The profits we make from it go back to BBC programme-makers to help fund great new BBC programmes. More to the point, it’s also available as an estate if you need the extra practicality a fast wagon offers – and there’s nothing cooler than a performance estate. There really is nothing else like it: one of the best manual gearboxes on sale, traction like you wouldn't believe, in gear performance to make rivals blush and an enormous boot. In its original '250' guise, praise for the Megane III R.S. The FK2 was a joyous return for the Civic Type R, but not quite cohesive enough for class honours. Honda Civic Type R: 306 horsepower charges out from this beast’s 2.0L heart. Chances are they won't stay that way as their numbers thin out and the current Mini continues to bloat - and at this money Cooper S you buy won't be perfect - model specific issues include oil leaks, cracked cylinder heads and driveshafts - though they remain tremendous fun. With such a healthy budget, buyers will have the choice of pre-registered new cars with the all options on tap - or even indulge in a tailored order from the manufacturer. Go hard or go home, right? In AMG style, the 421PS engine at the heart of it is currently the most powerful production four-cylinder anywhere and powers a clever all-wheel-drive chassis, complete with Drift Mode. The 10 best hot hatches for 2020 Want proof of how fast things move in the hot hatch world? The steering is electrically assisted but has major amounts of feel, plus Ford has managed to engineer in proper old-school lift-off oversteer but without the fear factor of a Peugeot 205, so it’s playful, but not petrifying to push hard. Likewise the Fiesta ST, the previous version of which announced a welcome return to hot hatches being (relatively) cheap, simple and fun. This website is made by BBC Studios Distribution. Cars such as the VW Golf R have four-wheel drive to boost their performance, while the latest Ford Focus ST and SEAT Leon Cupra and Skoda Octavia vRS use trick electronics and front diffs to boost front-wheel traction. This is enough to send the latest M135i to 62mph from rest in just 4.8 seconds with the help of launch control, then on to a top speed of 155mph. Sie können Ihre Einstellungen jederzeit ändern. Of the 3,000 to be built just 575 will be sold to British owners, meaning your £34K should be a safe investment while you enjoy yourself at the wheel. Although the Renault’s basic performance lags slightly behind some of its rivals’, the focus here is on the chassis ability, so as an overall package the R.S. This one did, though - and then some. But it is still quite some animal, with a 0-62mph time of 6.5 seconds and a three-stage drive mode programme but also claimed fuel economy of 47mpg, thanks in part to a world first: cylinder deactivation on a triple. Promoted from satisfyingly warm to seriously hot, the Focus ST now has one of the biggest engines in the class, a chunky 280PS and a sophisticated torque-shuffling ‘differential’ the black boxes can use to distribute power across the front axle. In comparison the M135i xDrive seems disappointingly conformist. Toyota obviously didn’t get the memo dictating modern hot hatch norms and, emboldened with a fresh WRC title for the Yaris, has created a B-segment superhatch with four-wheel drive, 257PS from a compact three-cylinder engine and a mongrel blend of underpinnings grafting Corolla front end to C-HR crossover rear to make room for the four-wheel-drive. If that and the £56,000-plus pricetag sounds too much the A35 AMG still offers 306PS, all-wheel-drive and the understated firepower to occupy the premium hot hatch ground temporarily vacated by the all-conquering Golf R. Mini hatches are already available in various degrees of Cooper-branded hotness but the much-teased John Cooper Works GP version takes things to a whole new level, thanks to eye-catching, aero-tuned carbon-fibre wheel arch extensions and a massive rear wing. True, the interior isn’t perhaps the most exotic of hot hatchback cabins, but the steering feel is good and there’s a lot of grip. The result was a car that walked every comparison test it entered - even once production has ended - beguiling all who drove it with its poise, balance and famously feisty 2.0-litre engine. Not content with having created a supermini legend in the Clio 200, Renault Sport set about doing the same for the C-segment at about the same time. It’s little over a year since we last came up with a list of this type, and since then three of the cars we featured have gone out of production, one switching from six-cylinders and rear-wheel drive to a turbocharged four and all-wheel-drive. The original hero car of Group A rallying captured hearts and minds on stage and street like nothing else at the time. True, the Clio may have lost its way a little recently but the Megane has come out fighting. The latest hot Honda is