Blog : MG6 is doing the business

Keith Adams

MG6 saloon is a smart looking proposition for the money.
MG6 saloon is a smart looking proposition for the money.

Okay, so we kicked up a storm about the MG6 – both in terms of marketing, and nationality. So, I’m going to neatly sidestep this issue in this blog and concentrate on the product itself.

I’ve been hacking around in the MG6 for a week now, and my early impressions regarding its improvements over the earlier models I drove certainly continue to stand up. I have to say that in terms of styling and overall road stance and presence, the saloon body works much better than the fastback MG6 GT, and judging from the reactions of others, I’m not the only one who thinks that way about the three-box.

But in the real world, where practicality rules the roost – certainly at this price level – the added usefulness of a hatchback will probably win out for most buyers.

I have mentioned it before, but the latest MG6 certainly feels improved over the early cars. Starting with the interior, the slightly brittle plastics that you’d have found had you gone looking for them seem to have been toughened up. Items such as door cards, initially feel a little hard, but there’s an underlying solidity. The same with the lidded storage box in the centre console and glovebox lid. All perfecttly acceptable.

The steering wheel and gear knob felt nasty on the early cars – with the shifter having an odd ‘sticky’ quality to its plastics that was a real turn off. That’s now gone. The slightly vague feeling selector wheels on the steering wheel haven’t been changed, though – so making single-step movements through the trip computer or cruise control is still more difficult than I’d like.  But overall, any nagging doubts about the 6 being substandard in terms of build have pretty much been banished – it’s no Audi, of course, but then, it’s not trying to be.

On the road, the 6 isn’t too bad at all. But we all know that wasn’t a problem, anyway. The steering is well-weighted and accurate, the brakes are strong and feel good at the pedal, and the driving position is spot on if you don’t like sitting low in a car. The bulky A-post/door mirror combinati0n is an issue – but Rover 75 drivers will know all about that – as is the general all-round visibility, if you discount the mirrors and parking camera.

Chassis-wise, I like its slightly sporting set-up, too. In corners, it feels grippy and stable, and what I’m particularly impressed by is the near-elimination of body roll. In many ways, it feels like an MG ZT riding on 18in alloys – so faithful, accurate and unlikely to scare the press-in driver. The ride’s a little on the firm side, though – and the damping doesn’t quite compensate enough to let the MG6 get away with this sporting set-up scott-free. For buyers looking for a replacement for their MG ZT, the 6 passes muster – but for those use to the waftiness of a Rover 75, I’d say this car misses the mark for them…

As for that TCi-Tech engine, I think it works reasonably well. Those used to tricked-up TDIs will miss the slug of low-down boost and torque you get with these cars, but in exchange, there’s a nice even spread of power delivered in linear way. It’s LPT technology delivered in a reasonable way, and when allied with the car’s longish intermediate gearing, means that wafting along at a reasonable rate isn’t going to feel like a strain. There was an unpleasant induction noise that accompanied the early cars – that has now gone, and overall refinement (thanks to good insulation) is very good. The only niggle is the over-light throttle (which sometimes leaves the driver sounding ham-footed) and the slightly snatchy engine mapping – both problems you’ll drive around with experience.

Niggles and annoyances after a week with the MG6? The sat/nav display dims too much with the lights on, the stereo sounds on the wrong side of tinny, those used to TDIs (like me) will find the throttle too sensitive, and I’d like classier looking instruments. But that really is about it.

Would I buy one? Chances are I’d certainly consider one. It’s a question I’ve asked myself many times during the past week and the thought does keep coming back to me: ‘I could certainly see myself in this car.’

Any buts? Obviously, I’d take an entry level car with cloth and lacking the toys – at a more realistic £15,995. But that hangs on the finance and lease deals, which – inexplicably – are still not being quoted for by MG. I’d be hanging on for a £199pcm deal with guaranteed residuals, as opposed to the only finance deal I’ve found quoted so far by SMC MG Rover (yes, the name is not a spelling mistake), which took added up to nearly £260pcm on a five-year hire purchase agreement. Oh, and I’ll have a diesel, but that’s not going to happen for a few months. And that is not good at all…

MG, it’s over to you.

Keith Adams
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  1. “The bulky A-post/door mirror combinati0n is an issue”

    That’s common on most modern cars though isn’t it? Bulky pillars are need to pass roll over protection and safety cell rigidity.

  2. Getting there, as you say needs a diesel option. MG3/MG5 will help bring life to things. My real concern is the HIGH CO2, MG needs to only to be cheaper but better than the others & thats hard with 3 pot Turbo’s.


  3. A pillars have got thicker over the last few years, the S-Max isn’t too bad, fair sized quarterlight helps, but some people carriers leave a lot to be desired on that from, and cars are getting as bad. The new Corsa is a classic case, yes there’s a quarterlight too but its that big it may not as well be there

    I’m still looking forward to actually getting a go in a 6 at some point, but there just hasn’t been the chance locally. I would also go for the saloon if I was buying.

  4. Unfortunatly theres a lot of good petrol cars around and I feel this could be one, however this country and its stupid fuel costs kill its sales potential. I’m currently driving vw 20tdi jetta which is almost matching the bhp of the 6 and size but churns 45-60+ mpg and the road tax costs are considerably lower so my pocket does’nt hurt so much at the pumps even the shocking inflation of the diesel prices over petrol it’s still better for my price to mile. So is the diesel going to get to the forcourt or has the damage already been done lack of marketing in he right places, awareness and maybe a lack of confidence in the brand are not helping, so what are MG going to do to get my business as i certainly won’t be buying VW again as they are not the quality cars most believe…..

  5. I think the saloon is a really nice looking, but 16k? There are a lot of nice cars around for that…and you should really buy a car with the intention of being able to sell it…..head v heart!

  6. It’s growing on me, I have to say. I certainly prefer the MGg’s styling when compared to a lot of new cars, although it does seem that the MG6 is very colour-sensitive. I like them in blue as in the photo above and in grey – they look too large and “blobby” in red and nondescript in black.

  7. @Dennis

    True, but some cars treat it better than other. The VW Passat’s A-posts are particularly well designed. Just as bulky, but further into the periphery, so less of a problem at angled junctions.


    Absolutely. I agree. Fundamentally, though, this ain’t a bad car at all – and if they manage to install the diesel lump as well as they have the K-Series, I mean, TCI-Tech, then it should see most problems – in terms of UK economics.


