- Finally some EV goodness for the masses
- Compact size yet spacious inside
- Brilliant dynamics - comfortable yet sporty
- Missing some key features in Excite trim
- Safety tech needs fine tuning
- Interior ergonomics are hit and miss
With the continual rise of the electric vehicle globally, there is a lot more of an interest in this technology as a way of reducing emissions in the global transport fleet, and EVs have improved significantly in their short time on the Australian new car market. When electric vehicles were introduced, they were expensive to buy and had short driving ranges and fast forwarding to today shows that EVs are more affordable and now have much longer driving ranges. With a starting price of $38,990 plus on-road costs, the 2024 MG 4 Excite promises to give more buyers an opportunity to buy into the EV space so should they?
The specific MG 4 variant we have here is an entry-level Excite grade with the larger 64kWh battery, which – for range at least – is the sweet spot in the range. We tested the MG 4 on its local launch and came away very impressed by it, but how does it fare with a two-week extended test over the Christmas break? Read more to find out.
How much does the 2024 MG 4 Excite 64kWh cost to buy?
As mentioned above, the 2024 MG 4 range kicks off at $38,990 plus on-road costs for the Excite 51kWh. The model we have here has the larger 64kWh battery which raises the price to $44,990 plus on roads. There are two models above the Excite which include the $47,990 MG 4 Essence 64kWh and the $55,990 Long Range 77kWh – plus, the 300kW dual-motor $59,990 XPower.
MG 4 Excite standard equipment:
- Dusk-sensing automatic LED headlights
- LED daytime running lights
- 17-inch alloy wheels with aero covers
- Intermittent windscreen wipers
- Keyless entry and start
- Electric heated exterior mirrors
- Single-zone automatic climate control
- 10.25-inch touchscreen with MG’s ‘iSmart Lite’ software
- FM/DAB+ digital radio
- Wired Apple CarPlay and Android Auto
- Electric parking brake
- Synthetic leather steering wheel
- Cloth seat upholstery
- 7.0-inch digital driver’s display
- Four-speaker sound system
- Vehicle-to-load functionality
- Eco, normal, sport, snow and custom driving modes
- Four regenerative braking modes
MG 4 Excite safety equipment:
- Six airbags
- Auto emergency braking (AEB) with pedestrian and cyclist detection
- Lane departure warning with lane keep assist
- Driver attention monitoring
- Adaptive cruise control with traffic jam assist
- Intelligent speed limit assist
- Traffic sign recognition
- Auto high beam
- Rear parking sensors
- Reversing camera
The 2024 MG 4 range earned a five-star ANCAP safety rating in 2022 with scores of 83 per cent for adult protection, 86 per cent for child protection, 75 per cent for pedestrian protection and 81 per cent for safety assist.
MG 4 colour options:
- Dover White
- Black Pearl: $700
- Brixton Blue: $700
- Volcano Orange: $700
- Diamond Red: $700
- Camden Grey: $700
- Sterling Silver: $700 (fitted to our test car)
While the 2024 MG 4 Excite is one of the cheaper electric vehicles on the market we do think the spec is a little too basic. We would love to see a wireless charger, auto-folding mirrors, auto wipers and blind-spot monitoring with rear cross-traffic alert added to the Excite. Spending a further $3,000 to step up to the Essence adds a six-speaker sound system, a six-way electric driver’s seat, an EV trip planner, live services, access to a phone app, a rear spoiler, heated front seats, heated steering wheel, 360-degree camera, two tone roof, auto dimming rear view mirror, leather and suede seating, dual level boot floor, larger 18-inch wheels, voice control and a wireless smartphone charger. That’s money well spent in our opinion – and makes us think that the Excite 64 should be less expensive.
The main rivals to the 2024 MG 4 Excite 64kWh are the GWM Ora Extended Range that’s priced at $45,990 plus on-road costs and the BYD Dolphin Premium, which is priced at $44,890 plus on-road costs. Both the Ora and the Dolphin gain an extra airbag, a 360-degree camera, blind-spot monitoring, power folding exterior mirrors, a six-speaker sound system and faux leather seats over the MG 4 Excite 64, and are more richly appointed inside as well.
How far can the 2024 MG 4 Excite 64kWh drive on a charge?
Using a new platform from MG with newly developed batteries, the entry level 2024 MG 4 Excite with the 51kWh battery has a WLTP-rated range of 350km – but step up the the Excite 64 with its larger 64kWh battery and the range increases to 450km. The motor paired with the 64kWh battery produces 150kW of power with 250Nm of torque. The claimed 0-100km/h sprint for the MG 4 64kWh Excite is a potent 7.2 seconds – or comfortably quicker than a warm hatch like a Hyundai i30 N Line – with a top speed of 160km/h.
The driving experience of the MG 4 is much like other EVs as the instant torque from the batteries can be a surprise if jumping from an ICE car, but once you are used to it, it’s great. There is a good amount of power on offer and we like the dual character driving characteristics on offer – it can be quick and fun and then once you relax, it’s quite mature. There are four different braking regeneration modes that return energy the batteries, including an automatic mode. We quite liked the strongest setting, while there’s also a one-pedal mode on top of that. There are also multiple driving modes and we mostly drove it in eco mode for maximum energy use, but it still gives reasonable performance – we wish it was easier to select the drive modes, however.
As we mentioned, the 2024 MG 4 Excite 64kWh will travel 450km on the WLTP cycle. Interestingly enough, we got close to 500km out of our first charge using Eco mode and then achieved the 450km claim on a second charge with a mixture of eco and normal modes. Both of these charges were achieved with some motorway and urban driving as well. The average energy usage we achieved during our time spent in the MG 4 was 14.2kWh/100km, which we thought was excellent.
