MG MG 3 Review

The MG3 is a small city car that’s cheap to buy and relatively roomy but it isn’t as nice to drive as alternatives and lacks some common safety kit.


This score is awarded by our team of expert reviewers after extensive testing of the car

What's good

  • Sporty styling
  • Reasonably spacious
  • Well-equipped

What's not so good

  • Noisy to drive
  • Alternatives are safer
  • Sluggish petrol engine

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Overall verdict

The MG3 is a compact city car that’s affordable to buy and comes with some refreshingly sporty styling. It doesn’t feel particularly well built inside, though, and its sole petrol engine isn’t particularly economical.

Helping to make up for this is the MG3’s affordable price tag. It costs less than the likes of the Kia Picanto and Hyundai i10 and even has the bargain-basement Suzuki Celerio licked.

Thankfully, the MG3 doesn’t look like a cut-price product. Its intake-ridden bumpers look more like they belong on a Suzuki Swift Sport-rivalling hot hatch and it comes with a few tasteful chrome trims.

It makes a good first impression when you climb inside, too. The doors come with a funky embossed pattern and all but the entry-level car comes with an 8.0-inch touchscreen. It’s not the brightest or most intuitive unit around, but it comes with Apple CarPlay smartphone mirroring as standard so you can use your phone’s navigation and music-streaming apps through the MG’s screen.

It’s not all good news, though. The MG3’s dashboard, doors and various cubbies are made from cheap-feeling scratchy plastics and none of the switches and buttons feels particularly robust.

The MG3 is a very affordable small car, but you can tell where money has been saved. It’s noisy on the move and the cabin, while spacious, feels very cheap in places.

Mat Watson
carwow expert

If you’re looking for a cheap car that’s reasonably spacious, though, you can forgive the MG3 a few brittle plastics. It’s roomier than the likes of the Suzuki Celerio, Hyundai i10 and Kia Picanto and there’s enough space in the back for a few six-foot passengers to get comfortable without brushing their heads on the roof. Things aren’t quite as roomy in the MG3’s boot, but there’s still plenty of room for a weekly shop.

You’ll appreciate the MG3’s small size when it comes to squeezing into tight parking spaces. It’s large windows give you a good view out too, so it’s a doddle to manoeuvre, and the steering is nice and light to help make the occasional three-point turn dead easy.

Less suited to nipping through town is the MG3’s 1.5-litre petrol engine. It feels sluggish at low revs and noisy when you accelerate hard. It’s not as economical as the smaller units you get in most alternatives, either.

Add to this the unpleasant wind and tyre noise you’ll hear at motorway speeds and the MG3 is quite tiring to drive for long periods. Even top-spec cars with their built-in cruise control will have you reaching for a service-station coffee more regularly than most other small cars.

The MG3’s woes don’t stop their, either. Unlike many small cars, you can’t get it with automatic emergency braking to help prevent low-speed collisions, which is pretty poor these days. That being said, if you’re looking for a very cheap city car and don’t mind that it’s missing out on some fairly common driver assistance features, the MG3 may well be worth considering. Check out our MG3 deals to see how much you can save on one.

RRP £11,395 Find new, used & lease car deals