MG3 Revealed At Chinese Motor Show - But Will They Sell?

MG's return to the UK market with the MG6 has not been a huge success.

Despite some mildly positive reviews and plenty of race victories at the hands of Jason Plato in the British Touring Car Championship, we'd be surprised if the average person on the street even knew they could buy a brand new MG.

Whether this all matters really depends on what sort of margins MG's owners, Chinese firm SAIC, were planning for the UK. Perhaps annual sales in the hundreds are all they need. But it wouldn't hurt to sell more, and that's where the MG3 comes in.

You don't need to be a maths genius to work out that the MG3 is smaller than the existing MG6, and it'll line up alongside Fiesta, Poloand the rest in the supermini segment when it launches later this year.

That class is a tough nut to crack, but the MG3 could be off to a positive start.

MG3 rear angle

Where the MG6 is a little bland, MG's designers have clearly made a little more effort with the smaller car and it's heavy with the sort of crisp angles, concave surfaces and neat detailing buyers now demand.

It's sporty enough to justify the MG badge and features the same floating roof effect used so well by brands like MINI and Skoda. In fact, its proportions don't look dissimilar from Skoda's Fabia in the images, but it manages to look less frumpy than the Czech offering.

MG promises the interior will be spacious and versatile, and able to accommodate four six-foot passengers. We're yet to sneak a glimpse of the UK-spec interior (Chinese images are floating around the 'net), but hopefully it'll be fresher than the MG6's disappointing cabin.

Where the MG6 doesn't disappoint is in the twisties, so it's fair to assume the MG3 will be a deft handler. There's only one engine due initially, a 105 PS petrol unit with a five-speed manual gearbox.

Priced from: Not yet announced
Available from: Later this year - production begins mid year

MG3 detail

Conclusion

MG's last attempt at a sporty small car was actually quite appealing - the old Rover 25-based MG ZR was a little rough around the edges but plenty of fun and proved a big hit with younger buyers.

The MG3 is likely to be a more polished affair but the brand would do well to recapture the enthusiasm it saw before bowing out in 2005. We can't help feeling MG should put a little more effort into promotion, though - people only buy cars if they know they exist...

For more information check out our full summary of the MG6 alongside reviews, stats, photos and videos!

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