Prices for the new MG GS SUV start at a budget-conscious £14,995, rising to just under £21,000.

That starting point undercuts the best-selling Nissan Qashqai by £3,500 but, on paper at least, the GS doesn’t look like £3,500 less car.

At 450cm long, it’s one of the bigger cars in the class, while the 1.5-litre turbo petrol engine produces a healthy 164bhp and 184lb/ft of torque. MG claims a 0-62mph time of 9.6secs, with Co2 emissions of 139g/km for the six-speed manual gearbox-equipped version. Other engines including a more powerful petrol motor and a diesel are expected to be added in due course.

A 7-speed dual-clutch ‘box is available on the top-spec model; either way, drive is channeled to the front wheels.

According to MG, the GS was entirely designed and engineered at the marque’s historical home of Longbridge. It looks suitably chunky and not unattractive, though the rear does have overtones of Pontiac Aztec. Hopefully the surprisingly good handling of the MG6 and MG3 will translate across, though hopefully not their complete lack of character.

Base-spec Explore models get cruise control, aircon and automatic headlights as standard; mid-level Excite adds DAB radio, Bluetooth and rear parking sensors. The top-grade Exclusive gets electric leather seats and satnav.

As the first next-gen MG, it will interesting to see if the GS resolves the interior quality issues suffered by the MG6 and MG3, and whether or not the Longbridge engineers have managed to inject a bit of soul.

For more information click here

By Only Motors