Blog : Is MG in the UK about to turn the corner?

Carole Nash Classic Insurance Specialists

Keith Adams

Launch of the MG3, MG5 and MG6 diesel (as well as BTCC) gives MG the perfect opportunity to turn things round in the UK in 2012.
Launch of the MG3, MG5 and MG6 diesel (as well as BTCC) gives MG the perfect opportunity to turn things round in the UK in 2012.

I must admit that the eternal soap opera that is BMC and its descendents never ceases to amaze and impress with its capacity to turn up new and exciting twists. As we all know, the drama should have ended – in 2005 – but, instead, it followed an exciting new tangent… in the Pacific Rim. With PRC’s billions behind it, MG Rover should have been reborn, Phoenix-like, and gone on to flourish.

And it has to be argued that, once the slightly confusing NAC/SAIC situation was rectified as a consequence of a mutual head-banging session prompted by the Chinese Government, MG (and its slightly weird Roewe cousin) are beginning to make waves in China. Sales of this oh-so ‘British’ of companies are moving in the right direction, and with a clever marketing campaign, backed with images of Union flags, red telephone boxes and Beefeaters, the Chinese middle-classes are lapping up the brightest addition to its car manufacturing empire. It would be good to hear from our readers in other global MG markets to see how they’re going down – are Chileans, Azerbaijanis, Israelis, Saudis and Belarussians buying them too?

But it’s definitely a story of two halves. We have this youthful, bright and ambitious company from China expanding and creating (quickly, it has to be said) an all-new model range of cars that people want to buy. And then we have Longbridge. And the clumsily named MG Motor UK.

We all know the story of Longbridge in 2011 and I’m loathe to go over it again: it launches a good product (the MG6), which receives fair and positive reviews in the press, and – shock – looks good on the road. It’s a marketable car that – due to a complete lack of, er, marketing fails to sell. And that spooks the dealers. And once the stories of the disappointing sales further escape into the public domain, that furthers a feeling of failure. And so the cycle of decline begins.

It could be argued, though, that, unlike in the 1970s and 1980s, when the national newspaper press did a great job of grinding BL into the ground, we’re in much better territory now. I’ll get to that in a second – because I do like to put a positive spin on situations like this. But for now, looking back to those dark years is still quite traumatic for me. I put it to a good friend a while back – what is it about us Brits that induces self-loathing?

His response was telling: ‘Did I tell you of the story Michael Edwardes came back with after his first CCMC (European SMMT) meeting as boss of BL? He was greeted by one of his German counterparts “Ah, Mr Edwardes” (as he was then) “from Britain, where you compete against yourselves!” I was told several times by colleagues from our European companies that they couldn’t believe the way that the UK media treated BL. Such behaviour would not have been tolerated in France, Germany, Italy etc. But then, see the Leveson Inquiry…’

We’re still at it today, of course. It’s just that we have less large-scale industry to bitch about these days. And that’s why we’re in better territory right now with regards to MG: outside of the enthusiast community, few people actually know about the company assembling new cars in Longbridge – and perhaps, perhaps, this softly-softly approach precedes a great turn-around in 2012.

I hear that there are moves afoot to turn around the situation. If lots of people watch British Touring Car Championship (BTCC), then they’re soon going to know about MG. The company is going to get high-profile representation – with a high-profile driver – in the series. As marketing goes, it could work very, very well for MG. The series is still widely supported on UK terrestrial TV and has plenty of manufacturer marketing impetus behind it – Chevrolet’s doing well from the association, and it’s hoped that MG will similarly benefit. Let’s hope so, because from what my informants tell me, the ingredients are all there.

However, it goes deeper than this.  I can’t imagine for a second that the management in China are not bemused by MG’s lack of sales in the UK. But similarly, it’s also clear that they also need to learn a little more about the European car market and what it takes to achieve success here. And I believe that they are listening – and that slowly, but surely, such badge-engineered mistakes as the MG 350 and MG 550 will need to be dropped in international markets (to be replaced by proper MG5s and MG6s). The MG marque is precious and needs tending to properly – and not watered down. That, of course, means no more MG press shots with Austin 7s and Morris Minors in…

Here, in the UK, you can’t simply sell cars here from a company that’s effectively been moribund for five years and expect the public to climb on board. Potential customers need to be told why they can feel confident that MG’s in safe hands and that the future is secure.

