MG ZS Limited

Edition

MG ZS, side static
MG ZS, front static
MG ZS, front static 2
MG ZS, rear static 2
MG ZS, rear static
MG ZS, rear seats
MG ZS, front seats
MG ZS, dashboard
MG ZS, boot

HAVE you read your car's handbook from start to finish? Thought not - and you're not alone; surely hardly any of us does.

Had my eyes alighted on page 174 of the handsomely presented handbook for the MG you see here some of what follows ought not to have happened.

You would not, for instance, hear what this mid-sized and bargain priced SUV was like under full bore acceleration or (whisper it) how it fared at a typical motorway canter.

For this particular car had covered so few road miles in its short life (plus lots of nautical ones travelling from its China birthplace) that it was nowhere near run in - and thus fit to be driven hard.

Still hadn't been when the nice chap turned up to drive it away, 30 miles short of the 900 dictated by the handbook before a fuller exploration of the rev counter is properly permitted.

Just as well, though, that I hadn't read, and then observed, that advice. Doing so would have condemned the car as a bit of a gutless wonder. So reluctant to get a move on you checked the handbrake has been fully released.

My more than 400 'running in' miles also provided a car so much more lively at the end it felt almost a different machine. No wonder many test cars spend a day or two on long motorway journeys before they're let loose on a motoring writer.

With an ultimate and heady 870 miles on show, the car no longer irritated with its reluctance to accelerate and became an acceptable performer, if still no ball of fire.

Another handbook runnning-in stricture was not to exceed 72mph, an odd speed to pick, you might think as at 115.8kph it's not even an obvious metric equivalence.

Anyway, at a tad more than that on the clock the ZS makes comfortable enough progress and doesn't get in the way of the M-way chargers on their way to that next vital business engagement.

The car you see here is one of 400 ZS Limited Editions, priced at £14,995 and using the £950 price hike over the mid-level Excite version it's based on to provide a purely cosmetic uplift.

So, you'll find Artic White paint, high gloss black grille, 17in diamond cut alloy wheels and red trimmed bumpers on the outside and lots of red accents on seats, air vents, gear lever gaiter, door coverings and steering wheel on the inside.

Carried over from less spangly versions are a hard ride, soggy steering and an odd spec that includes Apple CarPlay but not Android Auto and a very unsparkly sound system.

Pluses included a useful 45.9mpg on test, long warranty, easygoing gearchange and an interior that feels plusher than the sub-fifteen grand price tag might have you expecting.

FAST FACTS

MG ZS Limited Edition

Price: £14,995

Mechanical: 106bhp, 1,498cc, 4cyl petrol engine driving front wheels via 5-speed manual gearbox

Max Speed: 109mph

0-62mph: 10.9 seconds

Combined MPG:47.1

Insurance Group: 11

C02 emissions: 140g/km

Bik rating: 32%

Warranty: 7yrs/80,000 miles

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