Back in the 1980s, the guys at Volkswagen had a brilliant idea. They decided to put a high-performance engine in a small car. It had never been done before, and it sounded a little crazy. After all, the only fast cars on the road were sports cars. But, VW pioneered a change. They put a fast engine in a small car and called it the Golf GTi. It changed everything.
Soon after, copycat models cropped up across the market. The small hatchbacks with huge engines started making waves across the industry. Drivers fell in love with the fast acceleration and killer handling. They were relatively affordable too. Finally, we could have fun without shelling out for a Ferrari! In 2015, our favourite cars on the road are hot hatchbacks. Here are the very best.
Ford Fiesta ST
Without a doubt, this is the best hot hatchback on the planet. On paper, nothing stands out about the Fiesta. The top speed isn’t as high as the Golf GTi. The 0-60mph time is less than a Honda Civic Type R. But, there’s something special about the Fiesta ST. It handles like nothing else on the road right now. It’s responsive, exciting, and thrilling to drive. Leading car commentators are already calling it a future classic. It’s older brother, the Focus ST is also a phenomenal car.
Seat Leon Cupra
Seat have quietly produced incredible vehicles over the last decade. Their budget range is a brilliant showcase of mid-range, reliable family cars. However, with the Leon Cupra, they’re making themselves heard. The Cupra is a joy to drive. It’s one of the most powerful cars on the list too, reaching almost 300bhp. (That’s nearly as much as a Porsche 911!) Put your foot down in this car and you feel it.
Volkswagen Golf GTi
The Golf GTi is the original, and many claim it has never been bettered. The iconic shape is matched only by the distinctive tartan upholstery and golf ball gear stick. The 2015 model falls slightly short of its competitors at Ford when it comes to handling. But, it will still outrun them in a drag race. For some, there’s no replacement for the feeling of sitting behind the wheel of a classic Golf GTi.
Mini Cooper S
The Mini is perhaps the most recognisable car in motoring history. The classic shape and stylish design is known the world over. It’s relaunch by BMW was the most successful relaunch the car world has ever seen. But, it’s not just a pretty face. The Mini Cooper S drives like a go-kart. It’s responsive and exciting. The only downside? The cost. Brand new models come with a high price tag. For that reason, we tend to direct readers towards CooperMini and their range of second-hand models.
Honda Civic Type R
Since the introduction of the Golf GTi in the 1980s, one car has come closest to taking the iconic crown. That’s the Honda Civic Type R. It became the boy-racer’s car of choice, and still holds a place in the hearts of many petrolheads. It disappeared from the market for more than five years, but now it’s back and better than ever.
Hot hatchbacks are fierce, exciting, and full of animalistic passion. Which is your favourite?