2023 MG 4 looks like this

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MG Mulan MG4 2

Our first official look at the new all-electric MG4 family hatchback comes from the Chinese launch of the MG Mulan.

MG is expanding its all-electric line-up this year with the new MG4, and these latest images show us how it’ll look. It has been revealed in China as the Mulan by MG’s parent company SAIC, and we expect the export version to look almost identical.

The brand has previously said the MG4 will launch in Europe and the right-hand drive market the UK, but Australia is awaiting official confirmation.

MG Mulan MG4 3

MG has already said the MG4 will be 4.3 metres long, putting it into competition with family hatchbacks such as the Volkswagen Golf. And given the all-electric powertrain, the MG4 will be a rival for cars such as the Citroen e-C4, upcoming Peugeot e-308, and Volkswagen ID.3, albeit with a more budget-friendly ethos.

These latest images show a design contrasting with the big-grille look seen on other MGs. Instead, it has more typical EV design elements, so there are just some cooling intakes at the front. The slim LED headlights and sharp creases on the bonnet give the MG4 an aggressive face, and the gap in the centre of the lower part of the bumper is reminiscent of the MG Cyberster concept’s look.

The side skirts with chunky black plastic cladding help hide the elevated stance, which is more in line with the Renault Mégane E-Tech Electric and Volkswagen ID.3 rather than a lower-riding, more conventional family hatchback such ase Peugeot’s upcoming e-308. MG has omitted digital door mirrors from the MG4 (a feature we’ve seen in more premium electric cars), but it does have a huge panoramic roof.

MG Mulan MG4 1

At the rear, meanwhile, a new full-width LED tail-light bar curls around the tailgate, similar to the design used on the Kia EV6. There’s also a large roof spoiler that’s split in the middle.

The MG Mulan is underpinned by SAIC Nebula’s pure-electric architecture, and this will also feature in the MG4. This means it’ll be rear-wheel drive, just like the Cupra Born and its sister car the Volkswagen ID.3.

MG’s inconsistent approach to battery technology across its electric-vehicle portfolio makes it difficult to pin down what will power the MG4. No technical specifications regarding battery size have been revealed, but given the MG4’s dimensions, we could see similar battery and electric motor technology to MG’s ZS EV. MG has just given the ZS EV a major update, including new batteries, and there’s a fresh Long-Range version of the car using a 73kWh battery capable of 440km on a single charge, according to WLTP certification.

A 0-100km/h time of four seconds has been mooted for the Mulan, but we expect the MG4’s acceleration to be significantly slower to maximise the battery’s range, we could even see two different battery sizes for either car.

The standard-battery version of the ZS employs a 51kWh pack for a 320km range, although in the smaller, lower-riding MG4 this would probably be able to take the car beyond the 320km mark.

Further details will be provided closer to the car’s unveiling, which will take place towards the end of 2022. Given MG’s focus on affordability, we expect it will be much cheaper than its rivals.

Alastair Crooks

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