The Mini is an excellent hatch, but does it have to be so grown up?
It defines this sector and should be its default buy. You simply can’t go wrong.
New eighth-gen Golf remains the lingua-franca of the hatch world. A finely polished machine
Overlook the fact it’s so good that it’s almost joyless: the latest Golf GTI is very desirable indeed.
After a classy cabrio but don't have Audi-like cash? Try this. GTI expensive but worth it; R perhaps not
The e-Golf is an EV that works for most of us, most of the time. A truly convincing electric car.
Kia improves things yet again. Refinement, styling and interior quality are nearly as good as anything out there. Nearly…
Seat’s strongest car in a long time, the Leon is now a Golf-baiting player.
Not as cheap as you’d expect, but still one of the best hot hatches on sale.
Not as far behind the Ford Focus as you might think. Vauxhall's facelifted hatch is a very competent thing... but an all-new one lurks around the corner.
A beautiful, entertaining and fundamentally different hatch.
A capable machine, but more GT than hot hatch. Think mature rather than arm-wangly Italian
Solid, gimmick-free all-rounder that’s slightly less good at everything than a Golf, but cheaper for it.
The Kia Cee'd is the car that lobs the paving slab of reality into the windscreen of preconception. It might be a straight clone of a Toyota/Ford/VW hatch, but it’s a damn good one.
Just what the market ordered. Stylish crossover for people who don't need family space. But don't dig too deep beyond that
Well thought out, versatile and thoroughly decent family estate. The weeniest bit boring
Suffers from exactly the same flaw as every other Infiniti – the only reason you’d buy one is because it’s rare-groove different. Not necessarily better.
Peugeot's hot hatch renaissance continues. The 308 GTI has a joyously wild streak
A job well done. The Golf is better, but not by much.
Great-looking, great to drive new Volvo should be a fine car to own.
Citroen's Fiat Panda - character over driving thrills, but none the worse for that.
While still a comfy, useful hatchback, the C4 Cactus's move mainstream has taken away its class hero status