Home / Reviews / First Drive / MG Gloster Diesel 2.0 Twin Turbo – Car India review

 

The MG Gloster now holds the distinction of being the most premium offering from the Chinese- owned British car brand and is also the first car in its class featuring the autonomous (level I) tech.

This MG Gloster is set to make its presence felt with an enviable features list, gigantic proportions and massive cabin space with three very useable rows of seats. Here’s our report to see if it can delivery what it promises.
MG Gloster Car India review

Design
We’re driving the top-of-the-line MG Gloster 2.0 twin-turbo diesel Savvy variant with all the bells and whistles. And there’s no dearth of road presence because this SUV is longer, wider and taller than the competition – mainly the Toyota Fortuner, Mahindra Alturas and the Ford Endeavour. Based on parent SAIC’s international Maxus D90 model, and measuring almost five metre in length, the MG Gloster is BIG! It gets the proven ladder frame underpinnings, luxurious interiors, and in our case a premium MG Motor badge. It still looks a lot like the D90 with a large brush-metal-finished grille with three horizontal slats, slim adaptive LED headlamps, vertical LED fog-lamps and a silver skid-plate. There’s a neat slit on the sharp-looking front bumper to allow some air to slip in and keep the tyres and disc brakes cool. Not to forget the long bonnet with a power bulge and an impressive two-meter wide stance (1926 mm).

The stretched side profile creates quite an impression and there’s just enough bling to dazzle the onlookers. Nothing pleases me more than high-profile tyres on an SUV, and this one gets 19-inch alloys with 255/55 profile tyres which should soak in plenty of broken roads. What I like about the design is there is a large glasshouse allowing plenty of light to enter the cabin keeping it comfortably airy. And the well-designed wing mirrors positioned on the doors help reduce the blind spot that many SUVs are infamous for. These, by the way, come with logo projection to announce your entry and more importantly also comes with a blind-spot warning that light up if theres a vehicle nearby, but hidden from the driver’s vision.

The muscular rear design gets a pair of sleek LED tail-lamps and a good size boot-lid. What doesn’t work for me is the massive after-market-like ‘G-L-O-S-T-E-R’ chrome lettering and the fake dual-barrel twin chrome exhaust tips. It’s as if the Gloster is trying too hard to please the audience. Otherwise, it does tick all the right boxes and will grab the attention of full-size SUV connoisseurs.

MG Gloster Car India review

Interior
The cabin of this seven-seater is huge — thanks to the 2,950 mm wheelbase that help dish out all that carpet-area. There are pretty useable three rows of seating — with apart from the two up front —  gets a pair of captain seats in the middle, and a bench-type third row. It can accommodate six grown-ups without much fuss because the third-row arm-rests eats up the shoulder-room. These come draped in tan upholstery with upmarket diamond quilted pattern stitching to give it an English theme. Interestingly, even the cabin lights imitate the pattern of cut-diamond. The front seats get power adjustment, are ventilated and comfortable for average Indian frames. And apart from the usual seat-belt reminder, the car won’t budge till the driver is strapped up as an additional precaution. Apart from the usually a-c vents with dedicated controls for the second row, there are other highlights like a retractable coffee cup holder hidden on the side of the captain seat, even an aeroplane seat-like comfy headrests and one-touch tumble operation to access the last row. While large windows and a full-sized sun roof ensures there’s ample of natural light coming in, and post-sundown there’s 64-shades of ambient lighting too. (Also Read: MG Gloster Variants Explained)

The dual-tone dashboard flaunts largest-in-segment 12.3-inch touchscreen infotainment with Android Auto and CarPlay, along with a 8-inch driver’s multi-information colour display. Of course, there’s a multifunction steering wheel with tilt and telescopic adjustment. But the plastic-seams around the steering column need a better finish. The centre console gets a yacht-like gear lever surround by quick-access buttons and a rotatory dial to engage drive and terrain modes. The layout takes inspiration from Europe’s top luxury carmakers but the feel and built does fall short. Even the wireless charger for smartphones could have been better executed. Overall the use of materials – be it the leatherette or plastic parts desire a more premium feel.

