MG showcased the ZS petrol at the 2020 Auto Expo and since then SUV has been spotted testing in the country on multiple occasions. Now, it seems like the carmaker is planning to launch the SUV in India soon. Talking to a publication, Rajeev Chaba, president and MD, MG Motor India, reportedly said, “ By the third quarter of this year, we will launch another SUV.” He further added, “By the end of this year, it (our portfolio) should be good for SUVs, including one EV and three other SUVs. So that's what we intend to do.”
We expect the ZS petrol will be the third SUV and it will be slotted below the Hector in MG’s lineup. MG already sells the ZS EV in India but its petrol counterpart is expected to ditch the ZS moniker and get a distinct identity. It is expected to be called the “Astor” as MG has already filed a trademark in India under the said name.
The ZS petrol will also look different compared to its electric counterpart as it will be based on the facelifted ZS while the ZS EV sold in India is in its pre-facelift form. Compared to the pre-facelift model, the updated SUV gets sharper aesthetics.
Upfront, the SUV gets a blacked-out MG front grille with a honeycomb pattern instead of the chrome studded grille found on the ZS EV. It is flanked by redesigned LED headlamps that looks sharper than before. The front bumper is also refreshed and features a large central air dam flanked by fog lamps. On the side, it looks identical to its electric counterpart save for a new set of alloys. At the back, while the profile remains unchanged it gets updated tail lamps and a redesigned bumper.
Since the ZS petrol will be based on the ZS facelift, its dimensions should be similar to the ZS electric. The ZS EV measures 4314mm x 1809mm x 1644 (LxWxH) and has a wheelbase of 2585mm.
On the inside, the cabin of the ZS facelift looks largely similar to the pre-facelift model. Features on offer should include a panoramic sunroof, auto LED headlmaps, rain-sensing wipers, a 10.1-inch touchscreen infotainment system with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, connected car tech, auto AC and up to 6 airbags.
Under the hood, the ZS petrol is expected to be offered with two petrol engines. In the lower variants, it is expected to get a 1.5-litre naturally aspirated petrol engine making 120PS and 150Nm. The higher variants, on the other hand, are expected to get a 1.3-litre turbo petrol engine making 160PS and 230Nm. Both the engines are likely to be offered with manual as well as automatic transmission options.
If launched, the 1.3-litre turbo petrol engine will be the most powerful engine in the class. While the Creta-Seltos’ 1.4-litre turbo petrol engine makes 140PS and 242Nm, the Duster-Kicks 1.3-litre turbo petrol engine makes 156PS and 254Nm.
As mentioned above, the compact SUV is expected to go on sale by the Q3-2021 (June to September 2021). Prices are expected to range from Rs 10 lakh to Rs 16 lakh. It will take on likes of the Hyundai Creta, Kia Setos, Nissan Kicks, Renault Duster and the upcoming SUVs like the Skoda Kushaq and the Volkswagen Taigun.