Point of the spear: MG EZS brings the cheap Chinese EV to Europe and Australia
MG is bringing what should be a very affordable, practical electric crossover to the market in the new EZS. The company's first EV will rock a 45.5-kWh battery powering a 110-kW (147-hp) electric powertrain and giving it a range "up to 428 km" (266 mi).
Under the ownership of Chinese manufacturing giant SAIC, MG has been making quiet inroads back into the automotive world with a series of small, cheap hatches and SUVs that look neat, if a bit anonymous, and emphasize economy. A long way, then, from the quintessential British sports convertibles that still spring to mind when we see that storied logo.
Now, it's getting set to go even further with its first EV, a fully electrified version of its ZS compact SUV. Looking much the same as the ZS but for a funky set of rims, a lack of exhausts and an electric blue paint job, the EZS should deliver a simple and practical EV experience, with good enough range for everything but long highway trips.
MG's quoted range figures are unusual – they're an ideal-conditions "up to" rather than a standardized range comparison like the NEDC or WLTP cycle figures can deliver. We'd imagine they're probably highly optimistic, with a realistic range given normal driving behavior closer to 300 km (186 mi). But that's still plenty for the vast majority of trips for the vast majority of drivers.
Performance will be reasonably zippy, with the EZS making the same power as a Nissan Leaf, and those things are lots of fun off the line. SAIC says it'll do 0-50 km/h (0-31 mph) in 3.1 seconds – another weird measure that you won't get from other manufacturers. SAIC says "the high performance brings super feelings," and that certainly sounds pleasant.
The EZS will run a 4G internet connection, allowing real-time intelligent navigation, one-click payment of parking fees and "remote control vehicles," which sounds interesting but we're not expecting much.
This car will live and die on its price tag, which is yet to be announced. As one of the first Chinese electrics to proliferate through Europe and Australia as well as Asia, it's got an opportunity to significantly undercut opposition from the likes of Hyundai and Nissan. It's unlikely to come to the US.