New MG HS vs Citroen C5 Aircross vs Mazda CX-5: costs

The Citroen C5 Aircross and Mazda CX-5 are the best benchmarks for the new Chinese-built MG HS...

CItroen C5 Aircross driving

Buying and owning

Costs, equipment, reliability, safety and security

A low list price makes the HS look tempting, but no discounts are available yet, whereas you can get about £3000 off the others. That makes the C5 Aircross the cheapest to buy and the CX-5 the priciest. 

However, on PCP finance (with a three-year term, a £2500 deposit and 10,000-mile annual limit), the C5 Aircross is £278 per month, the CX-5 £321 and the HS a hefty £357. 

The HS’s generous equipment makes that extra easier to swallow, though. The list includes heated, electrically adjustable, leather-clad front seats, automatically dipping LED headlights, keyless entry and start and a glass roof. The CX-5 is less flashy but still gets the same type of headlights, tinted glass and adaptive cruise control. The C5 Aircross is a little more bare, with no leather seats or sat-nav. At least Citroen lets you add options.

Mazda CX-5 driving

With the smallest engine, the C5 Aircross is the most frugal, getting 35.7mpg in our tests, but the CX-5 was just 0.1mpg worse on the same route and the HS 2.2mpg worse.

The CX-5 has an ace up its sleeve, though, in that it holds its value the best. That means it will cost you almost the same to run as its French rival over three years if you sell it after that. With no discounts and the heaviest depreciation, the HS will prove £3500 costlier.

The C5 Aircross incurs the least company car tax, at £218 per month (for a 40% taxpayer). Despite its higher CO2 emissions, the HS incurs a still-decent £250, compared with £279 for the CX-5. 

MG HS rear driving

Automatic emergency braking is standard on each of these cars. The HS adds blindspot monitors and lane-keeping assistance, while the CX-5 gets both of those as well as rear cross-traffic alert (which warns of passing vehicles when you’re reversing). Euro NCAP is yet to test the HS, while the CX-5 gets the full five stars. It’s four for the C5 Aircross, rising to five if you pay £200 for the Active Safety Pack.

The CX-5 emerged as the leading large SUV in our 2019 What Car? Reliability Survey; the C5 Aircross was too new to feature, but Citroen came 23rd out of 31 brands. We didn’t receive enough data to rate MG.