In-depth reviews

MG ZS review - MPG, CO2 and Running Costs

Average running costs are offset by low purchase prices, but residual values are uncertain

There’s no doubt the MG ZS is cheap to buy, and it should be reasonably cheap to run too, although it’s not exactly an economy star when you compare its efficiency to that of rivals.

The 1.0-litre three-cylinder engine is the more technically advanced option, and you might hope for better figures than it actually delivers. It only musters 41.4mpg on the combined cycle using WLTP measures, while we’d have hoped for a little better to compete with key competitors. CO2 emissions of 155g/km don’t look great either, and we suspect the automatic gearbox is the culprit. But of course you’ll have to drive a long way before any economy disadvantages eat up the savings you’ve made in the showroom by opting for the MG instead of a European competitor.

Plump for the larger but cheaper 1.5-litre engine with its five-speed manual gearbox, and the official figures promise 38.6mpg and 166g/km of CO2. After the pricey first-year rate, road tax will be the same whichever model you plump for at £150 per year.

Insurance groups

The lack of performance and cheap pricing mean the MG ZS will be cheap to insure, with the 1.5-litre sitting in group 11 and the 1.0 in group 10 for quote purposes. It’s not quite as attractive as the group 9 rating for the smallest engined Renault Captur but it’s close enough to have a minimal effect on premiums. 

Depreciation

Residual values for the MG range haven’t been on a par with many European-built rivals, but expert data predicts the ZS will hold onto 40% of its original price over 3 years and 36,000 miles. Although not class-leading by any means, this is better value than a Vauxhall Crossland X.

Next Steps

Which Is Best

Cheapest

  • Name
    1.5 VTi-TECH Explore 5dr
  • Gearbox type
    Manual
  • Price
    £12,213

Most Economical

  • Name
    1.5 VTi-TECH Excite 5dr
  • Gearbox type
    Manual
  • Price
    £15,029

Fastest

  • Name
    1.5 VTi-TECH Excite 5dr
  • Gearbox type
    Manual
  • Price
    £15,029

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