    £16K is good value in new car terms, really. Just seen the prices of the new Civic (admittedly a better car). Top of the range 1.8-litre petrol and 2.2-litre diesel nudging £30K. Yes, £30K.

  8. I love Hondas, but £30k for a Civic? At that price, you could buy a well-specced Honda CR-V or Accord and have change left for a holiday!

  9. Looks nice, the saloon. I’d be worried about residuals though, so yes, they need to sort a finance package that covers this. Reports in the press that diesel is now 11p a litre more than petrol (that’s nearly 50p a gallon) and likely higher costs of maintenance/parts may reduce the appeal of a diesel, but they do need it. If you can find a used MG6 in a couple of years’ time, you may be onto a good thing.

  10. Diesel is shooting up again, keyfuels garage where I fill van up went from 142.9p to 144.9 overnight. I don’t mind when its someone elses money I’m spending, but it’s getting beyond a joke when its your own hard earned.

  11. I would have to say that the looks are growing on me a little. Ford have released the lastest Aussie FORD Territory on the market and ive seen a few around, and the nose styling is not indifferent to the MG6. this is in contrast perhaps the lastest round of Holden HSV which look like they have been styled from the MGSV. The MG styling is growing on me and I think the problem with the publicity photos is many of them are taken from ground level, and this doesnt actually do the car any favours, they look much better from 30 degrees above the car. I agree visibility from cars in general has taken a backward step in recent years and the MG wont be on its own there. I have to say that when the MG6S arrive in NZL (RHD drive market) I may well be temped by a brand new black or bronze MG6 fastback. I cant imagine though that the car will be much under $30000 in NZL, and then I would have to ask,,,wouldnt I better off with a second hand ex-lease Legacy (sorry i dont like Imperzas) which has AWD, but probably otherwise similiy trimmed. alex in nzl. (I think the MG would probably sell well here) outright sales might even outstrp the UK sales. alex

  12. PS the MG6 Looks a lot better than the Mazda 6, most of the Suby Imprezza’s and almost the entire Toyoata fleet, , so although I have been critical of the MG6 styling, it does look better than many others and most comments Ive heard so far suggest the car looks a lot better in the flesh than the photos. the black photos on michael edwards (is it the same michael edward as the P/4?) site look good. alex

  13. @Keith Adams

    Why do I get the impression that MGUK are trying to get you to re-appraise the product? Has money exchanged hands?

  14. Im amazed by this article and the previous one on the 6 Is this the same Keith that a couple of weeks ago couldnt find a good thing to say about Mg or the Mg6 for that matter.

  15. MattH

    In fairness to Keith, previous articles regarding the 6 have been sidetracked over matters like the companies “interesting” P.R and marketing.

    Lack of diesel or automatic asisde, it is after all an MG which needs our or the public support. MGUK have made some valid improvements to the cars and in defence of the guys `n gals in B31 who build them, any publicity on a positive side can only be a plus.

    I will be viewing the car later, so it will be interesting how it shapes up compared to the two I have previously piloted.

  16. MattH – If only they could afford me…

    Seriously, my stand point on the product hasn’t changed in the way you suggest. I liked the MG6 then, and I like it now. The verdict from my original first drive said:

    ‘Without the risk of repeating ourselves, we’ll simply say that the MG6 is good. Sure, there are one or two rough edges, but in no way does that detract from the appeal of an exciting addition to the budget end of the market for the £15.5k entry level car. On the road it feels well-sorted and easily capable of mixing it with more expensive machinery – ‘our lads’ in Birmingham have done a great job.

    ‘The MG6 is the product of an ambitious company, which has realistic expectations from its UK soft-launch – it’s much better than we had expected it to be. It’s going to appeal to keen drivers who appreciate a tactile, well-damped car, which is far less extreme than the old MG Zed car range. It’s for the family man in a hurry and, preferably, with a company fuel card. It’s a pity that the saloons and turbodiesels aren’t available from launch – both of which will massively extend the appeal of the MG6 – but, as it stands, we’ll give it a thumbs-up. MG is back – and there’s so much more to come.’

    The fact that the saloon I’m driving does have a better built interior and a nicer all-round shape should be reported.

    I also stand by my comments about the useless PR and marketing – and seemingly zero-budget UK operation. There are many good examples: driving three cars around the country has probably cost more than making a few funny viral videos; the fact that they *still* can’t come up with leasing figures, despite the GMAC tie-up; the lack of advertising and product placement… and so much more.

    As for the lack of a diesel model, that’s inexcusable, and smacks of a Pacific-Rim manufacturer not taking into account of the European market early enough. We know all that…

    For me, as an interested observer, the 6 is an innocent by-stander in the continuing soap opera of its maker, and one that’s fed this site (in one way or another) for the past decade, and which no doubt will continue to do so for years to come.

  17. @22 – Keith – excellent points, well made. I too like the car, a lot, and as a company car user, would seriously consider one as an antidote to the lines of grey Audis that seem to fill the motorways. But I can’t have a petrol engined car, and I can’t have a car that isn’t on the lease list (my beloved Alfa Romeo isn’t on there either), so I have a choice of the usual suspects, or take the car allowance. Until SAIC address the diesel issue, it’s not going to sell cars in any volume. Selling 50-odd cars to die-hard, retired, probably ex-BL workers does not establish a brand. Virtually zero advertising or marketing, and weak PR does not install a brand into the buying public’s psyche. And, correct me if I’m wrong Keith, your worry, and that of many others who contribute to this website is that by the time SAIC wake up to this fact, the cars will be so out of date that no-one will want them anyway.

  18. That’s the trouble, technology is moving along so quick it takes 5 minutes before the next best thing comes along, as manufacturers incorporate it all, not long ago we all thought air con was great, now its climate control, cruise control used to be on or off, now its all laser guided to keep you a set distance away, Volvos auto brake (when it works!) it just never ends, MG were making big bones about hill start assist on facebook other day, hell my 1994 Subaru had that! Where’s the android entertainment system they’ve been bigging up in China? Where’s the really fancy electronic gadgets? It’s not like they can’t make the stuff, so start sticking it on the cars to pull one over on the established makes.

  19. The Japanese are notorious for not catering for diesels either – that could be why petrol hybrids are pushed so much since diesel is uncommon in Japan even though it may actually be better.

