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MG3 3STYLE VTi-TECH 2016 Review

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Driven: MG3 3STYLE VTi-TECH Review

We carried out a week-long test drive of the MG3 3STYLE. Take a read to see what we made of this super affordable car.

What is it About?

MG currently have 2 offerings, the MG6 and MG3, soon to be 3 with the GS on the way. The MG3 is the smallest of the 2 and fits in nicely in the hatchback market. MG’s USP with the car is that is highly customisable; with 4 different levels of specification, 10 choices of paint colour, a mixture of different graphics for the roof, bonnet and side panels, various choices of alloy wheels, different colour mirrors, and choices of interior trim. So buying the car straight from the factory there is no doubt that you can buy an MG3 exactly how you would like it.

MG3 3STYLE VTi-TECH 18 - MG3 3STYLE

The MG3 is very affordable starting at only £8,399 for the bottom of the range 3TIME base spec model, up to the top spec 3STYLE model that we had on test starting at £10,499. In the 3STYLE trim level the car comes with a reasonable amount of kit for the money but still manages to undercut most of its competitors.

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I quite like the styling of the car; our test car in Lady Grey looks very stealthy. The MG3 certainly has its own style and separates itself from the rest. The test car had a set of 16 inch alloy wheels that gave the car a more premium look and helped it to stand out from the lower trim levels.

Ross Jukes Photography-Birmingham based Automotive Photographer - www.rossjukesphoto.com

The MG3 is powered by a 1.5 litre petrol engine, which creates 106 hp and 137 Nm of torque. This power goes through a 5-speed manual gearbox getting the car from 0-60 mph in 10.9 seconds and doing a top speed of 108 mph. The most outstanding statistic about this car is that MG say it will do a combined economy figure of 51 mpg, whilst only creating 124 g/km of CO2.

How Does it Drive?

In a world where most car manufacturers are now starting to turbocharge small engines to get more power and greater efficiency, the MG3 did feel a little left behind when it comes to power. But for most that won’t be too much of an issue as long as the car achieves close to its stated fuel efficiency rating of 51 mpg.

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Being such a small hatch, despite taking 10.9 seconds to get to 60 mph, the car still does feel playful. The turning circle is great, you can throw the car around roundabouts pretty well and you really can just use 100% of the car all the time.

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Another benefit to driving the MG3 is that it is really low effort to drive. All of the controls are really light to use and can make a long or difficult journey that little bit easier. The car isn’t really too complicated either. All of the controls are well placed and do what they say on the tin.

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I got to try the car out on a fairly long motorway journey during my testing and the car was decent to use on the motorway. Overtaking was no issue for this 1.5 litre engine. One thing I noticed during my test, and definitely something that ticks a box for me, was that the car is pretty quiet at around 70 mph, this can really help make a long journey more sustainable.

What’s it Like Inside?

The MG3 has a practical, yet funky interior. One of the first things that caught my eye was the cloth seats that featured some bold and stylish designs in red down the middle helping to jazz up the interior.

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The rest of the interior uses a lot of plastics and does feel like the quality could be improved slightly, but at the price point I don’t think you can expect much more. The central console of the car holds the stereo system which will play FM/DAB radio, CD and Bluetooth music streaming. Underneath are the heating controls for the car, which feel very retro and fun to use, especially when adjusting the temperature from hot to cold and you get a brilliant transition from red to blue on the dial.

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The interior of the car of course does feel basic but you are getting it at a bargain price. MG don’t have a built in sat-nav in their top model, the 3STYLE, but do supply a selection of phone holders for drivers to mount and use their phone’s sat-nav, which I think is a fair compromise.

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The Experience

Driving an MG in England is always a good feeling and the MG3 still lives up to part of that. The MG3 is stylish, very funky and fun to drive. I love just how customisable the cars are. It gives you a great sense of ownership knowing that you are less likely to see a car configured the same way as yours around. And if you do then it is prime opportunity to have a chat and make a new friend.

Ross Jukes Photography-Birmingham based Automotive Photographer - www.rossjukesphoto.com

Verdict

Buying a new car, for most people the decision normally just comes down to price, which puts the MG3 at a great advantage to start and then when you factor in the car’s coolness, the funky design and practicality it is actually a really good deal. There are some very minor quality aspects of the car that I would like to see improved but they are certainly not something that would put me off, considering the cost of the car. I am sure MG will go on to sell lots of the MG3.

Ross Jukes Photography-Birmingham based Automotive Photographer - www.rossjukesphoto.com

Video Highlights

Specification

MG3 3STYLE 

  • Price: £10,449
  • Engine: 1.5-Litre naturally aspired
  • Power: 106bhp
  • Torque: 137Nm
  • Transmission: 5 Speed Manual
  • 0-62mph: 10.9 Seconds
  • Top speed: 108mph
  • Weight: 1,1368kg
  • Economy combined: 51mpg
  • CO2: 124g/km

Full Gallery

Author: Paul Hadley

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