A dual-motor hatchback with sporty exterior touches and the kind of performance you'd expect from a sports car, the MG4 XPOWER is – most surprisingly – affordable at £36,495 ($45,925 at current exchange). By comparison, the 2023 model year BMW M2 stickers at £64,890 (circa $81,625) with the ZF-supplied automatic or £66,090 (approximately $83,135) with the manual.
Remember when automatics were optional? Pepperidge farm remembers, but alas, there is an explanation for this reversal. More specifically, the Getrag-supplied manual transmission is heavier on fuel than the automatic. The difference in WLTP-rated carbon dioxide emissions is minuscule, namely 228 grams of CO2 per every kilometer driven compared to 220 grams.
Fuel economy, however, doesn't interest us enthusiasts because the aforementioned MG4 XPOWER is much obliged to give battle to the most purist M car in production today. The good folks at carwow drag raced them over the quarter mile three times, and the results may surprise you: two wins for the Sino-British hatchback plus one victory for the Bavarian coupe from Mexico. Indeed, as opposed to the old F87, the G87 is manufactured across the pond rather than in Germany.
Their best ETs were 12 seconds flat, albeit the MG4 XPOWER pipped the M2 by the smallest of margins over the finish line. Can the Bimmer redeem itself from a rolling start? The answer is both yes and no because the M2 racked up two wins against one dead heat. Truth be told, a rolling start race to the half mile favors a combustion-engined automobile. To the point, the MG4 XPOWER is limited to 124 miles per hour (200 kilometers per hour) compared to 177 miles per hour (285 kilometers per hour) for the M4's smaller brother.
When it comes to braking from 100 miles per hour (nearly 160 kilometers per hour) to a screeching halt, it's Mat Watson in the far more affordable MG4 XPOWER who eats a slice of that yummy humble pie. The zero-emission hatchback is heavier, features worse brakes, and skinnier tires than the M2, but a win is a win.
As a brief refresher, the G87 is M's final completely internal combustion vehicle. It's also the final M to feature a manual transmission option. Scheduled to end production in July 2029, the M2 will receive a small update in August 2024 in the form of cosmetic upgrades and more oomph. There's also talk of M xDrive all-wheel drive launching in 2026, an addition that would open the M2 to prospective customers who would like to daily their cars regardless of the weather conditions.