    How about a direct roadtest comparison between a 6 and equivalent Chevrolet, Kia, etc? I see Suzuki has just launched a 3 box saloon which is being compared as poor value to a 6.

    In the lack of a diesel maybe MG should have copied Proton and pushed an LPG version – appealing to the private owner who keeps his car for siome time provided it doesn’t take up all the boot space.

  20. evrybody i would suggest wants mg to succeed keith but with this model it wont happen , by the time the diesel comes out and all the niggling faults they have been rectified it will be old hat ,my concern is the build in china and the way it is developed here , when the mgtf le 500 was built original parts were reworked to fit chinese parts and again for the 6 The big issue for me is the lack of build at longbridge the current employees have now gone to four days and are now used at weekends to sell the cars , again sales and markting has been ignored .and nothing reads right with the current vibes from the manufacturing employees.

  21. @25 – and we all know just how successful Proton have been in the UK with that novel solution…….it seems they are pulling out of the market next year!

  22. “@25 – and we all know just how successful Proton have been in the UK with that novel solution…….it seems they are pulling out of the market next year!”

    LPG is never that popular, because not every filling station sells LPG, although there are more than enough around there is still the convenience factor. The other problem with it is the LPG cars are always Conversions, GM offer factory LPG conversions, but they always look like an after thought (because they are). You’re also restricted from travelling on things like Eurotunnel.
    LPG is great for small delivery fleets with their own refuelling point, but it’s never really reached critical mass for the private car market though.

  23. 21@ in defence of the guys and gals in b31. these employees were hired to build cars not to visit shopping centres to sell cars that the professionals should be doing. defend MG as much as you like but SAICS professionalism towards the mg marque as been nothing more than woeful and if they dont pull it round soon and give the public the awareness and confidence in the product we may see yet again another remake of the titanic. LONG LIVE MG .ps i dont believe they realise what MG is all about KEEP AT IT KEITH THEY MIGHT FINALLY LISTEN

  24. @29 – Well said that man!

    As much as people will protest – MG should be about what the the Zeds brought to the market – affordable, sportier offerings that the average man could aspire to and afford.

    Not hum-drum hatches with a MG badged nailed on the front.

    Yes, you need the mainstream, but you also need to appeal to the enthusiast, and younger ones at that!

  25. “you also need to appeal to the enthusiast”

    Sadly there weren’t enough enthusiasts to keep MGR going either.

    You’re right though young car enthusiasts are a good market, however few of them are going to look twice at something the size of the 6, the 3 would make more sense to them.

    They do need to advertise. You have to assume they have a plan because there is no reason for them to be spending millions per year keeping Longbridge ticking over if they don’t have a plan for it. Some have said it’s just so they can say back in China they they’re British, but they could do that anyway, Longbridge or not.

    I think what we have to remember though is SAIC are basically owned by the Chinese Government, they’re not stupid but they’re not known for their openness either.

  26. The 6 will and has already failed, its the wrong car for the time, wrong engine, horrendous residuals and no PR to name but a handful of its shortcomings. By the time the derv comes online the car will be too old and there will be no dealers left to shift it anyway.
    The 3 and 5 may well do well IF MG bother to do the groundwork for it, but that comes direct from China. What then for Longbridge?
    You could run the design and tweaking from a couple of portakabins and a lockup…
    Its not looking good.

  27. Useless at launch, useless now!

    MG are simply not needed in the UK market. Personally, I would rather SAIC licence the MG name to Vauxhall (through their GM partnership), and for it to be used on the sportier Corsas, Astras, and Isignias. MG is after all, a brand firmly rooted in brand engineering, and I would part with my hard earned to purchase a British MG Astra. I would, in common with most of this website audience, not purchase an MG6.

    Viva MG!

  28. @33 im sorry but that sounds ridiculous,as we all know v/x’s are merely rebadged opels-themselves fine cars,its a shame jlr was split off from rover group and punted to ford like a cheap hooker all those years ago,instead the pigs in the trough did what they always do-rape the good bits and let the shakey stuff flounder- like ICI,GEC-marconi etc etc.
    just imagine with good stewardship and perhaps govt grants were rover could be today?now the rover name is owned by ford thus ensuring the name will never be used again,bmw binned rover for a tenner to PVH albiet with a dowry(would alchemy been any better?)took mini with it-thanks ARG for the engineering work and left the crumbs to towers and co and thier pension pots only for them to pimp the company to the chinese,now i know im going on a bit here but i think i trust the chinese a lot more than the ponces that run the place before them and i am pleased there is still a uk presence and i want it to grow,i understand that what is left of the plant capability is 150,000 cars a year i hope it starts grafting soon,look at JLR now……

  29. Apparently in NZL: Both the MG6 GT and Magnette will arrive in NZ in January to be on Sale February once the dealer network has been announced. And it seems we will be getting the full Chinese production ones not the Longbridge variant. I doutbt that this will be a problem but I would be interested to know what they do at Longbridge that requires them to be finished there.

  30. 34 – GEC-Marconi failed due to it’s own mismanagement, the CEO decided he wanted to sell off all the “non-Core” divisions and concentrate on Telecoms, a couple of months later the Telecoms industry took a nose dive and the firm went bust. It went from being a profitable firm with fingers in lots of pies to a failed one. No one else had much to do with it!

  31. 34 – Sorry, have to disagree with you. It was the behaviour of the chinese companies that led to MGR’s demise. I cannot see how you can possibly predict that they are better served to revive a knackered brand with a Proton Lite car. It is far better to use the MG6 for the developing world market as it is clearly well out of step with Europe (if not why are they not flying out of the showrooms), and to use the MG badge on something with much more credibility in the Western world. As SAIC have links with GM, it would make sense to use it instead of the VXR badge on their fast Opels and Vauxhalls. MG Astra, MG Corsa and MG Isignia sound good, and I am quite sure that the car buying public would respond very positively (i.e. by buying MGs).

    After once the K series has been finally put down, the next generation of Sino MGs will be GM powered.

  32. A lot of buisnesses only survive because of their channel partners. Even in PVH days the finance arm did quite well, and if the owners had spread the wealth (or reinvested from the finance arm back into MGR) and had MGR been managed properly instead of selling the factory and land, then other parts of the buisness (-EG MGR) may well have survived. so it seems to me that the P4 were opportunitists rather than enthusiasts.

