MG is one of the first automotive companies in India to shift toward EVs and Hybrids. ZS EV was launched in 2019 which is before Tata Nexon EV. However, it was launched after Hyundai Kona EV. When it comes to Hector, MG had launched a mild-hybrid with its top-spec petrol variants.
Mild hybrids are not exactly “Hybrids” and are used by various car manufacturers for bragging rights. Even Hector’s mild hybrid only allowed regenerative braking and a stop/start system. That’s about the extent that MG offered as a hybrid in India. But what if we told you, an MG Hector with a high voltage hybrid architecture has been revealed? Shocker, ain’t it? But it is true and is likely to translate into production soon. Let’s take a look.
When we say MG Hector, we actually mean Wuling Almaz in its Hybrid Concept form. Wuling Almaz, MG Hector, Chevrolet Captiva and Baojun 530 are all the same car underneath the badges. This Hybrid Concept car was showcased at Wuling’s booth at Indonesia Electric Motor Show 2022 at JCC Senayan Jakarta.
One look at the Hybrid Concept, it is immediately evident that it is based on Wuling Almaz RS. It gets RS-specific bumpers and whatnot. But Hybrid badging can be found on its tailgate and also its wheels are 18” in size, unlike Almaz RS which gets 17” alloy wheels. Rest of the body panels are identical to standard Wuling Almaz RS.
One thing to note is that MG is launching next-gen Hector soon. This sort of update is not found on Baojun 530, Chevrolet Captiva and Wuling Almaz. This suggests that next-gen of this vehicle will debut in India which might translate to other models in other markets as well. This next-gen Hector is highly unlikely to carry forward this hybrid powertrain, at least at launch.
Upcoming Hector is expected to bring interior overhauling, exterior upgrading and as well as bringing ADAS features too. As of now, MG Hector falls short when compared to Mahindra XUV700. It will retain its 1.5L turbo-petrol mild hybrid and 2.0L turbo-diesel engine options.
MG Hector Strong Hybrid which was showcased in Jakarta is not based on its existing 1.5L turbo-petrol unit. In fact, it is based on Wuling Xing Chen’s 2.0L petrol powertrain with strong hybrid architecture. Xing Chen is Xing Chi’s larger sibling and is also called Asta in certain international markets and come adorned with Wuling’s new Global Silver logo.
This new 2.0L powertrain on Almaz Hybrid Concept packs a 2,000cc engine with 134 bhp of power and 175 Nm of torque. It gets a dedicated hybrid automatic transmission with two electric motors named P1+P3 motor/generator unit. Combined peak output is at 174 bhp and 320 Nm. 2023 MG Hector Strong Hybrid claimed mileage is around 22 kmpl. This powertrain will draw juice from a Li-ion battery pack and can be driven on electric power alone for short bursts.
As demand for electric cars and hybrids increase, MG Hector Strong Hybrid is likely to be launched in India. Wuling Almaz Hybrid is expected to launch in Indonesia in October, though. One can hope the Hector strong hybrid comes to India sometime next year. By then, we will also have the 2023 Toyota Innova HyCross Hybrid in India.