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MG

New Car Review: MG ZS EV

Published 1st November 2022Read Time 19 min

Good Stuff 👍

Incredible value, MG Pilot system, Range

Bad Stuff 👎

Not particularly refined, Waiting list

What is the MG ZS EV?

Excellent value mid-sized all-electric SUV

MG is well known in Ireland for small sports cars. After a turbulent few decades, the brand is now owned by Chinese manufacturing giant SAIC motors. They produce EVs under various brand names, and have rebadged some versions for the Irish market of late. The MG5 and MG ZS EV proved a big hit with Irish buyers, and now with refreshed versions are carving out a waiting list that stretches to nearly a year.

What makes the MG ZS EV different?

The MG ZS EV is carving out a little niche as a really good value option. It may lack the finesse of something like an Audi Q4 etron, or the space of a Tesla Model Y. However, it gives a huge amount of spec as standard, along with good power and range at a price far lower than the competition.

What does the MG ZS EV look like?

Much improved

The older MG ZS EV wasn’t exactly an inspiring sight, but the refreshed version we had on test is a big improvement. The front grille is now completely closed off with a honey-comb effect that houses the MG badge and charging flap.

From the side, the MG cuts a familiar mid-sized SUV silhouette. 17” alloys are covered by aero hubcaps that help with range, but they do look well with two-tone silver and black colouring.

What colours are available on the MG ZS EV?

There are a total of five colours to choose from on the MG ZS EV: Black Pearl, Brilliant Blue, Monument Silver, Dynamic Red and Arctic White. Our test car was blue, which is probably our favourite colour choice for the ZS EV.

How about the looks of the MG ZS EV?

Much improved

The older MG ZS EV wasn’t exactly an inspiring sight, but the refreshed version we had on test is a big improvement. The front grille is now completely closed off with a honey-comb effect that houses the MG badge and charging flap.

From the side, the MG cuts a familiar mid-sized SUV silhouette. 17” alloys are covered by aero hubcaps that help with range, but they do look well with two-tone silver and black colouring.

What colours are available on the MG ZS EV?

There are a total of five colours to choose from on the MG ZS EV: Black Pearl, Brilliant Blue, Monument Silver, Dynamic Red and Arctic White. Our test car was blue, which is probably our favourite colour choice for the ZS EV.

What is the inside of the MG ZS EV like?

Quality that belies the price tag

Inside, MG have taken a real step up from the previous generation. Materials have been upgraded, and the overall feel is more stylish than you would expect from a car with such a price tag. Contrast stitching, carbon effect and a 10” infotainment screen all help the MG punch above its weight.

However, once you start to interact with the materials, you realise that the interior probably looks a little better than it actually is. There is a good deal of cheaper plastics, the carbon effect dash is patterned soft touch plastic, and the door trim features a lot of cheaper plastics. In the MG’s defence though, it is still excellent for the price, and we wouldn’t complain at all.

What tech features does the MG ZS EV have?

The MG has a good level of tech. You get a whole lot as standard, and the MG really puts it up to a lot of other manufacturers that are charging nearly double the amount for the same features.

The MG Pilot system is hugely impressive. The adaptive cruise control makes long trips much easier. It was especially welcome to us on a day when we had to do 400km of motorway driving. We arrived home much less tired than we normally would after a trip like that.

You get access to the iSmart App, which allows you to find your parked car, remotely unlock, and even set the climate control remotely. The 360 degree camera is complimented by a host of sensors that make parking easier in tight spots.

Is there good space in the MG ZS EV?

Plenty of space for 5 adults and a few suitcases

The MG ZS EV is a little shorter than you might expect at 4.32m long. So the space isn’t cavernous, but it certainly is decent. The boot measures 448 litres, and expands out to 1,166 litres with the seats folded down.

Space up front is good, and it feels very open and airy thanks to the sunroof. In the back, we tested space for four adults of 6ft 2inches, and found there was just about enough space. A fifth adult in the back would find things a little tight. Having said that, there’s plenty of space for four average sized adults and a few suitcases in the boot.

What is the MG ZS EV like to drive?