    Tata and JLR are enthusiasts and passionate and are probably also exploiting themsleves quite well. Steel and Aluminium Supplies and probably alumminium technology back and forth between India and UK and then a whole lot of JLR automotive technology / theoy / knowledge is probably being used in India right now to develop some new models (and metals) for the mass market in India and the World. While Tata borrowed substaintially to aquire and keep JLR initially, the JLR buisness is still small change to TATA global. Companies like TATA thrive and survive by using other peoples money and getting someone else to carry the risk. I can well imagine that if JLR corp fell over tomorrow or at anytime, that Tata global probably will come out if it rather lightly. alex

  33. 34
    frances if only , i would suggest you go to the reunion on nov 30th to look at this capacity of 150000 cars then ask them for a tour around the paint shops and existing cabs.then you will see what we all no that most of the facilities have been stripped and the reason they come in from china 80% built as there is no machinery or facilities to build the 6 from metal.or the next generation of mgs .SAIC just dont breed confidence maybe in there own market but over here a complete sales/marketing/overall MG disaster .

  34. SAIC, when negotiating with MGR, did what any company would have done in their position: they got the best deal for themselves.
    PVH were the last in a long line of poor owner/managers at Longbridge. Unquestionably they had a difficult job to do but what became sadly clear was that they weren’t up to it. MGR’s demise was their responsibility.

  35. @francis brett

    Rover name is owned by Tata, was sold as part of Land Rover. Ford kept a hold of it and licenced it to MGR to prevent Rover making a line of SUVs (and potentially confusing US buyers).

    Tata could potentially use the name as a sub JLR brand, almost as VW use the Skoda/Volkswagen name as sub-Audi, it would be nice to see the Rover name used again in some capacity.

    As for the comments on GMMGs, I am not sure about MG Corsas. People are gurning because they perceive MGs now as Chinese, Vauxhalls are Opels are German!!!

  36. “had MGR been managed properly instead of selling the factory”

    I agree that MGR wasn’t managed properly but the lease back deal on the factory wasn’t bad. Many companies do this to free up capital. Tesco for example did a lease back on some of their stores a couple of years ago, these schemes usually have a clause in them that allows the lease holder to buy the property back. The theory would have been than MGR leased back their factory then used the money raised to invest in a new product, once that new product is successful then they can buy the factory back. Trouble is new products didn’t arrive and weren’t successful.

    I really don’t think we can blame SAIC at all, i mean all they did is the same as any of us would do. For example would any of you go out and buy a new sofa or Kitchen for full price next week? or would you wait a month then pick one up in the sales for half the price?

  37. Lease back deals are bad! Swapping an asset for cash, it didn’t work out too well for Woolworths! Seems to be done by companies trying to convince themselves they are a going concern (surprises me that Tesco would have done it). I know Aldi had a policy of closing their rented shopspace and building shops on land that they owned, so its then an asset on the books.

  38. @alexscott

    The “final assembly” is undoubtably done in UK teritory for reasons that can only be described as (to use proper buisness lingo) ‘tax efficiency’. There can be no other reason why.

  39. Although if MGR hadn’t done a lease back on their plant they would have just gone bust a lot earlier as they’d have simply run out of cash earlier.

    I can’t see any problem with a leaseback so long as the underlying business is sound to begin with.

    Tesco is a stable profitable business, no reason at all why doing a lease back would be bad for them. Just a way of raising cash without getting into debt. As i said though MGR was badly run and wasn’t making a profit, so a lease back was only buying time.

  40. Quite agree, seems to be common practice these days and if you are sat on land worth hundreds of millions of £’s – it could make sense to liquidate that value for investment.

    On the similar subject of Tesco however, Morrisons on the other hand used to almost exclusively own their stores and land on which they were built which meant the company was sat on £billions of property on the asset book – Which is why they were able to get the backing to swallow up Safeway which was almost 3 times larger. Sir Ken Morrison was an old fashioned yorkshire man at heart and insisted his company owned all of it’s own assets without debt, including it’s own processing, packaging and distribution capabilities. Vertical integration I believe they call it – rather like the old days when Austin brought in raw metals through one entrance and cars left through another. Outside of the raw cost of materials, you control the rest of the process. In my opinion it’s no small coincidence that the decline of Austin et al. coincides with it’s slow withdrawal from vertical integration.

    So… back on topic… could argue that whilst sale and leaseback is a good way of accessing cash, if your business is unable to generate the cash you need to invest the problem is deeper rooted than simply selling off the family silverware…

  41. @39 i did state that the plant had the capabilty as i understood (from a industrial services contractor that was recently working there)not the facility, hopefully sometime that may come,anyway we have british built japenese cars so why not british built chinese cars?@37 i dont think the chinese swerved anyone at rover they looked at the books(due dilligence) and found the purse shut,now whether one of the directors were poking one of the chinese delegates or not,P4 sold the intellectual rights of the place to the chinese,proton didnt want to know so they were the only people left they cant be blamed.Its just funny in this country how some companies in britain can be sold off and skinned alive for assets for a better return for shareholders(mainly banks and hedge funds)yet our far eastern counterparts seem to be more morally grounded-nissan,toyota honda to name a few whether shareholder owned or not they have invested in our country and in a way that is to our shame-look what is happening at cadburys now registered in switzerland.and breathe!

  42. I remember doing a credit search against MG Rover in 2003 and 2004 and their credit worthiness was so poor that they only way they could borrow money then was to do it by sale and lease back, there being comparatively little risk for the lender.

    By they time that they were selling the intellectual property rights to their own designs, simply as a way of keeping the wolf from the door for another couple of months, it was getting embarrassing!

  43. Why would Vauxhall want to badge their performance models MG when they have the VXR badge to add to them all? I really can’t see Vauxhall rushing out to stick an MG badge on anything, let alone a performance car anytime soon.

  44. Seeing the picture at the top makes it seem even more incredible that I still ain’t seen a single one out on the road. It’s an attractive, relatively distinctive car and damn good value. Reports I’ve read also describe it as a pretty good drive.

    I know the range and dealer network are both very limited but surely purchases by British car supporters alone (not neccesarily MG enthusiasts) should have allowed at least two or three sightings?!

    So, it’s back to that question again – “What the hell is going on?”

