MG ZS EV
By Bill McCarthy
Once an upmarket British marque, under Chinese ownership MG is firmly aimed at the family market offering, excellent value for money and a seven-year warranty.
Now the ZS EV has joined the race to electrification alongside the MG5 EV and the HS plug-in hybrid and offers excellent value for money.
It is a smart move because the ZS is a fine looking vehicle and the EV version deviates little from its plugin and petrol siblings.
In terms of price, as electric SUV/crossovers go, there’s nothing to match the MG, which can be bought for just under £27,500, inclusive of the Government EV grant.
The cosmetic changes include a different grille that has a cleverly hidden port for the charging point and bespoke alloys wheels, together with the green stripe on the number plate signifying an electric vehicle.
And while they are becoming more common, the car still attracts some curious gazes from passers-by.
While looking like the SUV/crossover that it is, it has some neat new design touches and the large and still famous MG badge adorning the grille.
And MG is also doing its bit to alleviate EV range anxiety with its latest 72.6kWh battery which delivers a driving range of up to 273 miles from a single charge on the WLTP combined cycle.
In addition, it’s quick, hitting 60mph in just over eight seconds and delivering 150-plus bhp.
It looks the SUV part with a muscular stance and full LED headlamps, while the interior is also impressive with a roomy cabin, much improved fixtures and fitting and cutting edge technology.
Centrepiece is the 10.1 inch colour touchscreen which is the brains of the car, controlling navigation, connectivity and infotainment while also standard is wireless mobile phone charging. It also features the MG iSMART app you can pre-start the climate control system to cool or heat the car, and also schedule battery charging.
There are three specifications, SE, Trophy and Trophy Connect driven here, with either the 51.1 kWh or 72.6 kWh battery, the lesser battery still has a claimed maximum range of just shy of 200 miles according to WLTP figures.
But like other electric models, get up to motorway speeds with the wipers and lights on the go and the range plummets alarmingly.
All models are well equipped with a 360-degree parking camera, air con, cruise control, USB connectivity with Bluetooth, electric windows and door mirrors, LED daytime running lights and a host of other goodies.
The Trophy model adds a couple of grand to the price and more bells and whistles with updated 10.1 inch floating colour touchscreen.
The interior is much more upmarket, with this model offering heated, leather-style powered front seat and multi-adjustable front passenger seat, new piano key buttons and better quality trim, fixtures and fittings.
Seats are supportive and there is excellent head and legroom for a car of its dimensions and all round vision is also good. Stowage space is impressive with a deep split-level boot offering a huge 470 litres.
It is a pleasant car to drive, a smooth and comfortable ride, with passengers well insulated from road and wind noise.
There is plenty of safety kit, including full complement of airbags, electronic stability programme, assisted emergency braking and hill launch assist.
There’s no doubt that MG’s growing success will continue with an ever-improving range and more models coming on stream. Add to that a hugely attractive price tag and that seven-year warranty.
MG ZS EV Trophy Connect
Mechanical: 151bhp, 72 kWh electric motor driving front wheels via auto gearbox
Max speed: 109mph
0-60mph: 8.2 seconds
Range: 273 miles (WLTP)
Insurance group: 11
CO2 emissions: 0g/km
Warranty: 7yrs/80,000 miles