Today was a landmark – I drove my first Chinese car at the SMMT South driving day. The MG3 looks OK and the test car as in a nice shade of blue with fancy roof, but plastics are cheap, engine is rough and gutless, and the ride is jiggly.
Of course, it’s going to feel like a budget product with a price tag ofrom £8,399 to £9,999. No doubt it will attract people who would rather buy new than used, and who like all the bells and whistles - it certainly worked for Hyundai and Kia.
This one has one millions colour and personalisation options, too, and you can choose your warranty period and adjust the price accordingly. The range will soon gain an SUV and a saloon.
But I really think it would be better without the baggage of the MG branding. This company and this car have nothing to do with the old MG, and fans of the brand will be set against it before even trying one. MG was always a premium badge, and during its glory days, it was a sporty badge. It doesn’t sit easily on the nose of a budget family hatchback.