MG shows that station wagons have not said their last word. The MG 5 is the first to take an electric motor, and it now goes to the lie detector.
Manufacturers generally envision the electric car with two body shapes: sedans or SUVs. In both cases, their larger size makes it possible to carry a slightly larger battery than on compact or city cars, and this to better attract customers with reassuring autonomy.
The Chinese manufacturer MG sees things differently and unveils the first electric station wagon with the MG 5. With its 4.60 m length, it is ideally placed between a Fiat Tipo and a Peugeot 308 SW. A compact station wagon which could therefore be suitable for modest families (though) and for people transport professionals such as taxis or VTCs. It only remains to prove itself in terms of autonomy, therefore, subject of our Supertest.
Electric car supertests: summary of consumption, autonomy, performance and charging time
Presentation of the MG 5
Our test model is therefore an MG 5 in the Extended Autonomy version. In this configuration, the break has a Lithium NMC battery with a gross capacity of 61 kWh (57 useful kWh), which allows it to announce 380 km of autonomy in its top-of-the-range Luxury configuration. Like the MG ZS EV, the station wagon is powered by a front synchronous motor with a total power of 156 hp and 280 Nm of torque. Power is once again limited by that of the battery, when the entry-level version (50.3 kWh battery) peaks at 177 hp. Not enough to slash performance, sufficient with a 0-100 km / h in 8.3 s and a top speed of 185 km / h. It’s better than the SUV.
Although there are many common figures, they should not be confused. In that the MG 5 is based here on a General Motor Delta II platform modified from the previous Opel Astra. It is more exactly the PATAC-K unit launched in 2015 and initially developed for perfectly thermal cars. The teams therefore had to make some alterations, such as the raised trim to accommodate the pack in the floor.
On the charging side, the MG 5 refuels with an 11 kW AC on-board charger in series and a peak power of 87 kW in DC current. It takes a little less than 4 hours for a recharge on the best public terminals or wallbox, while the 10-80% requires 30 minutes on the fast terminals.
All our consumption measurements of the MG 5
Mixed autonomy: 358 km
Upon their arrival on the European continent, Chinese manufacturers have widely put forward their aggressive price lists. However, the varnish burst from the first turns of the wheel with equally aggressive consumption for the final autonomy. But MG was able to quickly acquire the necessary maturity in terms of efficiency, especially since the station wagon profile lends itself even better to the game. Admittedly, the temperatures during these measurements were mild with ambient air at 23°C, which which is favorable to consumption, although we took care to set the automatic air conditioning to 21°C. Air conditioning which, let’s take this opportunity to clarify, freezes your body at 20°C, but gives you the feeling of projecting lukewarm air at 21°C. It’s all the more unfortunate that you have to systematically go through the central touch screen to juggle. That is.
Well helped by the weather therefore, the MG 5 station wagon posted an average consumption of exactly 15.9 kWh/100 km. With its 57 kWh battery finally of an average size in the compact category, it therefore boasts a range of 358 km. It is just below the MG ZS EV and almost 30 km more than the Renault Megane e-Tech, however tested in the cold temperatures of March, let us remember.
In detail, it is in town where the station wagon felt the most comfortable with an average of 13.0 kWh/100. When the terrain becomes pronounced, efficiency takes a hit and the counter quickly tops out at a maximum of 30.0 kWh/100 km. On the fast lane, at an average speed of 105 km/h, it showed a consumption of 19.2 kWh/100 km.
|Conso. average A/R (kWh/100 km)||15,5||19,2||13||15,9|
|Theoretical total range (km)||367||296||438||358|
Road vs highway: a record for the moment
In these conditions, there are no surprises either when passing on our very favorable national road. Flat, without relief or almost and with few slowdowns, it allows electric cars to give the best of themselves. Especially since if the weather follows, final consumption can quickly take first place: with an average of 12.6 kWh/100 km (452 km of autonomy), the MG 5 does better than the Renault Megane e-Tech on the strict comparison of figures. Of course, with equivalent weather, the French could easily regain the advantage. But the performance is there.
Test – MG ZS EV Extended Autonomy: consumption, autonomy and measured performance of our Supertest
On the highway at an average speed of 120 km/h over a distance of 50 km, the appetite has increased to 21.5 kWh/100 km, or the equivalent of 265 km of autonomy. The difference with what we observed is finally in the average: between the most favorable and the least favorable of the existing routes, it is necessary to count on a lesser autonomy of 41.37% here.
