MG Cyberster UK pricing and spec: open-top electric motoring with 503bhp for £59,995 | CAR Magazine

MG Cyberster UK pricing and spec: open-top electric motoring with 503bhp for £59,995

Published: 25 April 2024

► MG Cyberster UK pricing announced
► Comes as RWD Trophy or AWD GT
► GT is over 500bhp for under £60k

The MG Cyberster kicks off the convertible electric sports car revolution (we’ll see) with official UK pricing starting at £54,995. That might sound like a lot, but in electric car terms it probably won’t come as much of a surprise – although the real impact of that entry-level cost is to make the range-topping 503bhp version seem like a bit of a bargain.

For while your £55k will buy you a rear-wheel drive, single-motor Cyberster Trophy with 335bhp, you’ll need to find just £5,000 more to upgrade to the Cyberster GT. The £59,995 asking price for this variant includes 503bhp and all-wheel drive via dual-motors – though the proof will still be in the driving, as frankly we’re not as sold on the more-potent dual-motor MG 4 XPower hatchback as we are the original RWD version.

Still, our Cyberster prototype passenger ride was fun, so here’s hoping the production car can deliver on at least some of this promise.

Tell us about the Cyberster

It’s very rare for a car to be unique, but that’s the case with this zero emissions drop-top: as it goes on sale it’s the only one of its kind. Though it must be said Elon Musk got there first with the Lotus-based Tesla Roadster in 2008.

MG Cyberster - front, red, UK pricing announced

In 2024, the MG Cyberster’s closest rival is the BMW Z4 M40i, a six-cylinder petrol costing £57,565.

Designed in Britain, engineered in China

MG is owned by SAIC, China’s biggest car manufacturer, which inherited the sports car brand and part of the Longbridge factory site when it merged with then-owners Nanjing Automobile in 2007. UK assembly continued for a while, with the final MG sports car, the TF, briefly revived using Chinese kits from 2007 to 2011.

SAIC still runs a small engineering centre at the former Mini plant, carrying out European homologation work and suspension tuning for cars such as the 4 EV. But its Advanced Design studio is in Marylebone, London, where the design director, Carl Gotham, had longed to revive the MG sports car after he joined the company in 2009.  

‘When I took over advanced design in 2017, our satellite studio developed concepts for a sports car as a side project,’ says Gotham. 

The project got real momentum when the team aligned its roadster ideas with SAIC’s electrification ambitions, and built some scale models that won approval. Then in 2018 designer Rob Lemmens sketched a proposal that management chose to be the brand’s concept at the 2021 Shanghai Auto Show – and this Cyberster show car became the inspiration for the production model (shown as scale model below).

Cyberster: from concept to production

While the concept could be mistaken for Batman’s weekend wheels, many of its show-stopping features are carried over to the more conventional final car, including the powered scissor doors, arrow-head taillights and front and rear end graphics. 

‘The production Cyberster still has some classical elements like the proportion and the fender treatments, but they’re all executed in a contemporary and modern way,’ says Gotham (pictured below).

With its long bonnet, the MG could be harbouring a combustion engine in that nose, giving those traditional front-engined, rear-drive proportions. And that classicism is enhanced by the curvaceous front and rear wings.

How big is the Cyberster?

There’s nothing conventional about this roadster under the skin, however: batteries from Chinese supplier CATL are stowed in the floorpan between the wheels. The wheelbase is more than 20cm longer than a Z4’s and the car’s wider too, to harbour sufficient cells.

It also means the Cyberster – which is almost identical in length to a Porsche 911 – stands a fraction taller than rivals. But the designers have tried to disguise the higher beltline with a black gloss hoop ringing the cockpit, which helps give the impression that the shoulders are lower than in reality.

A Kamm tail is designed to trip off the air to reduce drag, and the rear decklid hides the fabric roof compartment and the motor to power it. The model rolls on 20-inch rims, with a seven hoop, multi-coloured design reminiscent from the concept, and Brembo brake calipers visible behind.

