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Old 14th October 2021, 17:12   #616
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Default Re: MG Astor Review

Hi all!! Greetings to everyone. I am from Chennai and have been following this forum since 2015 and this is my post since becoming a member of Team-BHP. To give a background, I was one of the early bees who bought Elite i20 in 2014. I own an i20 Asta 1.2 2014 Petrol variant model and have driven only 50000 kms in 7 years. My i20 bought at Rs. 6.7 lakhs OTR, has been a gem, literally trouble-free, very light on maintenance, sufficient for my family of 4 (3 adults + 1 kid).

And thoughts of upgrading to a SUV never crept into my mind till the news of MG launching Astor in India emerged out 2 months back.

Our expectations on the new car:
1. Good safety ratings – with 6 airbags
2. Sun roof (More a want than a need)
3. A decent driving experience (Am not a driving enthusiast but my i20 was sluggish in low-mid rpm’s, so wanted a better one this time)
4. I drive around 10000 kms per year with 6000 kms in highways and the rest inside the city/ weekend drives to malls/beaches, etc – So preferably a petrol car
5. Decent rear seat comfort with good suspension (more for my mom who has retired and will be occupying the rear seat more often) – My i20’s suspension is not that great.
6. Decent mileage – at least 12 inside city and in the range of 15+ in highways
7. Budget capped at around Rs. 16 lakhs

Astor when announced seemed like ticking most of my expectations. When my family and I went to experience Astor in showroom last month, we were taken by awe by the premium interiors and the feature loaded car kept in display. I was waiting for the official price declaration and had budgeted around Rs. 16 lakhs OTR for manual top-end variant as I was expecting Astor’s pricing to be less than the Creta SX variant. When the pricing of Astor was announced, it was Rs. 50000 to 1 lakh more than what I had thought it would be and since then, I have started exploring options with other brands as well.

In the last 2 days, I have done extensive test-drives - Astor (Turbo and 1.5 CVT variants), Creta Petrol SX, Seltos HTX G Petrol and Taigun 1.0 TSI Topline models.

Since all the showrooms were quite next to each other in OMR, the test drive was taken on the same stretch of 6.5 kms. Have tried to summarize my observations below. I am not a technical person; so my observations will be mostly on the driving characteristics, comfort, mileage and price options, etc.

Taigun: (1.0 TSI Manual transmission)
Stood out in terms of driving experience. The pickup was linear, acceleration was excellent. The rear seat was slightly inclined towards back, so braking did not affect the sitting posture. Ventilated seats were of great comfort. The doors were sturdy and the build looked strong. My wife who wants to buy a sporty car was fully impressed with the drive experience/suspension. However I felt that the car was not spacious enough. The sales advisor who was sitting in the front passenger seat appeared to be seated very close to me when compared to my i20. The driver seat was narrow and my shoulder was not resting properly in the seat.

Mileage: 11 kmpl in the 6.5 km stretch, which comprised of 2 signals of about 4 minutes waiting time and a moving traffic at 50 kmph.


Seltos: (HTX G non-turbo Petrol highend)
Feature loaded car. The seating position was higher than all the other cars we had driven in the last 2 days. Pickup and acceleration was excellent. Ground clearance was great. “Hello Kia” voice command system was able to recognize our voices better than the BOT in Astor. “Hello Kia” commands were able to perform a lot more functions - opening sunroof/playing music/opening the windows/calling a specific number phone number. Potholes were negotiated with ease. Rear seat seating comfort was excellent. The rear seat had 2 seating positions – straight and recline.

Negatives: The car felt very light to drive. The doors were not sturdy and the overall build was also not that strong. This variant has only 2 airbags and I am aware about the crash rating of 3 for Seltos.

We were able to get a mileage of 13-14 kmpl in the same 6.5 km stretch.

Astor: (1.3 Turbo and 1.5 CVT)
Like many others had mentioned, Sangria red interiors in Astor feels very premium. The acceleration and pickup in CVT variant was more uniform than the 1.3 turbo variant. The rear seat was inclined and the seat was not able to hold the occupants in place. The body rolling was evident, even during small braking.