  45. “Why would Vauxhall want to badge their performance models MG when they have the VXR badge to add to them all? I really can’t see Vauxhall rushing out to stick an MG badge on anything, let alone a performance car anytime soon.”

    Exactly, they have Irmscher too. What do Opel use in place of VXR? I assume it’s something different?

  46. @51 of course why would you stick £20 worth of badges on?
    it would only be vxr/opc brand dilution and would fool no one-i want longbridge to stay open not bloody shut!face it these are the first mg models (from scratch)since the bgt/midget im not going to split hairs over ARG or ROEWE models but thats as it seems.people need to forget the chinese origins-they are not cherry or geely they deserve a chance.carpet bomb your mates with adverts help with the marketing!

  47. 51 Vauxhall and MG are a match made in heaven. Vauxhall/Opel make some brilliant hot hatches which have a real MG spirit. An MG Isignia would look fantastic, and a MG Astra would be a real ZR successor. Not sure about an MG Agila, but with the right styling and tweaks it could be a hit with the ex Saxo brigade. And the MG Corsa would clean up in terms of volume sales, I reckon a two model MG Corsa range (one warm, the other vindaloo) would account for 40% of Corsa sales.

    I would definitely put my money into an MG Vauxhall, but there is no way I would ‘invest’ in the current Proton Lite range. Let SAIC use their version of MGs for the 3rd world, they just don’t cut it in the UK.

    Advertising tagline for the 6:

    You’re mother wouldn’t like it….come to think of it noone else would either.

    Harsh, but based on 15 cars sold last month, painfully accurate.

    MG need to get the message that we are not interested in the 6, and never will be.

  48. Ian Langfield, comment 55 – ” Not interested in the 6 and never will be”

    No, I think the message MG need to get is ” not actually aware of the 6 and, at this rate, probably never will be”

  49. “An MG Isignia would look fantastic”

    Why would an MG badged Insignia look any different to an Opel or Vauxhall Badged Insignia?

  50. With all the talk of the MG Insignia I’m reminded of the Alfa Arna episode.

    Why on earth would Vauxhall want to get ride of it’s VXR brand or Opel it’s OPC performance brands after spending years developing them.

    MG have nothing to do with Opel/Vauxhall historicallly. It would just be hugely confusing for consumers. Get a grip on reality please

  51. Actually thinking about it, Vauxhall did have another performance/luxury brand. SAAB – Well that worked out well didn’t it, they’re in an even worse state than MGR were.

  52. M60 Well Land Rover and Jaguar had nothing to do with Ford until BMW sold them, and look whats happened to them. The next generation of MGs will be GM based anyway, just look at the Roewe 750!

    I don’t think the readers of this website necessarily reflect how the general public think, if not the Proton GT6 and Perodua Magnette would be flying out of the showrooms. You have to cater to public demand, and this means providing them with an car which at least matches the best that Ford and Vauxhall have to offer. The public.have spoken, they are not aware of or interested in the current offering from MG. SAIC need to recognise and move on, that way they can live to fight another Daewoo.

  53. “Why would Vauxhall want to badge their performance models MG when they have the VXR badge to add to them all? I really can’t see Vauxhall rushing out to stick an MG badge on anything, let alone a performance car anytime soon.”

    Got to agree with you there. SAIC aren’t going to sell or lease the MG name out and Vauxhall have established a good brand for younger and sporty car drivers with their VXR range.

    Perhaps they should drop the MG name altogether and just make up something completely new and create an identity not based on nostalgia for an unrelated product? It worked for Lexus.

  54. tell you what,why dont we put vauxhall badges on the MG6,5 and 3? would they sell any better?i think because its chinese it gets a lot of stick on here,the british shagged this company out for many years and ill be the first to drink a toast to the chinese if they make it a success over here,the trouble with us we piss about and procastrinate instead of grasping the breaks and chances available,the chinese?ask em to build a road from a to b and they are there next morning with a shovel!-a quote from tony blair.MG are being judged on one model and marketing they have all the time in the world ok ipod i want it now generation!

  55. @48 James

    Morrisons also ended up with the Safeway NI stores which were previously Wellworths (NOT Woolworths…), and promptly sold them off to Asda who were looking a foot in the NI market, raising more fundage as they wanted to focus on GB sales (and our money isn’t good enough for them and their bloody Flintoff/Forsythe advertising grumble moan)

  56. “tell you what,why dont we put vauxhall badges on the MG6,5 and 3? would they sell any better?”

    That will be the Daewoo, I mean Chevrolet trick then?

  57. “Morrisons also ended up with the Safeway NI stores which were previously Wellworths (NOT Woolworths…), and promptly sold them off to Asda who were looking a foot in the NI market, raising more fundage as they wanted to focus on GB sales (and our money isn’t good enough for them and their bloody Flintoff/Forsythe advertising grumble moan)”

    Well Morrisons were less than half the size of Safeway, buying Safeway was a real stretch financially for a small company. Selling off NI stores was probably just because they couldn’t afford to keep them. They were also forced to sell off some stores due to competition concerns from the regulator. It was a lot like buying a house with a large field with the intention of selling off the field to be able to afford the house.

  58. A lot of Safeways Morrisons didn’t want were sold to Waitrose, mostly in the north were Waitrose wanted to expand.

  59. 64. Vauxhall badges on MGs – Frances, you’re missing the point,both the 3 and the 6 are substandard products aimed at a third world audience. The UK public would not fall for that, and anyway GM has Chevy for the value market. No, my arguement was as Vauxhall already produce qualty cars to use MG for the sportier versions.

  60. @74 – an MG Corsa/Astra/Insignia would actually be a very appealing car given that the host Vauxhall/Opel cars are very good (well, maybe not the Corsa). SAIC may come to this conclusion anyway once they full appreciate the difficulties of selling cars in more sophisticated territories than China.

  61. @74 on the contrary,i see what you are saying but @£16 a pop i think they are good value and why substandard? tata indica/cityrover/tata nano are substandard as is most of the stuff built in second world countries,the MG6/5/3 are not built in china aimed at a third world audience?the new super power is china like it or lump it most of the nonsense we buy is from there anyway.there is no point putting MG badges on a insignia because as much as i love the car it is still an insignia,and no amount of badge jiggery pokery will change it.ROEWE/MG is what it is now and i think the range they are building look good,by the way i was behind a new c-max today and i thought that looks like a MG5!i get what you say but GME have enough on thier plate already

  62. @75 I understand that there have talks between SAIC and GM Europe, could they be linked to the development of MG Vauxhall? I hope so, as I would definitely buy an MG badged Vauxhall.

