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MG Australia confirms next GS

China’s new mid-sized MG HS set to appear in Australia as the next GS

MG logo9 Aug 2018

MG MOTOR Australia has confirmed that the upcoming MG HS medium SUV will make it to Australia as the second-generation GS, probably in the latter half of 2019.
 
To be formally revealed at the Chengdu motor show in China next month, the HS is the production version of the MG X-Motion Concept revealed by MG parent company SAIC Motor in April at the Beijing motor show.
 
MG has just shown the new five-seat vehicle to Chinese motoring journalists at a preview event, but held back some essential details such as overall dimensions.
 
Speaking to GoAuto from an MG dealer conference in Brisbane, SAIC Motor Australia marketing director Danny Lenartic confirmed that the new SUV developed by China’s biggest automotive company is destined for the Australian market as the next GS, probably next year.
 
He said timing for right-hand-drive vehicle production had yet to be confirmed, as RHD engineering was still on-going.
 
Mr Lenartic said the car would be made in China for Australia, most likely debuting with MG’s 1.5-litre turbocharged four-cylinder petrol engine carried over from the existing GS, perhaps with “a few more ponies”.
 
“The jury is still out on the 2.0-litre turbo they have shown over there,” he said. “I hope so, but I just can’t say.”
 
The current GS – launched in Australia just last year after being on the Chinese market since 2015 – comes with a choice of two four-cylinder turbo petrol engines: 119kW/250Nm 1.5-litre and a 162kW/350Nm 2.0-litre.
 
According to Chinese media reports, the 1.5-litre engine’s power rating increases to 127kW, while the 2.0-litre engine in the new model has been ramped up to 170kW and 360Nm.
 
The latter gets a seven-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission and a big red SuperSport button attached to the steering wheel, indicating a form of sports driving mode.
 
Once again, the smaller engine will be in front-wheel-drive variants, while the larger engine will only be available in the all-wheel-drive flagship that, in Australia, currently goes under the name of Essence.
 
Design wise, the GS will dispense with the old-style closed-in MG nose and adopt an open grille design with a strong family resemblance to the newest ZS.
 
Overall dimensions are still under wraps, except for the wheelbase which has grown 70mm, to 2720mm, indicating that the GS might be edging closer to conventional medium SUV proportions.
 
A related SAIC SUV, the Roewe RX5, which sits on the same platform, is said to be 4545mm long – just 5mm shorter than the top-selling Mazda CX-5.
 
Such bigger dimensions would serve to open more of a gap between the GS and the one-size-smaller MG ZS that is 4314mm long.
 
Inside, the new GS gets an Audi-style fully digital instrument display, at least in upper variants shown in official pictures.
 
A 10.1-inch floating infotainment screen is also shown in the flagship variant that also gets leather upholstery, a panoramic sunroof, Bose sound system and ambient lighting with 64 colours.
 
Importantly for MG Motor Australia, which will be hoping for a high ANCAP safety rating for the new model, the HS/GS gets several new safety features, including semi-autonomous MG Pilot Driver that combines lane-keeping assist and adaptive cruise control.
 
In Australia where MG has 19 dealers with 22 showrooms to date, MG has sold 1252 vehicles to the end of July – a jump of 236 per cent on the same period of last year.
 
Most of the growth from two SUVs, with the ZS leading the charge with 789 sales and the GS accruing 164 sales.
 
MG’s two ageing passenger car models, the MG3 and MG6 Plus, have managed 72 and 227 sales respectively.

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