If you're cash strapped, looking for fun and need a bit of utility, there's a lot of selection in the marketplace these days.
Thing is, it's tough sorting out what's fun and what's just an appliance.
But if you were to consult the folks at Autocar, they'd help you in a flash. This U.K.-based publication seems to have its pulse on the hot hatch market, and rightfully so, as enthusiasts are seeking pleasure on the cheap. Remember, fuel and insurance costs abroad are even MORE outrageous than here in the States.
Two new cars you can snap up and have your way with include the Ford Fiesta ST and Volkswagen Golf R. Though both are in different price and size brackets, they do both provide ear-to-ear smiles. Question is, of course, WHICH is better and WHY?
Having just driven the Fiesta ST, I have to say it is a surprisingly spritely little package. Can it REALLY go up against the likes of the more sophisticated Golf R though? I haven't driven the all-new Mark VII so I can't judge.
**If the several excerpts below don't give you an indication, head on over to Autocar to read the FULL review. Click "Read Article" below to jump to the head-to-head competition.
...Where the Golf R flows from apex to exit with fluent, sure-footed ease, the Fiesta ST storms its way around corners with hilarious abandon. On a B-road the Ford can occasionally require more from you than the VW...
...Within three laps, you’ll be doing things in the Fiesta you simply couldn’t contemplate in the Golf – and while these things don’t necessarily make you quicker, they certainly paint a broader grin on your face...
...The Golf wants to go fast, and makes going fast easy; come rain or shine, it does both very well indeed. The Fiesta’s a fast car, but it isn’t so bothered about your prevailing speed so long as you’re enjoying yourself. The former is incredibly capable and effective, the latter trades a bit of stability and ease of use for riotous, scrabbling involvement and fun. And when push comes to shove, we’ll take ‘fun’ every time...