Also when talking to the Sales Consultant, came to know about the following points:
1. 1.5 MT variant may not be available for delivery in this calendar year as per the news coming from MG
2. Sangria red upgrade may be available only with SHARP (O) variant

Mileage: We were able to get a mileage of only 8.5 kmpl in the same stretch, the lowest of all cars driven.

When analysing about the poor mileage in Astor, observed that the kerb weight of Astor SHARP variant 1736 kg when compared to 1250 kg of Seltos/1276 kg of Creta and 1313 kg of Taigun, which means Astor is almost 33% (400 to 500 kgs) heavier than its peers in the segment.

Creta’s test drive did not excite me because everything was almost similar to my i20 and there was no WOW factor in any of the features – hence skipping its review.

Am presenting the ratings based on my experience:
Driving pleasure: Taigun > Seltos = Astor > Creta
Rear Seat Comfort: Seltos > Creta > Taigun > Astor
Interior Space: Seltos > Creta > Astor > Taigun
Interiors feel/features: Astor > Seltos > Taigun > Creta (Creta was similar to i20 except panoramic sunroof)
Mileage: Seltos > Creta > Taigun > Astor
Perceived Safety: Taigun = Astor > Creta (2 airbags, no crash rating but perceived build better than Seltos) > Seltos (2 airbags & Crash rating: 3)
Perceived Build: Astor > Taigun > Creta > Seltos
OTR*: Seltos HTX Petrol MT (16.5L) > Creta Petrol SX MT (17.1L) > Astor CVT (18L expected) > Taigun 1.0 TSI Topline (18.03L)

Am confused what to do now. We liked Seltos (falls in my budget/feature rich/excellent comfort) but are hesitant due to safety issues, Astor comes second (6 airbags/Safety rich/loaded with features) but CVT variant has almost extended my budget by 2 lakhs rupees, poor mileage and non-availability of MT variant for delivery in this year, and non-availability of Sangria red interiors even in CVT Sharp variant). Taigun comes third but pretty expensive for a 1.0 litre engine. Creta will be the last option as it is similar to my i20 and was not looking fresh when compared to the other cars.

Request suggestions from the beloved forum members.

Last edited by Eddy : 15th October 2021 at 01:24. Reason: Not more than 2 smilies allowed per post
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Old 14th October 2021, 18:08   #617
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Default Re: MG Astor Review

Found a review for the 1.5 CVT, potential buyers can check this out:

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Old 14th October 2021, 19:12   #618
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kings2306 View Post
When analysing about the poor mileage in Astor, observed that the kerb weight of Astor SHARP variant 1736 kg when compared to 1250 kg of Seltos/1276 kg of Creta and 1313 kg of Taigun, which means Astor is almost 33% (400 to 500 kgs) heavier than its peers in the segment.
1736kg? Where did you find this info? ZS T is apparently ~1300kg unladen and Astor is a rebadged ZS T.
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Old 14th October 2021, 19:27   #619
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Has anyone managed to test drive 1.5L CVT in Bangalore?
I have updated my interest to SA and did test drive of 1.3T AT.
However CVT fits more into my budget though ready to stretch to 1.3T if the need be.

This launch strategy is pretty strange
- 1.5L MT and CVT not yet made available for test drive in BLR although the display car in the showroom is CVT.
- Not yet announed the price of sharp(o) with ADAS. The pre booking link in MG website doesnt have the option yet to select the variant with adas. Will this variant be not available for the first batch to be delivered in 2021?
- The brochure doesnt have basic info like ground clearence, ARAI mileage, Boot space details etc

Hope there is a proper update before the official booking starts.

