MG Motor UK MG3 (2013 -) Driving & Performance

Review by Parkers on
Last Updated: 30 Jul 2014
3
The Chinese owned car manufacturer has finally broadened its range with the MG Motor UK MG3 supermini. With prices starting from £8,399, the new car is not the cheapest in the sector, but decent levels of standard equipment puts it nose to nose with equivalent Dacia Sanderos and Chevrolet Sparks.

2.5 out of 5

Performance

There’s just one engine metering out MG3 performance. It’s a 1.5-litre petrol which develops 105bhp and 137Nm of torque at 4,750rpm. The latter figure means you have to work this car incredibly hard to make any real progress.

Its 0-60mph time of 10.4 seconds and 108mph top speed seem almost unlikely – this is not a fast car on the road. If you want to overtake or even pull out of a junction in a bit of a hurry then expect to drop at least one, if not two, gears in the five-speed manual gearbox.

The gearbox itself isn’t the sharpest unit we’ve ever tested either; we’d like a more assured shifting action.

Don’t expect a particularly nice noise from the engine. It really does want you to know how hard it’s working, and sounds quite strained when you get towards the upper end of the rev range. Peak power is available at 6,000rpm, so if you want to get a move on you’ll spend quite a bit of time at those sorts of revs.

3.5 out of 5

Handling

One of the most impressive aspects of the way the MG3 drives is its handling. The steering is exceptional for this size of car – it’s hydraulically assisted rather than electrically, which means there’s a lot of communication about what the front wheels are doing.

You don’t experience much in the way of body-roll when cornering and the car feels mightily planted, which means you have a lot of confidence in it. It’s a very stable thing which has obviously been set up with the UK’s roads in mind.

You have to treat it with quite some contempt to get it out of shape, and when you do the front begins to wash wide as per the norm on the front-wheel drive hatchback.

Of course, with taught handling usually comes a sacrifice in ride quality, and that’s no different on the MG3.