  63. @77 ive never bought a new car in my life partly because i dont like taking a pill on a car because of depreciation,and i get attatched to my cars(i have loads)and im not one of those who needs things renewing just for the sake of it,that said,if i could afford one outright id buy one without blinking.Park a focus next to a MG6 and im sorry but the focus looks wishy washy and unresolved.

  64. @79 i think the talks are about the epsilon platform(insignia)and gm cars behing built on the cheap,just as nissan,renault vw and everyone does.I harbour wishful thinking that maybe they pool the hybrid knowledge and get something going at longbridge(i know i bang on about the place-it gets on my tits that the place isnt being grafted fully)until the place is shut or stuff gets going there(maybe MG3)we can only speculate.

  65. @80. it gets on my tits that the place isnt being grafted fully……there’s not much of it left to graft!

  66. Getting back to the car, just seen one on the M6 heading north, and I must say I was pleasantly surprised. It looked quite good, almost as good ad a Chevy Cruze. Lower the price, bang in a diesel and you may sell more than 16 a month.

    No diesel = goodbye MG6!

    MG – Almost a Proton……

  67. @78 – GM is looking at possibly offloading GM Europe as it continues to make a loss for them which is ironic given that Opel loaned GM in the US 1 billion euros (or dollars – I can’t remember which) when the parent company was in deep trouble. Maybe SAIC will buy GM Europe? Chevrolet is no longer quite the value brand that GM thought it was going to be – the cars are improving (the Cruze and the Captiva in particular) – so possibly they can imagine a future without Opel/Vauxhall and with Chevrolet as their main volume brand with Buick catering for more upmarket tastes. At the moment they’re thinking that the Buick Lacrosse will come to Europe but be marketed as a new Opel Omega but I guess it could easily be a Buick. Anyway, as far as MG is concerned, I think SAIC/GM co-operation will grow in the future and that MG can only benefit from this.

  68. I heard murmurings of MG competing in BTCC again. Is this true? Hopefully the new regulations will lead to a 90s-style renaissance for the sport.

    @Richard Addison – Is this true about the new Omega? It is a good looking big car, admittedly the lovechild of an Insignia and a Skoda Superb, but a welcome return to the mainstream big car.
    I always wondered why Ford/GM didn’t just replace the Scorpio/Omega with an Australian big car, with smaller (2.0 and diesel) engines.
    Now they don’t have ‘premium’ marques (Volvo and Jag/Saab) in their stable, makes sense to at least re-attempt that market.

    Sell it as an Opel, even in the UK. I remember they tried to sell Cadillacs in the UK, it didn’t do well.

  69. Cruze is quite impressive now, and a long way from the original Daewoo range from the 1990s. Of course being part of the GM stable has helped, as well as the huge strides that the Korean car industry has made since the days of the original Pony.

    If SAIC were serious about selling their substandard MG6 in the UK, then they could learn from the Daewoo experience. Load the cars up with warranties, lower the prices, control the residuals through buying back when owners sell. Unless they build a base (and I don’t mean longbridge) then they cannot grow sales.

    For me the key question is what will MG Proton do to recover from 16 sales a month. Even SAAB knocked out 70 odd sales in the same period, and they are rapidly going down the tubes.

  70. @86 why is the MG6 substandard? i look inside a i30 and think early nineties corrolla thats substandard how do we know the forthcoming vehicle construction reqs in jan 2012 have something to do with the slow marketing? ie all new cars made after jan 12 must have tpms that means corner modules to be integregated etc into the electrical architecture of all new cars.No oneseems to have an answer from SAIC,anyone asked?

  71. @88 from jan 12 all cars manufactured must have tyre pressure monitering systems incorporated into the car to show driver if there is tyre deflation and also must warn of faults in system,so all new cars will have “corner modules- tpms esp etc etc these are the new vosa regs.interestingly(and worrying for some)cars will fail thier mot test if engine management and airbag lights are on,so some great cars could be scrapped becuase of a several hundred pound ecu not including software rewrite!anyway i go on a bit,it just got me thinking that maybe SAIC may have been aware of this with the current MG6 11MY and thought we do the bizzo in new year-perhaps a longshot!

  72. @84 the lacrosse is a w body (epsillon 2)/platform car its being used in china and taiwan which indeed is a insignia platform be it lacrosse,regal or whatever,they would have to use and holden derived platform to go a segment up,as the u.s do now.

  73. 89 – Francis, thanks for the explanation. When I say substandard I am referring to the interior and some of the exterior plastics. The surfaces and controls that you touch regularly are central to any driving experience, when I sat in a 6 it reminded me of a Cityrover, and as we all know that was an awful car.

    I also think that the styling of the 6 is well below par, it looks more Proton than Kia, and I think it is the latter’s market that it should be chasing. I don’t think the pricing is great for an unknown brand from China, and I am sure that they could shift 100s per month if the pricing was around the Fiesta mark and not the Focus.

    Also, the 6 had a very chemical smell, almost Lada Riva like. As such it simply will not sell and I predict that come March they will shut up shop. And that will be a real tragedy.

  74. “unknown brand from China”

    That’s kind of the point though MG isn’t an unknown ‘brand’, though the ‘company’ SAIC may well be.

    “The surfaces and controls that you touch regularly are central to any driving experience, when I sat in a 6 it reminded me of a Cityrover, and as we all know that was an awful car.”

    As Keith says in his article about though, these have been much improved.

    “Also, the 6 had a very chemical smell, almost Lada Riva like.”
    You can buy things called Air fresheners for that…. Incidentally my sisters Polo and her Husbands R32 Golf, both had what could be described as a chemical smell when new, VW’s sell quite well.

  75. “If SAIC were serious about selling their substandard MG6 in the UK, then they could learn from the Daewoo experience.”

    I suspect they have, and that’s why they’re not emulating it. The guaranteed residuals in particular, and the difficulties of using a generic support network for servicing, destroyed Daewoo in the UK. I remember trading a P-reg one in about 2002 for lowish three figures – it was a five year old car, and in excellent order. Oh, yeah, you can point and say they were substandard for ’90s expectations, but the Mk 3 Astra was no great improvement over the Mk 2 in terms of tactile, material or handling attributes at the low end (though the GSi was better mannered).

