Used MG Rover ZR Hatchback 2001 - 2005 reliability

Category: Small car

The MG ZR is a fun, low-cost hot hatch, but it's unrefined and looking very dated now

MG Rover ZR Hatchback (01 - 05)
  • MG Rover ZR Hatchback (01 - 05)
  • MG Rover ZR Hatchback (01 - 05)
Used MG Rover ZR Hatchback 2001 - 2005 review
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Steve Huntingford
Published01 January 2006

What should I look for in a used MG ZR hatchback?

The petrol engines can suffer head gasket problems if the coolant runs too low, so look for signs of oil leaks between the head and block of the engine, check the inside of the oil filler and take the car for an extended test run to make sure it isn't prone to overheating.

Watch out for crash damage. The ZR's flash-for-not-much-cash looks make it popular among less experienced, hot hatch wannabes, which can end in tears.

Likewise, the suspension needs close attention - the car should track straight, the steering should be accurate and it should turn in and feel well planted in corners. If it doesn't, walk away. If the cause isn't crash damage, it could be worn front suspension, which isn't uncommon.

Build quality can be patchy, but electrical problems are the biggest cause of complaint among owners, so give all the electrical kit a thorough once over.

What are the most common problems with a used MG ZR hatchback?

Is a used MG ZR hatchback reliable?