Last edited by ranjitht87 : 14th October 2021 at 19:57. Reason: Spell check
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Old 14th October 2021, 19:42   #620
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We test drove 1.3 turbo Astor and here are some observations:

  • NVH: This was one of the biggest points of discussion and a matter of concern for me personally. But let me say this loud that even being a 3 cylinder engine, the NVH levels are superbly contained. Usually the vibrations are felt at idle with 3 cylinders, but nothing with Astor. We tested it multiple times and never felt any harshness or vibrations. Actually you would be hard pressed to find out that you are driving a 3 cylinder engine, even when you knew it already. Couldn't test it in high speeds though. But mighty impressed. Good job, MG!
  • Interior Quality: One word - brilliant!
    The soft touch dashboard, generous use of leather (artificial?) throughout the cabin, overall layout etc all look and feel very upmarket. Nothing in the segment comes close to this level of fineness in the interior quality. The only gripe we had was the gear lever felt a little plasticy to operate. Very less dampness is used. New Creta's gear lever is definitely the best in the segment.
  • Interior Space and Comfort: The usable space is good but not the best. Creta, Seltos and Kicks offer far better space. The front seat space is healthy, no complaints there. The rear seat is good only for 2 adults and 1 child. The transmission hump does limit the seat usability. The seats are soft and accommodating. Special mention of the front seats which hugs you nicely. The rear seat comfort is also good but again, Creta and Seltos offer better comfort and sense of space.
  • Looks: It can be very subjective. We personally don't like Astor's design a lot. I think we prefer Creta's boxy design more than Astor's curvy design language. The car looks more like a crossover than a CSUV. This isn't a bad thing though as the car looks handsome and different. Reminds me of X1 . Overall, I feel this is going to one of the factors Indian buyers would keep in mind. It doesn't offer you that proper SUV looks which many consider important.
  • Drive: The 1.3 3-cylinder turbo petrol unit along with the TC gearbox work (almost) flawlessly. We didn't find much turbo lag initially. This is in contrast to other members' experience. Maybe because the auto hold function was off in our case.? The same lag we felt in Creta 1.4 turbo too when the auto hold was on. Once off, the lag was minimum. We drove the car in traffic and that's why couldn't test the high speed capabilities but the engine felt refined and responsive. There was good amount of torque available in lower RPM band which eased city driving. The sports mode alters the throttle response and the car suddenly feels more eager to move. I missed paddle shifters and really wish MG didn't have to skip on them. More than the ventilated seats, auto dimming IRVM, wireless charging etc, I would miss paddle shifters the most if my son were to buy Astor. The suspensions are on the softer side, as mentioned by other dear members. But it isn't too soft and in fact offers good ride quality for daily city drives. How much it would affect high speed drivability is to be seen. We are going to drive the car again on early Saturday morning to test these things. We are hoping to drive it longer to understand the car better. But for now, we came out happy.
  • Overall Experience: Impressive! MG showrooms have this strong positive vibes. The staff, ambience, facilities et al feel better than other showroom experiences. The Astor seems like a good alternate to segment leaders Creta and Seltos. I feel bad for Skoda and VW. Not because they will bear the maximum brunt but because even when they had all the time and muscles to kill the competition, all they could do is come up with average products with inferior interior quality plagued with outrageous issues (temporary hopefully). I feel Astor is going to give competitions a good run for their money.

Important question - would we buy the Astor?

So far the experience has been very good. Barring a few usable features, it offers so much for the money that you spend. We feel the better informed decision will be taken after a longish test drive. At 19 plus lacs on road in New Delhi, this isn't the destructive pricing most of us were hoping for. A few more lacs more and you are looking at the higher segment cars. But I'm not sure if even one segment higher cars can match interior quality of Astor, which speaks volume of how well this car is from inside. AI Inside - I think MG meant "Amazing Interiors" Inside!

Last edited by Col Mehta : 14th October 2021 at 19:55.
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Old 14th October 2021, 20:04   #621
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Originally Posted by TurboGuy View Post
1736kg? Where did you find this info? ZS T is apparently ~1300kg unladen and Astor is a rebadged ZS T.
This was posted few pages back in this thread only
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Old 14th October 2021, 20:06   #622
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Originally Posted by kings2306 View Post
Am confused what to do now. We liked Seltos (falls in my budget/feature rich/excellent comfort) but are hesitant due to safety issues, Astor comes second (6 airbags/Safety rich/loaded with features) but CVT variant has almost extended my budget by 2 lakhs rupees, poor mileage and non-availability of MT variant for delivery in this year, and non-availability of Sangria red interiors even in CVT Sharp variant). Taigun comes third but pretty expensive for a 1.0 litre engine. Creta will be the last option as it is similar to my i20 and was not looking fresh when compared to the other cars.

