Geneva 2015: Sometimes nothing beats boutique

  • AFP
  • Updated: Mar 10, 2015 11:43 IST

Times change, trends come and go, technology evolves, but in terms of the automotive world, as long as there are people that value individuality and style, automotive personality above all, there will always be room for companies like Morgan and Touring.

The Morgan Aero 8

Morgan is a tiny UK carmaker in business since 1909 and to this day still uses hand-cut, hand-shaped and hand-built ash frames for all of its cars.

And the company's latest hand-built supercar, the Aero 8, is no exception. A genuine Geneva surprise -- Morgan only announced it was bringing a new car to the show two weeks before the event -- it has some nods to modernity underneath in the form of an aluminum space frame chassis, a proven 4.8-liter BMW V8 engine, ABS and a limited slip differential, but that's limit of the 21st century influence.

The fame that sits on top of the chassis is wood, wrapped in hand-cut, hand-shaped and hand-formed aluminum panels to create an outer shell that captures the classic 1940s Morgan aesthetic, but then mixes it up with flowing lines of classic 60s sportscars like the E-Type Jaguar.

The result is a car that looks like a prop from a film set in today's world but that was made in the 1950s.

And every single Aero 8 will be unique.

Production will start towards the end of 2015 and the company is aiming to build around 300 over the next two years.

Touring Berlinetta Lusso

However, the latest offering from Touring Superleggera, which also made its debut at this year's show takes exclusivity further, limited to a production run of just five examples,

The Italian coachbuilder sent many a pulse racing last year when it unveiled the Touring Berlinetta Lusso. Like the Morgan, it blends 21st century technology with mid-20th century style, but Touring started its project with a Ferrari.

And not just any Ferrari: the current F12 Berlinetta, probably the best V12 GT car to carry the Prancing Horse badge in decades. Yet, the company has somehow managed to improve on what many supercar aficionados consider perfection.

Gone is the angular masculine outer shell in favor of swooping curves reminiscent of 1950s GTs. Also gone is some of the original car's weight thanks to hand-shaped carbon fibre and hand-formed aluminum panels.

The show car was a client commission, a Ferrari owner who wanted something more, and the end result has been such a hit that Touring has committed to building four more.

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