New MG 3 at Geneva has hybrid technology 2 generations ahead of Japan

Reading Time: 4 minutes

News like this to your inbox or phone?

Weekly summary to your inbox

Never miss and important news

Get Instant notification once the news is published.

MG showed today its third generation MG 3 to the public at the Geneva Motor Show. Destined for sale in Europe and the Asia-Pacific region the car will be the first SAIC produced car to feature a hybrid powertrain, consisting of a 1.5 liter engine and an electric motor.

- Advertisement -

The MG 3 name was first used on the NAC produced Streetwise version of the old Rover 25. SAIC then used the name for a new car which went on sale in 2011. The long overdue third generation replacement marks an evolution in looks over the outgoing car.

It had a sporty look with sharp lines and headlight cluster. In keeping with the current MG ICE range face there is a large grille with boomerang shaped air intakes on both sides. Although there is a carbon fiber looking front lip this is likely made of another material to keep costs down.

- Advertisement -

Internally the car has a similar layout to the MG 4 EV with separate LCD instrument screen and a floating central screen, the steering wheel is also near identical. However the MG 3 gains a row of physical switches under the main screen. The interior is black and the upholstery has diamond stitching. Judging from the pictures materials do not appear to be very good quality.

The old MG 3 came originally with a choice of 1.3 or 1.5 liter engines although the smaller engine was dropped at the time of the second facelift. At launch the new car will come with a 1.5 liter hybrid setup coupled to a 3 speed hybrid automatic transmission. SAIC are referring to the system as Hybrid Plus.

Producing 75 kW the engine when combined with a 100 kW electric motor produce a combined 143 kW in the MG 3 Hybrid+. Using a 1.83 kWh battery SAIC claims there is an extensive electric-only driving range with fuel economy figures of 64 mpg (4.4 l/100km) and 100 g/km CO2.

- Advertisement -

Zhao Aimin, Secretary of the Party Committee and Deputy General Manager of SAIC International, claims that that the system is two generations ahead of Japanese systems. However, other than saying SAIC had an advantage in the inductance of electric motors, and that after increasing the battery power the handling feels better when starting and accelerating he didn’t give any more details supporting the claim.

The hybrid system operates in a number of different modes:

EV – Running on electric-only power for as long as charge allows
Series – Engine runs through to the generator, which powers the electric motor for drive
Series and Charge – Series driving, plus topping-up the battery when under low-load
Drive and Charge – Engine drives the wheels, while also charging the battery through the generator
Parallel – Both engine and electric motor power the wheels

Editor’s note:

The MG 3 for many years was MG’s best selling and best handling car. However, SAIC tried to get far more mileage out of the car than was good for it without ever overhauling the powertrain options. The new car really should have happened five years ago but judging by the looks it should do well. Whether the hybrid really is that advanced or not remains to be seen but it will certainly make this model good for the next few years.

- Advertisement -
- Advertisement -



Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

- Advertisement -