MG TF LE500 production scheduled | CAR Magazine

MG TF LE500 production scheduled

Published: 08 May 2008 Updated: 26 January 2015

Another twist in the will-they-won’t-they MG TF saga. The company has announced that production of the roadster will start again at Longbridge from early August 2008, and cars will be in dealerships by September.

The first 500 cars off the Longbridge line will be the limited-edition, high-spec LE500. The regular TF will follow, and all cars will feature new interiors, exterior tweaks and an updated K-series engine.

So does the reborn TF mean Longbridge is open for business again? 

No figures are currently available from NAC with regards to the number of workers expected to be employed on the production line. But CAR’s sources suggest it won’t be very many…

The MG TF will be sold through a new network of dealers. NAC UK (Nanjing Automobile Corporation), MG’s parent company, currently holds 57 letters of intent from prospective dealers and hopes to have more than 100 franchises in place by the time it has a new model range on sale.

The MG TF: a history of delays

Production of the TF has been delayed by nearly a year. The car was originally set for production in September 2007, but this was delayed. NAC then announced a ‘fluid’ launch date for spring 2008, with the delay attributed to NAC’s merger with SAIC (Shanghai Automotive Industry Corporation), its rival bidder for MG Rover in 2005. The merger has again been blamed for this second TF delay.

More details on the TF and a new range of MG-badged cars are expected next week.

By Ben Pulman

Ex-CAR editor-at-large