Former MG6 owner Ant McGowan gives it both barrels…
Regrettably, it would appear that MG Motor UK’s PR and Marketing team haven’t learned the basics. To rebuild confidence in the MG brand within these islands and the wider European market there needs to be serious investment in raising brand awareness through both traditional and more modern media channels. Some social media viral adverts would be great to see, along with a focused campaign in the print media.
MG badly needs some of the larger dealer groups on board such as Arnold Clark in Scotland and Northern England in order to get itself up to a reasonable sales volume. The ’3 may well be the car to help this (God knows the ’6 has been a bit of a disaster – and I can personally attest to that), but none of them will sign up unless they have confidence that MG is here for the long haul and that they have models to sell and in development that are attractive to buyers – both private and fleet.
Unfortunately, the botched handling of the ’6 (wrong car, wrong launch engine) has opened the door to crushing depreciation and some reliability horror stories (granted, this has by no means been every owner’s experience), so MG is very much on the back foot.
The media event last week had a number of respected magazines and Internet blogs stating that MG were comparing the ’3 to the MINI and DS3. Attempts have been made since then to adjust this to say that the ’3 will suit those who want the MINI’s customisation but only have Fiesta money. However, that association implies that the ‘3 is a cheap, pretend MINI. Indeed, the ITV News piece did nothing to help this with its constant references to MINI and the suggestion that MG would prefer to call the ’3 as such – admittedly, Guy Jones refuted this, but the comparison was embarrassing.
I really want the ’3 to do well and I want to see a resurgent MG as much as anyone. SAIC Motor has deep coffers so why is it that we have to wait years for models to be launched, witness derisory attempts at marketing and feel the whole sales (note sales, not design) operation is only here to keep a tenuous link to English heritage and the soul of the MG brand?