MG ZS EV VS MG5 EV, WHICH IS BEST FOR THE FAMILY? The Chinese manufacturer MG is hitting hard on the electric vehicle market with an excellent price/performance ratio. Today we’re putting the two most popular models of the moment face to face: the MG5 and the MG ZS EV.
Electric vehicles that can boast of being the leading car of the household under 30,000 euros are not legion. However, the manufacturer MG can offer several of them, thanks an aggressive price that does not leave indifferent.
We chose the MG ZS EV, the compact SUV with a price-performance ratio that is hard to beat, and the new MG5, the newly arrived electric station wagon. Between technical characteristics, interior atmosphere and driving pleasure, which is the best electric car?
DIMENSIONS, WEIGHT AND EXTERIOR DESIGN
The MG5 brings fresh air to the electric car scene, as it is virtually the only station wagon on the market. Its lines are classic for a station wagon, and they don’t turn heads, but it’s not ugly looking.
MG went to the basics on the MG5, which is good: it’s a no-frills station wagon, relatively high on its legs (1.51 meters), with no notable stylistic particularities.
At 4.60 meters long and 1.82 meters wide, the MG5 is much longer than its rival of the day, the MG ZS EV (4.31 meters long, 1.81 meters wide and 1.62 meters high).
The small electric SUV that is the MG ZS EV benefits from restyling its entire front grille with a new texture, highlighting a small sporty side that is quite pleasant to the eye.
It’s not always easy to pick a winner in terms of exterior design, but the advantage goes to the MG ZS EV over the MG5, which doesn’t stand out enough.
INSIDE MG ZS EV VS MG5 EV
If you think of a station wagon as a vehicle with a vast, flat trunk when the seats are folded down, unfortunately, the MG5 brings you a nasty surprise. While the box is generous with the rear seats up (479 litres), the floor is not flat when the seats are down, although the volume is still good (1367 litres).
The interior of the MG5 is generally pleasant, with a modern presentation. We raised concern with the driver’s seat, where the high floor forces tall people to bend their legs. The feeling of numbness is a bit too pronounced.
The rear seats in the MG5 are not among the most generous because the heart is too low to the ground. Instead, two adults can be comfortably seated in the second row of the MG ZS EV, which is much more suitable for four-person trips.
The MG ZS EV’s trunk capacity is 488 litres, about the same as the MG5’s 30 centimetres longer. The MG ZS EV’s interior layout and roominess make it the winner of this comparison regarding onboard living.
The two MG vehicles have many similarities in terms of onboard technology. There’s the indispensable Android Auto and Apple CarPlay (there’s no onboard planner, so you have to use those apps to make up for the lack), as well as a suite of semi-autonomous Level 2 driving assists.
On the MG5’s side, the infotainment system consists of two screens (behind the steering wheel and in the centre of the dashboard), which are pretty simple to understand. The downside is the poor quality of the rearview camera and the climate controls, which require adjustment via the centre screen only, which is not very convenient.
The MG ZS EV infotainment system is fluid but still lacks ergonomics. A lot of menus and sub-menus are needed to get the correct settings, which is unfortunate.
Finally, both vehicles offer V2L technology, which helps charge a bike or a computer far from home with a fully charged car. Because of their similarities, it’s a tie in onboard technology between the MG5 and the MG ZS EV.
ON THE ROAD
The MG5’s relative lightness (1562 kilograms) is advantageous in many situations. It’s not a warrior with a 0 to 100 km/h time of 8.3 seconds, but its lightweight and handling are serious assets in urban and suburban environments.
Once out of the city, however, the MG5‘s first shortcomings become apparent. The suspension is relatively soft, and the roll is marked.
The MG ZS EV and MG5 do not offer single-pedal driving, but they do offer different regenerative braking settings.
While the MG5’s roll is a minor weakness, the MG ZS EV has been redesigned to eliminate this concern, which was raised in the first version. As an SUV, the MG ZS EV is a little less fast than the MG5, but its more comfortable ride makes it the winner of this section.
THE DIFFERENT ENGINE OPTIONS
The MG5 is available in two different configurations, depending on the battery size chosen:
_ Standard Range 2WD, front wheel drive with 50 kWh battery: 130 kW front engine, 0 to 100 km/h in 8.3 seconds, top speed 185 km/h ;
_ Extended Range 2WD, front wheel drive with 61 kWh battery: 115 kW front engine, 0 to 100 km/h in 8.3 seconds, top speed 185 km/h;
The MG ZS EV is offered with the same engines as the MG5 but with different batteries:
_ Standard Range 2-wheel drive, front wheel drive with 51 kWh battery: 130 kW front engine, 0 to 100 km/h in 8.6 seconds, top speed 175 km/h;
_ Extended Range 2WD, front wheel drive with 70 kWh battery: 115 kW front engine, 0 to 100 km/h in 8.6 seconds, top speed 175 km/h;
RANGE, BATTERY, AND CHARGING
The MG5’s small battery (50.3 kWh) has a WLTP range of 310 to 320 kilometers, depending on the configuration, while the 61 kWh version promises 380 to 400 kilometers. During our test drive of about 1,000 kilometers, the consumption was 20 kWh/100 km, which gives a natural range of 300 kilometers for the version with the larger battery.
The 11 kW onboard charger allows the battery to be fully charged at an AC charging station in five to six hours. Fast charging is claimed to have a maximum power of 70 kW on the small battery of the MG5 and 87 kW on the large battery. In both cases, 0 to 80 percent fast charging takes 40 minutes.
The MG ZS EV boasts a more extended range with its 70 kWh battery: 440 kilometers WLTP. The entry-level version and its 51 kWh battery are limited to 320 kilometers.
The onboard charger is a maximum of 6.6 kW on the MG ZS EV, which allows the battery to be fully charged in 11 hours for the top-of-the-range version, and 7 hours for the entry-level version. At the fast charge level, which tops out at 92 kW, going from 5 to 80 percent, battery power takes about 40 minutes.
MG ZS EV VS MG5 EV PRICE
At MG, the electric market is essential, and prices are very aggressive. Indeed, the MG5 is offered for 32,990 euros, not counting the ecological bonus.
The most expensive version is priced at just over 39,000 euros; with the environmental bonus, that’s about 33,000 euros.
The MG ZS EV starts at 33,990 euros for the entry-level model, which is just 1,000 euros more than the MG5.
If you choose the “Extended Range” version and the available options, the bill comes to 40,640 euros. In all cases, the ecological bonus is also valid, placing the two vehicles in this comparison in a handkerchief regarding the final price to pay.
WHICH ONE TO CHOOSE BETWEEN, THE MG5 AND THE MG ZS EV?
As we conclude this comparison, it’s worth remembering that the two vehicles are very similar, from price to range to technology.
In any case, even if it means adding between 1,000 and 1,500 euros to the price of the MG5, the MG ZS EV seems like the better deal. Indeed, the interior space is better, the trunk is more extensive, and the driving sensations are not bad.
Plus, the range shown with the 70 kWh battery makes it the first vehicle in the household without any problems, and the MG ZS EV is still the compact SUV to beat for price/performance on the market. Of course, if an SUV isn’t for you and the MG5’s “station wagon” profile seems more appropriate, don’t worry: it’s still a perfect electric car.