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.
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.