***** ***** **** ***** ***** ***** **** ***** ***» ***** ****» ***** ***** ****

Most exciting new Mini yet - Occasionally just a little too exciting More rear space, load flexibility - Torque steer, looks are a matter of tasle **** Rije and handling more composed than the JCW hatch - It's no looker **** Ciacking hot Mini, until the JCW- Expensive with option packs included bhrming engine, agility- I ac^y styling enhancements Strong performance, quality teel - Over-long gearing Even more power and pace than the 197bhp version • Even pricier, too Price, handling, performance - Its looks are a little odd A a<;tf» nf Fvn At a keener prir* - needn't do what it <iay<; nn th* fir» Engaging chassis, spirited engine - Doesn't have 160bhp its name suggests * * * j Nssan's Escort Cossie - Make sure it's a good one -k1t+ir

Bargain no-frills tbrills - Not as much fizz as original 1.3 * * * *

Frantic, thrashy fun - Needs caning to extract full potent^! •-»*♦*

Great engine - Sloppy controls and huge body smother the chassis ***

SHU scintillating after all these years - Brittle build quality **«t* *

One of the great CTfs - They don't make them like this any more *****

Essentially a GV-6 for less dcsh- Limited choice of colours *****

2C5 GTI in drag, cheap - Who wants a cheap drag queen ? ****

French alternative to Panda 100HP - Panda's more fun * * *

Renaultsport experience for pocket money - Could handle extra 30bhp CHo Williams' grand-daddy - Most have been thrashed The hot Clio is hack to its bes: - Why the long face7 Quick, polished and capable - Not as much sheer fun as 182 Cup Took hot hatches to a new le%el - Rawed driving position Fill of beans, fantastic \-alue • Sunday market upholstery M?st tun you cai ha w on three wheels - J vet 500 were built Bargain old-school hot hatch - Nervous in rhe wet, no ABS Revised Clio V6 is a winner- Uninspired interior Pocket supercar - Mid-engined handling can be tricky One of the best hot hatches e/er - Can be fragile tike an !ntegrale Fantastic chassis... - .partial.y obscured by new-found maturity One of the true tot hatch heroes - Two seas, plastic rear windows Best hot Mega/i9... until the P26.R - Fl Te*m stickers in dubious taste A iiesel with a genuinely sporty chassis - Could lake mo'e power

Good value and plentiful Yoj got to like big backadcs

Mega grip and Paction - Steering needs a touch more feel Fen and frugal - You're forcec to have the CSG automatic "box Even more fun and frugality - Almost as pricey as the Cupra Funky (especially in Bocanegra trim], economical - The PR's a better drive Torquey and brisk - Devoid of soul Well built, puncoy engine - The Warm' FR & a better bet A? quick as a Golf 6Tl but £4K cheaper - Misses the VW's completeness Great engine, ccmposure - Doesn't have acjustability of old Cupra R Bold car, blinding engine - Lack» the character of its rival mega-hatches Terrific value - Lacks sparkle of very best hatches Cross-country pace, practicality, value - Not as thrilling as some Well priced, well made, with great engine and D5G 'box - Dull steering Fascinatingly An and frugal tot hatch - A Utle short on steering feel Drives like a GTI hut costs m».ch less - Green brake callipers? Remarkably fun and capable ■ Cabin quality ♦ *

Telling people you drive a Brabus - Them realising it's nc* a 720bhp S-class *** Spec C suspension makes a better drive - No blue paint or gold wheels Cosworth kudo;. Fastest hatch we've tested - Pricey. Lifeless steering * * * » An improvement over the basic WRX - Still not the WRX we're longing 'or **-*» A bit quicker than the STL..- but not belter ** * *

Ertertaining handling, well built - Lacking in steering feedback «♦***

Individual take cn the city car - Toyota's Aygo more fun and much cheaper *»* Lcoks snazzy, surprisingly relined - Odd clutch, lacks a little grit ****

Cracking chassis - Looks dul. optional FlexRide suspension disappointing **** Fast and furious - Lacks a liltle composure and precisior ***w

Crazy power, chassis copes admirably - Lacks exploitability of Megane R26 ♦*** Lcoks, pcrformoncc. anoppy gearshift - Lo<ks fizz of 106GTt Punchy performance and gocd economy - Wot as much fun as the GTI St II a very accomplished hot latch - 207bhp isn't a lot any more ****

Great engine, tremendous pace and poise - High price. ACC only optional * * * * » Character and ability: the oriomal GTI is back - Lackinq firepower? faction's great and you'd love the soundtrack - We'd stsH have a GTI Charismatic - Boomy engine :an be tiresome Arguably the best all-round Golf GTI ever - We'd be splitting hairs The car that slaved it all - Tr»cky to find an unmolested one Good-looking, desirable Votvo - Lacks edge of best hatches. Avoid auto

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