Chinese-owned brand MG has revealed arguably its most exciting car to date in Australia – the all-new electric MG 4.
Due to touchdown locally in the second half of 2023, the MG 4 is about the same size as a Hyundai i30 or any other small hatchback in market, and is the first MG to be built on the carmaker’s new modular platform (MSP) dedicated to zero-emission vehicles.
While that makes it smaller than the ZS EV crossover and it’s therefore easy to assume the MG 4 hatch could take the mantle as Australia’s cheapest EV – but this mightn’t be the case, according to MG’s marketing boss, Rick Whaite.
“Cheapest is not necessarily our appetite, rather, it’s about value. As MG has always done, we will do our very best to make sure it’s an incredibly compelling proposition to the market,” said Mr Whaite.
Interestingly, the MG 4 is already on-sale in the UK and undercuts the base MG ZS EV by £3500, equal to around $A6000. This same electric SUV kicks off in Australia at $46,990 drive-away, suggesting a price point of around $40,000 is at least a possibility.
Nevertheless, the rear-wheel drive MG 4 will likely launch with three model grades, using two battery sizes, with pricing to be confirmed closer to the car’s launch later in the year.
The spec sheet lists a MG 4 51 with a 51kWh battery giving it 350km of range under the stricter WLTP cycle, an MG 4 64 using a 64kWh battery with 450km of range and an MG 4 LUX using the same 64kWh battery but with 430km of range.
MG Motor Australia is also looking at additional variants, including a dual-motor AWD hot-hatch version making more than 294kW of power, and possibly an extended-range version using a 77kWh battery for around 500km of range.
“The all-wheel drive version is definitely something we’re considering, obviously it’s a really exciting proposition and phenomenal as we move to our sportscar heritage,” said a spokesperson for MG Motor Australia.
“It would be great to have it in our line-up and definitely under consideration but not something we can confirm today.”
MG also told us that both the next-generation Marvel R electric crossover (in right-hand drive) and Cyberster electric roadster are also on the cards for Australia and ‘not too far away’.
The brand has already become popular in Australia with an entirely new generation of buyer largely unaware of its British sports car heritage and, according to Mr Whaite, it’s in a solid position to capitalise on its latest technology.
“I think we’re at a really interesting phase of the brand in terms of the fact we’ve managed to become the seventh largest seller in the marketplace and achieved that in a timeline far quicker than MG’s Korean counterparts,” said Mr Whaite.
“Moreover, it’s cars like the MG 4 that are going to be transformational in terms of the way people think and feel about the brand. We obviously have a very strong reputation for value and now it’s about making sure we add far more dimension to that.
“It’s also clear that we’ve moved our brand positioning to ‘Take Charge’, with a reference to our electric future but also what we’re trying to do with the brand.
“Whilst we’ll never walk away from value, it’s not the basis of our platform anymore”, concluded Mr Whaite.