MORGAN & ME: Jon Hildred

Despite living just a stone’s throw from the Malvern factory, Jon didn’t consider owning a Morgan until a chance encounter with an Aero 8. But now, hooked to the brand, he’s on his third. In the first of a series meeting the diverse Morgan community, Jon explains his story…

 

‘About four years ago, I decided I wanted to grow my car collection. We had built our family business, in the healthcare industry, to a stage where a PLC wanted to buy it, so decided to sell up. I started looking for a two-door naturally-aspirated V8. It had to have sporting credentials, and be rare and unusual.

‘I was on my way to Liverpool to collect a Mercedes SLS, but I’d noticed that on route, in Cheshire, there was an Aero Supersport for sale. It met all of my criteria, so I stopped to have a look. When I saw it in the flesh I thought, ‘Wow, what a stunning car’. The proportions looked great because it’s a relatively small car but with a big engine. And when it was started up, the sound just resonated – it was a physical feeling that seemed to permeate through the walls and the floor of the showroom.

 

 

‘I bought the SLS, but I couldn’t stop thinking about the Morgan. Nine months later, a friend messaged me and told me about an Aero Coupe for sale, and the next day I went down and bought it. I’ve never driven a car that gets so much positive attention, and it’s from every age and gender.

‘My next Morgan was a 3 Wheeler. I saw one for sale in the famous blue and orange Gulf colours. Fast forward a couple of weeks and I’d bought it. You have to grab it by the scruff on the neck and get it buzzing away, wind in your hair. I literally laugh out loud. And it’s all at sensible speeds.

‘Then I bought an Aero GT. The green and gold colourway was inspired by the 2009 Morgan GT3 car. I came to the factory many times to spend time with the Morgan design team finalising the exact specification, and I’m told it’s one of the most bespoke cars that has ever been made. I managed to persuade my wife that I could have it if I sold the Aero Coupe but, somehow, I’ve managed to keep hold of my Coupe…

 

 

‘My GT was built over the summer of 2018 and by coincidence, around the same time, I had booked a trip from Geneva to Monaco. The car was ready a week before I was due to go, so I had it transported down. My first experience of driving the car was through the mountain passes of Switzerland, France and Italy!

‘I’m lucky because I only live 10 minutes from the factory. I call it the pilgrimage. When I come in, I see the people who had a hand in building my car and I love that – I love putting a face and name to the people who put the engine in or sculpted the bonnet of my cars.

‘I’ve met lots of other owners, internationally as well as locally, and made some really good friends. It’s definitely a special relationship you have with other Morgan owners, you definitely know that they ‘get it’.’

 

Photos by Andy Morgan 

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