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Wednesday, October 12, 2022

Steve highlights his three of the best new cars

* No. 1 - MG4 EV. 

* No. 2 - Lexus NX450H+ F Sport Takumi.

* No. 3 - Genesis GV60 EV.

Steve Rogers samples three 'brilliant' new cars

It is rare for me to award top honours to a car company two years running but it has happened.

This was the annual event run by the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders when motoring journos get the chance to compare like for like from a variety of car companies. Last year my drive of the day went to the MG HS plug-in hybrid and the Chinese-owned company has done it again, with a car that is even better.

The MG4 EV is a brilliant budget busting electric car, and with a cost of living crisis and fuel prices through the roof it could not have picked a better time to arrive.

Check this out. A family hatchback the size of a Ford Focus or Volkswagen Golf with eye popping styling for a fiver under £26,000. An electric VW ID3 or Kia Niro EV will set you back an extra 10 grand. The trim quality right through the MG does not measure up to its well known rivals but it is plenty good enough and there were no creaks or rattles on the car I drove.

The entry SE goes with a 51kWh battery that is good for 218 miles, move up to 64kWh SE Long Range and it stretches to 281 miles. At £28,495 this is still bargain of the century territory. A fast charge from a public 150kW post will top the car up to 80 per cent power in 35 minutes.

Performance is on a par with the rest of the leccy pack with sixty coming up in brisk 7.5 seconds and although my drive was brief there were no complaints on the handling, comfort and steering front.

Equipment level from entry level is more than adequate with climate control, all round electric windows, automatic LED headlights, rear parking sensors, DAB radio, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto connections.

Even the all singing and dancing top of the range Trophy at £31,495 is a steal and will provide such luxuries as wireless mobile charging, 360 degree parking camera and powered seats.

I cannot think of any other electric car that comes close to the MG4 for value for money with few sacrifices and should be a shoe in for European Car of the Year.

Second slot goes to the new Lexus NX450H+ F Sport Takumi plug in hybrid, a hugely sophisticated car drawing on the decades of experience of parent company Toyota. What they don’t know about hybrid power is not worth knowing.

Power comes from a 305bhp 2.5 litre petrol with 43 miles of electric driving available and emissions between 20-26g/km.

It has a beautifully crafted cabin, is brilliant to drive but you will need to find £62,450.

Completing my top three is the Genesis GV60 EV. Launching a luxury brand in Europe, even if it does have the might of Hyundai footing the bill, is a huge challenge but the fledgling company is building a strong range.

Two things grabbed my attention: Phenomenal acceleration - FOUR seconds to reach 62mph,  50-75mph 2.5secs, from two electric motors with a total output of 480bhp, and a range of 289 miles.

Wow factor interior styling backed up by high quality materials and trim which it should be with the Fun model costing £71,445 (more than two MG4s). 

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