890
Year1950
Condition rating0
Registration number
Mileage-
Chassis number1197
Engine number
Engine capacity (cc)
Engine - cylinders
Number of doors