4 out of 5 4.0
Parkers overall rating: 4 out of 5 4.0

Battery-powered load-lugger focuses on value

MG MG5 EV Estate (20 on) - rated 4 out of 5
Enlarge 39 photos

At a glance

New price £27,595 - £30,095
Lease from new From £330 p/m View lease deals
Used price £15,685 - £19,800
Used monthly cost From £391 per month
Fuel Economy 3.6 miles/kWh
Insurance group 32 How much is it to insure?
New

PROS

  • Generous levels of standard kit
  • Sensible real-world range
  • Agreeable ride and handling balance

CONS

  • Boot isn’t that practical for an estate
  • Dowdy styling inside and out
  • Doesn’t feel very special

MG MG5 EV Estate rivals

Written by Keith WR Jones on

As sales of SUVs continue to grow, more traditional bodystyles are falling out of favour with car buyers, which makes the arrival of the MG 5 EV Estate something of a surprise.

Not only is the MG 5 only available in estate form, it has another, more important, distinction. Giving the game away is the EV part of its name – it’s fully electric. In fact, this is the only estate-bodied electric car currently on sale. In MG’s line-up it vies for showroom space with SUV pairing of the electric ZS EV and plug-in hybrid (PHEV) HS.

With no direct rivals – a situation that is bound to change sooner rather than later – near-alternatives to the MG load-lugger are all PHEVs, with the most relevant being the Kia Ceed Sportswagon, SEAT Leon Estate and Skoda Octavia Estate.

Ordinary exterior shrouds EV tech

Beauty is in the eye of the beholder and all that, but few would argue there’s anything about the MG 5 EV’s styling that looks remotely cutting edge. Being charitable, you’d be forgiven for thinking it was a car that had already been on sale for a good few years before being shipped to Britain… Oh, it has.

Yes, the MG 5 is a rebadged version of the Roewe i5 (with petrol and diesel engines) and Ei5 (the electric one), models that debuted in China in 2017. Chinese market cars are also available as conventional four-door saloons – don’t expect this body shape to reach these shores, though.

Lamentable glossy black front grille aside, which bears no relation to other MGs currently on sale, the 5 EV is a relatively safe design that’s not going to be polarising for buyers who shun radical looking cars or who find SUVs too new-fangled.

In fact, it looks so ordinary that you have to look at it hard to determine that it is electric: an EV badge on the tailgate, no visible exhaust pipes out back and a hinged panel behind the MG logo on the nose for the recharging socket are the only giveaways.

For consumers looking to go electric, but with as little virtue signalling as possible, the 5 could be the very thing you’re looking for.

What’s the MG 5’s electric range?

Officially, the MG will cover 214 miles of mixed driving between recharges, rising to 276 miles if used primarily for urban journeys.

Even in winter, when electric cars’ battery capacity is dented by low temperatures, we experienced little trouble reaching 170 miles before it needed plugging in.

Lying low down in the MG’s structure is a 52.5kWh battery pack, which can be zapped from 0-80% capacity using a CCS-type connection in around 50 minutes. A 7kW domestic wallbox would stretch that to 8.5 hours for a full battery, fine for overnight replenishment.

Easy to understand line-up

Some manufacturers’ ranges are so complex you need a masters degree in nerdery to work out which is the best version to go for. Not so with the MG 5 EV as it comes in just two flavours.

Kicking off the range is the somewhat ambitiously titled Excite model. While it’s unlikely to get you jumping for joy, it does come with 16-inch alloy wheels, air-conditioning, an 8.0-inch multimedia touchscreen complemented by a 7.0-inch colour display in the instrument binnacle, cruise control and rear parking sensors.

Plump for the flagship Exclusive version and for your extra £2,500 outlay you get leather-look plastic upholstery, heated front seats, six-way electrical adjustment for the driver’s seat, silver roof rails, keyless entry, an automatically dimming rear-view mirror, rain-sensitive wipers, plus integral sat-nav.

Both cars also come with MG’s seven-year/80,000-mile warranty.

Not the roomiest of estates

If outright carrying capacity is your key motivation for choosing the MG 5 then it may prove a little disappointing as we cover in more depth later in the review.

There are few clever touches in its boot that you’ll find elsewhere, such as adjustable floor rails and flat-folding rear seats.

Still, even under the retractable load cover there’s a useful 464 litres of luggage space, but it’s best to think of the MG 5 as a very generously booted hatchback rather than the last word in estate capaciousness.

There’s a clue to this on the tailgate with the SW badge: presumably it stands for ‘sport wagon’, implying it’s not the roomiest of estates, but strangely that name – or the badge! – is referred to anywhere on the website or in the brochure.

Does the MG 5 EV Estate have more in its arsenal than inexpensive motoring for private buyers and company car drivers alike?

Click through the next few pages to read everything you need to know about the MG 5 EV including its practicality, how much it costs to run, what it's like to drive – and whether we recommend buying one.

Grey 2020 MG 5 EV rear three-quarter

MG MG5 EV Estate rivals