Last year’s wonderful Brand Video should be on heavy rotation the moment the MG6 1850D and MG3/MG5 (with red seatbelts please) are launched – with the message ‘MG is back, and stronger than ever!’ You’ll have an opportunity to start really selling now. Just make sure the dealers are given a hug now and get on board some of those long-standing, small-town former specialists (think Souls of Olney), back into the fold.  BTCC success, some more appealing models, an international outlook and a stronger brand identity than us enthusiasts (who are probably too close to the story) appreciate, will really give MG the chance to reboot in the UK and Europe.

Mind you, perhaps that was always the intention. Let’s hope so!

Keith Adams

Keith Adams

Editor and creator AROnline at AROnline
Created www.austin-rover.co.uk in 2001 and built it up to become the world's foremost reference source for all things BMC, Leyland and Rover Group, before renaming it AROnline in 2007.

Is the Editor of the Parkers website and price guide, formerly editor of Classic Car Weekly, and launch editor/creator of Modern Classics magazine. Has contributed to various motoring titles including Octane, Practical Classics, Evo, Honest John, CAR magazine, Autocar, Pistonheads, Diesel Car, Practical Performance Car, Performance French Car, Car Mechanics, Jaguar World Monthly, MG Enthusiast, Modern MINI, Practical Classics, Fifth Gear Website, Radio 4, and the the Motoring Independent...

Likes 'conditionally challenged' motors and taking them on unfeasible adventures all across Europe.
Keith Adams

62 Comments

  1. BSD

    AT THE MOMENT,MG IS NOT SOLD IN ISRAEL.

    IN MID 2010 WHEN THE IMPORT BEGAN,THE IMPORTER WHICH ALSO IMPORTS PEUGEOT-CITROEN) RECEIVED A SPECIAL PERMISSION TO IMPORT 350 CARS (IT NEEDED THIS PERMISSION BECAUSE THE MAGNETTE,WHICH WAS SOLD IN ISRAEL AS THE MG550 IN A TRIM LEVEL EQUALLING THE TSE WITH SAT-NAV AS AN OPTION-STAND ONLY EURO 4, AND FROM JANUARY 2010 ALL CARS IMPORTED TO ISRAEL MUST STAND EURO 5!).

    THEREFORE, UNTIL THE MG550 WILL STAND EURO 5,THERE IS NO MG IMPORT,AT LEAST NOT UNTIL JUNE 2012 WHEN THE MG350 THAT STANDS EURO 5 WILL MEGIN TO BE SOLD IN ISRAEL.

    ANYWAY,THE 350 MG550S WERE SOLD VERY QUICKLY,AND ARE CONSIDERED TO BE RELIABLE (BOUGHT BOTH BY PRIVATE OWNERS AND COMPANIES AS LEASED VEHICLES).

    ALSO, IN ROAD TESTS DONE BY THE ISRAELI CAR MAGAZINES,IT CAME VERY GOOD INDEED!

    I REALLY HPE THAT IN THE NEAR FUTURE THE MG550 (AND HOPEFULLY-THE MG6) WILL STAND EURO 5 BOTH GASOLINE AND DIESEL), SO WE WILL GLADLY SEE THEM AGAIN AT THE MG DEALERS!

  2. MG need to get the 3 and the 5 over here now, not in a year or so, by then they will be seen as old hat. Once they have the full range including various engine sizes, transmissions and spec, relauch the whole brand, and do it BIG, not just one Tv ad that is shown for a week, and forget spending money on a few walkways at Elmdon, Heathrow has far more passenger footfall!

  3. The 3 is a good 12 months at least off a UK launch, which sadly by then could be too late for many of the dealers, and for the 6 to sell, they need to throw that awful, toxic 20 year old K series in the bin and fit new, cleaner engines, along with a decent self shifter, and slash the prices by a couple of grand, maybe then sales might happen.

