Owner Review

2018 MG ZS Essence review

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I love this little car. It has great fuel economy with a punchy motor and super-smooth gearbox. I have noticed that as it runs in a bit, it really starts to perform. I have taken it on long road trips up country Victoria in the wet and cold, and up steep hills, and it has done it all with ease.

It has comfortable seating and plenty of storage room for luggage and shopping, a great sound system and Apple CarPlay works great, as does the Bluetooth. I can’t see MG going backwards from here with a seven-year warranty. I think MG is out to win a good slice of the market.

On the downside, an auto-lifting rear door would have been good, but you have to remember this is a budget vehicle that presents great value and looks for a great price. The sunroof is awesome and the heater and air-con all work great. It is also achieving around 700-plus kilometres to a 50-litre tank.

I think the extra cost for the Essence model makes for a better spending choice over the Soul, but that’s up to the buyer's budget and the extras they feel provide value for money.

It was a little bit slow at the start and the motor was extremely tired, but as it slowly runs in, it has loosened up and is more responsive. When in sports mode you can have some real fun – it’s very sporty. Push-button start is also a great addition to the vehicle. The instrument cluster is informative and has a nice retro feel to it, as I prefer dials over a digital tacho and speedo.

I also found the cruise-control stick a little awkward to use at first, and it could be improved to be more user-friendly. Also, the user manual is nicely presented and it’s easy to read. I found that all of the other controls work well, including the array of buttons on the steering wheel.