Top Recommended Hatchbacks

If a compact sedan or 2-door is too small, and a crossover is too thirsty, you can enjoy the benefits of both – without those perceived negatives – in one of many hatchbacks now on the market. Named for the hatch (natch) at the rear of the vehicle, today’s hatchback provides the utility of the SUV without the penalties in size or efficiency. And if your vehicular decision attempt to arrive at a balance between function and fun, know that the hot hatch (Volkswagen GTI, Ford Focus ST) can drive more performance-centric coupes – and their drivers – absolutely nuts.

2016 RS 7

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$108,900 - $129,000
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Engine Engine 4.0LV-8
MPG MPG 15 City / 25 Hwy
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2016 Soul

2016 Kia Soul

The Kia Soul is a small and fashionable hatchback that's known, among other things, for its efficient use of space and money, its comfort, and its smooth ride.Sometimes it feels more like a small boxy wagon than a five-door.It doesn't try to be swoopy on the outside, while it displays a touch of sophistication on the inside, as the connectivity and infotainment systems hold their own against those in more expensive cars.In a nutshell, the Soul finds its own niche, which isn't easy to do in that class.

The 2016 Soul is the third year of the second generation.There are no …

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$15,900 - $21,300
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Engine Engine 1.6LI-4
MPG MPG 24 City / 30 Hwy
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2016 Golf GTI

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$24,995 - $31,630
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Engine Engine 2.0LI-4
MPG MPG 25 City / 34 Hwy
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2016 Focus

2016 Ford Focus

The Ford Escort is getting long in the tooth, having last been redesigned for the 2012 model year, but it still offers a good combination of ride and handling attributes.The Focus comes in sedan and hatchback versions, with front-wheel drive standard and a choice of powertrains.

Little has changed for the 2016 model year, except for the emergence of a greatly improved Sync 3 infotainment system.Installed in much of the 2016 lineup, Sync 3 replaces the much-criticized, non-intuitive MyFord Touch interface.Sync 3 has a capacitive screen, streamlined menus, smart-charger USB ports, and AppLink capability.

Conveying a sportier aura than many compact sedans …

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$17,225 - $23,725
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Engine Engine 2.0LI-4
MPG MPG 26 City / 36 Hwy
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2016 Beetle

2016 Volkswagen Beetle

It's hard to believe that it's been nearly 20 years since the Volkswagen Beetle was reborn, as the New Beetle.Thankfully, they don't call it New any more, and it's been redesigned a couple of times since then, but the 2016 Beetle continues the successful idea.It's not trendy any more, now it's mostly just fun, functional, and classic.If you don't need a hatchback, it could be for you.

Like the Mustang, the Beetle pulls off retro.It retains its classic style in a world that keeps changing styles.Underneath, the front-wheel-drive chassis is contemporary.

The Beetle looks happy.In fact, that's its appeal, and its identity.

The …

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$19,595 - $34,950
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Engine Engine 1.8LI-4
MPG MPG 25 City / 34 Hwy
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2016 Mazda3

2016 Mazda Mazda3

Mazda3 is a distinctive compact.Both the sedan and hatchback designs show flair, and the driving experience is fun.When you add safety and value, you've got a contender.The Mazda3 is a driver's car, like the Ford Focus and Volkswagen Golf.

Mazda3 offers a choice of powertrains: a 2.0-liter four-cylinder or a 2.5-liter four-cylinder, and a 6-speed manual or 6-speed automatic transmission, built by Mazda.The Mazda3 was redesigned for 2014, including the suspension and steering system.

There isn't that much difference between the 2.0-liter and 2.5-liter, which is a big compliment to the 2.0.The 2.0i is quick enough, and gains one or two mpg …

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$17,845 - $25,495
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Engine Engine 2.0LI-4
MPG MPG 29 City / 41 Hwy
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