Browse over 9,000 car reviews

Sorry, there are no cars that match your search


Best hatchbacks arriving in 2021

The next-gen Golf GTI is set to arrive in Australia at the same time as the rest of Volkswagen's small-car line-up.

New-vehicle buyers might be flocking in droves to high-riding SUVs, but that doesn’t mean the humble hatchback should be ignored.

A small – but practical – package that is designed to ferry occupants comfortably with some gear in the boot at an affordable pricetag is surely an attractive offering after all.

And with such a breadth of ability, from luxury to sport, there is a hatchback arriving in 2021 to suit nearly everyone’s needs.

Audi S3 Sportback - Second half

The incoming new-generation Audi S3 hot hatch will, for the first time, come to Australia in the second half of 2021 with an engine matching the European car after a change in the local ‘hot climate’ classification.

This means 228kW/400Nm from a 2.0-litre turbo-petrol four-cylinder engine, which is a noticeable jump from the 213kW/380Nm on offer in the current car.

Paired to a seven-speed dual-clutch automatic and Audi’s quattro all-wheel drive means a 0-100km/h run in 4.8 seconds, so expect the new S3 to be as exciting as ever.

Audi S3

Audi S3
3.8
From
$64,200
Based on Manufacturer's Suggested Retail Price (MSRP)

BMW 128ti - First quarter

BMW is looking to expand its performance hatchback footprint with the introduction of the 128ti in the first quarter of 2021, with it to slot in below the already-on-sale M135i xDrive.

Whereas the M135i xDrive will send power to all four wheels as an Audi S3 and Mercedes-AMG A35 rival, the 128ti is strictly a front-drive variant, with a meaty 195kW 2.0-litre turbo-petrol engine.

This lines it up against more mainstream fare like the VW Golf GTI and Ford Focus ST, but with a premium badge and sub-$60,000 pricetag, BMW should have no trouble finding more than a few homes for the 128ti.

Hyundai i20 N - 2021

After the success of the i30 N, how could Hyundai not introduce a bona fide rival to the critically successful Ford Fiesta ST, Volkswagen Polo GTI and Toyota Yaris GR?

Much like the Ford though, the i20 N will be Hyundai’s only offering in the light hatchback space from 2021 as buyers flock more and more to SUVs and crossovers like the Venue.

Engine details are still to be released, but rumours are the i20 N could output around 150kW/265Nm from the 1.6-litre turbo-petrol engine already under the bonnet of the i30 N Line and Veloster Turbo.

Hyundai i30 N - First half

Hyundai’s first crack at a proper hot hatch, the i30 N, was a rock-solid critical hit when it landed in early 2018, but a new version due in the first half of 2021 will address one of its biggest flaws.

Though the first car was paired exclusively to a six-speed manual gearbox (great for purists), the updated i30 N will also be offered with an eight-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission (great for everyone else).

A peppy 206kW/392Nm 2.0-litre four-cylinder petrol engine is driving the front wheels, but a two-pedal set-up should broaden the appeal of Hyundai’s VW Golf GTI-rivalling hot hatch.

Hyundai i30

Hyundai i30
3.9
From
$20,440
Based on Manufacturer's Suggested Retail Price (MSRP)

Skoda Octavia - Early 2021

Not a hatchback in the traditional sense, the four-door Octavia liftback – or five-door wagon – should nonetheless be on your radar if shopping in this segment from ealr y021.

Underpinned by the all-new Volkswagen Golf’s MQB platform, the fourth-generation Octavia wraps handsome styling, practical space and a tech-loaded interior into a package with an attainable pricetag.

Variety is also key here, with a high-riding Scout wagon possibly available to those who don’t want an SUV, while a performance-focused RS can be had by those that want a bit more pep in their step.

 

Toyota GR Yaris Rallye - First half

The GR Yaris is Toyota’s first in-house sports car in more than 20 years.

For those that think a 200kW/370Nm all-wheel-drive manual Yaris just isn’t quite enough, Toyota will offer the even more hardcore Rallye version in the first half of 2021.

What’s different? The Rallye scores stickier Michelin Pilot Sport tyres, 18-inch BBS alloy wheels and Torsen limited-slip differentials on both axles to make it an even bigger track-day terror.

However, Toyota is only offering around 250 special-edition Yaris GR Rallyes, and each will be priced higher than the promotional $39,950 drive-away pricetag of the standard car.

Volkswagen Golf - Early 2021

Arguably the hatchback yardstick that others are measured against, Volkswagen will roll-out its eighth-generation Golf in early 2021.

It looks to retain much of its class-leading interior finish and enough technology to keep it future-proofed for some time to come, but whether the carryover 1.4-litre turbo-petrol engine and MQB underpinnings are starting to show their age will have to wait until we’re behind the wheel.

Aside from the standard range, the tasty Golf GTI hot hatch will also be making its return in 2021, while the even more hardcore R variant will arrive some time thereafter.