MG Astor Review – Is Petrol Power Better Than Electric?

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Let’s take a comprehensive look at the design, features, price and other important details of the MG Astor and find out how good of an offering it is for the buyers.

MG has been offering SUVs to the Indian market from the very beginning and has also been fairly successful in doing so. Their first entrant was the MG Hector which became successful due to its distinct design and some stand out features. Since then, MG has been able to have some grip on the market and now, has introduced another vehicle in their line-up. MG Astor has been launched and is likely to go against Hyundai Creta, Skoda Kushaq, Kia Seltos, Nissan Kicks and Volkswagen Taigun.

MG Astor

MG Astor is the petrol-powered version of the MG ZS EV which has been a global hit and many Indians have given a positive response to the vehicle. However, people who are still sceptical about switching to an electric vehicle can most definitely choose to buy this vehicle. It has some subtle changes when compared to the ZS EV, so let us take a comprehensive look at this new car.

Exterior Design

MG Astor 5000 sold out

Starting off, the design of the MG Astor is somewhat similar to the MG ZS EV but has some differentiating elements. The grille with the outwardly radiating studs looks sophisticated and the headlamps have a new design as well. The essence is the same with some subtle changes to the styling. There are ample cuts and creases to add visual character and one can notice the camera and proximity sensors at the front.

MG Astor

Coming to the sides, there is not much distinction and they look exactly the same. It has the typical mix of a crossover design that looks sophisticated and appealing. The only distinguishable feature are the 17-inch alloy wheels, which are different on the petrol-powered version. Both, the front and rear get disc brakes enhance its stability and give the driver more confidence while driving this car.

Astor

Finishing off with the rear, it gets the new hawk-eye design taillights which will be carried to the ZS EV in a facelift. The bumper has been slightly revised for the combustion engine and also gets a diffuser treatment at the lower end of the rear bumper. Overall, the design of the MG Astor is conventional yet sophisticated which will be well-liked by many people.

Interior and Features

MG Astor features a dual-tone cabin with a red and black theme which has slightly more shades of red than of black. This can be tweaked by MG and they will happily offer you with the conventional black and beige options. The plastic quality is pretty good and soft-touch materials are used in plenty. General fit and finish levels are high as well and give a feeling that you are sitting in a vehicle from a segment above. The turbine design AC vents look premium and there are physical controls for the blower which is a good thing. It portrays an all-digital instrument cluster that has a high resolution and is very legible. The flat-bottom steering feels nice to hold and the seating comfort is great as well. There is ample kneeroom and under-thigh support which will aid comfort on long journeys.

Astor Interior

MG Astor has plenty of options in the price bracket it sits in. With the rivals it goes up against, it is imperative that it boasts of an extensive feature list so that potential customers are attracted to the Astor instead. Some of them include connected car tech, remote climate control, panoramic sunroof, rear AC vents, cruise control, push-button start, real time vehicle tracking, voice control, leather upholstery, electric adjustment for the driver seat and a 10.1-inch touchscreen with apple carplay and android auto. The MG’s AI Assistant is also present inside the car which is pre-loaded with some trivia to take the experience a notch above. It will keep you busy on the daily trips to your office and is a nice gimmick but could have been useful if it was paired with Alexa or Google. Moreover, it misses out on wireless phone charging, ventilated seats and auto-dimming IRVM which are some disappointing omissions.

Performance and Ride Quality

MG Astor is offered with two petrol engines. The naturally aspirated motor is a 1.5-litre; 4-cylinder unit which produces 108 bhp and 144 Nm of torque. It is offered with a 5-Speed M or 5-Speed CVT. There is another turbo-petrol engine which is a 1.3-litre; 3-cylinder motor which churns out 138 bhp and 220 Nm of torque. It is mated to a 6-Speed AT. Both of the engines are capable enough for daily drives and highway runs but it is the turbo-petrol motor that is fun to drive. However, it is still slightly behind the power units of its rivals. Power delivery is smooth and linear and does not feel lethargic at any given moment. Gear changes are quick with a very little amount of lag but it is something that you will get used to.

MG Astor

Talking about the rear seat, there is ample kneeroom and headroom but under-thigh support might be lacking for taller passengers. Rear AC vents, centre arm rest with cupholders, adjustable headrests and a panoramic sunroof make the rear seat experience pleasant and nice. However, seating three adults at the rear would be a tight squeeze and it is best suited for two adults and a child. Ride quality on this vehicle is soft and supple which translates into the fact that it can round off bumps fairly easily. It is not a sporty SUV to drive due to the soft suspension but you can tweak the feel of the electric steering by choosing different modes on offer.

Safety

MG Astor Safety

A Global NCAP rating is yet to arrive for the MG Astor but it sure has some safety features which are confidence-inducing and reassuring. Some of them include ABS with EBD, six airbags, traction control, tyre pressure monitor, automatic headlamps, electronic stability control, 360-degree camera, parking sensors, ISOFIX child seat mounts, hill assist, hill descent control and level-2 ADAS features.

Price List

Below is the variant-wise price list for the MG Astor.

Variants Price (ex-showroom)
Style Rs 9.78 Lakhs
Super Rs 11.28 Lakhs
Super CVT Rs 12.68 Lakhs
Smart Rs 12.98 Lakhs
Sharp Rs 13.98 Lakhs
Smart CVT Rs 14.18 Lakhs
Sharp CVT Rs 14.98 Lakhs
Savvy CVT Rs 15.78 Lakhs
Smart Turbo AT Rs 15.88 Lakhs
Sharp Turbo AT Rs 16.78 Lakhs
Savvy Turbo AT Rs 17.38 Lakhs

Verdict

MG Astor is the petrol-powered version of the ZS EV and has been re-designed a bit. It has a smart and sophisticated exterior with a premium interior and cabin. Moreover, it comes with two petrol power units both of which are capable motors and choosing either of the two would not hurt your decision. It is a feature-packed vehicle when it comes to entertainment. Has confidence inspiring safety kit with level-2 ADAS features and if you are in the market looking to buy a compact SUV, do check out the MG Astor.

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