Currently reading: New MG 3 to be unveiled at Geneva motor show
Supermini is set to go hybrid but remain one of UK's cheapest cars; take design influence from Cyberster

MG has confirmed that it will unwrap the next-generation MG 3 at the Geneva motor show on 26 February.

The Chinese brand made the announcement on X, posting an undisguised image of the new supermini's front end.

Trademark filings from September previously revealed the exterior design of the new 3, confirming that it has taken influence from both the larger MG 4 hatchback and the new MG Cyberster flagship sports car.

Unlike those cars, though, the new 3 is set to stay true to its affordable billing by sticking with petrol power rather than switching to a pricier electric drivetrain - a decision seemingly corroborated by the new car's lengthy front overhang, sizeable grille and a filler cap at the rear that's clearly too small to accommodate a CCS charging socket.

The petrol-engined supermini is an increasingly rare breed in the UK, following the exits of likes of the Ford Fiesta and Kia Rio, and the current 3 is one of just three such cars still on sale for less than £15,000. 



Its successor is tipped to adopt emissions-reducing mild-hybrid technology, which – together with wider inflationary pressures and the introduction of heavily updated interior and driver-assist technology – will make it a more expensive proposition, but bosses are keen that it remains one of the market's most affordable new cars. 

The current 3 is a minor player compared with the MG ZS and MG HS compact SUVs, having taken just 2920 sales across Europe in the first half of 2023.

The figures don't stack up to convert the MG 3 to electric power, hence its continuation as an ICE model, MG UK commercial director Guy Pigounakis told Autocar recently.

“Developing a small electric car is only marginally cheaper than developing a bigger car,” he said. “Then half the price is battery, so it becomes a £25,000 car, which is unaffordable."

2024 Mg 3 patent filing right side


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The current 3 is the oldest model in the MG range, having been revealed in China back in 2011, since when it has received three facelifts. 

It was launched in the UK in 2013 with a starting price of £8695. Subsequent increases means it now costs from £13,565, but it remains one of the cheapest cars on sale in the UK.

The addition of electrification is likely to increase the price again, but it should still remain under £20,000.

Additional reporting by Nick Gibbs and Charlie Martin

Felix Page

Felix Page
Title: Deputy editor

Felix is Autocar's deputy editor, responsible for leading the brand's agenda-shaping coverage across all facets of the global automotive industry - both in print and online.

He has interviewed the most powerful and widely respected people in motoring, covered the reveals and launches of today's most important cars, and broken some of the biggest automotive stories of the last few years. 

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FastRenaultFan 19 September 2023
It looks just like a mazda 2 to me with an MG badge on it.
Chris C 19 September 2023

If you want a small cheap RHD MG EV check out the MG Comet being sold in India.

catnip 6 September 2023

The Autocar rendering doesn't look anything like the camouflaged version on test. I presume the latter isn't a mule?