MG 4 XPower long term test: report 3

The MG 4 offers great value in cheaper guises, but this XPower version promises to add hot hatch fun to the mix. We're living with one to see if it delivers...

MG4 long-termer

The car MG 4 XPower| Run by Claire Evans, consumer editor

Why it's here To find out what it’s like to live with a fast and practical pure electric car that costs less than many petrol or diesel-engined rivals 

Needs to Be a comfortable, frugal and easy-to-charge commuter car Monday to Friday, and something to raise a smile and enjoy driving at the weekend

Mileage 5960 List price £36,495 Target Price £36,134 Price as tested £37,295 Official range 239 miles Test range 175 miles Options Racing Green paint (£800)

8 February 2024 – Springing into action

With the first signs of Spring appearing in our neighbourhood, I headed to our local garden centre to get some trellis for a new project. I was a little concerned that switching from a family SUV to a less tall hatchback would have resulted in less usable space, but the MG 4 easily swallowed my four 6ft by 2ft sections of trellis. All I had to do to get them into the car was fold the back seats down, lift them over the low sill and slide them along the flat boot floor. 

This bodes well for my ambitious 2024 gardening plans, for which I expect the MG 4 to prove highly useful. That’s because its second motor has been added to the front set of wheels, leaving boot capacity hardly diminished over single-motor versions, at 1165 litres. 

MG4 long-termer

The MG4 is proving practical in other respects, too. There’s a lot of useful storage space in the centre console - it has two good-sized cup holders up front, and because the gearlever is a dial high up on a ledge on the dashboard, there’s a cubby that’s big enough for my keys, handbag and other bits between the two front seats. It’s also sensible to have a separate wireless phone charging pad in front of the gearlever so you’re not rummaging around among other things to find your phone. 

It’s not all been good news recently, though. A massive crack almost the entire length of the windscreen appeared when I was demisting the car on one particularly frosty morning. I think it had been caused by a tiny stone chip that had happened a couple of days earlier, but it was so small the first I knew about it was when the giant crack appeared.

MG4 long-termer

Getting the windscreen replaced proved more time-consuming than I’d expected because the MG4 XPower is a new model and there was a bit of a delay in sourcing the screen plus some confusion over whether or not the insurer’s preferred repairer, Autoglass, could recalibrate the car's electrical systems once it was fitted.

Initially, Autoglass said it could supply a screen and reconfigure the driver assistance systems, but then I got an email saying it couldn’t and that I’d have to take the car to an MG dealer for a day afterwards. However, in the end my local Autoglass depot did all the work in just one morning, restoring the car to perfect condition, albeit after a three-week wait. 

MG4 long-termer

Still, watching my car being worked on gave me time to appreciate its understated styling. The only obvious things that sets my XPower model apart from other MG4 models are the 18in alloys and orange brake callipers. That’s good, because while I really appreciate the power that’s on tap whenever I need it, it doesn’t attract unwanted attention from other drivers. 

It also has eye-catching diagonal criss-cross lights across the bootlid spoiler, which it shares with Long Range and Extended Range MG4 versions. They are distinctive and make it stand out on a dark road. 

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