MG’s new electric hatch headed for right-hand drive

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Images surface of MG’s upcoming Nissan Leaf rival, which could appear as a concept in April.

MG is set to unveil a new high-riding electric hatchback in the coming months – and right-hand drive sales for the UK of the five-door model are already being discussed, according to sources at parent company SAIC. Locally, the company’s executives have suggested they are interested in the model.

Exposed in prototype form in a series of photos uploaded to Chinese social media channels over the weekend (below), the new hatchback is planned to join the recently facelifted ZS EV and 5 EV in a three-strong line-up of electric MG models in the UK. The new MG Marvel-R, while confirmed for a European launch later this year, has not yet received approval for UK sales.

Although the project is shrouded in secrecy, we understand MG is planning to preview the new model as a concept at the Beijing motor show in April before unveiling the definitive production model during the second half of the year.

Right-hand-drive deliveries of the new hatchback, which will rival the Nissan Leaf and Mini Electric, are slated for 2023 in the UK. MG Australia already offers the MG ZS EV here, and this could well be another EV in the local line-up – although such information has not been confirmed by the company.

Chinese media reports suggest the new hatchback could replace the second-generation MG 3, which has been in production at MG’s Nanjing plant in China since 2011, offering the choice of both electric and combustion drivetrains.

Among the styling details identifying the prototype as an MG is the middle section of the hatchback’s distinctive front bumper, which is shaped similarly to that of the Chinese-owned car maker’s recent Cyberster roadster concept.

The new model also features a prominent shoulder line reminiscent of that seen on the ZS. Other details are obscured by camouflage wrap covering the bodywork, though images from underneath show the battery and reveal the early testing mule uses an independent rear suspension.

The new MG is described as being shorter than the ZS, which extends to 4314mm in length.

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