  4. I think there’s a difference between now and the media in the 1970s – in the 1970s, BL had good designs, but as an ownership prospect the cars were so variable in build quality that if your money counted, buying one was a gamble. I think Jaguar in part weathered the storm by being a car for high earners – who, whilst irked by a badly made car, wouldn’t be facing the choice between food or fixing it.

    The MG6 is a good car. For the money, it’s good, and I think MG’s issue in the media is this lack of understanding that visibility is everything – people won’t buy it if they can’t see it. 

  5. I’m sure more effort could be put into marketing the 6, even if dealers offered a few ‘special edition’ models of their own, different alloys, gloss black the current black plastic front grille and other external plastic trim, tasteful badges etc. It sounds trivial but if it manages to shift more than seven they managed a few months ago it would be a big step.
       

  6. @6 that toxic(do me a fovour) 20 year old engine is still years ahead of a lot of engines-just ask yourself how old the GM family one and two engines are and still in use,ok apart from HGF and piston slap the design is sound,only cost cutting early on in terms of materials used did this engine get a reputation but so did fiat with the single point FIRE engine.

  7. Francis, the aged K series fitted to the 6/Magnette is in a stupidly high VED band, simply because it does not comply with the latest EU emissions standards. It is currently spec’s at Euro 3, and we are now at Euro 5. It will not be long before the EU declare this engine illegal in new cars. When you look at the rivals petrol lumps, they are much smaller in capacity, and have similar power outputs, and much cleaner emissions. They are also much lighter, which helps fuel economy, and also makes the car slightly less nose happy, which can actually improve handling.This is one major hurdle that needs to be jumped, because the fleet sector want the cheapest running costs, and the private buyers will scream when they get the road tax reminder. And at least GM modify their engines so that they meet emissions standards. If they got the CO from the engine down and the VED lowered, they could use that as a major plus in their ad campaign. Perhaps ditching the K completely, and using a tweaked 1.5 from the 3 in the 6 is the way forward.

  8. To be honest, in order to make MG a success you need a product that makes people sit up and take notice, whether that is just in the showroom, in a television advert or competing in Motorsport.

    No one will deny that MG is a deeply flawed brand based on decisions made over the past four decades by various chiefs in Ivory Towers located in various countries. However, there is no real sense of consistency in what is being achieved at the moment which has resulted in the rejuvenation as being viewed as conveying anything but a proactive message. Everything seems to smack of penny-pinching budgets, misguided marketing strategies, an automatic expectation that the badge alone is strong enough to spearhead a rejuvenation and that references to olde worlde heritage will get people all misty-eyed and sentimental.

    To make the brand into a success needs heavy investment sooner rather than later, products that people genuinely have a reason to want to go out and buy and marketing and positioning in the market place that is based on a realistic value of the MG brand at this given moment in time.

    I genuinely feel sorry for the dealers and those completing the assembly of the MG6 at Longbridge that the current custodians of the MG name are letting them and potentional owners down. After all, there is a limit to how many times the buying public will feel let down before they turn to other brands and stay loyal to them.

  9. Hopefully being in the BTCC will give MG the exposure it so badly needs – the man in the street simply does not know that it exists.

    The MG3 looks great in that livery! 

  10. @Steve Bailey:

    Despite my previous harsh but honest oppinions about MG, I agree  that the MG3 does look great in that livery.

    With some proactive and focused marketing and hopefully also a presence in Motorsport, together with some ‘high impact’ colour and trim-based accessories, the MG3 should have a good chance of attracting healthy sales.

  11. u see the thing is, is that its all very well having all the ingreedients, but if no one mixes them together bungs it in the over to cook then there really is no point in trying.
    i klove MG as much as the next person but its just seems that by the time they kick there arses into gear it will be too late for them. people dont know what that MG exsist and by the time that they do it will semply seens as a chinies company that is failing to sell i n europe. for people to believe that MG really is MG and it really is back. then for a start it needs to ditch the current designs and start again. the mg6 looks ok but the 3 looks horrible. there are no redeeming features on it at all. and coming to think of it i finally this i have pinned down what it is about the mg 6 that bugs me so much. i have always known that the 3 is a chinies car trying to look like a VW polo and getting it badly wrong! but after finally seeing a magnette driving down the road in london the other day it hit me that the front of the 6 is trying to look like a golf! and geting that wrong as well. trying to style ur car range after a compnay that is home to some of the most borring, sleep inducing car designs in the world is not a good idea! be more european sure. but not VW, anyway i digress, what really needs to happen for people to believe that mg is still mg, is for a new product range, launched with great fanfair “adverts, posters, a place on the new judging line up of britians got tallent (maybe not) the works. but above all. it needs to be launched in europe first! eurpean cars are the envy of the world, and mg is british but has a question mark over its identity hanging over it.
    launch the cars in europe first. then every where else. untill then it will be seen as a chinies company  with and mg badge on it.  and people will wrongly stay away.

