The Runabouts

The first production Morgans were simple single-seat machines steered with a tiller and powered by either a single cylinder 4 h.p. engine or an 8h.p. V-twin engine made by the London firm J.A. Prestwich. A patent was granted, the patent drawings being produced by a bright youth who was later to become famous as Sir John Black of the Standard Motor Company. The Runabouts (as the machines were to be called) were unveiled to the public at the Olympia motorcycle show in London in November 1910.

Despite the interest shown just a few of these were built and sold, mainly because of the lack of a two-seat version and the somewhat old-fashioned tiller steering. However, to prove the soundness of the design, one month later H.F.S. Morgan entered the Runabout in the MCC London to Exeter Trial, and his remarkable performance won a Gold Medal. This was the first of many such victories in all forms of motor sport such as reliability trials, plus racing and record-breaking particularly at the Brooklands autodrome.


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