SAIC Motor : Badge-engineering back in Belarus
British MG enthusiasts may still be waiting for MG Motor UK Limited to announce whether and, if so, when the Roewe 550-based MG 6 will roll off a Longbridge production line but SAIC Motor has now launched a range of Chinese-built MGs in non-European Union country Belarus.
MG-badged versions of the Roewe 550 and 750 are already on sale at the SsangYong Dealer in Belarus’ capital, Minsk. MG’s Belarusian website indicates that both the MG 3 SW and MG TF will soon be joining them in the showroom.
The most expensive MG 750, the 2.5 litre V6-engined Flagship model, costs US$28,900 and comes with ABD, EBD, integrated SatNav, Xenon headlights and 17in ‘MG Rage’ alloys as standard. We are not too sure, though, about how Land Rover UK will react to the fact that the entry-level MG 750S model’s standard 16in alloys are known as ‘Rover Classics’…
The MG 550, upon which next year’s UK market MG 6 will be based, comes with either a normally aspirated 1.8 litre 135bhp or a turbocharged 1.8 litre 160bhp engine and starts at US$17,900 for the 1.8 Standard version while the 1.8T Grand Delux Auto costs US$25,350. The MG 3 SW 1.4 Luxury seems to be a relative bargain at US$13,900 while the MG TF costs US$24,900.
AROnline reckons that SAIC Motor’s decision to use the MG marque for this first foray into Eastern Europe affirms the company’s intention to restrict the Roewe brand to just the Chinese market. However, we are as keen as everyone else to find out when MG will be relaunched in the rest of the European Union…
MG’s Belarusian website can, in the meantime, be found here.