Morris Garages (MG) – Chinese DNA has got into what was originally a British brand


MG showroom and MG NB sports car
MG is a British automotive brand that was found by Cecil Kimber in the 1920s. The brand went through a lot of ownership changes over the years. Initially, it was a retail sales and service center in Oxford belonging to William Morris. The business manager Cecil Kimber was the driving force behind MG. MG was known for their two seater open Sports cars.
MG Badge
In 1930, a separate MG car company limited was incorporated which Morris owned alone before selling it, which later formed Morris Motors Limited.  The Morris Motors Limited then merged with another British automaker Austin to form British Motor Corporation Limited in 1952. They then went on and merged with British Leyland to form British Leyland Motor Corporation. The MG brand was still used by BLMC. Finally, in 2000 the MG Rover Group and all the assets of MG Rover were purchased by Nanjing Automobile Group.

Chinese History

MG and SAIC motors
Once all of MG was acquired by Nanjing Automobile Group it merged with SAIC Motor Corporation Limited in 2007. This turned MG brand from a sports car and Motorsports History maker to largest importer of Chinese made cars into the United Kingdom. The Longbridge plant was converted to an R&D center and all the cars were made in Shanghai facilities.
MG6 facelift
Initially, Nanjing Automobile continued production at the Longbridge plant. It produced MG TF which was mildly redeveloped and when SAIC took ownership of the MG brand, the next MG 6 was produced in China. However, MG motor also produced the MG 6 from 2013 in the UK before ending all the production in the UK in 2016 and shifting all the production to China and later shared with a factory in Thailand.

Indian History

MG India
MG came to India in 2019, MG India is fully owned by China’s SAIC motor. They purchased the manufacturing facility from general motors in Halol Gujarat in 2017. The plant has a capacity of 80,000 units per annum.

MG Hector

MG Hector and Baojun 530
The first model released in India was the MG Hector. The MG might be a British brand but it’s not so British anymore, the Hector was a rebadged version of the Baojun 530 which was produced by SAIC motors China. The car is produced in the Halol plant and is said to have 75% locally sourced components.


The MG ZS is a crossover that was launched in 2017 in china. The electrified version of the same is launched in India as the ZS EV. It has a range of 262km and with competitors like Tata Nexon it did not do well in the market.

MG Gloster

MG Gloster and Maxus D90
MG Gloster is the latest launch of the brand in India. It is a premium luxury SUV with off-road capabilities rivaling Ford endeavor, Toyota Fortuner and  Mahindra Alturas G4. Just like Hector the Gloster is also a rebadged Chinese, The Maxus D90 is what it’s called in China. It was launched in 2017 and is currently manufactured by SAIC motors China.

They want to be British

MG advertising
By now, you know how much of the brand is Chinese and British. Hence after recent India-China border conflicts the brand is making a desperate attempt to sound British. MG hired the British actor Benedict Cumberbatch as the brand ambassador of the company. The company made the first TV commercial that focused on “Internet Inside”, Soo not British! The MG Gloster comes with a Brit dynamic badge to prove that its British even if the car is designed in China. 
Strange thing in India is that being from a country that oppressed India for 2 centuries is a better brand image than being from China!

Image Credits:
Navigator84, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons
Chanokchon, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons
TheDriversHub, CC BY 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons
Jengtingchen, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons
MG India

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