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Testing every hot hatchback on sale in 2024 – car pictures of the week

We rank every petrol hot hatch on sale in the latest issue of evo – here are some of our favourite shots

The traditional hot hatch is dying a slow death. Once a staple of the performance car market, some of our favourite models are being phased out to satisfy hunger for crossovers and EVs. To celebrate them while we can, we gathered every hot hatch on sale for an epic group test in the latest issue of evo. To read the full feature, pick up a copy of evo 318 in-store or online via the evo shop.

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There are many reasons why evo heroes like the Ford Fiesta ST and Volkswagen Up GTI have been killed off. Most manufacturers are turning their investments to EVs, and as consumers gravitate towards taller crossover-style vehicles, developing petrol hatchbacks with slim profit margins is harder to justify.

That’s a shame, because the hot hatch has long been one of the most affordable routes into performance car ownership, and the best of the breed can offer a level of involvement and finesse comparable with that of a six-figure sports car

Our test was made up of eighteen current models, from the charming Suzuki Swift Sport and Peugeot 208 GT at the lower end and right up to the likes of the Mercedes-AMG A45 S and Honda Civic Type R. The market has changed dramatically in the last decade or so – of all our contenders, only three had fewer than five doors, and just seven had manual gearboxes. In time, EVs will take over too.

Despite the doom and gloom, some truly fantastic hot hatches make up the field in 2024. Some dazzled on track but fell a little short on the road, while others seemed to relish all the conditions we threw at them. Find out which came out on top by picking up your copy of evo 318 in store or online via the evo shop.

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