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It’s the MG ZS 180 sedan, sport!

Small sport: Rover 45-based MG ZS 180 will rival sporty small cars like Subaru’s Impreza WRX and the Ford Focus ST170.

MG adds another sports sedan to its Australian range with the ZS 180 small car

16 Nov 2004

LOCAL MG and Rover importer Motor Group Australia has proved good to its word by making the small MG ZS 180 sports sedan available Down Under.

Joining the Rover 75-based range of V6, supercharged V6 and V8-powered MG ZT models in what MGA calls its Z range of MG sports sedans, the ZS 180 is now on sale here, priced at $39,990.

While that may sound expensive for a Rover 45-based small sedan that’s been on sale in the UK for more than three years, MG ZS 180 should deliver enough V6 urge to be in the performance ballpark of the similarly priced 206 GTi 180, Focus ST170, Clio Renault Sport and Subaru Impreza WRX.

ZS 180 also has a sports look to match its transversely-mounted, long-stroke 2.5-litre quad cam V6, which produces 133kW at 6500rpm and 240Nm of torque at 4000rpm.

The same engine as that found in the larger MG ZT sedan, combined with a five-speed Getrag manual and 1235kg kerb weight, propels the small ZS to 100km/h in a claimed 7.4 seconds and to a top speed of 225km/h.

MGA says the 180 offers dynamics to make the most of the performance, with double wishbones and MacPherson struts up front and a multi-link arrangement at rear, both with anti-roll bars and anti-dive geometry.

There’s also a quick-ratio steering rack with 11.2-metre turning circle, Bosch 5.7 four-channel ABS with EBD, 282mm ventilated front brake discs with 260mm rear discs and 17-inch, 11-spoke alloy wheels fitted with 205/45 R17 tyres.

ZS features the MG family’s sculpted grille and twin headlights, along with wheelarch spats, “shark-gill” side vents and a bootlid lip spoiler.

Inside there’s satin chrome finished rotary air vents, soft-touch membrane switches and specific sports seats with leather bolsters and height and lumbar adjustment, along with a leather-wrapped steering wheel and gearshifter.

Available in one specification, with optional leather seat trim available at $2500, ZS offers standard automatic climate control air- conditioning with pollen filter, a six-speaker sound system with CD player, power windows and (heated) mirrors, tinted glass, remote central locking, a 60/40-split rear seat and twin front and front side airbags.

"The MG ZS is a car that perfectly represents the 80-year tradition of accessible, enjoyable and rewarding driving experiences delivered by MG," said MGA managing director Michel DeVriendt.

"I am proud to add this car to the MG range and am pleased to introduce yet another real driving enthusiast’s car to the Australian market."

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