Words: Keith Adams Photography: Dan Strong
A new MG at last! The MG6 might be billed as a concept but the production version will be on sale in China later this year and at a dealer near you here in the UK during 2010.
The wraps came off a new MG hot hatch for the first time since 2001 when the British marque’s Chinese owners, SAIC Motor, chose Auto Shanghai to reveal the latest product to wear the famous octagon badge.
The new sporting fastback shares its underpinnings with the Roewe 550, which is based on the proven platform from the Rover 75. The MG6 is shorter and lighter than the Roewe 550 and, in 1.8-litre turbocharged form (likely to be the biggest seller in China), should crack 0-60mph in 8.5 seconds before reaching a top speed of around 130mph.
The MG6 was styled and engineered in the UK by the team at SAIC Motor UK Technical Centre Limited which recently moved from Leamington Spa to Longbridge.
Although we did not have a chance to look under the MG’s shapely bonnet, we know that it’s powered by a slightly reworked version of Rover’s K-Series engine, now known as the N-Series. SAIC Motor is believed to be in talks with various European partners over a diesel engine supply deal – the company has Joint Venture Agreements with both General Motors and Volkswagen Group and both companies are rumoured to be in negotiation with SAIC Motor.
The MG6’s announcement marks a potentially major breakthrough for China’s Automotive Industry because the car has been specifically designed for export markets. Chinese buyers are notoriously conservative in their tastes – most choose saloons in preference to hatchbacks. However, the MG6 was styled and engineered in the UK by the team at SAIC Motor UK Technical Centre Limited which recently moved from Leamington Spa to Longbridge.
[Editor’s Note: Ash Sutcliffe of China Car Times has now visited Auto Shanghai and any AROnline readers wishing to view his Gallery of MG6 photographs should click on this link to his MG6: The Verdict article.]
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