  12. @10 its still hardly toxic is it?its hardly some old hillman with shagged stromberg carbs,the VED is a out and out rip off tax dressed in green credentials,first it was lead,then oxides of nitrogen and sulphur dioxide now its co2.Im aware of the euro regs and ask myself why is it not euro 5 compliant?they are only sold in small numbers anyway its ok having small capacity turbocharged cars a la banzai cars from japan in the 90s etc(no new thing)but can you tell me were the torque comes from?i think the k would clean up rather easily for euro 5 be it direct injection or otherwise.
    I dont buy into the green thing especially when paying more in tax.in fact when i buy a car green issues dont proffer me a neutron of interest,i wont let such tedium enter my decision its all about the car for me,and you are right if GM can modify thier engines family one/two(dating back to at least 1980 kaddett/astra)im sure SAIC can too.

  13. It would be the greatest comeback story since Mohammed Ali if SAIC managed it……..I’ll keep an open mind until I see signs of effort on their part!

  14. I really hope that 2012 proves to be a better year for them. For all the hard work behind the scenes they deserve to do well. Competition is tough though so they really need to get the product right this year and address the driveline and VED issues. Only then can things work well for them. The MG3 really needs to be ready for September registration with the 5 following on for March 2013. I appreciate there are hurdles to jump and test to conduct but that’s pretty realistic. Gives the whole thing a bit of time to build up then.
    It would really have been better for them to have held off launching anything until the 3, 5 and diesel were ready as that is the car that Europe wants whereas in China they want bigger cars and saloons at that.

  15. Although I welcome the introduction of the MG3 & 5 into the range I don’t expect they will be assembled/built in Longbridge (or will they?).   I still havent seen any MG6’s in my area but live in hope.  I do wish MG UK well but think it’s going to take more than one single year – 2012, to get them re-established properly.

  16. @ Marty B
    The ‘TCI-TECH’ engine in the MG6 is not Euro 3, it is Euro 5, it would not be allowed to be sold I don’t think with Euro 3. The N-series used in the TF which is pure K-series with a few tweaks is Euro 4.

  17. I think mg will crack it soon enough. with the cars being seen around with the rental go and confidence and awareness growing, sales will soo lift. but I I agrre if the smaller and  presumably cheaper 3 was available buyers might perhaps be more preapred to take a punt on the new MGs. the best thing Mg can do is to buy some sales 9give some cars away so to speak) which is presumably what they have done with the rental car co, i imaging theres probably one very weet deal for the rental car so. the looks and the possibility (in our family) of the MG6 are growing on me. alex

  18. If they do all that is mentioned in the article sales will pick up. I hope they get to a point where MG3 and 5 assembly also comes to Longbridge and the UK work ans material content climbs.

    I am reasonably sure I saw a white MG3 on the M42 last week, do engineering at LB have some running around?

  19. Yes, MG can definitely come back – with proper marketing and strong products. The fact that not many people are aware of apparent failure of the current model may be a bonus. Others have done – it took a long time for Kia to be taken seriously, but they have certainly come good since. It will take time, but it will also take investment.

  20. I dont think it looks too bad, in a Hyundai/Kia sort of way and look how popular they are! But are we being too critical toward the new offering? VW appear to be the Elite brand of choice (if it were your own money) However the Polo is not the star VW make it out to be, although sharper looking than the Golf (Just my opinion) It has been deliberately down graded as not to steal sales from the more profit Golf.
     
