Costs & verdict
Everyday costs, plus how reliable and safe it is
This is where the HS really comes into its own. Despite being a similar size to the Mazda CX-5, the cheapest model undercuts the far smaller Volkswagen T-Roc on price by a considerable margin. Even the top-spec Exclusive model is cheaper than entry-level versions of the Citroën C5 Aircross, CX-5 and Peugeot 5008. Just remember that most manufacturers give far bigger discounts than MG; that’s why it’s worth checking out our New Car Buying pages for current savings on the HS and its rivals.
The news isn’t as good if you’re looking at using finance rather than buying outright. When we looked into a three-year PCP on an Exclusive model, it proved pricier than a more expensive Mazda CX-5 or Citroën C5 Aircross by a considerable margin.
High levels of standard equipment help to make up for the hefty PCP payments and slim discounts, though; even base Explore trim gives you such niceties as keyless entry and start, automatic headlights, adjustable driver’s lumbar support, cruise control and an auto-dimming rear-view mirror. Mid-spec Excite trim increases the alloy wheel size from 17in to 18in, adds rain-sensing wipers and introduces the option of an automatic gearbox. If you want dual-zone climate control, LED headlights and electrically adjustable leather seats, you’ll need top-spec Exclusive trim. Overall, Excite trim makes the most sense, but given that it only costs a little more, we wouldn’t blame you for picking Exclusive.
If you’re thinking of running an HS as a company car, bear in mind that the engine’s official CO2 emissions are on the high side: all versions are in the top 37% benefit-in-kind (BIK) tax bracket. However, it’s worth remembering that the HS’s low list price will go some way to offsetting the fact that it’s in a higher company car tax bracket than rivals such as the 5008 and C5 Aircross.
Officially, the HS averages 37.2mpg with the manual gearbox and 36.2mpg with the auto; that’s not terrible for the class as a whole but trails the petrol 5008. However, despite the official fuel economy figures proving a bit disappointing, in our carefully controlled tests on a private test track that simulate real world driving, the HS manual managed a respectable 33.7mpg; that’s not too far behind the 2.0-litre CX-5 and 1.2-litre Citroën C5 Aircross.
Every HS has automatic emergency braking (AEB), lane-keeping assistance, blind spot monitoring and even a rear cross-traffic alert system; such a long list of standard crash-mitigation kit is all but unheard of at this price point. Opt for the automatic gearbox and you also get adaptive cruise control, complete with a traffic jam assist feature that can steer the car in slow-moving traffic.
This standard safety equipment helped give the MG HS a full five-star Euro NCAP crash test rating. It’s better at protecting adults in a crash than the C5 Aircross and 5008, but you’re less likely to be injured in the Toyota RAV4 and Mazda CX-5.
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