MG is back, but is it for good?
Now that the excitement and hoopla that was the Johannesburg International Motorshow is over it’s time to sit back and take stock of one of the main reasons Drive RSA went. The launch of the MG6. Why you may ask? Well an old British car maker, brought back from the grave, Frankenstein’s-monster-style, by the Chinese to recapture the glory days of motoring is something we just couldn’t miss.
Now when you think of MG, I’d dare bet you have the same image as me in your head. A group of 5 to 6 old men, stood around an old British sports car, wearing a combination of tweed and leather, smoking pipes, chewing straw and nattering on about how us youngsters don’t understand proper handling – all the while completely oblivious to the irony that the car they’re applying this to wobbles more than a Weeble could ever hope to.
However the one thing to take from this image is passion. This is something I love to see in a motorcar enthusiast. I honestly couldn’t care if you come from the Proton or the Pagani owners club, all that matters is that you have passion. So the real question is, has MG got it?
Well on first glance the news is not good. For a kick off MG was best known as a manufacturer of sports cars, which their endlessly repeating promotional blurb droned on and on about – constantly spewing out facts about how MG set countless speed records and so on. So the irony was not lost on me that they decide to launch a run of the mill family 4 door sedan to catapult the brand into the 21st century.
Things do however pick up somewhat. First off the car isn’t actually all that bad looking. It’s no head turner, but it hasn’t exactly hit many ugly branches when falling through the design process either. In fact in many ways I feel this car best compares to the Kia Cerato that Miles tested all those months ago. The interior is a similar story, all drab black that would make any BMW or VW owner feel right at home, however not offending your Fiat and Citroen owners so much that they run screaming for the nearest design quarter. The finish also seems up to standard; something I was not expecting from a car with such suspect origins. Although I fear only future buyers will be able to tell us how it really is a few years down the line.
For me though, the cherry on the cake isn’t the MG6 itself, but rather the turbo-charged engine that comes standard across the range. The word alone is music to my ears. If it were up to me everything would be turbo charged. Even a salad somehow sounds more appetising with the word “turbo” thrown into the title and may in fact raise the reputation of vegetarians the world over. So with a healthy 118kw under the bonnet, you can be sure the MG6 won’t be a complete slouch.
So is the MG6 worth a look? Well if you’re in the market for a family sedan with a reasonable price tag then you can certainly do worse, however I fear that Kia’s Cerato will be putting up a big fight.
Comfort – R209000
Luxury – R219000
Deluxe – R229000