Published on July 2nd, 2024 | by Subhash Nair


MG4 XPower Review: Punching Above Its Weight Class

The MG4 XPower takes a basic 5-door EV and turns things up to 11 to fight off upper tier rivals.

MG brand is not unfamiliar to a number of older car buyers in Malaysia. Many older Malaysian car enthusiasts will have fond memories of 2-door roadsters and some may even still be running 4-door sedans and wagons like the ZT. But MG of today is a completely different beast. It’s essentially the export arm of SAIC – one of the oldest and largest Chinese automotive conglomerates. While SAIC has been rather cautious with its expansion into Malaysia (only its Maxus sub-brand has been operating here), they’ve now decided to take the plunge here with the MG brand and a couple of electric vehicles – the MG4 and the ES.

While MG’s arrival was not surprising to us, what did come as a shock was the value proposition of the MG4. Our analysis of EV pricing to performance showed that the MG4 XPower delivered more metric horsepower per Ringgit than literally any other car sold in Malaysia. 435PS for just under RM160,000. It dethroned the former king (the BYD Seal Performance AWD) and the would-be king (Ora 07 Performance) and even the EV that started this performance-value comparison in the first place – the Tesla Model 3 Long Range AWD. These are all cars that cost between RM190K – RM220K at launch, so the MG4 XPower coming in at RM160K was really not expected for us. Additionally, the MG4 XPower also delivers great performance-value in terms of torque for the Ringgit with 600Nm available.

So when we the team was offered two MG4 units to test drive, I decided the XPower was worth checking out. Daniel took the Lux Extended Range model and you can read his review here.


Just about every “mass market” electric vehicle tends to follow the same template set by the Model 3. The base model has a single motor with a smaller battery for mediocre range and too little equipment and exists solely for that low “starting from” price. Then there’s a middle range option with the same single motor but a larger battery for much better range and a lot more equipment in the middle. And at the top, there’s the “flagship” model with two motors for breakneck figures but at the cost of range and sometimes the value proposition gets thrown out the window. With the MG4, this formula is just about replicated with an additional 4th variant thrown in for good measure.

The MG4 XPower variant truly delivers on the numbers. 435PS and 600Nm of torque are figures you’d expect to get out of your first Million-Ringgit Porsche but here we are in 2024 getting it from a car that costs less than a Honda Civic hybrid! 0-100km/h in 3.8 seconds is what’s reported on the brochure but we got about a second slower than that as the car got into our hands with less than 75% battery state-of-charge. That being said, straight-line speed was extremely impressive and it was still way to powerful to fully exploit on public roads so we can’t complain. The MG4 XPower lands within the top 5% fastest EVs we’ve ever tested and it’s pretty close to the bottom 5% most inexpensive EVs we’ve ever tested.

In terms of handling, the XPower comes with stiffer dampers and the chassis in general just feels really well sorted. It feels planted and sure around corners and there were no mistakes in the way it was tuned. Even pedal feel was pretty impressive. The only issue we had with performance is that the MG4 XPower feels completely inert to drive. There’s no drama to speak about. Of course, the Model 3 and Seal are also relatively drama-free vehicles, but the interiors of those cars communicate some excitement where this one comes across as a little drab. The issue here, I think is that the XPower sells itself as a performance variant (just look at those orange painted caliper covers) but doesn’t do enough to stimulate the senses besides deliver an enormous amount of power.

In stark contrast is the Ora 07, which even in Long Range guise gives you a range of simulated engine sounds. The smart BRABUS #1 also features fake engine noises while the Volvo C40’s motors have a natural wail to them. The MG4 XPower is just kind of silent and powerful. Some may like that, some may find it too eerie and disjointed from car’s actual performance.

In terms of ride, the XPower is a little on the stiffer side but it’s not jarring. I wouldn’t complain about the comfort level of something this powerful but what is an issue to me is the range. At full charge you’ll get only 385km. By the end of my first day with the car I had 51% battery left and 180km of range with a long weekend full of traveling to look forward to. On paper, the MG4’s fast charging capability is nothing special (135kW vs the Seal’s 150kW and the Model 3’s 250kW) but in practice I was pretty impressed.

