Stylish MG has lots to offer price conscious buyers

Stylish MG has lots to offer price conscious buyers

Stylish MG has lots to offer price conscious buyers.

IT carries an iconic British badge but these days MG is owned by Chinese car maker SAIC, and built in China. Gone are the days of sporty two seaters in favour of more populist SUVs, an estate and a very smart hatchback, and what by today’s standards are bargain prices. There is now a very capable range of EV power within the MG line-up too.

The latest MG ZS is a different matter though. Style is subjective, but most who saw my test model mentioned words like smart, stylish and quite a few admired the optional Battersea Blue paintwork. Inside the good vibes continue with decent legroom, a quality feel and premium look. The top of the range Exclusive model tested here has an extensive standard equipment tally and puts rivals to shame at the price.

Two engines are on offer, both petrol units, a 1.0-litre turbocharged three cylinder and a  more conventional 1.5-litre four cylinder. They are mated to a six speed manual or automatic transmission and a five speed manual with the 1.5-litre engine.

Prices for the range start from €20,476/£16,995 with my top of the range Exclusive model driving in at €25,727/£21,350, with the 1.0-litre power unit, six-speed manual gears and optional Battersea Blue paint finish.

Standard fare includes pretty much everything you would need including sat nav, cruise control, keyless entry and start, auto lights and wipers, heated front seats, faux leather upholstery, air conditioning, heated and powered door mirrors, 360 degree cameras, 10-inch touchscreen with Apple Car Play and Android Auto, electric seat adjustment and six speaker sound system. Phew!

On the road the ZS is a smooth and comfortable ride. The six-speed manual gearbox is a delight with a slick change and well-chosen ratios. Quiet and refined, with particularly comfortable seating, it has excellent steering and handles surprisingly well with minimal body roll.

MG’s new car profile is growing and they have relatively recently added an all-electric ZS, including a long-range version, the MG5 EV estate and a plug-in hybrid HS model.

MG models are increasingly gaining in build quality and feel, with the ZS representing especially good value. Compared to similarly priced rivals the MG will probably not hold its value to the same level, but in many cases looks and feels better quality, rides and drives better and is a very nice place to be for your daily commute and holiday drive.  

Facts at a Glance
  • Model: MG ZS Exclusive 1.0T GDi
  • Engine: 1.0-litre, 3-cylinder, turbocharged petrol
  • Gears: 6-Speed manual
  • Price: €25,727 (£21,350)
  • Performance: 0-100 kmh (60 mph) 10.5 seconds/Maximum Speed 180 kmh (112 mph)
  • Economy: 6.6l/100km (42.7 mpg) Combined driving
  • Emissions: 149 g/km

Model tested was UK-specification and equipment levels and prices may vary in other markets.

Written by

Mark Slack

If you're a petrol head you're in good hands with Mark Slack, whose expert take on the latest car releases will help you make your next purchase.