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MG Extender pickup – famous but faded British brand goes trucking mad

  • First ever MG pickup revealed
  • On-sale in Thailand, well-equipped
  • Based on LDV Maxus T70

MG Extender pickup trunk - front view, grey

The MG Extender is not, in fact, the latest in our series of stories about one-off pickup trucks (see the Skoda Mountiaq and BMW X7 Pick-up concept for more on that kind of thing), but an actual full production model. It’s just not one that you’re able to buy in the UK.

Still, the idea that the famous British sports car badge can now be found on the nose of a pickup – even one that’s presently only on sale in Thailand – is intriguing enough for a few minutes’ read, don’t you think?

What is the MG Extender?

Dubiously named, for starters. But beyond that it’s a pickup at the larger end of the scale of the types we generally get in the UK – meaning that if it were ever to make it here it would be going head-to-head with the likes of the Ford Ranger, Toyota Hilux, Mitsubishi L200 and SsangYong Musso.

Available as a Double Cab and a Giant Cab (MG-speak for an extended cab model – meaning smaller rear seats but a longer load area), it’s powered by a 2.0-litre turbodiesel engine that produces 161hp and 375Nm, and only the very top-of-the-range six-speed automatic transmission version gets four-wheel drive.

The rest are rear-wheel drive. A six-speed manual gearbox is fitted as standard.

Has MG built a pickup before?

No, it has not – and to be perfectly honest, it’s not really building one now. Rather, this is a re-badged version of something called a Maxus T70.

Both the MG brand and Maxus are these days owned by Chinese automotive giant SAIC Motor, hence the tie-up between them.

The Maxus has a more powerful 218hp twin-turbo version of the MG’s single-turbo 2.0-litre engine, so it isn’t just a case of a different face here.

Will we ever see the MG Extender pickup in the UK?

The official word from the UK press office is that ‘there are no plans’ to import the Extender into Britain.

But we are expecting to see the Maxus T70 go on sale here in 2020, when LDV plans to begin selling it as an extension to its van range. The 218hp 2.0-litre engine is also set to appear in an all-new V80 large van around the same time.

How much does the MG Extender cost?

The Extender is priced from 549,000 Thai baht – which is around £14,730 at today’s exchange rate.

Even in the Thai market that makes the MG a budget choice.

Is the MG pickup any good?

Unsurprisingly, we haven’t had the chance to try it for ourselves, but the newly-launched Extender does at least benefit from all the assets of the Maxus it’s based on.

Which is to say it has a generous load area and plenty of passenger space – not to mention a modern interior design and lots of standard equipment.

Also read:

>> New pickups coming soon – and recent launch round up

>> BMW X7 Pick-up concept – full details

>> Skoda Mountaiq – one-off pickup truck concept driven