MG4 XPower

MG4 XPower, 2024, front, action
MG4 XPower, 2024, front, action
MG4 XPower, 2024, front
MG4 XPower, 2024, front, static
MG4 XPower, 2024, nose
MG4 XPower, 2024, side
MG4 XPower, 2024, rear, action
MG4 XPower, 2024, rear
MG4 XPower, 2024, interior
MG4 XPower, 2024, boot

WE all feel the need for speed every now and then.

The well-heeled might splash out nearly quarter of a million on a McLaren 750S, which sprints from 0-62mph in just 2.8 seconds.

Or, you could save yourself a fortune and go for the MG4 XPower, which will do the same in 3.8 seconds.

It costs just a fiver less than £37,000.

Delivering 429bhp and up to 600Nm of torque, it is the most powerful production MG yet, positioned alongside the most potent high-performance hatchbacks on the market - although very much cheaper.

Even the Audi RS3 Sportback, which does the 0-62mph in 3.8 seconds, will set you back nearly £57,000.

The XPower is based on the MG4 - the second biggest-selling EV of 2023 - but instead of just one motor on the rear axle, there are motors on both, the front delivering 201bhp, the rear 228bhp.

There's an electronic differential, the Intelligent Motor Control spreads torque between all four wheels, uprated springs, dampers and anti-roll bars increasing stiffness by 25 per cent, recalibrated steering, bigger brakes and a set of Bridgestone Turanza tyres.

There's no aggressive body kits, gaping air intakes or big spoilers to hint at the XPower's supercar-challenging performance.

It's distinguishable mostly from its humble cousin by its orange brake calipers and larger 18-inch wheels.

Inside, the usual blue stitching is now red, and there are metal pedals for a sportier feel. There's Alcantara trim on the seats too. The dashboard and steering wheel are covered in soft materials, but some of the switchgear - particularly below the 10.25-inch infotainment screen - don't seem very robust and appears to be quite cheap.

Okay, the interior materials reflect the cheap price point of the MG4 XPower, but the cabin is smart, modern and easy to live with.

But, that performance! In a straight line, it's a hoot, quick enough to have my mobile phone flying out of the lipped tray in front of the gear selector. And that was without launch control.

Even though we were on a wet road, the traction control did a great job transferring all that power to the surface under hard acceleration.

Select Sport mode for the powertrain and you can literally feel the MG straining at the leash - it's almost a little too eager.

And you don't need me to tell you that overtaking is a cinch.

So, it's quick in a straight line and on the motorway. However, while it can be entertaining on a typical English B-road, it does bring a little bit of the devil with it.

The ride is firmer than the standard car, but there's little noticeable drop-off in comfort. Body control is excellent, with very little noticeable roll through fast bends.

The extra motor and engineering tweaks certainly have made the XPower rapid, agile and nimble, even though there's very little to criticise about its standard sibling.

In normal driving it uses only the rear motor but can seamlessly switch to all-wheel drive in 200 milliseconds.

However, if you are using a large amount of that power on rough surfaces or on a constantly undulating road, the MG can buck and weave a little so you need to make constant adjustments to the steering.

Alternatively, just ease back on the pace a little and enjoy easing it through corners and surging along the straights.

The XPower'sofficial range is 239 miles but the more you play with that stonking power, the quicker it evaporates. However, the XPower is good for a 10-80 per cent top-up in 35 minutes when using a suitably faster charger.

The XPower comes as standard with the aforementioned colour touchscreen with Apple CarPIay and Android Auto, sat nav, 360-degree parking camera, a configurable seven-inch driver's display, heated front seats and steering wheel as well as MG iSMART app connectivity.

Behind the rotary gear selector, conveniently located on the floating console, sits a wireless charging pad.

There's also Bluetooth, an auto-dimming rear-view mirror and a six-way electrically adjustable driver's seat.

Despite its compact dimension, and relatively low roof line, it still feels spacious inside.

There's a decent amount of rear legroom and kneeroom and, unless you're well over 6ft, headroom too.

The EV powertrain means that the central hump in the floor is quite low, which helps accommodate three passengers across the rear seats.

Boot capacity is 363 litres, which increases to 1,177 litres if you fold down the rear seats, which have a 60:40 split. There's also a height-adjustable boot floor that's ideal for your charging cables or to hideaway valuables.

Also standard is the MG Pilot suite of driver assistance systems which features active emergency braking with pedestrian and bicycle detection, adaptive cruise control with traffic jam assist, lane keep assist with lane departure warning system, driver attention alert, and intelligent high beam assist.

For this flagship model, a door open warning, rear cross traffic alert, blind spot detection and lane change assist are also added.

It's probably also worth pointing out the MG4 is bum started. I don't mean there's some sort of tramp-cum-valet. There's no key or starter button: you just get in, take a seat, press the brake and the car comes to life.

FAST FACTS

MG4 XPower

Price:£36,495

Mechanical: 429bhp, 64kWh battery electric engine driving all-four wheels via a single-speed automatic gearbox

Max Speed: 124mph

0-62mph: 3.8 seconds

Combined MPG:328 miles

Insurance Group:40

C02 emissions: 0g/km

Bik rating: 2%

Warranty: 7yrs/80,000 miles

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