- The MG ZS is a small, premium looking SUV that’s fun to drive and comes with a generous amount of equipment as standard. You can get it with two petrol engines, including a 109hp petrol model with front wheel drive as standard.
The ZS’s interior looks premium at the very first sight. You get a premium looking sporty steering wheel and high-spec models get a soft faux leather trims on the dashboard. Thankfully, most models come with lots of equipment as standard. Every MG ZS gets a 8.0-inch touchscreen infotainment system. It’s relatively easy to use. You get it with Apple CarPlay smartphone mirroring systems. You’ll need to use your iPhone for sat nav or maps, because the built-in system doesn’t have it. It’s a bright and colourful screen to run AM/FM radio or your Bluetooth connected smartphone, though, and there’s a six-speaker sound system – apparently with Yamaha 3D sound.
The seats are comfortable, offering a decent driving position, but there’s no reach adjustment to the steering, only height adjustment – that’s really annoying if you have long legs but short arms. And while you get a digital driver info display, there’s no digital speedometer.
Adults and Children everyone will be particularly comfortable in the back seats. There is good amount of head or leg room and the MG ZS’s large rear windows make it feel airy and big. There’s enough room to carry three kids abreast also three adults can sit for short journeys.
The boot of the MG ZS is decent, with 448 litres of cargo capacity to the cargo cover when the rear seats are in place, or 1166L with the 60/40 back seats folded down (measured to the window line) – though they don’t fold flat. The load lip is a bit high.
You can get the MG ZS with two petrol engines. The 109hp 1.0-litre petrol is best if you spend most time pottering around town – it’s quieter than the 1.5 petrol and will return a 13 kpl. The larger 1.5-litre petrol returns around 12kpl and has just about enough puff to keep up with fast-moving traffic on the motorway.
The MG ZS is relatively easy to see out of too, thanks to its raised driving position, but the little small rear windows can make parking a tad tricky. You’ll nt feel bumps in the road, and it’s reasonably quiet at high speeds and much more fun to drive than most small SUVs.
The MG ZS is among the safest car on sale – it received a four-star safety rating from ANCAP in 2017 – and it’s well worth a look if you’re after a high-riding, well-equipped family car that looks premium and is plenty of fun to drive.
The MG ZS’s interior feels premium than what you’ll find most small SUVs. There’s a new steering wheel that no doesn’t feels cheaper to hold than a Fisher-Price PlayStation accessory, and the buttons have been copied from old VW products so you needn’t have the dexterity of a concert pianist to switch the volume up a little.
Every MG ZS comes with a good slug of soft-touch material on the dash, which is jolly nice, but rather undone by the baffling decision to make Apple CarPlay a standard feature on mid and high-spec models, then not rubberise the cubby holes where your phone might live. So, as soon as it’s plugged in and you set off, your gadgets are going to get scratched, and rattle. All models get a 8.0-inch touchscreen infotainment system. It looks pretty smart and you get apple car play standard.
The MG ZS’s tall body means it has more ground clearance than most small family cars. As a result, it’s easier to climb into and its raised roofline means there’s lots of headroom in both the front and back seats. The front seats are pretty supportive and there’s plenty of adjustment to help you get comfortable, even if you’re tall. Jump in the back seats and you’ll find them quiet spacious. Passengers over six-foot tall will not struggle for leg and headroom and carrying three abreast will be comfortable.
There’s plenty of space in all four door bins for a medium-sized bottle and the ZS‘s glovebox is reasonably roomy, too. The cupholders in the centre console are a little small but they won’t have too much trouble holding a regular coffee cup. There’s a small storage tray with a USB port for charging your smartphone under the dashboard too, but you don’t get a folding armrest or cupholders for the back seats.
You can fit 448 litres of luggage in the MG’s boot with all five seats in place. Unfortunately, the tall boot lip makes loading heavy or bulky items a pain. There’s some storage under the height-adjustable boot floor and a few tether points to stop small items rolling around. You can fold the back seats down in a two-way (60:40) split using the catches beside the headrests so you can carry long luggage in the boot and a passenger in the back at once.
With the seats folded – and the adjustable boot floor in its raised position – you’ll have access to a 1375-litre load bay. That said it’s just about big enough to carry a bike (with one wheel removed) and its mostly flat floor makes it fairly easy to slide heavy boxes up behind the front seats.
You can get the MG ZS two petrol engines. Front-wheel drive and an automatic gearbox are available as standard. Pick the 109hp 1.0-litre petrol model if you do lots of city driving. MG claims it’ll return nearly 17kpl but you’ll probably see a figure closer to 13mpg in Kathmandu’s driving conditions.
The MG ZS’s taller windows and raised ride height mean it’s easier to see out. The pillars between the windscreen and doors don’t create any particularly large blindspots at junctions but its thin rear windows and a bit small rear windscreen can make parking slightly tricky. Luckily, all models get rear parking sensors and camera.
All the ZS’s controls are light and easy to use which makes threading it through tight city streets a breeze. Its suspension is a soft and it soaks up imperfections in rutted roads reasonably well. Here, the case for the MG as a good drive starts to waver. The steering is incredibly vague around the straightahead, which isn’t that pleasant, and despite MG’s fevered protestations that the three different weights (Urban, Normal and Dynamic) improve the feel or wieldiness of the steering, that’s chapter one, verse one of marketing rubbish. The MG ZS received a fair four-star safety rating from ANCAP in 2017.
If you’re the sort of person who wants a nice looking SUV that doesn’t cost too much and is more practical than some of its competitors, the MG ZS might be an option for you.