Surprisingly fast. Comfortable, but a little wafty

The MG Pilot system includes an impressive adaptive cruise control system. It’s not the best we’ve come across but it’s only beaten by cars that are significantly more expensive such as the Tesla Model Y. It makes long motorway drives in the MG ZS EV much easier.

The ZS EV isn’t exactly a driver’s car. It’s on bigger squishy tyres that absorb those little bumps, and the suspension is softly sprung. This means it’s quite comfortable for the kind of driving that we do most of the time. But it means that there’s a bit of body roll in corners, and it wouldn’t be our first choice for a spirited drive through the Wicklow Mountains on a sunny Sunday afternoon.

Is the MG ZS EV fast?

The MG ZS EV is surprisingly powerful. It has a front-wheel drive 115kW motor. That puts out 156PS and 280Nm torque. So there’s plenty of poke there to get you up to speed, overtake and merge lanes on the motorway. The 0-100 km/h time is 8.4 seconds, and the top speed goes up to 175 km/h.

“Inside, MG have taken a real step up from the previous generation”
Blake Boland

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Which MG ZS EV should I buy?

Our choice is the Long-Range Exclusive

There are four different choices when it comes to configuring the MG ZS EV. So, it’s worth looking at the various options to figure out what’s best for you:

MG ZS EV Standard Range – Excite

The MG ZS EV Standard range costs from €31,995. For that, you get the Excite spec which is still nicely appointed but misses out on some of the features of the Exclusive. You get the 51.1kWh battery which has a real-world range of about 270km. It also has a slightly smaller motor, but the difference in acceleration is negligible.

MG ZS EV Standard Range – Exclusive

If you don’t need the range, but still want a few extra creature comforts, then this is the spec for you. The price is €34,995. You get the same battery, range and acceleration, but with a few extras such as the 360-degree cameras and leather heated seats.

MG ZS EV Long Range – Excite

If range is an issue for you, or perhaps it’s your first EV, then the Long Range gives you a nice little comfort blanket. The 72.6kWh battery will give you a real-world range of about 370km, and will likely get you above 400km if you’re not on the motorway.

Prices for the Excite spec are actually cheaper, starting at €34,495. You miss out on some of the extras, but that won’t trouble some people looking for a great value EV with a good range.

MG ZS EV Long Range – Exclusive

Prices for the higher spec Exclusive and the Long Range battery start from €37,495. This will likely be MG’s most in-demand option as the difference in price is so small from the lower spec variants with smaller batteries.

Is the MG ZS EV safe?

All the safety features expected

The MG ZS EV has a whole raft of safety features thanks to the advanced MG Pilot system. It is equipped with numerous cameras and sensors around the car that help avoid accidents. Other features include ABS and EBD, front seatbelt pre-tensioner and limiter, and multiple airbags including side curtain.

The earlier model received a 5-star rating at the Euro NCAP, outperforming the petrol variant due to its additional active safety features.

Verdict 👀

The MG ZS EV has been such a success in the Irish market to date that waiting lists are now stretching up to 12 months. Considering the value for money, this is no surprise.

The ZS EV is not perfect. We found the screens to be a little laggy and grey scale. The feel inside is not particularly luxurious. The ride is a bit soft and you can feel the body roll in corners. However, when we start to think about these potential shortcomings, we pinch ourselves and remind ourselves of the price.

The MG gives you good range, plenty of power, more than enough space, and it is also ram packed with features that you don’t get on some other cars that are double the price! It is very impressive what you get compared to other EVs with similar price tags.

Spec Check ⚙️

MG ZS EV

Engine

Fully electric

Power

115kW, 156PS

Torque

280Nm

0-100km/h

8.6,, 8.4 seconds

Range

Standard Range - 320km, Long Range - 440km WLTP

Top Speed

175 km/h

Transmission

All electric single speed

CO2

0g/km

Annual Motor Tax

€120

Luggage Capacity

448 litres, 1,166 seats folded down

Price as tested

From €31,995 incl. grants.

For more information, visit MG Motor Ireland

 

 

 

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