MG 5 Review
The MG5 is the only electric estate car available in the UK, and it’s great value for money
Strengths & weaknesses
The MG 5 is an all-electric family car that’s only available in estate form. It has no real rivals here in the UK, as most electric cars are either larger SUVs or smaller superminis, but you could consider a Nissan Leaf as its main competition (even though that’s a hatchback, not an estate).
The MG 5 is actually a version of a Chinese car called the Roewe i5, which is made by MG’s parent company SAIC. This means it’s a really cheap car and this is the main reason to buy one - it’s one of the most affordable electric cars you can buy when you consider how practical and well-equipped it is.
The MG 5 uses a 61kWh battery and a 156hp electric motor, which allows it to drive for up to about 250 miles on a single charge and it can go from 0-62mph in 8.3 seconds. It can charge up to 80% in about 40 minutes at a public rapid charger.
These figures are competitive in the electric car world, although the very best electric models have longer range and faster charging. None are as cheap as the MG 5, though, and the estate body style means there’s a big boot and plenty of space for passengers.
There was previously a smaller-battery version with a 53kWh battery, which had a range of about 214 miles. This version is no longer on sale, so you will only find it on the second-hand market - but it’s still a decent option.
It’ll be easy to spot because the MG 5 was updated in 2022 with a more modern and attractive face. It looks more like a Kia, with wide, angry-looking headlights. The previous model has a much more traditional face with a big grille.
Read on to find out more about the MG 5 EV and which model is right for you.
Should I get an MG 5?
✔ Good value for money
✔ Practical estate body
✘ Dull to drive
✘ Interior quality isn’t great
✘ Odd looks
The MG 5 is a great option for people who want to get an electric car to replace their family transport, but have a more limited budget. It’s not fancy or exciting, but the MG 5 is one of the most affordable electric cars that is actually capable of dealing with family life on a regular basis - the estate body style means the boot is big and there’s room in the back for adults as well as kids.
It’s not as good to drive or as high-quality as a Nissan Leaf, but it has plenty of equipment, it’s comfortable to drive and - especially as a used car - it’s cheap to buy and run. There’s a good amount of range from the batteries and performance is good enough for most people, too.
- Models explained
- Trim levels
- Batteries and range
- Charge time
- Best MG 5 for
- Boot space
- Should I buy used?
The MG 5 is an electric estate car similar in size to a Volkswagen Golf (or ID.3). It’s available currently in Long Range form only, which has a 250-mile range, but was previously also available in Standard Range form as well, which had a smaller battery and a range of about 214 miles.
The current model has a modern look with Kia-like headlights, and the 2020-2022 model had a more traditional look. Under the skin they are pretty much the same, although the newer model has an improved interior and drives better too. Go for a 2022-on version if you can stretch to a more expensive car.
|Limited stock: The early versions of the MG 5 came in Excite and Exclusive trim levels. The base version came with air-conditioning, sat-nav, smartphone connectivity and digital radio.
|From £12,989: The higher-spec model came with all of the above plus heated seats, leather upholstery, climate control and keyless entry.
|Limited stock: Currently the trim levels are SE and Trophy, in Long Range form only. The base version comes with a 10.3-inch media screen, a seven-inch driver’s display and aero-style alloy wheels.
|From £20,841: The higher-spec car gets tinted windows, sportier alloys, a 360-degree parking camera, heated seats, climate control and automatic windscreen wipers.
There’s a 156hp motor in all models, which allows 0-62mph in 8.3 seconds - not bad for a family car. It’s not particularly good to drive, though, so the performance is more useful than exciting.
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There are two battery options in the MG 5, although the smaller of the two is no longer on sale so is only an option for used buyers. This was a 53kWh battery and it delivered a range of 214 miles on a single charge. It’s a more affordable option since it has depreciated faster than the Long Range model.
Some 2020-2022 models also have the larger battery option, and all post-2022 versions (which have an updated, more modern-looking face) have the Long Range battery. This is a 61kWh battery and it brings a range of 249 miles on a single charge.
The 2022 MG 5 is equipped with rapid charging capability of up to 87kW, which means you can top up the battery to 80% in about 40 minutes. At a 50kW charger (available at most service stations), the same takes about an hour. The smaller battery model actually has only 80kW charging capability, but because of its smaller size, it takes the same amount of time to recharge.
At a home wallbox, the Long Range model takes around nine hours to charge fully, while the older Standard Range version takes just under eight hours because the battery is smaller.
