Independent, Expert EV Reviews & Advice Since 2006

MG4 EV XPOWER Review

The MG4 XPOWER takes the standard MG4 and adds 435PS of power, a 0-62 mph acceleration time of 3.8 seconds, and all-wheel drive – for a bargain price relative to the performance.

  • MG4 XPOWER
  • Fastned_Chargecurve_MG4_64kWh_ExtendedRange_watermark
  • MG4 XPOWER
  • MG4 XPOWER
  • MG4 XPOWER
  • MG4 XPOWER
  • MG4 XPOWER
  • MG4 XPOWER
  • MG4 XPOWER
  • MG4 XPOWER
  • MG4 XPOWER
  • MG4 XPOWER
  • MG4 XPOWER
  • MG4 XPOWER rear window & lights
  • MG4 XPOWER rear lights
  • MG4 XPOWER rear lights
Green Car Guide Rating: 9/10

Key stats

  • Model/Engine size:   MG4 XPOWER
  • Fuel:   Electric
  • Electric driving range (WLTP): 239 miles
  • Maximum rapid charging rate: 140 kW

Summary

  • Lots of performance
  • All-wheel drive
  • Good value
  • Don’t expect a premium feel for the bargain price

Background

MG may still be associated with 1960s and 70s sports cars in many people’s minds, but the brand has reappeared in the UK and has been getting on with the business of bringing electric cars to market. We’ve already had the MG4, and now it’s been sprinkled with some extra performance dust – in fact the MG4 XPOWER is the most powerful production MG yet, and one of the first high performance electric hatchbacks. It’s also priced competitively, so is it too good to be true?

MG4 XPOWER

MG4 XPOWER

Design & Engineering

The MG4 XPOWER shares the same body style as the standard MG4, which looks quite sporty anyway, but it gains a few design changes, most notably unique 18-inch ‘Cyclone’ alloy wheels and orange brake calipers. There’s also a new green colour available, which MG calls ‘Racing Green’.

The NCM (Nickel Cobalt Manganese) battery capacity remains the same as the Long Range MG4 model: 64 kWh with 61.8 kWh usable capacity. What has changed is the power output; there are now two electric motors, one at the front and one at the back, delivering all-wheel drive (the standard MG4 is just rear-wheel drive) and a total of 435PS (compared to 203 PS for the standard model) and up to 600Nm of torque.

The MG4 XPOWER is 4,287mm long with a 363-litre boot. There’s reasonable space inside the car for five people, with a large storage area between the two front seats.

The big idea behind the MG4 XPOWER is to offer lots of performance at an affordable price. So something has to give way to allow that to happen, and it’s the interior quality that feels like it’s built to a price point. The overall dashboard is quite basic, and details such as the buttons for the volume controls under the touchscreen feel cheap when pressed. There are also some design elements that could be improved; for example the USB sockets are hidden away under the floating centre console, and there’s a pad next to the gear selector for your phone, but if you put your phone on it, it’s pretty much guaranteed that it will fall off when you accelerate or go round a corner.

The MG4 XPOWER has a maximum (braked) towing weight of 500kg.

MG4 XPOWER

MG4 XPOWER

MG4 EV XPOWER Driving Experience

The MG4 XPOWER delivers on its promise: it has rapid acceleration (launch control helps it achieve a 0-62mph acceleration of 3.8 seconds) and all-wheel drive, delivered to the road via Bridgestone Turanza tyres, gives good levels of grip – although not quite matching the traction of some other all-wheel drive EVs. This is despite a ‘Dynamic Cornering Control System’, available for the first time on an MG, with a locking electronic differential and Intelligent Motor Control to allow torque vectoring between all four wheels.

The MG4 XPOWER should also be able to stop more quickly, thanks to uprated, ventilated 345mm brake discs all round.

In terms of handling, the MG4 feels relatively compact, light and agile (at 1,800kg it’s lighter than the average EV), and the steering is sharper than the standard model.

All this results in the car being fun to drive, as well as being easy and enjoyable to live with day-to-day.

Ride quality is decent overall, but the suspension is (25%) firmer than the standard MG4, with recalibrated spring and damper tuning, and stiffer anti-roll bars; the suspension doesn’t feel as well engineered as some rivals.

