I received a call from a very professional sounding salesman from West Riding MG in Bradford today in response to an email enquiry I made at the weekend. He looked at a part-x deal for my 54 ZT135Cdti and came back with a figure I wasn't happy with. His demonstrator on the other hand was of great interest and after confirming that it was 174g/km CO2 version I arranged to make the 100 mile round trip to look it over, discuss further and purchase.
I arrived at the showroom that to my surprise had MG totems and signs proudly displayed. As expected the demonstrator was prominently parked in the car park looking gleaming in Arctic White. I was genuinely quite excited at this point, having said to my Dad on the way up "I just know I will buy it as soon as I drive it".
There were two used TSEs in the bright, clean and spacious showroom that is shared with Toyota but the brands are in very distinct halves. There was a Red pre reg SE GT in the carpark and what appeared to be two new MGs round the back still covered in the protective film from the factory.
I headed straight for the White demonstrator I had travelled to see and it looked everything I had expected it to from the internet pictures I have seen. The salesman joined us, tentatively guessing that we were his expected visitors.
I sat in the driving seat and tried to take everything in, the plastics seemed fine to me even the rotary wheels in the steering wheel were fine. My excitement upon seeing the exterior had gone though, this is no MGZT it has no ambience. I can still remember the excitement I felt when I first sat in a MGZT almost 10 years ago, the same excitement was felt by my Dad and over the following months we both bought new ones and I bought a new TF at the same time for the same reason.
Back to the exterior the doors shut with a nice clunk and the panel fit is superb. The paint appears to be better than pretty much every BMW I have ever seen (no orange peel effect). we sorted out the insurance for the test drive and due to the central Bradford rush hour traffic the salesman came along to guide us around.
The controls seem perfectly acceptable, everything where you expect it and positive in operation. I didn't test performance as it is of no interest to me. The car drives solidly without any noises and my Dad commented on how quiet it was, he does have a 190 though so he would.
I am a cash buyer and my Wife fully expected me to return with a new car, all I needed was for this car to set my pulse racing a little and I am so disappointed to say it didn't. It is a nice car in every respect I can't actually fault any aspect of it other than it didn't excite me. It could have been any car from any brand and it displayed no MG DNA to me.
We negotiated on price as this was now the only feature of the car that would secure a sale to me. There is no way I can give away my perfectly sound MGZT for £750, but that is apparently all it is worth. Even though this MG6 is very competitively priced we were £500 away from a price that would have had me sign there and then.
I am not saying I won't buy it tomorrow, after I have slept on it. I am not saying I won'y buy a different MG6 at some point in the next few weeks but I genuinely wish it had more to attract me than a low price and an MG badge.
Good honest opinion!
I'm not against the MG6 (I have not even driven one) but I am very picky, and I respect the seriousness of being selective when buying a car. You will spend a large part of your life sitting in your car, so it needs to be liked.
Similarly, my Rover 75 V6/180hp is worth next to nothing as a trade-in. Similarly, I have driven many new cars in search of a replacement. Similarly, I have (so far) dismissed each one because the new cars are not
I recommend trying the Lexus 200CT. Its not going to put a massive grin on your face, but its low running costs and quiet drive will impress you. It didn't win my signature but on sensible costs it came closer than Jaguar and Mercedes. Jaguar was fun, but the upkeep made me feel like a mug.
I have not had a chance to try an MG6. Audi A4/A5 had me murmuring for a while, and I've ear-marked the Lexus 250 V6. I cannot yet decide, and as the owner of a comfortable 75 I have no need to rush.
Vauxhall, Ford, Land-Rover, Proton, Renault and BMW were dismissed in my tests which focused on driving. They were all inferior to an old 75/ZT for the physical qualities
that matter to me (none of them lasted long enough for their costs to be considered).
P.S. Since starting my search for a new car, I bought a 2nd Rover 75 (diesel) for £500. My jaw drops when I think about how much you get with a 75/ZT these days. I also sneakily suspect that economic recessions are unlikely environments in which to discover new high-quality products..