Charging from 10-80% using a 50kW DC charger take a claimed60 minutes in the Excite 64kWh, while using a faster 150kW charger will reduce that time to only 28 minutes. The Excite 64 can be charged at a maximum of 140kW, while a full charge at 6.6kW (its maximum AC rate) will take nine hours. The MG 4’s peak charging rate and range are quite healthy – the Ora Extended Range’s 63kWh battery offers up a range of only 420km on the WLTP cycle and it can only be charged at up to 80kW, for example. The MG 4 is also more powerful than the 126kW Ora.
What is the 2024 MG 4 Excite 64kWh like to drive?
The 2024 MG 4 Excite 64kWh drives very well, especially for an electric vehicle, and it does well to hide its weight. The damping and ride quality is on par with more expensive vehicles and we were more than comfortable daily driving the 4. The ride is not too firm that it makes it uncomfortable but not too floaty that it will make passengers feel sick – in our opinion, it really is a Goldilocks ride as it’s just right. For an electric vehicle that isn’t marketed to be a performance offering, the 2024 MG 4 handles quite well and the rear-wheel drive chassis and great body control of the 4 make it far more engaging to drive than its rivals. For a daily driver and an electric one at that, we think the MG 4 is more than sporty enough for most people – but those wanting more have the range topping XPower to scratch that itch.
The active safety technology on the MG 4 is mostly fine, though some aspects could do with some tuning. We found that the radar cruise control would vary the speed regardless of if there was another car in front of us or not and we also found it jarring and not as smooth than a lot of other systems we have used. Another point we found could use work was the lane keep assist, which was fidgety – especially on the motorway at higher speeds, while the auto high beam didn’t work too well either. The lack of blind-spot monitoring and rear cross traffic alert hurts the MG 4 Excite here too, and we think the whole range should offer it as standard.
What is the interior of the 2024 MG 4 Excite like?
The 2024 MG 4 interior is much more minimalist in layout than your typical MG. It’s more spacious because of its new platform and it’s more modern as well thanks to higher-quality screens and new switchgear. Quality inside the MG4 is not particularly plush – the only soft points are the dashboard and arm rests – but everything feels well made and put together properly.
Storage inside the MG 4 is great with reasonable door pockets, a good-sized glovebox, a big box underneath the central armrest and a huge tray in the centre console with a netted area, a large open section and two reasonable cup holders.
There are a few odd and unergonomic aspects to the 2024 MG 4: there’s no start button to power on and power off the car – you do so by putting your foot all the way on the brake with the key in the car. Another annoying aspect about this is when you are sitting in the car while it charges and you accidentally touch the brake then you have to go into the car’s menus to power it off.
Centre of the 2024 MG 4’s cabin is a new 10.25-inch touchscreen. It includes digital radio and wired Apple CarPlay and Android Auto smartphone mirroring. It uses the same ‘iSmart’ software that features in the updated MG ZS EV and it’s far more useable than the software that other MG models like the ZST and HS use thanks to the use of icons which are more logical, more intuitive menu layouts and high screen quality. However, while there are more shortcut buttons below the screen, we’d still like to see more hard buttons for basic functions like adjusting the temperature and the regenerative braking instead of having to go into the screen to do so.
The rear seat of the MG 4, thanks to its EV platform, is quite roomy for its size – two six-foot adults will be more than comfortable, while a third will fit for a bit too thanks to the lack of a transmission tunnel in the middle. The rear seat features two ISOFIX points, three top-tether points, door pockets and a USB-A charging port – but no centre armrest, map pockets, air vents or even any lighting.
Opening the rear tailgate of the 2024 MG 4 reveals 363-litres of storage. It is a good size for the segment, though not exactly massive. It’s a reasonable space, with 1,177-litres when the rear seats are folded – definitely larger than a Corolla, but the BYD Dolphin offers more space with the seats folded at 1,310L. There’s also some side storage, though no dual-level boot floor like in the Essence and Long Range and no spare wheel and no front boot either.
What warranty covers the 2024 MG 4 Excite?
Like other new MG products, the 2024 MG 4 is equipped with a seven-year/unlimited km warranty with seven years of roadside assistance and a seven-year/unlimited km warranty for the battery. Its service intervals are long two-year/40,000km terms, and six years/120,000km of servicing costs $1,478 or $246 per annum.
Competitor BYD offers a slightly lesser six-year/150,000km warranty in Australia but with a slightly superior eight-year/unlimited km warranty for the Dolphin’s battery. The BYD Dolphin’s service intervals match the MG 4 for distance (20,000km) but it must be serviced once yearly – six years/120,000km of servicing costs $1,754 ($292 per annum). The GWM Ora has a seven-year unlimited kilometre warranty for the car with an eight-year unlimited kilometre warranty for the battery. It needs to be serviced once-yearly or every 15,000km and the cost to service it over the span of five years or 75,000km is just $495 as each of those five services cost $99.
Should I buy a 2024 MG 4 Excite 64?
We think that the 2024 MG 4 is a car that makes a lot of sense for a lot of people. It’s cheap to buy for an EV, it’s very cheap to run, it charges relatively quickly and is more than spacious enough for most buyers. We believe that the MG 4 is a great example of not spending more money to get a better car – it’s one of the best EVs we’ve driven, and it also happens to be one of the least expensive on the market.
Compared to its direct rivals, we believe the MG 4 to be the pick of the bunch. It has the most range, the most performance, the most interior room and is quicker to charge. Is there anything wrong with it? Well, the interior controls can be a little fiddly, the active safety technology needs some fine tuning and we do think the Excite spec level does need more equipment. But overall, we really like the MG 4 here at DiscoverAuto and would recommend putting it on your test drive list if you’re after a small EV – or, given its pricing, a small car in general if electric power works for you. It really is that good!