Request suggestions from the beloved forum members.

I am also upgrading from my 2012 i20 asta petrol manual variant, since it will turn 9 this December; though in the beginning, Astor felt a better upgrade.

The more I saw, TD'ed the car, got info on the price reveal, and 5k cars delivery, i20 felt better, and the looming upgrade at cost of 20 lakhs felt absurd to go pick a cramped car in the inside in comparison to my car.

Every single time I come back to my i20 post driving all these nice and fancy cars, it never felt out of place, probably it's due to easy steering setup, that buttery smooth 1.2 NA petrol or even the soft suspension setup, the i20 feels much better to drive even almost 9 years later.

The best car experience I got was in Skoda Superb and VW tiguan 5 seater, those cars are built to last and provide enjoyable driving experience.

I guess all these CSUV or crossovers are nothing but just big hatchbacks that are driving our cravings to go look at them.

So if I must say, don't buy them if the i20 is getting your regular things done, if you badly need an upgrade, go for something with better rear legroom than features, cramped interior is never good despite other upgrades.
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Old 14th October 2021, 20:27   #623
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Default Re: MG Astor Review

I thought it was just me who lost interest after prices were revealed, but it seems to be the case with many potential buyers who were waiting for Astor. A couple of Astor groups I am part of turned completely silent after prices were announced. Look at this very thread, there are just ~100 posts since the price announcement on the 11th of Oct whereas the forum was overwhelmed for other launches such as Magnite, XUV700, and even for the overpriced Kushaq. In my case, I was disappointed with turbo models pricing. If we put aside interiors and a few gizmos on turbo models, there is no USP for this price point.

Every new launch in the CSUV segment makes Creta and Seltos look more and more attractive with its overall package. If there was no supply chain constraint, Creta/Seltos would have killed all these new products at the launch itself.
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Old 14th October 2021, 20:39   #624
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kings2306 View Post
This was posted few pages back in this thread only
Those are gross weights i.e. a fully loaded car. Unladen weights will be around 350-400 kgs lower than GVW.

Last edited by nitkel : 14th October 2021 at 20:42.
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Old 14th October 2021, 20:46   #625
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My last login to to this forum was in 2009 and I own a '99 Santro LE :-) It was time for an upgrade although the Santro still runs as good as new. I'm looking to buy the MG Astor because I finally felt car manufacturers in India are beginning to provide good features and value for money for base variants.

I test drove the 1.5 CVT with ADAS because the 1.5 MT base variant I've pre-booked is not available for a test drive. The rubber band effect of the CVT is very pronounced especially for someone like me who has always driven MTs and EVs. I liked almost everything else about the car except for the infotainment system which felt a bit too cheap due to lack of dials for volume control and AC, which anyway seems to be the (bad) trend these days.

I then test drove the ZS EV which is definitely better in every aspect other than the price tag. If you're looking to buy an automatic/CVT and the OTR price is getting closer to 18 lacs, I'd suggest stretching the budget further and getting the EV version instead which has unmatched performance.
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Old 15th October 2021, 10:15   #626
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Originally Posted by Gotcha View Post
I then test drove the ZS EV which is definitely better in every aspect other than the price tag. If you're looking to buy an automatic/CVT and the OTR price is getting closer to 18 lacs, I'd suggest stretching the budget further and getting the EV version instead which has unmatched performance.
ZS EV is indeed a very good rival to the Astor! However, I'd wait for the facelifted version because it might come with a better range.
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Old 15th October 2021, 16:24   #627
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I have been an invisible member of the forum since many years but this is my first post here. Team-bhp has been a beacon for exhaustive and impartial reviews and is unmatched in the industry.

I have been driving my Polo 1.6 for the past almost 11 years now and the drive still puts a smile on my face. I have been looking to replace my car for the past couple of years but have found it very difficult to find a worthy upgrade.

My drive is 90% city use hence strictly looking for an automatic.