  76. “92 Dennis – Too little, too late!”

    How though? If they’ve only sold a few of the ones with duff bits of trim, then it’s probably not too late. Perhaps if they’d sold thousands of them. As it stands at the moment they’ve sold so few they haven’t made a reputation either way.

  77. 94 & 95 – That’s the point, they have sold so few because:

    a. Noone knows about the MG
    b. Those who do know are not buying them (otherwise everyone om this website would own one, and I’ve yet to see a response from someone who has actually bought one)
    c. There are much better cars available in the UK, particularly if you go down the preowned/preregistered route
    d. The car has not been designed for the European market, rather bits of it have been adapted

    I am a lifelong BL/ARG supporter and have owned several over the last 27 years, but, in common with the vast majority of the UK (including contributors to this website) I wouldn’t buy an MG6.

  78. Its a very emotive subject this one eh?as for chemical smells i havnt sniffed one yet but fiats have stunk for years,i think the MG6 is way ahead of a proton in design and looks and better than the focus-which when launch in original form with “new edge” design still looks better than the larger not nice looking current one-funny when the mark 4 golf was launched ford could not believe the quality it was light years ahead of the focus.Ford blew loads on control blade rear suspension,vw on quality and so that comes to tactality original focus great drive some hash plastics inside,vw decent enough ride unbelievable quality at this price bracket £16k+ ok tactility is out of kilter but its loaded up isnt it?and drives good?you could pay that sort of money for a fiesta.

  79. 91 – I have to say that, having driven two MG6s, I did not find them to be substandard. OK, the plastics aren’t as nice as they good be but I didn’t find them repellent. The interior is quite sober in a VWish way. It’s spacious and comfortable and I certainly didn’t detect any unpleasant smell.

  80. @85 Will M – it’s true that they are looking at bringing the Buick Lacrosse to Europe but whether it’s a Buick or an Opel is open to question. On balance it’s more likely to be an Opel Omega than a Buick but I guess it depends on whether they sell GM Europe or not.

    The Lacrosse is a good car and could do well over here as a new Opel Omega. Many people reckoned that the old Omega was the best excecutive car in its class at the time (better than both the E Class and the 5 Series) but suffered from being badged as an Opel. Not replacing it was a mistake. I guess they thought Omega drivers would switch to the Saab 9-5 or the Signum, but the latter wasn’t upmarket enough and the former maybe just a bit too idiosyncratic for more mainstream Omega drivers.

    Ford could do well to bring the Ford Taurus over here as well. I know many Ford dealers are crying out for a big Ford in the range.

  81. @ Francis Brett, and going a bit off-piste I agree wth the Focus I v Golf IV question. The first time I drove a Mk1 Focus I loved the ride and handling but hated the cheap materials used on the interior. Seemed to me that Ford blew the development budget on the chassis and had to scrape up a few quid to furnish the inside. Didn’t stop me from buying one though and it’s been pretty durable!

  82. ” in common with the vast majority of the UK (including contributors to this website) I wouldn’t buy an MG6.”

    So Ian you’re speaking for the whole of the UK now? How can you possibly say that the vast majority of the UK wont buy one when by your own admission no one knows about them? You may not want one, but that doesn’t really mean you can speak for everyone else.

    You don’t like the car, which is fair enough, but it seems you’re on a mission to complain about any aspect of it, including the smell. I don’t think it would matter how good it was, you would still find something to complain about. I mean the ‘chemical smell’ thing i actually found quite amusing, really smacked of barrel scraping to be honest. Many people actually like ‘new car smell’ to the point that you can even buy air fresheners that smell like it.

    ” Many people reckoned that the old Omega was the best excecutive car in its class at the time (better than both the E Class and the 5 Series) but suffered from being badged as an Opel. Not replacing it was a mistake. I guess they thought Omega drivers would switch to the Saab 9-5 or the Signum, but the latter wasn’t upmarket enough”

    The badge is the big part of the problem, it’s down to badge snobbery, most exec class cars are initially bought as company cars. Most company car buyers will opt for one of the german propeller badges, even if it means getting a low spec model. I’m not sure badging them as Buick or anything else would make much difference, i mean they were selling Cadilac models here a few years ago, they didn’t sell too well either. They might as well just brand them all Opel’s then use Vauxhall as the premium brand.

  83. @99+101 the the vauxhall senator which the omega was based was said by the metropolitan police to be the best police car ever and one gunship driver on the flying squad rated it over and above 5 series bmw’s saying it was the fastest police car he had ever driven!i think if we have big vauxhalls they will have the holden platform the lacrosse/regal are insinia based(epsillon2)nice car it is but looks too much like a lexus.

  84. “saying it was the fastest police car he had ever driven!”

    They later did a special Police Carlton too, which was also sought after by the police. Thing is though Police cars are bought for very different reasons to company cars, prestige isn’t really an issue like it is to a company car buyer. I’ve not said the Omega was slow or even a bad car, it’s just they didn’t sell well compared the BMW’s and the like because most buyers wanted the prestige of the badge. You tended to get a lot more for your money with one of the mainstream brands.
    A friend of mine used to have a fully loaded Vectra 2.5V6, our boss was jealous when one day he actually looked inside it and realised his company Merc had next to nothing in the way of luxuries yet cost a similar amount of money!

  85. 101 – Yes, they are flying out of the showroom aren’t they! MG don’t look like they are going to push their nonsensical advert any further, so I can’t see how they will shift anymore than 200 a year.

  86. 101 – re the ‘smell’ – I know new car smell when I smell it, but I have also had a couple of Skodas in the past. The MG6 had the aroma and ambience of my old Estelle 105 lux! Not a premium smell in anyway.

    Has anyone who contributes to this site actually bought a 6? If so, Keith, could you ask them to submit a blog on their experience to date?

  87. That reminds me of the time my Dad mentioned that someone he worked with bought a BMW & was surprised it didn’t had a “lights on” buzzer, which even his wife’s base model Nova had.

  88. “re the ‘smell’ – I know new car smell when I smell it, but I have also had a couple of Skodas in the past. The MG6 had the aroma and ambience of my old Estelle 105 lux! Not a premium smell in anyway.”

