Nick Gibbs, Auto Express, 2nd July, 2010
The new baby MG has been caught out in the open! First pictures of the car – which is due to be built in Britain alongside the MG6 – have surfaced in China.
The snatched images show how close the production MG3 is to the UK-designed MG Zero Concept seen at May’s Beijing Motor Show. The five-door supermini is set to go on sale in China in September, priced from only £5,900. This suggests that, when production of the European version moves to MG Birmingham in 2012, the new car will undercut major rivals.
As with the MG6, stylists have avoided the usual derivative designs for which Chinese makers have become infamous. Instead, the newcomer has an attractive face with a bold grille whose shape is repeated around the back. Our shot of the interior reveals the layout is a long way from the striking digital theme of the show car, but the flush, chrome-ringed central vents, white detailing on the steering wheel and bold MG3 badge add elements of flair in an otherwise conventional set-up.
The car will be powered by 1.3 and 1.5- litre four-cylinder petrol engines, delivering 67bhp and 107bhp. A turbo version of the 1.5 could follow, offering 150bhp-plus. The latter would exploit what’s expected to be sharp handling, giving the Ford Fiesta some competition. The supermini will slot into a line-up that’s likely to comprise six separate models when UK production is running at full steam.
The MG6 will go on sale at the start of next year. It will initially be powered by a 1.8 turbo, with an MG-developed 1.9-litre diesel set to follow. A smaller car to sit between the MG6 and the MG3 is also on the way and MG UK has confirmed there will be a replacement for the ageing TF mid-engined roadster, too.
[Source: Auto Express]
[Editor’s Note: The two images which appear above were sourced from China Car Times’ website.]
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