MG Gloster Car India review

Features

MG tries to make it up by the extensive features list on the MG Gloster 2.0 twin-turbo diesel Savvy trim. With the i-Smart owners can remotely control and monitor the car right from the sunroof, climate control, windows and door locks, to checking the tyre pressure or managing the Geo-fencing and even Anti-Theft Immobilization through your smartphone. Being a connected car it gets internet-calling, streaming of music, live weather updates, detailed navigation, and pre-loaded content to entertain the family if the drive gets longer than planned. And it also understands hundreds of voice commands to make life a lot easy.
Driving around you feel pretty secure, backed by segment-first life-saving techs like — front collision warning and automatic emergency brake which act as an extra pair of eyes to help the driver avoid accidents. And there are three driving modes, and a bunch of terrain modes to make it suitable for on and off-road adventures. (Also Read: MG Hector Plus Review)

Engage the Adaptive Cruise Control and the Gloster maintains speed, and when needed brakes and accelerates again following road traffic all by itself. It’s also the only car in the segment to boast of offering Autonomous (Level I) driving. So, you’ll just have to look for a vacant parallel parking spot, press the Park Assist button, select reveres and hands off the steering wheel. Just manage the brake and the Advanced Driver Assistance System (ADAS) does the rest.

MG Gloster Car India review

Engine

MG is introducing a new 2.0-litre twin-turbo diesel with the Gloster with decent figures of 218 hp and 480 Nm, along with an eight-speed automatic. We won’t be surprised if shortly the Hector gets a slightly detuned version of this engine too. Power delivery is brisk enough for a car this size, but more importantly the engine itself is pretty refined, adding to the Gloster’s premium positioning. But what really blows you away is how quiet the cabin remains throughout the journey, brilliantly filtering away annoying road or wind noises. This just amps up the luxury quotient for everyone being driven around in a Gloster. (Also Read: Kia Sonet Compact-SUV Review)

The twin-turbo diesel does a decent job of lugging around a big and heavy SUV like this, as power delivery is linear and progressive. Initially, there is a slight lag from the eight-speed when you demand acceleration urgently, but once the engine crosses the 1,800 rpm mark things get interesting. The engine hasn’t really been tuned for outright performance but to give drivers a good balance of everything. You can shuffle through the ‘Auto’, ‘Eco’ and ‘Sport’ modes to pick what you like the most. Performance in Sport feels the most exciting as it does manage to match 0-100 km/h of the Toyota Fortuner and Ford Endeavour. If you continue to poke it, the MG Gloster will reach a true top speed of 171 km/h and still feel fairly composed on the straight. As you guessed it, performance isn’t blistering but up to the segment benchmark, which is fast enough for a large SUV.

MG Gloster Car India review

Ride and Handling
On slow speed, there’s noticeable body roll which gets largely restrained as you up the speed. Approach a corner too hot and the Gloster’s massive dimensions flash in front of your eyes but the Roll Movement Intervention’ does manage to flatten it out to a fair degree. So, you won’t need to worry about unusual wallowing and pitching either on highway speeds which is really reassuring. And it’s very important while driving to know how well and quickly can a car come to halt, hopefully without much drama. So, we decided to test the Gloster’s ABS, Electronic Brake Distribution and the additional help of Brake Assist. Impressively, it remained composed, stopping in a straight line without any fuss.

 

Off-Road

With a high driving position, clear view, ample ground clearance and a capable on-demand four-wheel-drive system that extends multiple driving modes is what you get here, the MG Gloster slays bad roads equally well. There’s a smart terrain management system that enhances the MG’s off-roading ability using a dedicated rear differential and BorgWarner transfer case, an electronic shift-on-the-fly technology. Toggle through terrain modes like ‘Snow’, ‘Sand’ or ‘Mud’ depending on the road ahead looks like and it promises to oblige We did try out the ‘Mud’ driving through slush, over grass and splashing though sizeable puddles. And the Gloster is pretty good at it, with ample of low-down torque and a system that distributes it to a particular wheel, depending on the road condition. The electronics ensure that it doesn’t roll back while climbing a gradient even if the brake isn’t engaged and while descending the system ensure that the SUV crawls down without the wheels losing grip. The engine grunt, a capable platform, intelligent electronics and a cocooned cabin makes all this seem surprisingly effortless. The Gloster does have the making to conquer practically any road surface — driver confidence boosted further.

MG Gloster Car India review

Verdict

The challenge MG Motor will face is to enhance the perception of the British car brand in India further. Because the MG Gloster hope to be the upgrade option for existing Fortuner, Alturas and Endeavour owners. But the icing on the cake is it’s surprisingly aggressive pricing that stars at Rs 28.98 lakh and our MG Gloster 2.0 twin-turbo diesel Savvy trim costs a tempting Rs 35.38 lakh (ex-showroom introductory prices valid till 30 October). With such pricing will buyer over-look some of the shortcomings? After all, the MG Gloster offers tremendous value with things like three rows of seating and the extensive features list. The competition will surely have sleepless nights now.

  • MG Gloster Car India review

Also Read: MG Gloster Variants Explained)

 

About the author: Sarmad Kadiri

 

 

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