MG 5 review

Electric cars don’t get more sensible than the MG 5.

Pros: affordability, comfort

Cons: cheap quality in places, bland styling

When so many new electric cars are trying to outdo each other in the styling stakes, the MG 5 takes a more pragmatic approach. Its sensible styling and estate-only body style shout ‘practicality’ and it turns out the MG is quite economical to run too.

MG 5 Design

Looks are a subjective thing, but we think the general consensus is that the MG 5 is more about its useful features than drop-dead gorgeous design. The estate body style is unusual in that there isn’t a saloon version of this car. It has a certain sense of familiarity to it but also looks quite nondescript. However, while some may consider its exterior styling to be lacking in appeal there are many buyers for whom this won’t even be a consideration.

There are only two versions of the MG 5, and both come on modest 16-inch alloy wheels. LED headlights are standard and the higher-spec Exclusive version gains silver roof rails, although these are rated to carry a very limited weight. Similar to its other models, the battery charge port is located behind the MG badge on the front of the car.

MG 5 Interior

The interior of the MG 5 is quite similar to the company’s ZS SUV. As you sit in, you immediately notice the difference in packaging an electric estate car compared to an SUV, as the driver’s seat seems much closer to the floor where the battery is housed. The seat base bolster also seems on the soft side and could be vulnerable to wear over time. A good amount of adjustment is available though, so finding a comfortable driving position should be easy for most.

All versions get a seven-inch driver display that is inset between the analogue dials. This is easy to read and can show all the relevant driving information. MG’s multifunction steering wheel is reminiscent of the Mk6 Volkswagen Golf GTI’s, which is no bad thing as it looks and feels fine. An eight-inch colour touchscreen for the infotainment is rather basic, but the inclusion of Android Auto and Apple CarPlay helps.

The rest of the cabin has a sensible layout and the material quality is fine for the car’s price point. There are some elements that look and feel cheap, but it’s worth remembering that this isn’t a premium car by any means. Rear space draws no room for complaint, with comfortable ingress and egress, while a flat floor benefits the passenger in the middle. Boot space at 464 litres is reasonable and this can increase to 1,456 litres — a little less than an equivalent combustion engined estate car, but still very useful.

MG 5 Performance & Drive

Having sold out of its initial allocation of the smaller battery in the MG 5, it is now only available with the larger capacity 57.7kWh (usable) battery. This can provide a WLTP driving range of 403 kilometres and up to 538 kilometres in city driving according to MG. One added advantage of the larger battery is that it is capable of peak DC charging at 100kW, whereas the smaller battery could only manage 50kW. That’s sufficient to replenish the battery to 80 per cent in as little as 40 minutes.

The 156hp electric motor provides a modest level of performance and drives the front wheels. The MG 5 accelerates briskly when asked and the electric motor is quiet in operation. Helped by the generous tyre sidewalls and soft suspension setup, the electric estate is comfortable to drive. Buyers will be pleased to read that it is reasonably efficient too, with the combined consumption of 17.5kWh/100km seeming entirely achievable.

MG 5 Pricing

With a starting price of €29,645 the MG 5 is already one of the most affordable electric cars currently on sale and for its size there is little to rival it. The product offering from MG is simple, with two specification grades, Excite and Exclusive, and then the choice of three exterior paint options.

Standard equipment on the Excite model includes an eight-inch touchscreen, adaptive cruise control, rear parking sensors, reversing camera, air conditioning, lane keep assist,  intelligent speed limit assist and traffic jam assist. The Exclusive starts at €32,895 and adds keyless entry, leather-effect upholstery, heated front seats, an electrically adjustable driver’s seat, automatic wipers and silver roof rails.

Carzone Verdict: 3.5/5

For anyone looking to get a new electric car that needs space the MG 5 is impossible to ignore. Nothing else comes close to rival its size for the price. The fact that it is quite efficient and comes with a seven-year/150,000km warranty are other pluses.

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