A quick escape to Baler with MG Philippines

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The journey of MG Philippines through its inaugural year in the local automotive industry has been nothing short of spectacular under the leadership of The Covenant Car Company, Inc. The fruits of company’s labor is now evident on the streets, with more and more Filipinos choosing the British brand’s vehicles as their trusted chariot on the road.

To close out 2019, MG Philippines recently took the local motoring media on a 270-kilometer scenic journey from Quezon City to rustic Baler, Aurora aboard its full vehicle lineup: the MG ZS crossover SUV, MG 6 fastback sedan, RX5 SUV, and the MG 5 sedan.

Personally though, I only got a chance to get behind the wheel of the MG 6 and the MG ZS through our spirited driving to and from Baler. Still, experiencing the famed octagon brand’s prized luxury sedan and crossover SUV was definitely one for the books.

The MG6 is a Trophy 

There’s no denying that the MG 6 is very appealing to the eyes. Choose the pearl black color and everything about it gets even sexier, especially those two-tone 18-inch alloy wheels and sunroof. This sedan does not shy away from attention, as it should. The front facia sports a “Stardust” grille along with “London Eye” headlamps while the flowing tail lamps exudes the sedan’s sportiness and elegance. 

Step inside and you’ll see two-tone, red-and-black finish on the dash, seats and door panels while the center of the cockpit sports an eight-inch LCD infotainment system that is Apple CarPlay ready. There are multi-function controls on the flat-bottomed steering wheel that is properly positioned above the seven-inch virtual instrument cluster.

But the Trophy isn’t just about swag. Pop the hood and you’ll see a potent power plant for its segment that makes it a well-rounded car. At the heart of the sedan is a turbocharged 1.5-liter four-cylinder engine that produces a maximum power of 166ps at 5,600rpm and a peak torque of 250Nm at 4,300 rpm that shifts through a seven-speed TST with manual triptonic function. Although the sedan produces a tad bit of jolt during stop and go traffic, the Trophy’s acceleration does not disappoint. Slamming your foot on the gas while cruising at legal speed on the expressway eventually pins you to your seat while the power plant generates a sonorous, feral-like growl. The feeling is quite addictive, actually. I eventually caught myself looking for every opportunity to feel the engine brew all that power that shoves you back to your seat.

As for the handling, the MG6 offers responsive and precise steering, especially in tight corners or when overtaking slower vehicles. This speedster-like sedan feels light and quick while the ride can be a bit jarring when on rough terrain. 

The dependable MG ZS

Our assigned vehicle heading back to Manila was the MG ZS. This crossover SUV is powered by a 1.5-liter four-cylinder naturally aspirated engine that produces 114ps of maximum power at 6,000 rpm and peak torque of 150Nm at 4,500 rpm. The variant we used is mated to a four-speed automatic transmission with manual tiptronic function. 

For its size as a crossover SUV, the ZS proves surprisingly light, offering pin-point steering while maneuvering through the endless twists and turns of the Nueva Ecija-Aurora road. As for speed, the MG ZS takes its time to provide the acceleration you need on certain situations, like when passing vehicles.

When you step on the gas, the reaction isn’t instantaneous, with a bit of lag before speeding up. 

Although the ZS fits perfectly with the road conditions in the city, MG’s crossover SUV also demonstrates durability and reliability throughout our lengthy journey back to the metropolis. Despite spending more than six hours on the road, I did not feel worn out because of sufficient legroom and headroom. That’s what I like the most about the ZS.

Aside from the spacious interior, the ZS features various safety features, such as a reverse camera, antilock brakes, cornering brake control, electronic brake assist, electronic brake distribution, hill start assist, tire pressure monitoring system, and traction control system. Bottom line is that the MG ZS fuses riding comfort with style and performance.

MG Philippines offers competitive pricing in all of its vehicle offerings, such as the MG 5 1.5-liter MT that is priced at P658,888. Not just that; every car also comes with premium aftersales service and niceties.

These include a five-year or 100,000km warranty (whichever comes first) on all-brand new MG cars, and one-year free periodic maintenance.

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