We have had the 2021 MG ZS EV in the CarAdvice garage for quite some time, six months to be exact. It turns out this is a sufficient amount of time for the team to become well-acquainted with Australia's most affordable EV (which, as you'll see is a bit of a theme), and in many cases was the first electric car that some of the broader team have driven. So what did the Sydney office think about the ZS EV? Check out their feedback below.
Justin Narayan – Senior Journalist
The thing that surprised me most was value. It doesn't feel cheap, despite being Australia's most affordable electric SUV.
The cabin is well put together, and there are plenty of digital displays and screens everywhere making it feel like a mature product. On top of those techy points, there are some luxury items bolstering its value equation, like its opening panoramic sunroof.
In terms of delivering against the EV brief, it met expectations with regard to range and charging times. What I didn't like was the ride quality, which will require extra fettling to get right. It can feel coarse and bumpy over roads that are seemingly smooth, but that's as bad as the negatives get with the MG ZS EV.
Rob Margeit – Culture and Lifestyle Editor
Sam Purcell – Off-road Editor
Putting aside the whole ‘cheapest EV on the market’ argument for a moment, the MG ZS EV has a few other things going for it.
While 105kW is decent, the 353Nm is the more important figure to ponder for a town car. The torque is on tap instantly, and gives this little blue number some usable punch around town.
And through the adjustable ‘KERS’ button by the gearshifter, I was able to get one-pedal driving working smoothly enough around town. While other small SUVs do ride and steer better than the MG, I found it good enough for the purpose of a small town-bound SUV.
One potential negative for the ZS EV is highway driving range, which did take a bit of a beating on a longer highway run. Over 75km of highway driving, I used up around 100km of range – nearly half a tank. Wait, not a tank. A bank, maybe?
Electric motors clearly aren’t operating at their most efficient at higher speeds, and pushing the little MG through the air at 100km/h clearly has its effect. Also, you can see how beneficial the small bursts of recharging through braking – which happens more often around town – can be.
This highway range reduction isn’t something only experienced in the MG. All electric vehicles will suffer a similar fate to varying degrees. But it’s worth keeping in mind, especially if you’re moving into one from a petrol- or diesel-powered vehicle.
Otherwise, the MG is a good little town jigger. My kids fit in the back quite happily (and they love a sunroof), and we had enough room in the boot for a big load of groceries.
|2021 MG ZS EV|
|Power and torque||105kW / 353Nm|
|Drive type||Front-wheel drive|
|Boot volume||359L / 1187L|
|ANCAP safety rating||5-stars (tested 2019)|
|Warranty||5 years / unlimited km (battery is 8 years / 160,000km)|
|Driving range||263km (WLTP)|
|Charging time||80 per cent capacity in 40 mins on a 50kW fast-charger|
|Tow rating braked, unbraked||Unrated|
|Main competitors||Hyundai Kona, Nissan Leaf, Hyundai Ioniq|
Trent Nikolic – Managing Editor
Lucas Kennedy – Senior Video Producer
The appeal of a brand-new car has never been so alluring with MG pricing its SUV range so competitively. The brand has taken a page out of Kia and Hyundai's book to get bums in seats, and when you consider the environmental advantages of an electric car future, I hope all brands can follow suit.