Eye Candy: 1968 Morgan 4/4

The Car: 1968 Morgan 4/4

The Owner: Bob English, automotive journalist

The Story:What collectible vehicles do the people who write about cars own? Eye Candy has previously revealed such secrets. This week Bob English, long-time contributor to various auto publications, spills the beans on himself.

sIn the fall of 1990 I was wistfully wandering the Morgan ranks at British Car day in Oakville’s Bronte Creek Park. I’d long yearned after one of these anachronistic Brit motoring icons, and had some cash in pocket from the sale of a pretty 1959 MGA Coupe. But not enough, I’d sadly discovered, to put a Morgan in my garage.

A friendly Morgan owner’s club member I was lamenting this state of affairs to suggested calling a guy in Nova Scotia who “might still have” a 1968 4/4 for sale. He did, priced a bit beyond my reach but not, it turned out, my grasp.

My then 11-year-old son Jonathan and I hopped a flight to Halifax and went looking for John Flinn, whose garage door rolled up to reveal a long, louvre-pierced, leather-strapped bonnet, elegantly swoopy fenders, wire wheels and cut down doors.

But also time-dulled maroon paint, cracked black seat leather, crazed dash varnish, and loosely hung doors. The 1.6 litre Ford four seemed to run okay, although the exhaust sounded dodgy and the front wheels shimmied alarmingly. I, of course, overlooked these flaws, dickered with Flinn for form’s sake, then wrote a cheque. The next day we fired it up for the 1,800-kilometre trek…

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