Spied Up Date: 2011 MG 3

Take away this Chinese test car’s disguise, and it’s clear to see how MG’s new supermini is shaping up.

The MG3 will be the smallest model to wear the octagon badge since the Rover 25-based ZR, and these spy shots show it retains the good looks of the MG Zero on which it’s based.

The Beijing Motor Show concept’s big central exhaust and chrome wheels have vanished, but the dynamic stance remains – as does the wide hexagonal front grille – giving the 3 a welcome hint of sportiness.

On sale in China in next month, from around £6,000, the model will be powered by a 109bhp, 1.5-litre petrol engine from sister firm Roewe. Also under development is a 1.3-litre four-cylinder unit and a turbocharged version of the 1.5. The latter could power a more focused MG3 hot hatch.

Tentative plans are to build European versions of this car at MG Rover’s old Longbridge plant in the West Midlands from 2012. Our spies in China have also seen a variant with a chunkier tail-light treatment – which could be a new Streetwise. Although the pumped-up Rover 25 was a flop here, it has since proved a sales hit in China. For more details click here.

Thanks to: Auto Express


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