By Russell Manning
ZS is the latest in the MG line-up of small SUVs. And while it has the usual SUV attributes of practicality and high driving position, it’s set apart from the pack to some degree by its unique MG styling and heritage.
The entry level Soul comes with a 1.5-litre, 84kW engine and 4-speed auto, while the higher spec Essence has a 1.0-litre, 82kW 3-cylinder turbo engine and 6-speed auto. But it’s difficult to distinguish one from the other without lifting the bonnet. In fact, apart from the different powertrains, there are only two significant differences between the models. Essence gets a panoramic sunroof and keyless start as standard.
Inside there’s a big boot, plenty of head and leg room and the usual practical touches such as door and seatback pockets and cup holders. Interior trim is basic black in synthetic leather, which also covers the multi-function steering wheel. It’s also nice to see some soft touch interior finishes on the dash and door arm rests – a feature noticeably lacking from earlier offerings.
Apple CarPlay, reversing camera and rear parking sensors are standard. Safety equipment includes six airbags and the usual suite of electronic assistance aids. There’s also three-mode electric power steering to tailor the driving dynamics.
Paint options include two solid colours, black and white, and two metallic colours, red and blue.
Build quality and fit and finish seemed to be pretty good, however with only four cars in the country at the time of the launch, there simply weren’t enough for us to drive.
Prices are $20,990 for the Soul and $23,990 for Essence.
ZS has a 7-year unlimited km warranty and roadside assistance, which is amongst the best offerings in the industry.
Cars will be in showrooms in early December and two new Brisbane dealers will open shortly, MG says.