more capable than ever dynamically, but is also civilised and usable. It might not be thrill a minute, but there aren't many cars as broadly capable as a Golf R. Make no mistake: the FK8 is as significant a front-wheel drive achievement as anything built by Renault Sport or VW in recent years. OK, it’s following the rubber laid down by the Focus RS on that score. Fortunately, there are a few automakers, particularly from the JDM and European markets, that persist in progressing the hot-hatch chronicles in the US. Thirdly, its interior, although quite basic, contains everything you need and absolutely nothing you don’t. I'll pass, thanks. BBC Studios is a commercial company that is owned by the BBC (and just the BBC). Want proof of how fast things move in the hot hatch world? The hot hatch also includes a Performance Driving Data System that saves and displays driving data to improve a driver’s track skills. Nobody saw this revival of the classic ‘90s Japanese rally rep coming. was generous if not effusive; partly dimmed by the proximity of the previous generation R26.R. Granted, the Civic's styling is divisive, but there is no finer purveyor of the idea that you cannot see the outside while driving it. Again, check they've been properly maintained if used on track (including the cambelt) and be sure to try both chassis options to make sure of your preference. Reduced customer demand will see almost half all agency staff at the MINI Oxford factory lose their jobs by mid-October, The BMW 1 Series is one of the best premium hatchbacks on sale, offering a combination of performance, efficiency and driver thrills, The Honda Civic Type R is the 2020 Auto Express Hot Hatch of the Year, with the Ford Focus ST and Mercedes-AMG A 45 S commended, The new BMW 128ti revives the brand’s famous ‘ti’ badge after a 15-year hiatus, Renault’s new CEO says the firm is examining the possibility of reducing the range of models it offers to UK buyers as it aims to boost profitability, Honda has quietly phased-out its diesel-powered models in Britain, Have updates made the BMW 5 Series even better? It’s firm but rides relatively well, has a great amount of standard equipment in all its various forms and comes with a five-door bodyshell for an extra hit of practicality. This service is provided by Disqus and is subject to their privacy policy and terms of use. Autoblog ist Teil von Verizon Media. The most extreme models have stiff suspension and a rock-hard ride that picks up every bump in the road, but those models fitted with adaptive dampers - either as standard or an option - offer the best compromise between comfort and handling. Remember that “nah, you’re alright” McDonald’s advert from a few years ago? Most are still front-wheel drive, although 4WD is gaining traction, and BMW still goes its own way with rear-wheel drive. Five years ago the idea of Hyundai producing a front-line hot hatchback seemed laughable. Introduced earlier in 2020… The three-cylinder turbo engine is gutsy, the chassis is playful and you can now enjoy more of the power, more of the time. Registered at Goodwood House, Chichester, West Sussex, PO18 0PX. With its cool exterior design, 2.0-liter turbo-four engine, six-speed manual transmission, and front-wheel drivetrain, it’s the purist’s go-to choice. It certainly made us wait. So don’t think that because it has a 0-62mph time of 5.7 seconds and a top speed of 155mph that the latest ST is any sort of a madman. There may be more options abroad, but there’s a solid selection available in the United States. By the time the 265 Trophy appeared, it was unmatched: grip, traction and power in abundance (yet also in perfect harmony), with feedback and communication to rival the best sports cars and an ability to dissect a British B-road like little else. Yet on the right road it could also slay most supercars, while that grunty, characterful engine is linked to one of the best manual gearboxes ever. In this hot hatch Masterchef Biermann’s signature dish earns a top score. True to tradition the real speed lurks in the corners though, thanks to track-optimised suspension, sticky tyres and body stiffening extending to a brace where the rear seats once were. Yes, it has a big (and very expensive) brother called the A 45 AMG, but the A 35 still produces more than 300bhp from its 2.0-litre turbocharged four-cylinder engine, offers a seven-speed dual-clutch automatic gearbox with four-wheel drive, and still serves up performance to slay all but hyper-hatches like its A 45 sibling. And you should seriously consider that because the tweaks are delivered to good effect. Because it's proven that small turbo engines can be enormously exciting, that transverse four-wheel drive hatches can be properly fun and that these typically quite stoic five-doors can really cut loose when required. McLaren 765LT?

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