Recently I test drove Skoda Kushaq 1.0 TSI AT, Volkswagen Taigun both 1.0 TSI AT and 1.5 TSI DSG, Kia Seltos CVT, Kia Sonnet DCT and MG Astor 1.5 CVT and 1.3 TC


I did not enjoy driving the Astor 1.5 CVT as it has pronounced rubber band effect and overtakes has to be preplanned. It is smooth as long as it is driven sedately.

The 1.3 turbo TC has enough grunt and I find it to be a worthy upgrade to my Polo 1.6. You don’t feel any vibrations on the wheel or pedals and would fail to notice that it is a 3 cylinder engine. Coming from a 1.6 NA engine there is a small amount of turbo lag but it still has sufficient power lower down the revs. The interiors are at least one segment above. Only features I would miss are ventilated seats, Auto IRVM and wireless android auto.

Out of all the test drives I would slot Astor 1.3 turbo TC between the Volkswagen 1.0 AT and 1.5 DSG in terms of power and drivability.

The lower variants are priced well but I feel the pricing was a damper for the higher spec variants.

I think MG smartly waited for Taigun and XUV 700 pricing and took advantage of the chip shortage to price the Astor higher than expected (not for the base model which is truly value for money). They also took a leaf out of Mahindra's book and came up with options pack to avoid initial sticker shock.

What peeved me is that MG shouted from top of the tower about ADAS level 2 and the beautiful Sangria red interiors and their entire marketing campaign was based on that but failed to disclose the pricing of ADAS on price launch.

Also there is lot of confusion about the Sangria red interiors. Initially the dealer said it would be available as an option in the Sharp variant by paying around Rs.10,000/-. Now there are rumors that it is Rs 40,000/- extra. Also there are reports that the Sangria red is not even included in the Savy variant (or the Sharp O variant) and will be charged additional. Personally I feel they should not charge additional for the interior color as the material used is the same and asking 40,000 for just a color option is absurd.

Had they included the ADAS 2 features and the Sangria red interiors at the price of Smart variant they would have had an upper hand against the German twins.

Awaiting clarity on the final specs sheet including the ADAS features and sangria red interiors.

Update : Sharp (O) / Savy variant prices have been updated on the website.

For the 1.3 Turbo AT additional 60,000 for ADAS and Sangria Red interiors

For the 1.5 CVT additional 90,000 only for ADAS

This takes the Astor to the Taigun and Kushaq 1.5 DSG range

P.S. mods please merge the back to back posts

Last edited by Sheel : 15th October 2021 at 21:15. Reason: Please edit or multi quote (QUOTE+) your replies instead of back to back posts on the same thread. Thanks.
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Old 15th October 2021, 20:45   #628
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Test drove the Astor 1.5 CVT today, and it was so underwhelming. :(
I had been eagerly looking forward to buying the Astor and had also pre-booked it, but the underwhelming driving experience has confused me. Just to double confirm, I immediately went to the nearby Kia Showroom to test drive the Seltos 1.5 manual again. The Seltos felt so much better in terms of pick up and handling. The Astor felt so lazy and just didn't want to accelerate, and seemed really bumpy on uneven roads.

Can anyone help me understand how come Seltos has better acceleration although both have same engines and similar power and torque figure? Was it because of the CVT rubberband effect? Will the pick up in manual Astor be similar to Seltos?
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Old 15th October 2021, 21:17   #629
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Is there any news of NCAP testing for Astor for India and not global?
Also, with full details of pricing, it is missing out on ventilated seats and auto IRVM compared to the Creta / Seltos.

So not the Creta / Seltos killer we all were waiting for. Next up Marut?
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Old 15th October 2021, 21:42   #630
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Okay, so it's going to touch/cross 20 lacs OTR in most of the states. I'm not sure how to feel about it. Expected it to be a 1-1.5 lacs cheaper but then with ADAS and those tasty interiors, it's not that bad either. Just wish it had ventilated front seats and paddle shifters at least to make it a hard to miss proposition.

With these prices, it will be interesting to see how many bookings MG claims to have received on the 21st.
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