Virtually all EVs are refined, but our MG4 test car generated some noise and steering vibration at motorway speeds, we’re assuming this was a one-off, possibly due to an issue such as incorrect wheel balancing or alignment.

There’s no start/stop switch in the MG4, you just get in and select a gear to drive off. The MG4’s gear selector is a circular dial which often feels very slow to respond when trying to twist it into gear. The gear selector doesn’t give you the option to adjust the level of brake regeneration, and there are no steering wheel-mounted paddles to do this; you have to go into the touchscreen and select the ‘car’ button, then energy recovery, and then low, medium, high or adaptive.

Also accessible via the touchscreen are the drive mode choices of Snow, Eco, Normal, Sport and Custom, although both the drive modes and the level of brake regeneration can be changed using left and right shortcut buttons on the steering wheel.

There are no standalone climate controls on the dashboard, but one significant change compared to the last MG4 that we tested is the addition of a set of climate controls at the top of the 10.25-inch touchscreen (incredibly, previously the MG4 didn’t have any climate controls accessible via the dashboard or home screen). Although the new controls are small, and they’re not that easy to access, you can now press these and bring up a screen of climate controls.

The graphics on the touchscreen aren’t particularly sophisticated, finding your way around radio stations isn’t easy, and connecting a phone via Bluetooth wasn’t as straightforward as with most other cars. At least the buttons under the touchscreen include one for Home.

The MG4 would benefit from being able to adjust the angle of the driver’s seat base – as it is, the driving position isn’t perfect – and the floating centre console can dig into your left knee.

MG4 XPOWER

MG4 XPOWER

MG4 EV XPOWER Electric Range and Charging

The MG4 EV XPOWER has an official combined WLTP driving range of 239 miles (or 328 miles on the City cycle). After a week on test the real-world driving range was 191 miles.

The MG4 XPOWER has a maximum DC rapid charging rate of 140 kW, which should deliver a 10% to 80% charge in 35 minutes at a 150 kW public rapid charger. A 10% to 100% charge at a 7 kW home wall box should take 8.5 hours.

The MG4 features the ability to deliver vehicle to load charging, in other words to power, for example, domestic appliances, camping equipment or power tools.

Electric cars do not charge at their maximum charge rate for an entire charging session – their charge rate typically starts off high with a battery with a low state of charge, then the charge rate decreases as the battery charge increases. See the charge curve for the MG4 XPOWER from Fastned:

Fastned_Chargecurve_MG4_64kWh_ExtendedRange_watermark

How to charge an electric car

MG4 XPOWER

MG4 XPOWER

Price And Model Range

The MG4 EV Trophy XPOWER costs £36,495; in the Racing Green colour as tested, the price is £37,295.

Also available are the MG4 EV Trophy Long Range, MG4 SE Long Range, and the MG4 SE Standard Range, featuring a smaller 51 kWh battery.

The MG4 EV XPOWER comes with a 7-year/80,000 mile fully transferable warranty as standard.

Prices and specifications correct at time of review

MG4 XPOWER

MG4 XPOWER

 

 

 

Conclusion

The MG4 EV XPOWER offers lots of performance, good grip and agile handling – all of which results in a fun driving experience. It’s also packaged in a sporty-looking and practical body shape, and it has a decent driving range. At £36,495, this is an electric performance car bargain. Of course there’s no such thing as a free lunch, and the catch is that the interior can’t be described as premium. But this shouldn’t be a deal breaker for lots of people, and the MG4 EV XPOWER is awarded a Green Car Guide rating of 9 out of 10.

Car facts and figures MG4 EV XPOWER Review

  • Test electric driving range: 191 miles
  • Consumption (WLTP): 3.27 miles/kWh
  • CO2 emissions (WLTP): 0 g/km
  • Vehicle tax rate (VED):   £0
  • Benefit in Kind (BIK) company car tax liability (2023/24): 2%
  • Price:   £36,495
  • Insurance group:  40 D
  • Power:   435 PS
  • Torque:   600 Nm
  • Max speed:   124 mph
  • 0-62 mph:   3.8 seconds
  • Weight:   1,800 kg
  • Towing capacity: 500 kg
Paul Clarke

Review by:
Paul Clarke, GreenCarGuide Editor