MG Astor can create commotion in the mid-size SUV space if priced right
Post numerous teasers, MG Motor India has officially taken the wraps off the MG Astor SUV. The vehicle is essentially the petrol guise of the MG ZS EV and would slot into the highly competitive mid-size SUV space upon launch next month.
A Design That Differentiates!
The design of the MG Astor deviates sharply from that of the MG ZS EV sold here, thus making this car look fresh and even more appealing. It measures 4.3 meters in length and thus stands closer to the segment leader- Creta, in terms of dimensions. The overall design is the same as that of the MG ZS facelift that is on sale abroad. To be noted here is that the ZS EV available here is actually based on the pre-facelift model of the global car. Now you know why the Astor looks so fresh!
The key design highlights of the MG Astor are the hexagonal Celestial grille, new fog lamps, redesigned LED headlamps, reworked bumpers, grey roof rails, faux dual exhausts, and faux skid plates. The profile of Astor looks much like that of the ZS EV, but gets a new set of 17-inch wheels.
A Cabin Full Of Technologies
The Astor builds on the ‘Car as a platform’ philosophy and takes the same a step ahead or two. The cabin gets all the segment-needy pieces of equipment like a large 10.1-inch touchscreen infotainment system with Jio-powered connected car features, a panoramic sunroof that covers 90% of the roof area which the manufacturer calls the ‘skylight roof’, heated ORVMs, digital key, automatic climate control, 7.0-inch digital instrumentation, 6-way power-adjustable driver seat, premium leather upholstery, and a choice of multiple interior colour schemes (2 tone Sangria red, 2 tone Iconic Ivory and Tuxedo Black).
A key novelty, however, is the new AI-based personal assistant that sits on the dash. This tiny display understands voice commands and queries and caters relevant information with the help of the built-in Jio e Sim.
Powertrains And Mechanical Details
The Astor will have two petrol engines on offer- the first would be a 1.5L naturally aspirated petrol letting out 110 hp and 144 Nm. The second is a smaller 1.3L turbo-charged petrol unit producing 140 hp and 220 Nm. (Note that the Creta’s turbo-petrol is a bigger 1.4L unit with identical power figures but a greater torque of 242 Nm.) The NA engine will come with a manual transmission and an 8 speed CVT, whereas just a 6AT will be offered on the turbo variants.
Level 2 Autonomous Driving!
The Astor will be the first car in the segment to feature level 2 ADAS (Advanced Driver Assistance Systems). The car uses 6 radars and a few cameras to get 360-degree views and facilitate level 2 autonomous driving. We had already seen Level 1 ADAS on the Gloster and Level 2 ADAS on the recently launched Mahindra XUV700. MG has sourced its Level 2 ADAS from Bosch and claims to offer a highly efficient ADAS experience.
The Astor will sit below the Hector in the MG India lineup and will battle the likes of Hyundai Creta, Kia Seltos, VW Taigun, Skoda Kushaq, Nissan Kicks, and Renault Duster. Going by MG’s usual pricing strategies, the Astor could even challenge bigger engine SUVs like XUV700 with its prices. More on that, post the market debut…