The next-generation MG 3 is due in Australia sometime in 2024, and will offer both petrol and hybrid powertrains.
MG’s new hatchback, recently revealed in a European patent filing, will use the same platform as the i5 from fellow SAIC Motor brand Roewe.
The i5 entered production in 2017, and an electric wagon version is sold in Europe as the MG 5.
However, MG Motor Australia CEO Peter Ciao says it’s unlikely to earn a five-star ANCAP safety rating.
“It will definitely be a hybrid and it will have a lot more safety equipment, too, but it won’t get a five-star safety rating,” Mr Ciao told CarExpert.
“It’s important that MG Australia offers some of the most affordable cars in the segments we compete in and we want to continue that with the new MG 3,” he added.
The new MG 3 will include autonomous emergency braking, mandatory on all newly introduced cars in Australia from March 2023. The current model doesn’t have this feature.
Other new safety technology we are likely to see on the next MG 3 include traffic sign recognition, lane-keep assist, and tyre-pressure monitoring.
The company has yet to detail the new MG 3’s hybrid powertrain, but it offers such an option in its ZS-based VS SUV in Thailand.
The VS marries a 1.5-litre four-cylinder petrol engine making 80kW and 142Nm with a 70kW/200Nm electric motor and a 2.1kWh lithium-ion battery.
The hybrid crossover has a combined power output of 130kW, with claimed fuel consumption as low as 5.8L per 100kms.
Year-to-date, the diminutive MG 3 is the best-selling vehicle in its segment and has a 42 per cent share – a greater share than the second-place Suzuki Swift (17.8 per cent) and third-place Kia Rio (16.0 per cent) combined.
While the current generation was launched here in 2016, and facelifted in 2018, it first entered production in China in 2011.
Back in 2014, MG 3 received a three-star safety rating from Euro NCAP. That was too old for ANCAP to carry over without new testing as this predated ANCAP’s harmonisation of its testing protocols with Euro NCAP’s.
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