MG Comet long term review, 1,500km report


The MG Comet is one of a number of cars I’ve sampled briefly at a press drive event, and then subsequently ran it as a long termer, but never before have I learnt so much more about a vehicle with the benefit of a protracted time. On one hand, this is because the press drive through the heart of New Delhi (a traffic-filled test befitting of the tiny EV, to be fair) was so short, but on the other hand, the MG Comet is quite unlike anything I’ve ever driven before.

Even in cramped Mumbai, there’s rarely a parking spot too small for the Comet.

The Tata Nano, of course, springs to mind, and yes, while it had two more doors and a barebones cabin, the general tall-boy, micro-compact concept is remarkably similar. The seating position is akin to that of a barstool, and the first sensation is of awkward unfamiliarity as you come to grips with its vertically oriented ergonomics. The same goes for its tiny footprint and lack of bonnet – can I squeeze through that gap? How much closer to the garage wall can I nudge the nose? My Delhi drive was too brief to reconcile with all of this, but having now driven it for a couple of months, I absolutely revel in it.

No covered storage, huge glass area mean cabin contents are always on display.

No amount of added horsepower could shorten my office commute, as it’s 98 percent gridlock traffic. Yet, the Comet gets me to work 10 to 15 minutes quicker, and it’s all down to its size, or the lack thereof. Buoyed by my newfound confidence in the driving position, I whiz into gaps in traffic with almost the brazen disregard of an autorickshaw driver. Almost. And it’s thus that the other main difference to the plucky Nano comes to light – a powertrain that actually has some power. 42hp and 110Nm aren’t numbers to boast of, to be sure, but with instantaneous responses and just around 800kg to move, it can really zip! In fact, I’ve started to use Eco mode, not to lengthen its range, but to temper its exuberance.

With little weight to move, its 42hp and 110 instant Nm really hustle you along.

Two decades of driving in Mumbai has made me a big fan of public transport, largely because with driving comes the added headache of finding parking. Not in the Comet. Even in the busiest parts of town, you’ll find a spot that’s just a few inches shy of the average car length. You could even park it perpendicular in a parallel slot, much to the amusement of all and sundry, and it won’t spill out onto the street.

Thick C pillar’s huge blind spot makes precision reversing surprisingly tricky.

The wacky shape, the tiny footprint, the zippy powertrain and the sit-up driving position – all of it makes for a unique and unconventional driving experience that sets the Comet apart even from other EVs in this price range. It’s not without its flaws; in fact, some of them are quite glaring – brakes, software, displays, ride quality, practicality and charging, to name a few, and I’ll detail them in the next report. But I’m almost ready to forgive them all for the convenience this car provides in the cut and thrust of Mumbai traffic.

Also see: 

MG Comet long term review, 430km report

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