2024 MG Cyberster
This month, our news pages are chiefly dominated by one thing – the production version of the MG Cyberster, which we first saw two years ago as a concept; but there is a twist – what you see here are extremely high quality digital images, even though they look like the real thing. Many expected to see the car ‘in the flesh’ at the April 2023 Shanghai Motor Show, but SAIC chose instead to reveal the shape and style of the road-going car (along with some of the technical details – see below) as a series of stunning pictures and a video presentation.
There are reasons behind this, of course; the on-sale date is not likely to be before early 2024 (SAIC and MG Motor in turn are sticking to the idea of 1924 as being the year representing the ‘birth of MG’) and so they do not want to show their entire hand; some details of the interior were not revealed, for example, although it seems that perhaps the controversial ‘yoke’ style steering wheel seen in previous scoop photos may not be the standard fitment. However, we also know that at least one full-size running prototype is in the UK, where it has received limited exposure to dealers and distributors ahead of any further pre-launch appearances.
In the Chinese press release issued during the Shanghai Show, we received a clue about the next steps in the statement: ‘This July, MG Cyberster is about to meet all car enthusiasts, providing a perfect answer for global car enthusiasts who continue to follow MG Cyberster.’ Meanwhile the UK press release hinted at sales in the summer of next year.
Carl Gotham, the Director of SAIC’s ‘Advanced London Studio’, the team of which did most of the exterior design work on the car, said ‘Our intention was to create a completely new roadster ready for a new generation of sports car drivers and which opens a bold and compelling new chapter for MG. The focus for Cyberster was to create a design that was respectful of the brand’s illustrious past and to bring back that sporting bloodline, while also being absolutely clear that it should be modern and forward-facing like the MG of today, completely in-tune with the rapid transition to electric vehicles.’
Meanwhile Guy Pigounakis, MG Motor UK’s Commercial Director, added: ‘this is the perfect time to introduce an MG that completely reconnects with our performance DNA and is designed to enthral the driver on every level. MG is all set for an electric, sporting future and it is the perfect way to start celebrating our 100th anniversary.’ Watch out for more Cyberster news in your favourite MG magazine!
The distinctive scissor doors – usually the preserve of high-priced exotica (or the occasional less expensive ‘customisation’ of something more mundane!) have evidently survived the transition from pure show concept to road-going sports car Chinese media ‘scoops’ of the new car have been seen for a number of months; in the weeks prior to the Shanghai Motor Show in April, a pre-production Cyberster could be spotted on local roads with a special livery, obviously intended to spark interest. The roof in the process of opening; it appears to follow conventional European practices and is none the worse for that.
Overhead view of the 2021 concept, with no provision for any kind of roof system, and a central feature strip running longitudinally from the front bumper to the windscreen…… the 2023 car has dispensed with some of the earlier concept features, but the black ‘boot lid’ remains.
Patent images imply that there may be at least two choices of wheel style; perhaps they will help distinguish the rear-wheel-drive and twin-motor four-wheel-drive variants?
See if you can spot the ‘party piece’ as the two little brown flaps fold over during the hood stowing sequence; we bet the engineers loved designing that!
The Cyberster in 2023 form looks really good from the side view; the ‘laser belt’ of the 2021 concept has been dropped.
From these elevated views, the Cyberster arguably looks more conventional. The black boot lid with the integrated chrome boot badge is a neat touch; the badge harks back to the similar arrangements on the MGA and MGB.
The ‘Kamm back’ tail of the Cyberster has survived, along with the arrow-style tail-lamps; the latter will no doubt become less controversial with familiarity, but either way they are certainly a talking point.
Here are graphic images for the 2021 concept from that year’s Shanghai Show; those oval ‘eye’ headlamps were a stunning feature but their means of operation would probably not have been practicable; a shame in our view, as the shape was nicer.
The nose of the production Cyberster has lost a little of the exotic feel of the concept, which had more organic headlamps which would almost certainly have proved difficult – if not impossible – to realise in a legally certified form. The ‘chin’ spoiler is still bold but less pronounced than that on the 2021 concept.
Low, sleek and lithe, the Cyberster has nice conventional roadster proportions; there is no sense of a squashed or distorted SUV here, unlike some of the soft-top conversions of such car offered by a handful of other car makers.