The Hyundai Kona Electric highlighted the challenges that come from adding a lot of weight to a platform with a reasonably short wheelbase. Wherever you hide it, that additional mass becomes difficult to keep under control – because mass is still mass, even if it is carried low and between the axles – and ultimately leads to key dynamic compromises.
With an even shorter wheelbase and a less sophisticated torsion beam rear suspension (the Kona has a multi-link arrangement), the MG falls into the same trap, and on faster, more variable country roads the result is a perceptible shortage of vertical body control.
Not that the ZS and Kona feel alike on the road; while the Hyundai is staunchly upright, over-sprung and short on grip, the MG is softer and comfier at lower speeds but less well-controlled at higher ones. Downward movement through compressions feels more soggy than genuinely cushioned and regulated, though, while the dampers often need a couple of passes to then bring the oscillation triggered on rebound back under control.
The car doesn’t feel particularly wieldy or agile through bends either. That softer set-up and inflated mass give way to what feels like quite a pronounced level of roll under faster cornering, which combines with limited reserves of front-end grip to sap the MG of anything in the way of athleticism. Mid-corner bumps can also lead to a degree of thumping and deflection, while the electronic stability systems are quick to step in with a heavy hand.