Instantaneous consumptions of the MG 5
Still in terms of exploring performance in terms of consumption, the MG 5 did not escape our instantaneous measurements at fixed speeds of 110 and 130 km/h. With the most modest speed on the expressway, consumption is 19.5 kWh/100 km, or 292 km of total theoretical autonomy. Raising the tone a little more, the average rises to 24.0 kWh / 100 km, or 237 km.
Reducing the speed therefore increases the theoretical range by 21.66%. In the case of the MG 5, this corresponds to a range difference of 55 km, or 38 km on a “useful” full tank between 10 and 80% load.
|110 km/h||130 km/h|
|Cons. average (kWh/100 km)||19,5||24,0|
|Theoretical total autonomy (km)||292||237|
Long distance journey: 255 km range
But driving on the motorway is not just about consumption at 130 km/h: the various slowdowns, changing limits and topography always end up reducing consumption, and therefore increasing autonomy. At the end of our 500 km journey between the outskirts of Lyon and Paris, we crossed the finish line with an average of 22.3 kWh/100 km. Which in this case represents 255 km of autonomy.
Charged to 100%, the MG 5 can cover 230 km before reaching 10% charge. Then, it will be necessary to count on 180 km of autonomy between two stations on the motorway, our measurement being between 10 and 80% of load. In short, nothing new in the tropics, the MG 5 being in the average of the other compacts, but with different practical aspects.
Comfort and performance of the MG 5
And it is particularly at the level of the trunk that it takes the advantage with a very cubic hold of 479 l. Any modularity does not really shine in this station wagon, but it will still allow you to carry a little more business than in a Volkswagen ID.3 or Renault Megane e-Tech. And he has no more to be ashamed of than that in the face of the 488 l of the MG ZS EV. But the break also does not take advantage of the space under the trunk to carry a storage box, which could receive the charging cables. However, sufficient space is hidden under its imposing plastic plate. Shame.
The interior does not suffer from any criticism. Some astonishing details are obvious, such as certain color choices, the creaking of the upholstery, the central console that burns the eyes with the reflections of the sun or the perfectible driving position. But the whole is pleasant. The digital instrumentation is complete and the central screen seduces with its speed, organization and definition. The soundproofing is correct, nothing more: our sound level meter admitted levels a little higher than those recorded in a Megane, and persistent air noises at the top of the uprights are heard at high speed.
Renault Megane e-Tech test: consumption, autonomy and measured performance of our Supertest
The MG 5 is perched high on its wheels, which will not appear in the books of the most beautiful rims in history. This is the only solution that the engineers have found to accommodate the battery pack under the body. That does not build confidence if one refers only to appearance. But the road behavior is surprisingly under control. Yes, the suspension is very soft and the Michelin Primacy 3st tires are average. But the heading is rigorous despite some pumping effects in support. The shock absorbers, however, deserve better guidance in rebound, while compressions resonate loudly in the body.
The motricity is generally correct, but probably a little less on the fat/wet. The ESP takes care of the grain, but it must be said that the health of the engine is good. Count 8.3 s for 0-100 km/h and 5.75 s for 80-120 km/h at 80% battery. But its capacities are reduced as the load goes down, without issuing any visual cue to the dashboard on the remaining power: at 10% battery, the same exercise requires more than 13 s. An eternity when overtaking!
|80% SoC||50% SoC||20% SoC||10% SoC|
Reprises 80-120 km/h
|at 50 km/h||at 80 km/h||at 110 km/h||at 130 km/h|
Sound level on board
Supertest MG 5: le bilan
No one can match the Dacia strategy, and certainly not the Chinese manufacturers who, despite exotic price lists, are getting into the SUV segments. But MG is pulling the rug out from under and offering a car suitable for small families, or those who need a bit of boot space without signing up for an imposing SUV. The MG 5 could easily be the spiritual descendant of the first generation Dacia Logan MCV, offering a pragmatic, sufficient formula based on technical solutions already proven elsewhere.
But it is not a vehicle on the cheap, with a completely correct presentation and road behavior perfectly up to par. A good family car, which keeps its promises in terms of autonomy and versatility. In any case, this is what its powers and recharge times suggest, which should allow more than one to go on vacation, provided that they are well prepared in the absence of an on-board journey planner. We will come back to this with the second part of this Supertest.
If the Romanian break could suit modest homes, the MG 5 is not for all budgets and will not quickly become the darling of families. Of course, it is in a good position compared to other proposals and presents a convincing price/benefit ratio. But we shouldn’t forget that you still have to sign a check for €37,490 in the Luxury finish of the configurator alone, which brings it down to €31,490 with the ecological bonus. The MG ZS EV with its larger battery demands an effort of just €1,500. Too bad the border is not better marked to the advantage of the MG 5…