    Take the engine choice’s 1.2 3 pot, Road Tax group D, £95.00 after 1st year and not a great engine at that with very average mpg, 1.4 R/T group E, £115.00 and strangled performance, mpg slightly better, 1.2TDi 3 pot is an absolute joke and nowhere near as good as the old 1.4Tdi or the Ford/Peugeot units, wont mention the 1.6 Tdi…The Diesels are the only ones with cheap Road Tax, whilst most Manufacturers are more in step with the current trends of low Co2.
     
    These up market shopping trolleys are not cheap starting from 10k, But to get in on the act I do agree it has to be special to make its mark with the establishment, So perhaps being cheaper or offering more for less, until it is established… perhaps taking the easy route of £99.00 down and 0% finance, free servicing/Insurance… But again there lies the big problem, to offer these It will have to be built in China or assembled in CKD kit form at Longbridge, Even the Polo is built in Spain (3door) and South Africa (5door) to make reasonable profit margins.
     
    It is very rare to find a new breed bursting onto the scene with some authority, (especially with a confusing past) It is going to take time before the new MG group becomes part of the establishment.

  21. BSD

    @MARTI B,STEBO & DEAR KEITH

    IF THE TCI-TECH IS THE 1.8 TURBO,IT IS EURO 4 COMPLIANT ONLY!

    THIS IS THE REASON WHY THE MG550 IS NO LONGER SOLD HERE IN ISRAEL-IT DOES NOT COMPLY WITH EURO 5 (SINCE JANUARY 2010,ALL VEHICLES SOLD IN ISRAEL MUST COMPLY WITH EURO 5,AND THE MG IMPORTER RECEIVED A SPECIAL PERMISSION TO SELL ONLY 350 MG550’S).

    UNLESS THE UK MG6/MAGNETTE RECEIVE A DIFFERENT ENGINE…

    I WAS IN CONTACT BY E-MAIL WITH MRS. HELEN HOU FROM SAIC (SHE IS IN CHARGE OF THE ISRAELI MARKET AT SAIC),AND SHE CONFIRMED THAT THE MG550 COMPLY ONLY WITH EURO 4,AND ONLY LATER IN THE YEAR (SHE DID NOT SPECIFY WHEN) IT WILL COMPLY WITH EURO5.

    NOW,SINCE THE  “ISRAELI” MG550 COMES FROM CHINA,AND IS DIFFERENT FROM THE MAGNETTE (THE MAGNETTE HAS THE FRONT HEADLIGHTS OF THE MG6 WITH ANALOG DASHBOARD,WHILE OUR MG550 HAS DIGITAL DASHBOARD AND A DIFFERENT FRONT HEADLIGHTS (TWIN ROUND HEADLIGHTS AT EACH SIDE),MAYBE THE ENGINE IS ALSO DIFFERENT.

    AND MAYBE THIS IS THE REASON WHY THE UK MG’S ARE MANUAL ONLY,AND THE MG550 IMPORTED TO ISRAEL FROM CHINA IS AUTO ONLY.

    WHAT DO YOU THINK KEITH,COULD THIS BE THE REASON TO THE DIFFERENCE (INCLUDING THE COMPLIANCE WITH EURO 4 OR EURO 5) BETWEEN THE UK AND ISRAELI MODELS?

  22. Firsly as I mentioned before, Diesel option is required on all of the MG range, still need  a sportier engine spec that compares with top spec ZS, ZR, ZT, look at price structures of other cars in the market place and match them, or already been mentioned built in deals to tempt the buying public. Thats hope that MG takes off and sell some cars. Regards Mark

  23. @ #28: There is probably the reason I keep seeing Roewe 550 (digital instruments, automatic) here in Aachen: I am pretty sure FEV is doing some work on them – quite possibly working on EUROV compliance…

  24. BSD

    FURTHER TO MY LAST COMMENT (NO.28),I ENCLOSE A LINK (TO “AUTO” MAGAZINE WHICH IS THE BIGGEST&OLDEST CAR MAGAZINE IN ISRAEL) TO A PICTURE GALLERY OF THE MG550 AS SOLD IN ISRAEL.

