Morris Commercial disappeared over half a century ago in 1968 but a group of investors have claimed the brand name and will relaunch the lovable Morris J-Type as a 21st-century electric classic.
The UK based automotive start-up describe the quickly thought out ‘Morris JE’ as a state-of-the-art, fully electric premium product with sensational styling, excellent functionality and a practical driving range for business and pleasure.
Now, the cynical will, of course, be thinking burger van or yet another mobile coffee stalker but the innovative company is promising bigger things with a lightweight, modular chassis, making it highly adaptable for more future derivatives.
It’s that advanced lightweight chassis working in synergy with a complete carbon fibre body that will make the Morris JE one of the lightest LCVs around, boasting a power-to-weight ratio efficiency that ‘fully maximises’ the range of this iconic British van.
Dr Qu Li, the CEO and founder of Morris Commercial:
“I am so pleased to reach this stage after over two years of intense development. It’s been a fantastic journey and I am extremely proud of what the whole Morris Commercial team and its incredible suppliers have achieved. The working engineering prototype has undergone extensive road testing and the end of 2019 is an amazing conclusion to the first phase of the project. We still have a little way to go to bring the project to full production, but we have the team and the product to make this an enormous success. As a business, we are committed to environmental sustainability and we are trailblazing a new approach to the production of appealing, fully electric commercial vehicles. We are very excited to unveil the JE to the public this autumn”.
Original Morris J-Type Van
There are many classic enthusiasts who still refer to the original Morris J-type as the ‘ultimate’ or most ‘stylish’ British light commercial van, with large carrying capacity and more charm than your average gypsy fortune teller. Others may remind you of the difficulty they had when trying to negotiate around even the easiest of corners and resembling the Hulk over a 6 month period.
“The new vehicle is not a replica of a 70-year-old design, but it takes the DNA and values of the original van and brings it up to date in a fun, funky and contemporary design.”
How things were before power-assisted steering and other modern additions
Joking apart the J-Type did have practicality and even reliability and was used extensively for promotional and advertising purposes thanks to its distinctive and appealing looks. Often seen resplendent in distinctive colour schemes and company liveries and was often used for major advertising and promotional campaigns. Exported around the world to over 22 countries, the original van has international recognition, and today many are still in use as ice cream vans and for food retailing and are still used in film and advertising campaigns.
Patience Is A Virtue
Some advice for those expecting big things quickly – don’t hold your breath too long. The design and functionality is a completely new EV platform which will (if things progress) lay the foundations for a new and exciting forthcoming era for the reinvented Morris Commercial vehicles.
Technical spec and details have not been disclosed with range and charging times being kept under wraps for now, but the company has said there will be fully operational engineering prototype which hopefully will be seen before 2020.
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