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There is one name that hot hatchback enthusiasts everywhere recognize as one of the most tenured in the world: the Golf GTI. After nearly fifty years of the German hot hatch model, the GTI keeps improving, and the 2023 Volkswagen Golf GTI topped TrueCar’s list of the best hatchback cars for the model year. Read about the GTI and its competitors, like the 2023 Honda Civic

Why do people prefer hatchback cars?

Many prefer hatchbacks to sedans or wagons because they combine nimble handling with practical three or five-door applications. For instance, these hatchbacks were TrueCar’s picks for the best hatchbacks of 2023:

  • Volkswagen Golf GTI
  • Honda Civic
  • Toyota Prius Prime
  • Acura Integra

Moreover, in the case of vehicles like the Volkswagen Golf GTI and Acura Integra, practicality doesn’t have to be a compromise. Instead, a five-door hatchback car can be a sharp, swift, playful application with track day credentials. 

Is the Volkswagen GTI a hatchback?

The Volkswagen Golf GTI has always been a hatchback, and the 2023 model is no different. However, the hot hatch model has gotten faster and more advanced since the 1970s. For 2023, the GTI packs a 241-horsepower turbocharged inline-four-cylinder engine, seating for five, and standard Apple CarPlay. 

A 2023 Volkswagen Golf GTI Hatchback, like the Honda Civic,  shows off its five-seater car practicality and sporty handling as it drives on mountain roads.
2023 Volkswagen Golf GTI | Volkswagen

Moreover, the GTI tops TrueCar’s list of the best hatchback cars for 2023, balancing affordability, performance, and pedigree. For instance, although the GTI is a taut, capable driver’s car with the standard six-speed manual transmission, the $800 seven-speed dual-clutch automatic makes for snappier shifts and faster launches. Additionally, the hot hatch packs an electronically controlled limited-slip differential for spirited driving with dependable traction. 

Will there be a 2023 Civic Hatchback?

The 2023 model year will see another Civic Hatchback available as a Sport, EX-L, or Sport Touring. In addition to the liftback Civic, Honda’s new Type R is a thoroughbred hot hatchback with 315 horsepower, a standard six-speed manual transmission, and a library of track-ready goodies.

Also, with a starting price of around $25,850 for the Sport trim hatch, the 2023 Honda Civic is an affordable option. Further, the Civic Hatchback’s generous 24.5 cubic feet of cargo capacity make it as practical as it is lively.  

Is there a 2022 Prius Hatchback?

The 2022 Toyota Prius Prime is a hatchback hybrid liftback car with seating for five. Moreover, with an Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) estimated 54 mpg combined, the Prius Prime is the most efficient option on TrueCar’s list of the best hatchbacks on the market. 

A Toyota Prius Prime parks in a compact car spot while it shows off its hatchback styling and practicality.
Toyota Prius Prime | Toyota

Is the 2023 Acura Integra better than the Volkswagen Golf GTI?

The 2023 Acura Integra channels the DNA of the new Honda Civic to deliver a solid competitor for the Volkswagen Golf GTI. However, those who want an Integra to put the GTI in its place will have to check out the Integra Type S, a 315-horsepower sibling of the Civic Type R. 

In terms of practicality, the Acura Integra is more roomy and efficient than the Volkswagen Golf GTI. Specifically, the Integra has about 4.4 cubic feet of cargo capacity and 5.0 mpg combined on the Golf model. 

The Acura Integra's looks are an apparent sibling for a 2023 Honda Civic as it corners on a mountain road.
Acura Integra A-Spec | Honda

What is the hottest hatchback?

Of TrueCar’s picks for the best hatchback cars, the hottest option is the 2023 Volkswagen Golf GTI. The GTI packs driver’s car credentials into an affordable package with a historic badge. However, the more aggressive versions of the GTI, Integra, and Civic are in a league of their own.

If you want more speed and sharper handling in your hatchback, the Golf R, Integra Type S, and Civic Type R won’t disappoint.


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