There’s no one-size-fits-all method with vehicles. Some might come shut, however but not fulfil each standards. However, is it attainable to come back brief, however but nonetheless make sense total?
First issues first: Yes, we have reviewed the MG HS beforehand. But that was the “common” variant, if I do say so myself. This one here’s a little totally different – extra tarted up, or because the Thai saying goes, “identical identical however totally different”.
But what sets this HS Exclusive apart from the “common” HS? And extra importantly, what sets it apart from the competitors?
Classified as a compact crossover, it’s a part of an especially crowded and aggressive phase the place consumers are fairly price-sensitive too. Even some defining function one mannequin has over one other is sufficient to sway a purchaser’s choice.
Tell me, what’s totally different?
Looking from the skin, there isn’t any. Between the usual HS and the HS Exclusive, there isn’t any figuring out mark between each variants. The HS Exclusive nonetheless has that acquainted entrance fascia, with the chrome trim, black grille, recognisable headlights and sizeable fog lights.
Along the facet, the design components and panels are all the identical. You is likely to be considering, “What’s the purpose of getting a brand new variant and name it an ‘Exclusive’, however not have any differentiating design cues?”
Well, modifications value cash, and the price of such modifications is usually handed all the way down to the client. And as talked about earlier, consumers on this aggressive phase are usually price-conscious, and usually tend to go along with the extra inexpensive choice with superior value-for-money.
Some might complain about why there aren’t any variations, however why mess with a confirmed method?
It’s not as modern as a few of its rivals, however its headlight design options an aggressive trying half-eye-like daytime operating mild, along with a grille that recollects sure visible results from Star Trek, like when the spaceships enter warp velocity.
If you ask me, the HS Exclusive already appears fairly distinctive from most different crossovers in the marketplace at present.
Upgrades on the within
Inside, you’re handled with a predominantly-red leather-based upholstery, with swathes of black leather-based and alcantara as well – a step up from the usual mannequin’s black leather-filled cabin.
Besides contrasting with the white sheet metallic outdoors, it is maybe the most important visible pop to the automobile, masking many of the inside, from the seats, door panels, dashboard and centre console.
The entrance seats are semi bucket-style, with a good quantity of facet and thigh bolstering. If you’re extra generously-proportioned like myself, becoming within the seats might be a tad cosy, but it surely must be positive for most individuals.
What’s not ultimate is the seating place, for even on the lowest setting, it nonetheless felt like I used to be sitting on the automobile, not in it.
Besides being electronically adjustable, the entrance seats are additionally two-piece, that means that the headrest isn’t independently adjustable.
This is likely to be annoying to some, however having the headrest completely positioned in a barely ahead place proved to be fairly snug and extra ergonomic, permitting me to relaxation my head with out straining my neck.
The gauge cluster and infotainment stays unchanged from its commonplace twin. Apart from supporting wired types of Android Auto and Apple CarPlay, it additionally options an infotainment system that admittedly has some slight lag when scrolling by screens, and isn’t very intuitive to make use of.
On the plus facet, sound high quality from the audio system is pretty respectable and can suffice for most individuals.
What else is totally different
Don’t fret, because the HS Exclusive isn’t a one-trick pony and it nonetheless has somewhat extra to supply. While the gauge cluster is basically the identical as earlier than, it now showcases a collection of security methods, entrance and centre being the adaptive cruise management system.
Besides that, there’s additionally a blind spot detection system, lane departure help and rear cross visitors alert. At this worth level, having such a complete security suite is kind of unusual, however extraordinarily welcome. Particularly helpful is the rear cross visitors alert, particularly in busier HDB automobile parks the place there are different autos and pedestrians round.
Having this security suite made driving much less strenuous throughout our take a look at, contemplating that it rained for half the time that we had the automobile.
The adaptive cruise management was easy to make use of, and in addition able to bringing the automobile to an entire cease with out driver intervention, like when the automobile in entrance stops at a visitors mild. But like many different ACC methods, it tends to be overwhelmed in extraordinarily heavy visitors.
(Don’t) drive it such as you stole it
If you have been anticipating the Exclusive to achieve some powertrain upgrades, we apologise for bursting your bubble.
MG have elected to make use of a General Motors-sourced turbocharged 1.5-litre inline-four engine, producing 160 bhp and 250 Nm of torque. Power is shipped to the entrance wheels by way of a seven-speed dual-clutch transmission.
Although the torque curve is fairly linear, the transmission can get confused at occasions, leading to a surge in revs earlier than it modifications to the next gear and issues settle down. Still, shifts are clean with little to no jerkiness when travelling at low speeds, and are quite snappy when extra aggression is known as for.
I wouldn’t say the trip high quality is class-leading, however I’ve no complaints. Fitted with 18-inch wheels and shod with 235/50 R18 tyres, trip high quality is pretty compliant, with solely actually massive bumps or enlargement joints upsetting the automobile.
For a crossover, the steering feels well-weighted and never overly boosted. While it lacks suggestions from the entrance wheels, driving the HS Exclusive spiritedly isn’t the purpose, for the automobile isn’t suited to aggressive driving.
Driven usually, nonetheless, it’s calm and comfy, with the linear torque curve permitting it to maintain up with visitors with minimal fuss. With peak torque of 250 Nm obtainable from 1,700 to 4,400 rpm, roll onto the throttle, trip the wave of torque even within the greater gears, and sustain with right-lane visitors with ease.
Rear passengers aren’t forgotten about both. They might not get semi-bucket seats, however they will nonetheless get pleasure from ample legroom and headroom, in addition to rear highly effective air-conditioning vents.
As a instrument of practicality, I daresay the HS Exclusive excels at it.
It’s not excellent, but it surely isn’t half dangerous both
The MG HS Exclusive isn’t the be-all, end-all of the Compact Crossover phase, and no automobile ever might be. However, what it does supply is a decent, interesting, and better-value different to Japanese and European choices.
And whereas its Korean contemporaries include extra bells and whistles as commonplace, the HS Exclusive affords is a extra smart and fewer fussy package deal. Overall, it is simply that little bit simpler to know and function on a day-to-day foundation.
ALSO READ: Introducing the all-new MG HS PHEV: Prices begin from $99,888
While some may flip their nostril up at what is likely to be thought-about a “middle-child choice”, this might very nicely be that Goldilocks automobile that satisfies most necessities of a potential purchaser.
And better of all, its worth. At $89,888 (earlier than COE, costs correct as of press time), there isn’t any distinction in worth between the HS Exclusive and the “common” HS. You are getting all that extra security package and pink leather-based inside at no further cost. With a deal like that, you may virtually surprise why the HS Exclusive isn’t already flying out of the showroom.
This article was first revealed in Motorist.