    PLEASE BARE IN MIND THAT THE CAR SHOWN IS THE ROEWE550,HOEVER THE CAR IMPORTED TO ISRAEL IS SOLD AS MG550 BUT ACTUALLY HAS THE FRONT & REAR OF THE ROEWE550 AND IT’S DIGITAL DASHBOARD (DO I HEAR SOMEONE SAYING “BADGE ENGINEERING?…).

    THE LINK IS   http://www.auto.co.il/%D7%92%D7%9C%D7%A8%D7%99%D7%94-1396-MG550.aspx

  25. Thanks a lot Keith for this fair and optimistic analysis. I really hope the succes story #2 will begin this year for MG, in the UK of course, but also in continental Europe (and especially in France where I’m living). Happy new year to all at AROnline!

  26. It’s good to hear some optimism! Hopefully, the MG6 Diesel, MG3 and MG5 will mark the start of  MG’s new beginning. The BTCC news is definitely encouraging. I still can’t help wondering, however, why they haven’t been able to make more of a success of the MG6 petrol alone. Surely by now a lot of dealers will have given up hope and MG UK will have to start again in convincing potential dealers that a bright future lies ahead.

  27. And who exactly is going to risk their hard earned money on an unknown product? Why do people buy Fords and Vauxhalls? They might not be the greatest cars but they are a known quantity, and there’s some guarantee of stability, MG doesn’t have that.

    People who need a new car but can barely afford one will not try something new.

    In any case MG isn’t MG, it’s just a Chinese company with a badge. My Honda was built in Swindon, does that mean it’s British? No. 

    Sadly, MG is we all knew it is long since dead. 

  28. That chinese company with a badge is MG’s only and last hope of survival be it in china or europe,which i hope they do.Again,its down to its made in china syndrome,when most of what we use in terms of consumer electronics are made there.All MG has been for decades is a badge anyway-metro-meastro anybody?
    I think very soon some people will be eating thier words as regards MG.

  29. Well thank you for that insightful comment A-T. You may wish to look at an atlas though, as Japan and China are two unrelated countries….

  30. “The MG3 looks great in that livery!”
    Errrmmm, I think they’ve been beaten to first place by Audi A1 Sport

    The Audi uses Red white and black, other than that i can’t see a similarity. Doesn’t mean either don’t look good. You could argue the Shelby Stripes have been done before too (by various people), but that doesn’t mean they don’t look good. 

  31. @ ITZHAK
    The UK spec MG6 TCI-TECH differs from other markets, it has a different engine management system and other stuff, it therefore meets Euro 5 standards. 

  32. Dennis, I know that really…. I was jokingly referring to how many perceived Japanese cars many years ago!”

    Fair point. There was an article on the BBC news site yesterday that highlighted that very perception.

    We do get a few trolls on here though that pop up and post the odd comment. 😉 

  33. Why are we bothered? Theres far more to the British Car industry than MG! As I’ve said before the “core” British Leyland is doing just fine. Jaguar are investing massive amounts and generating huge profits and Cowley is still bursting at the seams building the Mini. So what if MG cant make a go of it?

  34. So what if MG cant make a go of it?”

    Well it would potentially further develop more manufacturing if they did. 

  35. @Dennis – Longbridge will never be more than a screwdriver operation for SAIC/MG – Read what I said about Jaguar/Landrover – Thats real manufacturing!

  36. Screwdriver assembly, but R&D and design too. I think that’s arguably more important in terms of developing cars suited to European tastes.

    And it’s an option for them. Things may start to shift globally to make the UK appealing for manufacture; one of the lens manufacturers in Japan has seen their cost before margins essentially double just because of the exchange rate; as China’s economy becomes more open to trading (see recent accessibility, trading in UK, etc) you’ll see the cost competitiveness of China eroded. And quickly, too. Speculators are going to pounce on that market – it is going to be very hard on China’s poverty gap.

  37. While their are competitive cars that have their R&D, design AND complete manufacture & significant component sourcing in the UK, I’ll continue to spend my money there thanks 🙂 

  38. *shrugs* I can’t think why you would, really – surely the money would be better spent on a classic Ford RS or something 😉

  39. @Dennis – Longbridge will never be more than a screwdriver operation for SAIC/MG”

    Maybe so, but the more cars they sell the more people they’ll need to wield screwdrivers. 