I plugged it in at a 60kW charger, packed up my camera gear, spoke to a random uncle about the pros and cons of EV charging and by the time I walked to the cafe the car was at 80+%. 50-80% literally happens in the time it takes you to exit the vehicle and get your coffee. I stayed an additional 5 minutes and it was close enough to full that I decided to just head home.

All-in-all, the MG4 XPower is really quite competent and a little too fast for your average customer. If you want something fast for cheap, there’s no EV that matches this. However I just don’t think it’s exciting enough behind the wheel and most EV buyers at this price bracket should concern themselves more with range. I’ll put it this way – at no point in time did I feel the need to ask for 100% of the MG4’s power but there were instances where I wished it had more range and was maybe a tad softer. In that sense, I think the Lux Extended Range makes a lot more sense.


The MG4 in itself is a pretty interesting shape for a car. It’s not quite an SUV but it’s also lacking the compact proportions of your typical 5-door hatchback. I think the most accurate way to describe it is as a 5-door crossover inspired hatch. In this segment there’s nothing quite like it in terms of its body style but when you actually look at the big picture you’ll understand that’s part of MG’s strategy. The MG4 is actually BOTH a BYD Dolphin competitor and a BYD Seal competitor too. In terms of shape and size it’s actually not too far from the Dolphin, but in XPower form, it’s not too far from the Seal Performance variant.

The advantage of this in terms of design is that you have a more versatile interior. The boot is pretty tiny compared to what you get on its sedan competitors but no sedan opens up this much volume with the rear seats folded down.

In that sense a single-vehicle household could make more of a case for the MG4 over an electric sedan.

Exterior design is mostly inoffensive save for a tiny 3rd brake light, and some strange generic pattern on the rear taillight bar. The front fascia and the orange brake caliper covers make the MG4 come across as a very aggressively designed vehicle but it’s somewhat earned with this much performance available. It’s also worth noting that the 18″ wheels here are the only ones that don’t come with plastic aero covers.

The cabin is plain and ergonomic with some nice upholstery but some poor plastics on the dashboard and door cards. It’s a far cry from the beautifully designed British interiors of yesteryear but there’s good stuff here to talk about.

Physical buttons are still here (though not for temperature and fan speed) and you get a rotary gear selector with a giant “P” button which is genuinely quite unique. In addition, the MG4 is one of those EVs that doesn’t come with a start-stop button.

Build quality is excellent here too, good even by the high standards Chinese manufacturers tend to deliver nowadays. That being said it lacks the flair that many of its rivals are starting to show. Everything looks very conservative any a few materials really don’t quite cut it, including the piece of rubber on the wireless charging pad.

Overall, it comes across as a well-designed appliance with clean lines, a sensible layout, and lots of storage bins. 


All of this makes the MG4 very compelling as an entry or mid level EV. The issue is that in its XPower form it going up against cars like the BYD Seal, Ora 07 and Tesla Model 3. Yes, you’re getting a substantially cheaper car with comparable performance but in this space, the MG4 XPower feels a little bit out of its league – not in objective measurements, but in subjective feel. Plastics here feel too cheap, displays are too small, and overall package too held back by its economical roots to really feel upmarket.

Which at least answers the question – why is the value ratio so far in its favour? Well, because it’s simply a smaller, cheaper product that has been highly specified to fight rivals one tier above its weight class.

EVs do that all the time. The Model 3 and Seal fight the BMW 3 Series and C-Class while being cheaper thanks to tax free pricing. But when an EV itself tries to go up against its own kind with the same philosophy, it remains to be seen if many customers will be convinced.

My personal opinion – if you’re going to spend around this much money, go for the Long Range model and not the XPower model. The fundamentals of the MG4 are great and it makes for an excellent starter EV. The XPower is simply there for the showroom test drive and to prove that MG can indeed deliver some impressive figures on this very capable chassis.

MG4 XPOWER dashboard

2024 MG4 XPower Specifications

Battery Capacity: 64 kWh
Range (WLTP): 385 km
Estimated Charging Time: 8.5 hours 10 – 100% @ 7 kW AC (maximum), 26 minutes 10 – 80% @ 150 kW DC (maximum)
Power: 435PS
Torque: 600 Nm
Acceleration 0 – 100km/h: 3.8 seconds
Top Speed: 200 km/h
Selling Price:RM158,999.00

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Written work on @subhashtag on instagram. Autophiles Malaysia on Youtube.

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