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Guangzhou show: MG ZS headed for Australia

Grand designs: The design of the MG ZS crossover previews the look of future MG models, the car-maker says.

MG ZS sub-compact SUV to hit Australian dealerships in late 2017


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23 Nov 2016

MG MOTOR’S push into the Australian market is gaining pace with confirmation that the Chinese-owned British brand will introduce its freshly uncovered ZS crossover Down Under next year.

Revealed late last week at the Guangzhou motor show, the MG ZS will hit Australian shores in the fourth quarter of 2017, and will follow the larger Mazda CX-5-sized GS into showrooms.

Following a series of sketches previewing the ZS last week, the front-end design, particularly the headlights, and silhouette of the production model is reminiscent of Mazda’s CX-5.

MG says the headlight design was inspired by the London Eye and that the overall look of the ZS showcases the next generation of MG design.

The ZS will be fitted with an “intelligent internet system” that provides each user their own individual ID to “log into” the vehicle.

It will also feature “natural semantic technology” that allows for voice command operation of various functions, such as determining the temperature, opening and closing the sunroof, playing music or requesting navigation.

The car uses adaptive navigation in conjunction with real-time map updates, and is capable of map zooming by speed, responding immediately to any road condition and independent route planning.

Under the skin, the front-drive only ZS uses a SAIC-developed ‘Net Blue’ 1.0-litre turbocharged petrol engine delivering up to 90kW and 170Nm that could be matched with a six-speed manual or a six-speed auto.

The platform is a shortened version of the one that underpins the MG GS mid-size SUV, but MG has not revealed dimensions.

It appears that MG Motor Australia will use the ZS nameplate – an old moniker used on a sports sedan from 2004 – despite suggestions that it might look at another name for its baby crossover.

When it launches, it will enter a hot segment that is being led by the Mazda CX-3 but also includes high-selling models such as the Mitsubishi ASX, Honda HR-V and Holden Trax.

MG relaunched in Australia as a factory-backed operation last month after a false start in 2013 under independent importer Longwell Motors.

It is offering the ageing MG3 light car from $13,990 plus on-road costs and the MG6 mid-sizer from $21,990.

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