So you fancy a car with a good turn of speed and the fun factor turned up as high as it’ll go, but you also need something that’s reasonably practical and cheap to run. You’ll be after a hot hatchback, then – no other class of car mixes pulse-racing fun and day-to-day, real-world ability quite like a hot hatch. Here, we’ve gathered 10 of the very best and all with an upper price limit of just £10,000. Read on to see if any of these can tempt you.
Best used hot hatches for less than £10,000
Who could resist this chunky Focus, an old-school hot hatch with pumped-up bodywork and garish colour options that’s about as subtle as a punch in the face and as leery as a stag weekend in Blackpool? Its turbocharged 222bhp 2.5-litre five-cylinder engine burbles and pops and invites you to have a go; and when you do, you’ll find it does the performance, steering and handling part very well. It’s even fairly practical.
9. Mini JCW
You want a Mini that can do 0-62mph in just 6.5sec and go on to a top speed of 148mph? Look no further. The John Cooper Works takes the standard 1.6 Cooper and sprinkles a bit of performance magic on it until it emerges as this flickable and delightfully agile pocket rocket. Think of it as the ultimate Mini. Expensive new but at this age and for £10k, it’s beginning to look like a thoroughly good buy.
8. Audi S3
If what you’re after is straight-line performance combined with lashings of practicality, then the five-door S3 might well be the car for you. It’s civilised and secure; in some ways, a swift and sure-footed express rather than a fire-breathing hot hatch. However, it’ll let rip with the best of them if you really push it, thanks to its turbocharged 2.0-litre engine and four-wheel drive, providing a pleasing blend of both speed and comfort. Plenty of room for the kids, too.
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