It may look vintage with its chromed radiator grille and separate wings, but there's nothing remotely old-fashioned about the engineering of the Morgan Aero SuperSports – or the way it performs.

Even the 1930s-style skin is not as traditional as it looks. It's crafted in aluminium using an up-to-the minute 'Superform' process, and it incorporates twin removable roof panels that can be stowed in the boot. There's a bonded and riveted aluminium chassis which is both light and stiff, to the benefit of both ride and handling. Power comes from a BMW V8 engine which is mildly modified by Morgan and delivers 367bhp. That means the SuperSports has near-supercar standards of performance: it can accelerate from rest to 60mph in just 4.5 seconds, and tops out at 170mph.

Step into the SuperSports and twist the key, and you'll be left in no doubt about the car's potential: the V8 burbles menacingly through the side-exit exhaust pipes that end just a few inches behind your ears (a longer, quieter rear-exit exhaust is an option). Once you're used to the hefty, short-travel clutch pedal you can use the six-speed gearbox to keep the V8 spinning in the middle of its rev-range, where it delivers immense performance with no more than a prod of your right toe­.

Even more impressive is the Morgan's composure on the road. The suspension is firm enough for good control, but with enough wheel travel to soak up all but the worst road surface irregularities.

Demerits are limited to cramped footwells which leave the driver nowhere to rest his left foot, and the nondescript airbag-equipped steering wheel which doesn't really suit the 'olde worlde' wood-and-leather character of the rest of the cabin. But that's nit-picking: the Morgan Aero SuperSports successfully blends old and new into a hugely entertaining package.

www.morgan-motor.co.uk