Several months ago my wife decided that she wanted to change her car. Although I work in the industry undertaking events and consultancy for car dealers, we decided that it would be her decision but with some help from me at the negotiation stage. The first question was what to go for. My wife decided that she would order some brochures online and narrow down the search from there so she duly ordered brochures for the Honda CRV, Hyundai i30, Ford Focus and the MG6.
Interestingly, we only received a brochure for the Honda, a letter from Ford saying they had run out of Focus brochures and no brochures for Hyundai and MG!
The decision was made to look at a one-year-old Honda CRV, or maybe a new Focus, Hyundai or MG. However, my wife’s main requirement was for a full leather interior with heated seats, a feature that she had loved on a previous Rover Sterling Coupe. The other main requirement, despite current fashion, was for petrol and not diesel.
Despite having an image as a ‘budget’ brand the i30 was priced up at £21,000 with those options and, once my wife had seen one in the metal, she decided that it looked far too ordinary. The Focus likewise was well over £20,000 with leather trim and my wife was put off by the new 1.0-litre EcoBoost option.
Hence, her decision came down to a choice between a CRV Executive with 6-speed gearbox and VTEC engine for £16,000, at one year old or a new or nearly new MG6 TSE. For a long time the decision was going the Honda’s way due to excellent reputation, high up driving position and a lovely leather interior with more than a touch of Rover Sterling about it, especially if the cream interior colour was chosen.
However, as luck would have it MG had just opened a new showroom in Lincoln and a quick call to the very pleasant General Manager, Nigel Burley, secured the loan of an MG6 for a whole day so my wife could really put the car through its paces.
Taking the MG6 from Lincoln on a mixture of fast A roads and twisty B roads took us to the Petwood Hotel in Woodhall Spa – home to the officers of the Dam Busters Squadron during World War II.
A superb lunch followed by some demanding driving soon had my wife choosing the ‘6 as her next car. The combination of space, comfort, excellent handling and features left both of us very impressed. The styling in fastback GT form was fine and the fuel consumption the right side of 35mpg made the decision as long as the price was right. The petrol CRV nearly had the measure of the ‘6 but the fuel consumption and bulk of the CRV eventually went against it.
The week we visited the Dealer MG had just announced an Approved Used Programme so a one-year-old TSE was the likely choice with a budget of about £13k. However, in the end the combination of a no-questions-asked £3k discount and a good trade in price on my wife’s four-year-old Fiat Punto swayed the deal towards a new MG 6 TSE GT in silver with black leather interior. Cost to change a tad over £200 per month and a £3500 cash deposit plus the Punto.
The truth is that, at £16k, no one else could touch the value of the TSE with full leather, heated electric seats, climate control, sat nav, and rear parking camera. The so-called budget brands of Hyundai and Kia are much more money.
The car was collected a week ago and my wife has been delighted. The Dealer had pulled out all the stops to get a car within two weeks, a thorough PDI and excellent handover with a full tank of fuel and car mats included.
I appreciate others have had some customer issues with the ‘6 but, so far, my wife would give the car ten out of ten and the Dealer service likewise. We can thoroughly recommend Charles Warner of Lincoln if you are considering an MG6. A family dealer with Chevrolet and Vauxhall franchises that is small enough to care but large enough to sort out any problems.
Have a look at the pictures – in silver with 18″ rims the car really does look the business and far more expensive than its price suggests. My wife says she wanted a car that made her feel special without costing the earth – the MG 6 delivers that. Yes, a six-speed gearbox would be nice and, yes, a slightly higher quality interior would make it perfect. The cream interior option from the Roewe would be a good move to broaden the appeal but, apart from that, she is delighted.
My advice, then, is to make up your own mind because listening to Jeremy Clarkson or the chap down the pub who hasn’t even seen an MG 6, never mind driven one, isn’t the best person to take advice from. Dealers need to promote this car and get people behind the wheel. It worked in our case and it will work for others.
We will keep you posted as to the ownership experience but, so far, ten out of ten. Thank you MG and thank you Charles Warner.