  40. The way I see it is that the vast majority of design & development for the new ganeration MG’s is carried out in the UK, so high value, properly paid jobs for Britain.

    If sales sucess in the Uk and the rest of Europe is forthcoming then Longbridge has a far brighter future than a screwdriver plant.

    Why do you think that since the start of the Automotive industry Ford & GM made cars here, and why do you think that Honda, Nissan and Toyota make cars here now? It’s not that they want to for some social reason, it’s because it’s cheaper to do so. And why do you think that manufactures such as Daihatsu, Subaru & Mitsubishi who haven’t invested in Europe have either pulled out or are on the verge of doing so?

    SAIC have the design, development and manufacturing expertise all at Longbridge, they would be completly mad not to use it.   

           

  41. lonbridge will remain as ckd ,why would the chinese want to pay 1000 s of workers mega money when they can build the car in china for peanuts, the main issue is that they need to launch quicker and let the public no they are here, as for the 6 and all the commotion of the alvis deal take with a pinch of salt thats why they arent building and some employees stood down this week.

  42. @ 52

    your right milly about the expetise at longbridge ,but what they dont have is the capacity to be a volume player, i would suggest that people have a quick rde around this former vibrant plant and make your own conclusions .the only building to produce is cab 1 and in there the former tracks and vfacilities are now sitting in the motherland

  43. I suppose the point I am trying to make is that the whole focus seems to be on MG and that it is vital to Britains motor industry. It isnt. If we stopped whingeing about MG for a moment we could see that Britains motor industry is actually in a renaissance, not just in the former BL companies, but in the Japanese transplants as well which are all increasing investment and production in the UK. They are also manufacturing premium vehicles that there is real demand for. This to my mind is far more relevant than wether SAIC are going to start bolting together a cheap Chinese hatchback here.

  44. “the point I am trying to make is that the whole focus seems to be on MG”

    Well, yes. That’s probably because the site’s focus is BMC/BL/Austin-Rover, and MG is a brand from that stable.

  45. @55 you only have to look at nissan in sunderland,was it 500,000 it made last year,mainly exports?i think SAIC would like a slice of that action so were better to start?if longbridge can pump out only a 100.000 cars a year from longbridge and cheap,good cars and punt them round the uk and europe its going to make the place far more viable than it is now,all i see from MG is a drip feed of good news and i cant wait for the torrent.And good luck to all the other manufactorers in the uk too.

  46. MG in btcc? great!!! if a Deawoo can win, why this asian MG not? hope i can see that on eurosport or motorsport here in holland… i loved and watched the MG zs180 battling it out years ago, dont forget the very very nice Le mans cars…

  47. James – Comment 34

    That’s rather defeatist!

    Hyundai, Kia were unknowns once and look how UK buyers lap them up now. At least MG has a past. The likes of Hyundai had nothing when they started in the UK.

    True, MG isn’t what it was. It is now just a brand owned by a Chinese company. That does not mean SAIC can’t make a success of it. I’m sure they could succeed even without an historic British name as a great starting aid.

  48. ‘@57
     francis take the rise tinted glasses off my man they cant even build 2000 a year ,100,000 a year at longbridge ,more chance of raising the titanic ,

  49. 100,000 cars 80 per cent built shipped by sea ,thats 2000 a week never happen ,they would have to shift somewhere with a bigger capacity maybe ldv or a tie up with a gm plant within the uk ,now that sounds interesting ,saying that if it happens more jobs ,better economy revival of mg ,happy days

  50. @61 couldnt give two shits how they come out the gate really,but just ask yourself why is the paintplant mothballed and of the 100 or so acres left CAB1 etc which as a potential capacity for 100,000 or so cars? if its going to be a low volume car they dont need a place that big to do stuff ups regardless of the track,if they do a tie up,sweet.GM and FIAT share the corsa/punto but i think the MG3 is beyond the body in white stage now,anyway even if my bins are rose tinted im being positve,the fact is no one knows what SAIC are upto do they?Im convinced MG is here to stay.And i hope so.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.


*


WordPress spam blocked by CleanTalk.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.