MG Cyberster: range and performance

While there was originally talk of 64kWh and 77kWh battery packs, the Cyberster has launched into the UK offering the latter only.

Claimed range for the single-speed RWD Cyberster Trophy is 316 miles – down a little from the 330 promised initially – but with 335bhp and 350lb ft it can crack 0-62mph in 5.0secs.

MG Cyberster - silver and red

The dual-motor AWD Cyberster GT model develops 503bhp and 535lb ft of torque, dropping the 0-62mph sprint time down to 3.2secs.

For reference, that BMW Z4 makes 340bhp from its straight-six petrol and does 0-62mph in 4.5sec.

Claimed driving range for the GT is 276 miles per charge. Both versions feature 150kW DC charging capability, and claim 10-80 per cent is possibly in 38 minutes.

Interior and equipment

The Cyberster comes well equipped. ‘There’s no point in doing an entry version,’ a source told us previously. ‘So it’s electric doors, electric roof, all the screens and all the kit. It’s just a question of whether owners want to go really fast – or crazy fast!’

Standard equipment includes an instrument binnacle with centre 10.25-ich digital screen, flanked on each side by additional 7.0-inch screens, with another screen on the centre console. An eight-speaker Bose audio system, Android Auto, Apple CarPlay, ambient lighting, 360-degree parking camera, six-way electric seats, heated steering wheel and paddleshifters to control the regen are all included.

MG Cyberster - steering wheel and dashboard screens

There are four driving modes – Comfort, Custom, Sport and Track – and all the usual modern safety kit. The electric roof operates in 15 seconds at up to 30mph, while the boot squeezes in a modest 249 litres.

The two-seat cockpit is driver-oriented, with the hanging centre console separating the two occupants. The door release buttons are sited at the base of this, while gears – Drive, Reverse, Neutral and Park – are engaged via four buttons, Lamborghini-style.

The cockpit feels very modern compared with those ageing combustion engine roadsters’ interiors. And those sports cars are a dwindling bunch: the Mazda MX-5, and more pertinently BMW Z4 and Porsche 718 Boxster are the sole key players in the market, with the Audi TT and Jaguar F-type recently following Mercedes’ SLK into the history books.

But from summer 2024, the MG sports car will ride again – and kickstart the £50k electric sports car niche.

The MG Cyberster Concept

The new MG roadster was prefaced by a 2021 concept called the Cyberster. It was the work of China’s SAIC design department and developed at the MG Advanced Design Centre in London. It’s a synthwave, pure-electric reimagination of the classic MGB Roadster which laid the foundations for the near production ready car leaked above.

Like its grandfather, the concept features a long, swooping bonnet – but that’s about where the similarities end. There are loads of bang-up-to-date design touches like supercar-style nacelles behind the passengers and an unusual lightbar at the rear, seemingly lifted straight from the Polestar Precept concept.

There are a few Union Jack LED details peppered around the car, too, like those used on the MINI hatchback. MG is also keen to point out the concept’s gaming-inspired dashboard, pop-up headlights and cockpit that separates driver and passenger like the 1960’s Batmobile.

MG’s performance claims for the concept are impressive. It says it’ll be able to sprint from 0–62mph in less than three seconds, while its maximum range stands at 500 miles. We reckon the former claim is realistic but, given MG’s current battery technology and its budget-friendly ethos, the production Cyberster’s range could reduce by as much as 50 percent.

Carl Gotham, director of the SAIC Design Advanced studio in London, said: ‘The Cyberster is a bold statement that looks strongly into MG’s future, touching on our heritage but more importantly building on our technology and advanced design.’

In August 2022, MG released a new video which seemed to tease a production version of its Cyberster Roadster concept. At around one minute long, the video doesn’t provide a huge amount of information, but it gave a few hints at the new car’s design features. The biggest news from the clip was that the production EV will be chunkier than the concept and it might get a pair of butterfly doors. You can watch the video below.

By Jake Groves

CAR's deputy news editor, gamer, serial Lego-ist, lover of hot hatches