MG Australia will expand its passenger range in the fourth quarter of 2022 with the launch of the petrol-powered MG5 sedan – a rival to the Toyota Corolla, Mazda 3 and Kia Cerato.

    It will be the first MG Australia product sourced from the Chinese company’s Thailand plant, which is a hub for much of its ASEAN right-hand drive operations.

    At 4675mm nose to tail, the MG5 is 45mm longer than the Corolla, and 14mm shorter than a Skoda Octavia liftback. That puts it at the larger end of the Small Car segment.

    While sedan sales are declining every year now, the MG5 will nevertheless give the newly minted top 10 sales player an incremental boost, and undercut all competitors.

    The MG5 will give the company a second passenger vehicle alongside the MG3 light car – the segment top-seller – and will become its fourth model: the others being the MG3, ZS and HS.

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    However, despite using the corporate tagline ‘Electric for Everyone’, MG Australia has no current plans to sell the electric MG5 wagon option, preferring to focus on the ZS EV – itself due for a sizeable overhaul next year.

    Power for the MG5 in Thailand comes from a low-output 1.5-litre with just 84kW and 150Nm, but you can expect Australian versions will instead use the more powerful 115kW and 230Nm 1.3 turbo from the ZST.

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    Features include a 10.0-inch touchscreen and a digitised cluster. It also comes with a surround-view camera, six airbags, and driver assist features like lane-keep assist and blind-spot monitoring.

    While we don’t know Australian pricing yet, you can bank on the MG undercutting all its better known competitors and offering a seven-year warranty. We’ll report more when we know more.

    The MG5 will represent the brand’s return to the small car segment in Australia, which it last competed in with the first-generation MG6.

    The almost mid-sized MG6 sedan and hatch were introduced here as part of the brand’s unsuccessful first launch under Chinese ownership in 2013, and the hatch was part of the brand’s more successful relaunch in 2016.

    Featuring underpinnings that could be traced back to the Rover 75, the MG6 wasn’t as popular as the brand’s other models. Just 900 were sold between 2017 and 2019, when it was discontinued.

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    Mike Costello
    Mike Costello is a Senior Contributor at CarExpert.
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