An MG for the modern age

I made a special effort to enjoy my time behind the wheel this week. Well, I felt I should, given that the age of the self-driving car is upon us.
The MG ZS EV is smartThe MG ZS EV is smart
The MG ZS EV is smart

That’s right. From 2025 your car could be driving you rather than the other way around, if Government claims are to be believed.

I know, we should all be hesitant in believing official statements, especially when it comes to motoring, but it seems that developments really are afoot regarding automated motoring.

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It sounded like science fiction. I never really imagined that the humble motorist would be replaced by a robot.

It is fast becoming a familiar sightIt is fast becoming a familiar sight
It is fast becoming a familiar sight

Although to be honest, judging by the poor standard of driving I see – not by Yorkshire Post readers, I’m sure – a robot at the wheel might be a good thing.

But back to the point, I’ve enjoyed driving the MG. It is a brand which conjures up images of traditional petrol-engined sports cars, but in truth the modern MG is a different beast altogether.

It might not yet be self-driving but it is a very modern affair nonetheless. It is an electric vehicle and an SUV, not something many of us would associate with MG but the brand has been reinvented. It is owned by a Chinese company.

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This car is the MG ZS EV, which was named Affordable Electric Car of the Year at Auto Express’s new car awards ceremony in London earlier this year.

It is a great cabin to live with - very easy to use and smart to look atIt is a great cabin to live with - very easy to use and smart to look at
It is a great cabin to live with - very easy to use and smart to look at

It was recognised as a great value option for those looking for a no-compromise affordable EV. Judges highlighted its winning combination of usability, practicality and accessible price.

It is part of a resurgent MG. Last year it was announced that MG has set yet more records recording a 383.1 per cent sales increase in the same month that the New MG ZS EV arrived in the brand’s rapidly developing dealer network.

It must be said that the rise was from a pretty low level but still impressive. MG cemented its position as the fastest growing mainstream car brand in the UK. The MG ZS was also the UK’s sixth best-selling model across the entire car market.

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Much of the success was driven by the brand’s plug-in models, with MG having the highest battery-electric (BEV) mix of any manufacturer selling a mix of traditional and alternative fuel cars. Another key part of the sales success was the performance of MG’s dealer network, which is growing rapidly with over 40 new dealers being appointed since the beginning of 2021.

So, how does the ZS EV shape up? The renewed model builds on the success of the older ZS EV, which is the brand’s best-selling pure electric model and a consistent fixture among the UK’s top 10 best-selling EVs.

The revised model makes the MG ZS EV even better and is characterised by a modernised design, improved performance, a significantly longer range, and even more technology.

It introduces a fresh 72kWh battery pack delivering a substantial range increase, as well as a new iSMART connectivity system, which brings state-of-the-art infotainment to the latest model.

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In styling terms, the New MG ZS EV gets a new electric-only front end, with a stamped-effect grille to improve aerodynamics and a new charging port. The bold new face is set off by LED headlights and distinctive daytime running lights. It also gets a redesigned rear bumper and new wheels.

ZS EV is offered in a choice of two trim levels and two battery variants. MG is introducing two new version names, starting with the new ZS EV – SE and Trophy. The version tested here has a range of 198 miles which is fine for most needs. It charges quickly – from 0 to 80 per cent in 42 minutes.

Charging status is now readily viewed on the four-stage indicator LEDs inside the port. The combination Type 2 and CCS charger provides up to 7kW fast charging using the on-board AC charger, or up to 76kW DC rapid charging. This means the Long Range 72 kWh battery can be charged from 0 to 100 per cent in 10-and-a-half hours on a standard 7kW charger, or as little as 42 minutes on a 100kW rapid charger.

Every new MG ZS EV also comes with the new state-of-the-art MG iSMART connectivity system, which offers a connection via a smartphone app, through which various car, climate, security and charging functions can be controlled remotely.

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At the heart of the system is a 10.1-inch tablet-style touchscreen, with new graphics and improved functionality. The new model also gets a new instrument cluster and wireless phone charging.

The test car is a Trophy specification so it comes with 360 degree parking camera, wireless phone charging and heated front seats.

MG offers six models in the UK including three plug-in cars – the MG ZS EV, the game-changing MG5 EV and MG HS Plug-in Hybrid, all backed up by MG’s comprehensive seven-year warranty.

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