MG4 EV review
The MG4 EV combines range, practicality and loads of kit into a sharp-looking, fun-to-drive package all at an unbeatable price
- 281-mile range
- Comfortable and fun to drive
- Hit-and-miss infotainment
- Rivals offer more boot space
- Interior materials
|Model||Range||Wallbox charge time||Rapid charge time|
|Standard Range||218 miles||8hrs 15mins (0-100%, 7.4kW)||39mins (10-80%, 150kW)|
|Long Range||270-281 miles||10hrs (0-100%, 7.4kW)||35mins (10-80%, 150kW)|
MG has become known for its great-value electric cars over the past few years. The recently refreshed ZS EV SUV – DrivingElectric’s 2022 Car of The Year – and the MG5 estate prove the brand knows how to make a solid, sensible, and most importantly affordable EV, while not skimping too much on quality. But now, MG is introducing its next generation of electric cars, and taking a swing at the Volkswagen ID.3, Nissan Leaf and Cupra Born with this: the all-new MG4.
Underneath the eye-catching bodywork is a brand-new, EV-specific platform called MSP (Modular Scalable Platform) that, in time, will serve as the underpinnings for all sorts of electric MGs – including an electric convertible sports car that’s arriving in 2024.
MG’s first zero-emissions family hatchback is available with two powertrains at launch: the entry-level MG4 uses a 51kWh battery and 167bhp electric motor, and has a range of 218 miles, while the Long Range version gets a 201bhp motor powered by a larger 64kWh battery. MG says that’s enough to cover 270-281 miles depending on the exact specification. However, we’ve already been informed an Extended Range model with a range of up to 329 miles will be introduced in mid-2023, along with a performance-focused MG4.
For now, your choice is nice and simple, with just two trim levels to choose from: SE and Trophy. The former is available in both Standard and Long Range form, and comes with plenty of standard kit including 17-inch alloy wheels, a 10.25-inch infotainment touchscreen with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, a seven-inch digital driver’s display, LED headlights and rear parking sensors. Plus, there’s lane-keep assist, adaptive cruise control and driver attention alert.
Trophy-spec MG4s like our test car are only available with the Long Range powertrain, but add more luxuries like a 360-degree camera, wireless phone charging, heated front seats and steering wheel, as well as some additional safety systems including blind-spot monitoring and lane-change assist.
The base MG4 starts from £25,995, making it one of the cheapest electric cars on sale today, and substantially more affordable than any of its rivals. Upgrading to the SE Long Range only raises the price by £2,500 to £28,495, while the top-of-the-range Trophy model will set you back £31,495. Compare that to the Volkswagen ID.3, which at the time of writing is only available in one specification, and is currently priced at £36,195 with a range of 265 miles.
The only obvious signs of cost cutting can be found in the MG4’s cabin, where there are a lot of rock-solid, scratchy plastics on the lower parts of the doors and centre console. The infotainment system also had its flaws. It often required two or three taps on the touchscreen before responding to a command, and the toggles for all the settings like the regenerative braking strength and drive mode were quite small, making them hard to adjust on the move. That said, most of the key touch points like the indicator stalks and two-spoke steering wheel feel nice and solid, with the latter getting physical buttons and control pads – no haptic feedback panels here – and the cabin felt quite spacious overall.
MG claims 0-62mph takes a little under eight seconds for all models, even if launching from a standstill doesn’t feel too fast. But once you’re on the move and break out the heavy foot, this family hatchback surprises you with a rapid burst of speed – ideal for whizzing around town or overtaking on the motorway.
There’s a noticeable amount of road noise at higher speeds, but it’s by no means a dealbreaker, especially considering how comfortable the ride is in the MG4. Then there’s the steering, which is light enough to make manoeuvring in tight spaces easy, while feeling direct and sharp to give the MG4 a real sense of agility. Considering how much fun the ordinary MG4 is to drive, we’re excited to see what the hot 400bhp version coming next year can do.
When it comes to practicality, the MG4 only has 363 litres of boot space, which is 22 litres less than its rivals from VW and Cupra – neither of which lead the class in this department as is. The MG4’s boot is still usable, and there’s no load lip to contend with, but you may find yourself testing its carrying capacity every now and again. The rear seats can fold flat, in a 60:40 split, giving you 1,177 litres of cargo space to work with.
It may have its flaws, but the MG4 combines solid practicality, oodles of standard kit and impressive efficiency into one sharp-looking but extremely affordable package. The fact that MG’s first bespoke EV has a superbly comfortable ride, is fun to drive and delivers a usable real-world range is just icing on an already appealing cake. For a more detailed look at the MG4 EV, read on for the rest of our in-depth review…
In This Review
- 1Verdict - currently readingThe MG4 EV combines range, practicality and loads of kit into a sharp-looking, fun-to-drive package all at an unbeatable price
- 2Range, battery & chargingFor the money, the Long Range MG4 EV’s 281-mile range is hard to beat, while rapid charging speeds are on par with key rivals from VW and Cupra
- 3Running costs & insuranceRunning costs for MG’s electric family hatchback are likely to be much lower than for its petrol-powered alternatives, especially if you’re planning to run one as a company car
- 4Performance, motor & driveThe MG4 EV lives up to its looks with quick steering and plenty of poke that make it fun to drive around town and on a back road; plus there’s a 400bhp hot version still to come
- 5Interior, dashboard & comfortThe MG4 EV is exceptional value for money, offering plenty of kit regardless of which trim level you go for, however, its infotainment system is one of the car’s biggest weaknesses
- 6Boot space, seating & practicalityWhile it doesn't match the boot capacity of some other electric family cars, the MG4 EV’s cabin is spacious and comfortable
- 7Reliability & safety ratingLike all electric cars, we expect the MG4 EV to be very reliable, but we’ll have to see how it performs in Euro NCAP’s crash safety tests