In general, the newer the better with the MG 5 EV. The latest (post-2022) version is the best, especially in terms of looks, but it’s also better to drive than before and is only available with the larger battery. However, the older version is still worth considering because it’s good value on the used market. Here are some options for a few different situations.
|MG 5 Exclusive Standard Range: Since buyers want a log of range, the Short Range version of the pre-2022 MG 5 has depreciated quickly. It’s very good value and will be ideal for people who don’t do a lot of long trips. It still has over 200 miles of range, which is pretty good.
|MG 5 Trophy Long Range: Go for the newer 2022-on version in Trophy trim if budget isn’t a problem. It’s still good value next to a VW ID.3, for example, and in top-spec form it has a lot of kit, plenty of range and the more modern looks of the latest version.
|MG 5 Excite Standard Range: There’s not much difference between any of the models when it comes to performance - all have 156hp and take around eight seconds to go from 0-62mph. However the lightest model is the entry-level version with the smaller battery, so that’s the quickest.
|MG 5 Excite Standard Range Range: Even though it’s the quickest, we’d skip the entry-level version. The Exclusive version is only a tiny bit more expensive as a used car and it brings a lot more equipment for the money, so choose that instead.
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There are no other electric estate cars available in the UK, so the MG 5 doesn’t have any direct rivals. However, there are some similar-sized cars to consider. The Nissan Leaf is the main one - it’s practical and matches the MG for range, although it’s not as roomy in the boot.
There’s also the Volkswagen ID.3, which also isn’t as roomy and it’s also quite a bit more expensive than the MG 5. You could also consider a plug-in hybrid such as the Mercedes C350e or the Volkswagen Passat Estate GTE. These are larger and more luxurious but thanks to decent used prices, they cost about the same as a new MG 5 - or in the Mercedes’ case, a lot less if you choose an older model.
MG 5 practicality: dimensions and boot space
The MG 5 is 4.5m long, 1.5m high and 1.8m wide, which means it’s about average for a family car. It’s similar in size to a Volkswagen ID.3, which is also 1.8m wide but is taller (1.6m) but not as long (4.3m) as the MG 5.
The MG 5 is an estate, which means it has five doors including a hatchback boot with an extended roofline to create a larger luggage area.
There’s plenty of space in the MG 5 for passengers, although the high seating position means that it feels a bit like you’re perched on the seat instead of sitting in it. There’s not much space to put your feet under the seats in front either, so if you have big feet it might feel quite cramped in the footwell.
|Length 4,544mm - 4,600mm
|Height 1,521mm - 1,543mm
|Weight 1,532kg - 1,737kg
The MG 5’s estate body means it has more room than most other electric cars in the boot. There’s 464 litres in the 2020-2022 model and 479 litres in the post-2022 version, which is more than you get in a Volkswagen ID.3, which has 385 litres.
With the rear seats folded down there’s 1,456 litres of space in the older version and 1,367 litres in the newer model. Again, this is more than in the VW, which has 1,267. However, the MG 5 isn’t as practical as a normal petrol-powered estate of a similar size, such as the VW Golf Estate - which has about 600 litres even with the rear seats up.
|Seats up 464-479 litres
|Seats down 1,456-1,367 litres
The MG 5 didn’t appear in the 2022 Driver Power customer satisfaction survey, but MG as a car maker came in a very poor 28th place out of 29 manufacturers. This doesn’t suggest that the car will necessarily be unreliable, but that the ownership experience generally will not be up to scratch. The electric powertrain means that we would expect it to be more reliable than petrol or diesel estate cars, as there are fewer moving parts to go wrong.
The MG 5 comes with a warranty covering it for seven years or 80,000 miles, which is certainly better than average. Most car makers offer a warranty of three years or 60,000 miles, although Kia and Toyota models come with an even more impressive warranty. Still, MG’s excellent warranty means it’s great for long-term owners who don’t plan on selling the car for a significant period of time.
The MG 5 has its own niche in the market as an electric-powered estate car, but the main reason to buy one is actually that it’s good value for money. To get this amount of space and electric driving range in other models you have to pay a lot more, plus the MG 5 is also really well equipped and comes with all the modern tech you need.
It’s okay to drive - not very exciting, but comfortable - and performance is good from the 156hp electric motor. The interior is dull and pre-2022 models look very plain on the outside as well, but the latest versions are much more eye-catching. However, the dull looks of the older models mean they are even better value, since some buyers ignore them in favour of prettier models that aren’t as good in many other ways.
Choose an early model with the smaller battery if you don’t do a lot of longer trips. It has plenty of range - up to about 214 miles - for daily driving and comes just as well equipped as models with the larger battery.
The newer 2022-on version is much better-looking than the previous version, plus it’s a bit better to drive and the interior has also been updated. This model isn’t as affordable simply because it’s newer, but it’s still good value in comparison to similar models from other car makers.
The Long Range model is the better option for long trips, as it has a range of 249 miles on a single charge. It’s able to charge up to 80 per cent in 40 minutes or so, which is okay for a stop-over.
*Representative PCP finance - 2018 Ford Fiesta 1.0 ST-Line Hatchback:
|PCP representative example
|APR rates available
|Cash price £12,000
|Value of loan
|Fixed monthly payment £218.12
|Annual mileage of 8,000pa
|Total cost of credit £2,755.55
|Term 48 months
|Optional final payment £4,285.79
|Loan value £12,000
|Total amount payable £14,755.55
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