Road Tests

Handbook: MG6 Diesel

Time 11:26 am, February 19, 2013

mg6MG has finally slotted a much-needed diesel engine into its MG6 range. But is it up to the job? James Batchelor finds out

What is it?

This is the car the UK should have received when MG launched the MG6 range last year. At long last the Chinese-owned British marque can entice more customers to the brand and win over fleet buyers – the latter being something MG really needs to work hard at.

What’s under the bonnet?

Well this is no old Rover or BMW engine – it’s a brand new unit. Badged 1.9-litre DTi-Tech, it’s a 1,849cc common rail unit with a variable rate turbocharger. Total power is 148bhp with 350Nm of torque at 1,800rpm, mated to a six-speed gearbox. However, the engine returns 53.5mpg and 139g/km of CO2 – hardly class-leading but MG promises this will improve over the MG6’s lifetime.

Screen Shot 2013-02-19 at 11.17.02What’s the spec like?

The diesel is available in both the MG6’s bodystyles – five-door GT and four-door Magnette. Prices start at £16,995 for the S GT model which comes with air-con, a USB socket, 17-inch alloys, hill assist and electric and heated door mirrors. Prices top out at £20,195 for the TSE models which get full-leather, climate control, a rear parking camera, and electric and heated front seats. The four-door Magnette model only comes in one spec (equivalent to top-spec TSE trim on the GT five-door) and costs £21,195.

What’s it like to drive?

The 6 has independent suspension and it’s a real joy to drive – an experience backed up by accurate steering. The six-speed gearbox is rather sweet too and the brakes have great feel. The diesel brings in a raft of revisions – updated chassis, new power steering, new gearbox and revised braking system (now with brake disc cleaning) – and they’re all welcome.

What do the press think?

Honest John said: ‘Overall, it’s a good effort’ while Autocar felt: ‘It’s fighting some great cars, but it definitely deserves consideration.’ Parkers, however, said: ‘The MG isn’t a game changer and there are better rivals out there.’

What do we think?

MG hasn’t sold many MG6s since its 2011 launch thanks to a range of just one thirsty petrol engine. The MG6 diesel is a fine car – but until more people choose to buy an MG6, depreciation is going to be strong. Order books open in December, with the first deliveries in March.

James Batchelor's avatar

James – or Batch as he’s known – started at Car Dealer in 2010, first as the work experience boy, eventually becoming editor in 2013. He worked for Auto Express as editor-at-large and was the face of Carbuyer’s YouTube reviews. In 2020, he went freelance and now writes for a number of national titles and contributes regularly to Car Dealer. In October 2021 he became Car Dealer's associate editor.

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