    So what exactly does a ‘premium smell’ smell like? I mean you don’t get leather smell any more because the tanning methods have changed. Those modern cars that do have a leather smell do so by putting a small air freshener in the car somewhere to simulate it. To me all new cars smell like chemicals, because they all contain plastics, foam, carpet etc etc. BL’s used to smell of that Dunlop glue they used to slap everywhere.

    My brother in law’s brand new R32 smelt chemical like inside, but i suppose the Audi’s smell better? They’re a more premium car?

  89. @102 – I’d have thought the Lacrosse looking like a Lexus would be a positive point in its favour.
    I know the Buick Regal is an Opel Insignia (I think it’s even built in Germany then shipped over) but is the Lacrosse off the same platform?

  90. @102 – Francis, you’re right, the Lacrosse is an Epsilon 2 car. Why do you think any big Vauxhalls will be based on Holden platforms?

  91. @112 it would be natural for a new omega to be rear drive as previous generation models,the current VE commodore is a c1978 v car platform that has given stirtling service and is the floorpan for the camaro and other US models-im not sure if epsillon 2 is a modular platform so lending itself to track and wheelbase changes but who knows.

  92. “Most new cars seem to smell the same as new house carpets.
    Slightly chemical but not overpowering.”

    Indeed, and probably because they have a whole load of the stuff covering the floor. 😉

  93. To be honest, the smell isn’t that bad and I have quite a soft spot for my old 105. The MG6 is awful though. If MG were to shut up shop in the next few months (as per the rumours doing the rounds of some of the forums), what would happen to long term residuals-would they become collectors items like early Protons and Daewoos?

  94. it doesnt augur well when even now no one from MG IS LISTENING , I LIVE OVER THE ROAD FROM MG YET THERE WAS NO COVERAGE THE FOLLOWING DAY ABOUT THE REUNION ON THE LOCAL TELEVISION or radio about future plans or ne thing . And as some one quoted world class engineers sitting at home counting there yen while the manufacturing associates work there asses off outside local gardening centres and shopping malls to sell there so called MG THE NEXT GENERATION CARS just sums up the whole set up FARCICAL.

  95. Posts are easier to read when written in english, rather than text speak. You know you don’t get charged by the letter on here.

  96. manufacturing associates are doing what most peoplw would do in this current climate trying to keep there jobs ss mg struggles in this period of discontent .regardless what a lot of people say on this site mg can only get better if given the right direction from the top ,there must be a clear plan as no one at mg seems unduly worried and perhaps we need to give them more time , the chinese are not fools and jf things were as bad as it sounds on here they would pick up lock stock and barrel and dont become one of the top car players by throwing money at ghost projects.

  97. “Manufacturing Associate”? Can I assume that Longbridge also employs “Facilities Hygiene Associates” and “Catering and Hospitatlity Associates” too?

  98. Hi Rob

    Assembly line bods of all grades were called Associates, and had been for years. I think it stems back from the Honda era – although I’m happy to be corrected.

    I know they’re called Associates at the MINI factory at Cowley.

  99. @120-@122
    thanks guys for the videos probably nit picking here only i did 33yrs at longbridge yet never recognised any body on the tv report

  100. Surely though given the size of the place/number of people who’ve worked there over the years, it wouldn’t be too hard not to have met everybody?

  101. I just watched the Central news item. Amusing inaccuracies in the reporting – “closed in 2006” and the factory was called “The Rover” (which was corrected later by the newsreader).

    It is a shame the article didn’t mention the assembly of the new MG6.

    What is odd about the somewhat cryptic adverts that appeared briefly on TV in the UK and online, was that they seem to be a teaser campaign to get the public ready for the relaunch of MG. What has been missing is the follow-up adverts that actually mention the new model’s name, its price, where you can buy one and a bit of info about the car.

    Does anyone know what is happening to the cars that are coming off the assembly line at Longbridge? Are they being stockpiled or has assembly been halted as with the relaunched MGTF?

  102. 129 – I believe that they are stockpiling for the Christmas and New Year sales. Fingers crossed that they can break the 20 sales a month target!

  103. “Geely are coming to the UK in late 2012”

    Geely have been in the UK for years, they trade under the name of “London Taxi’s International” based in Coventry. 😉

  104. “@135 go on you tube and look up chinese car crash tests.”

    Which probably explains why they’ve bought Volvo.

  105. The Geely scored 4 stars, same as the MG6 and same as the Jag XF.

    If taken as last years standards, would have been a 5 star!

  106. @141 – I have yet to see any of these Chryslers (I would much prefer them to be Lancias) on the roads. I have seen several MG6s though plus quite a few Range Rover Evoques (strange looking things but it looks as though they’re going to do well) and half a dozen Nissan Leafs on the M4, M25 and M1.

  107. Just been checking up on Geely. Their plans for entering the UK market are: one model (4 door saloon/5 door hatch aimed at C/D segment) with two (petrol) engine options (1.5 and 1.8) marketed through an initial network of 30-40 dealers. New models will follow in due course. Sounds familiar, doesn’t it?
    Maybe we should give MG a break here. Sure they’ve got some things wrong and they definitely need to improve on marketing/advertising, but they’re only just beginning to re-establish themselves here.

  108. @Ian Langfield… Your idea of badging high spec Vauxhall Astras & Insignias as MG’s is interesting but I doubt that will ever happen (at least not with the current range). You could of course buy a new Vauxhall and add MG badges to it – they are still available from Rimmer Bros. The latest Nov sales figures for the “6” are truly awful aren’t they?

  109. 140 & 145 – Agree, it looks like the end. If you apply linear regression to the current sales figures, it is unlikely that they will sell any in December. It was never to be, this must be worst car launch since the Denem.

  110. @Alexscott.The MG6.Looks better than a mazda 6? I think you need to go to Specsavers!Doesn”t shake a stick at the mazda 6 looks wise nor mechanically,,

  111. Agreed!! Everybody thinks the chinese are going to save the economic world(How wrong they are) when we were kids 9times out of10 our toys all bared the words”Made in china”and 9 times out of 10 they either broke or didnt work..Whats changed here then?Nothing chinese manufacturing in the western world is still considered crap,,cheap&nasty unfortunately the great hope that was MG falls into this category..

  112. Respecting there procedures and having regular car services will make sure the car does not fail because of something
    insignificant. Examinations can be taken in most towns and cities in the UK, (at driving theory test centres) and are computer based.
    A first tip for passing an MOT is to make a good impression on the
    testing day.

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