Parkers overall rating: 3.2 out of 5 3.2
  • MG3 from 2018 on is a massive leap forward
  • Simple, effective infotainment system
  • A few crude details show platform's age and cost

The 2018 MG3 interior is impressive for the budget, with appealing design and good material quality for most touch points. Some out of eyeline trim is quite cheap still, however.

An impressive makeover has propelled the MG3 from mediocre to modern in one sweep of the designer's pen - or software, these days. Without being too fussy, the dashboard incorporates retro-modern circular airvents with easy to use flow controls, a Windows-esque touchscreen and clear dials behind the chunky steering wheel.

On upper specification models, that wheel is leather trimmed and features solid, easy to use cruise control and media buttons, providing a high quality tactile interface with the car. Apple CarPlay is supported on the 8.0-inch screen; like so many cars these days navigation is assumed to be the domain of the smartphone.

Large, robust plastic door trims look less sophisticated than the view straight ahead, and provide some storage in addition to the cupholder between the seats and reasonably large glovebox. The USB port is in a cubby ahead of the gearlever, which isn't generous enough for the larger smartphones popular now.

Some details remain very budget in feel, but compared to most rivals the MG3's interior is a very pleasant place to be.

  • Supportive seats are still fairly soft
  • Like the suspension, which allows body roll
  • Fundamentally good, but compromised

The 2018 MG3 attempts to meet the needs of both sporty and comfortable driving tastes, and does so surprisingly well

Square and upright for a small hatchback, the MG3's interior is remarkably spacious for the class, with good rear head- and leg-room allowing four adults to easily find space. The seats are firm, but not unyielding, with decent bolster supports for the front passengers that have enough give for larger occupants not to be uncomfortably pinched by the protrusions. Footwell space and pedal placement is good too, making it very easy to get comfortable in this MG.

Althoug the MG3 is a five-seater, the middle-rear position has an unyielding shape that’s not hugely comfortable for a fifth passenger. The body is wide, though, so for the class it will take three adults across the back in relatively good comfort.

Once you're seated comfortably, the MG3's weaknesses become apparent - particularly as speed builds. There's minimal soundproofing, and every noise you can think of takes centre stage at some point in the performance. You'll want the highest specification Exclusive's six-speaker stereo if you feel like drowning out the roar of tyres, rush of wind and crescendo of engine noise when travelling briskly.

Engine noise is perhaps the most significant downside of the MG3, despite all the improvements made to the latest model in 2018. It's subdued at low speeds and quite inoffensive, but attempt to use the maximum 106hp, and the unrefined racket will soon discourage you. Tall gearing keeps it quiet at motorway speeds, thankfully.

Unusually, the air-conditioning's noises and impact on power are surprisingly obvious - unlike their effectiveness in the cabin. There's a digital temperature dial with on-screen display, but it feels like a much cruder system behind the controls.