BMW’s 2.0 liter turbocharged four-cylinder, commonly known as the “B48” engine, is one of the brand’s most commonly used engines. The B48 powers everything from the 2 Series Gran Coupe, all the way up to the 530i, and everything in between. But it isn’t only used in BMW vehicles, as both the Toyota Supra and Morgan Plus Four use the Bavarian four-pot. According to Top Gear, the Morgan is the car that best makes use of it.
Top Gear staffers are lucky ducks, as they have a Morgan Plus Four, with a manual transmission, in a lovely shade of Mint Green, in their long-term press fleet. Unfortunately for us Yanks, we don’t have the Morgan Plus Four, so we have to live vicariously through our colleagues across the Atlantic. In doing so, though, we’ve learned that Morgan’s iteration of the B48 engine is the most enjoyable yet.
Of course, the Plus Four has some inherent advantages that no other BMW does. As a two-seat roadster with a manual transmission (and eight-speed auto is available), it’s unique from every BMW product in the lineup from the jump. It also has a fruitier, more exciting exhaust, which is likely tuned down for BMW customers, who’d prefer a calmer sound. The Plus Four is also quite a bit lighter than any BMW that uses the B48 engine, so its modest power feels even punchier.
According to Top Gear, it’s also incredibly efficient. They were able to achieve over 50 mpg on highway runs, which is magnificent for a two-seat roadster sports car that can do 0-60 mph in 5.2 seconds. In its worst case scenario, the Morgan Plus Four still gets in the high-30 mpg range. So, if you’re willing to deal with its lack of space, you could daily drive or even commute in the Plus Four and achieve great fuel economy.
We’re supremely jealous of our British colleagues who get to drive Morgans. While there are some Morgan press vehicles floating around the U.S., they’re incredibly difficult to get a hold of. So the likliness of us ever testing one is slim at best. Which is a shame because, from what we hear, it’s an incredible car that uses BMW’s own engine better than BMW.
[Source: Top Gear]