Loved across the country for their innovative, performance-led prowess, the story of MG is one of ups and downs, and stops and starts. So while it's been a bit of a bumpy ride for the famed manufacturer, they're definitely the strongest they've ever been under the brand's current ownership.

Below, we'll take a look at the storied history of MG Motors to see what milestones and checkpoints they've crossed along the way. We'll also shine a light on some of the most frequently asked questions about MG that you may be wondering about too.

The history of MG Motors

Ready to explore MG's history in more detail? Here's how they've evolved from when they were first founded in 1924 all the way up the present day.


-1924: MG is first established by British motoring pioneer William Morris. Behind the scenes however, it's General Manager Cecil Kimber who proposes the idea of faster cars with a sportier look. To do this, Kimber re-bodies and tunes up existing Morris car models.

The same year, MG releases its first model: the 14/28 Super Sports. With a top speed of 65mph, the car is actually the existing Morris Oxford fitted with a two-seater body.

-1928: The car is re-badged with the iconic with the legendary octagonal MG logo.


-1930: The MG Car Club forms at the Roebuck Hotel near Stevenage when 30 MG owners attend a meeting. By 1933, the enthusiasts' club reached over 500 members - and it's still going strong today!

-1931: The MG EX120, nicknamed The Magic Midget, sets a land speed record by becoming the first 750cc car to exceed 100mph - it logs a top speed of 103.13mph.

-1933: More performance plaudits follow when MG becomes the first non-Italian brand to win the Mille Miglia (1000 Mile) race in Italy.


-1945: In a move away from its more traditional classic coupes, MG introduces the T-Type line-up - a more adventurous looking vehicle that proves a huge hit with American servicemen in the UK during World War II. The USA would go onto become MG's most important export market.


-1950: Known as MGLive! today, the first Silverstone International Race Meeting is held. It's been a calendar event each year ever since.

-1952: Following World War II, a restructured British motor industry sees MG incorporated into one company alongside its partners Morris and Riley, as well as its rivals Austin Wolseley.

-1956: The stylish LHD MGA 1500 roadster goes to market, marking the production of 100,000 cars.

-1957: In another record breaking feat, the EX181 reaches an unbelievable 245.65mph on the Bonneville Salts courtesy of none other than Sir Stirling Moss. Two years later, this record is broken again by American driver Phil Hill with a speed of 254.91mph - it's still the fastest MG car ever.


-1962: MG makes inroads into the family market with the 1100/1300 range, available in two- and four-door versions. The range proves to be a huge hit.

-1967: The brand gets a serious boost after the release of the MGC CT model is delivered to the now King Charles. The vehicle now belongs to Prince William.

-1968: Leyland Motors merges with BMC to form British Leyland. Under this, MG works alongside Jaguar, Rover and Triumph.


-1975: Continuing with the brand's royal involvement, MG celebrate the production of its one millionth car just in time for Queen Elizabeth II's Silver Jubilee. It even featured jubilee GT livery and wheels.


-1982: The 80s were not a successful decade from British Leyland. Despite this, MG weathers the choppy waters and continued to remain popular thanks to the launch of the MG Metro 1300. One of the first "hot hatchbacks" on the market (a more performance-led hatchback), it's followed by the faster MG Metro Turbo a year later.

-1985: Rally car racing surges in popularity. MG get in on the rise of rallying with the MG Metro 6R4, complete with a 3.0 V6 engine and capable of 410bhp.


-1990: After a twenty-year sabbatical, the MG Car Club re-opens with official club headquarters named after Cecil Kimber. Its location? The same road on which MG's original factory operated.

-1995: Its first sports car since 1962, the MGF proves a huge hit across most of the world. However, it is never released in the USA. Still, the car's mid-engine and gas suspension makes it something of a game changer.


-2001: After BMW sells its interest in the Rover Group, MG merges with them to form the MG Rover Group.

-2003: The MG XPower SV is unleashed. With its stylish looks, carbon-fibre body and Mustang-source 4.6-litre V8, it's a total stand out - but only 100 of them were ever made before MG Rover's collapse in 2005.

-2007: With many believing it to be the end for MG, the manufacturer resumes production in China.


-2012: The return of MG marks its return to the British Touring Car Championship - driver Jason Plato scores consecutive third place finishes in 2012 and 2013.

-2015: The MG GS launches - the first SUV to be produced by the manufacturer. SUV production would continue across the decade and beyond, with the ZS, RX5 and HS all proving popular entries into their range.


-2020: The MG ZS EV is unveiled, bringing family-friendly, zero-emission driving to the market.

-2021: With the release of the MG RX8 Black Edition, MG produces its largest 7-seater SUV.

-2022: The manufacturer’s first fully-electric hatchback car, the MG4 EV, hits the road to rave reviews and a whole host of incredible awards.

-2023: The MG4 XPower optimises the MG4 further thanks to a dual-motor build and speedy performance. It’s a lot more affordable than you might think too!

Who owns MG cars?

Although it is headquartered in London, MG is currently owned by the Shanghai-based, Chinese state owned automaker SAIC Motor, who took over from its previous Chinese owners Nanjing Automobile in 2007.

Where are MG cars made?

The manufacturing of MG vehicles takes place in plants across China, Thailand and India.

What does MG stand for?

The MG initials stand for Morris Garages, after Cecil Kimber's boss William Morris, with Kimber choosing the name as a mark of respect.

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