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MG 3 (2013–)

Last updated 14 January 2019

Low list price. Generous kit and performance for the money. Tidy handling. Roomy interior. Extensive personalisation options. Hugely improved with up to date interior in 2018 facelift.
Petrol-only. 2012-2018 interior quality average. Slightly clonky suspension. No longer assembled in UK.
Updated 14 November 2018

Further report of stretched timing chain (with no further engine damage) on a 2015 MG3 1.5 vi-tech lux at 29,000 miles. Unfortunately the car had been independently serviced so before it woulod consider...

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MG Motor UK's post-2008 relaunch was a slow burner - with the TF roadster selling in dribs and drabs between 2008 and 2011, and the MG6 continuing in the same vein. With the arrival of the 3, MG is looking for genuine growth, as well as an increase in visibility. The good news is that the UK-designed MG3 has plenty of showroom appeal, thanks to a sensible spead of models spanning £8399 to £9999, which are available in a myriad of appealing colours and external graphics options.

It's a completely new car from the ground-up, so any lingering doubts in the wider buying public about MG's engine longevity should hopefully also be dispelled. Beyond that, the MG3 has an exceptionally low insurance grouping (it's classified as 4E, placing it alongside far less powerful rivals), and has a useful amount of kit, such as Bluetooth, USB connectivity and DAB radio, even in the entry-level model. It's a recipe that MG hopes will see younger customers make a return to their local MG dealer.

The MG3 has actually been on sale in China - and other overseas markets - since 2011. It's a roomy hatchback, boasting a long wheelbase, and wheel-at-each corner stance, that's slightly longer than the class norm. For the UK, there's only one version powered by a new 1.5-litre chain-cam engine, which develops a healthy (for the money) 106PS and 137Nm. Consider that most price rivals develop between 70-85PS, and you can see why MG is confident about its chances.

When cost comes into the equation, and the MG3 is viewed as an overall package aimed at real people with more modest budgets, it's near compelling. Because at this price point, the combination of generous kit and 106PS engine, it's difficult to find any rivals to put it up against. For younger buyers, the cheap insurance is also a big attraction, bringing a warm-hatch to within their reach.

MG Motor UK's dealer network grew from around 30 initially to 80 by mid 2018 and is expected to reach 120 by 2020. Overall, the MG3 is a likeable addition to the market that's quick, stylish and cheap - it's not perfect, but at the price, you can more than forgive its faults.

MG3 2013 Road Test

MG3 2019 Revamp Road Test

Owners' reviews

Great little car
quality of car is poor
Good value for money and almost entirely British
List Price from £11,395
Buy new from £10,994
Contract hire from £154.52 per month

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