MG4: “Have fun and enjoy life”

MG4: “Have fun and enjoy life”

You feel welcome immediately. “Good to see you again,” says the on-board computer after pressing the start button. He also has life wisdom in stock: “Enjoy and enjoy life,” we hear a few days later as we embark on a long-distance journey from Cologne to Hamburg in our sky-blue MG4 Electric. We have never been greeted so friendly in an electric car. This not only brightens the situation significantly on cloudy and rainy days.

Yes, Stromer compact from far away China is a real surprise. And a positive one at that. China shouting is a big hate in politics right now, because the USA is afraid of their supremacy in the Pacific and because the Europeans are realizing that the people of the Middle Kingdom are not only good to imitate and that the companies there are innovative and. showing the speed that they themselves seem to lack. The results can be seen very clearly on the electric car market with the rapid increase in the number of registrations by Chinese sellers not only in their country but also in Germany: the import of electric cars from China has tripled since last year. All manufacturers combined already had a market share of 7.8 percent at the end of March. Ascending direction.

an eye catcher
The bright color suits the MG4 Electric well. “Brighton Blue” like our test car or the intense “Fizzy Orange”.

MG Roewe, the maker of our test car from the Shanghai Automobile Industry Corporation (SAIC), now ranks 25th in the new German registration figures with a market share of 0.6 percent – ahead of LandRover, Smart and Mitsubishi. Since the beginning of the year, the sales figures of the old British car brand, which is part of the BMW Group for a while, have more than doubled. Thanks to the MG5, the first electric station wagon on the domestic market, the Electric SUV MG ZVabove all thanks to MG4 – the new shooting star from China.

Price is a declaration of war

You don’t have to look far for reasons for Stromer’s popularity. Extreme, sporty design can play a role, as can fine craftsmanship and high-end materials in the interior. And last but not least, the price: the standard version with a 125 kW rear engine and a 51 kWh lithium iron phosphate battery was available at the beginning of the year for 31,990 euros. After removing the environmental bonus and the innovation bonus, 24,812 euros remained. And our top model “Luxury” with a 150 kW (204 hp) engine and a 68 kWh nickel-cobalt-manganese battery on the floor of the car cost only 32,460 euros including the heat pump and many other nice extras such as leather seats and intuitive. special blue color after giving all payment. Try talking to a VW dealer to sell the id.3 1Pro S with matching equipment for the same price. For less than 40,000 euros, I’m afraid there will be nothing to do.

Show time
MG4’s night design is also impressive. The creators have come up with a few cool details.

Well, our 2022 MG5 also showed one weakness or another during the two-week test. For example, we were surprised to see that there were seat belts for three people in the back seat, but only head restraints. And in addition to the two-piece rear spoiler, we’d like a rear window wiper on rainy days.

Recently also with upload planner

But while we are still writing these lines, MG has already put things right: No model year 2023 sand both features are available now. And that’s not all: the MG4 now has heated seats and a heated steering wheel even in the standard version, and a heat pump is now also standard in the medium comfort version. You can’t complain, even if the price has risen by a good ten percent: After deducting the manufacturer’s part of the environmental bonus, the basic version now costs at least 32,312 euros, MG 4 Luxury 37,312 euros. However, the government grant of 4500 euros is still deducted from this.

Touch and keys Unlike many other modern electric cars, the MG4 still has a number of automatic selection keys.  However, the menu navigation takes some getting used to and the labeling is very limited.
Touch and feel
Unlike many other modern electric cars, the MG4 still has a number of automatic selection buttons. However, the menu navigation takes some getting used to and the labeling is very limited.

The Chinese not only learn quickly, they also react quickly to criticism. The navigation system should automatically add one or another charging station when you plan a long-distance tour with a target charging rate and destination distance. In our test car, charging stations still had to be programmed manually – the on-board computer only gave indications of low charge levels on the trip to Hamburg and back. It remained for the driver to find the socket himself. And the list of payment centers displayed in the navigation system was also very poor – we would be lost without additional software.

Amazing loading performance

A pleasant surprise was again the speed at which the MG4 Electric picked up power on the fast charger. One should not expect miracles from cars from China (so far). Even the elegant Stromer NIO ET7 only reaches a maximum of 130 kW on a high-power charger. And the compact Atto 3 from BYD only has 88 kW. In this regard, the MG 4 is already in a good position with a maximum charging capacity of around 140 kW. Especially since, as it was shown several times during our trip, unlike the Renault Megané E-Tech (maximum 130 kW), for example, it lasts for a surprisingly long time and, due to the temperature of the battery, it does not take. long time to reach it. Even when the battery was already 40 percent full, there was still 137.8 kW. With the Audi Q4 e-tron at the nearby charging station, the charging capacity had already dropped to less than 100 kW.

The short stoppage of the MG4 Lightning also cuts a good figure at the Ionity charging station.  The electric motor draws up to 140 kW of direct current.  And the charging power drops only slowly to the level of 60 percent. That promises a short break.
Stop for a while
The MG4 Lightning also cuts a cool figure in the Ionity charging station. The electric motor draws up to 140 kW of direct current. And the charging power drops only slowly to the level of 60 percent. That promises a short break.

Which is not to say that there’s still room for improvement here and there with the MG4. Not only in terms of charging power, but also ergonomically. So you shouldn’t try to use the on-board computer – and that’s the only way to do it – while driving to change the amount of brake energy recovery. Because of that it is only possible in the sub menu. And until that is achieved, a few seconds can pass that the eyes are not focused on the road. A head-up display like the one on the VW ID.3 would also be on our wish list: Once you get used to it, you won’t want to miss it.

A range of about 350 km is possible

Otherwise, the friendly Chinese leaves nothing to be desired, at least since the latest model update. The chassis is sporty and tight, but the ride comfort is still very pleasant. Also thanks to the low level of noise even at a high speed of 160 km / h. However, you should not try them too often. Because then you quickly depart from the average consumption that MG specifies at 16 kWh/100 km. However, it remained a mystery to us how to achieve a range of up to 435 km. We came up with an average consumption of 17.9 kWh/100km – and we had to find a charging station after 350 km soon. Which is pretty good value for a Stromer with a 64 kWh battery on board. So the MG4 Electric is perfectly suited for everyday use.

And the Chinese have already announced other models, with a large battery with a capacity of 77 kWh, also with all-wheel drive: the race has just begun.