Hatchbacks are a popular choice with a wide range of drivers.
If you value extra boot space, easy loading and second-row space, a hatchback is ideal. Hatchbacks can carry a considerable amount of luggage (including bulky items). They also offer a safe, comfortable passenger experience.
They usually have excellent fuel economy and offer a great driving experience. Here we take a look at seven of the best hatchbacks that will be for sale in Australia in 2022.
1. Hyundai i30
If comfort, value and safety are your priorities, it's time to take a look at the Hyundai i30. Several upgrades since its introduction in 2016 have seen the i30 undergo exterior upgrades. Improved safety features (the majority of which are present in the base spec as well as the more advanced options) have been added over time. Tech has also been improved.
Little details such as rear air vents (which are missing in several higher-spec options) add value. An 8" infotainment screen that's easy to navigate (and features both wired and wireless capability) is a welcome addition. Roomy rear seats result in a hatchback that's great for passengers as well as the driver.
Reviewers are positive about the driving experience. Fuel efficiency and price are competitive.
For drivers who crave good value, a good level of tech and plenty of space, the i30 is a pretty good option.
2. Skoda Fabia
If you haven't considered a Skoda before, the time may be right to do so. Part of the VW group, the 2022 Fabia benefits from the MQB-40 platform (the same one as you'll find in the Seat Ibiza and VW Polo). Despite its relatively small exterior dimensions, the Fabia has a spacious interior. It is well-laid out and incorporates some high-end materials for a luxury touch.
Features such as the 10" digital driver's display (in higher-spec Fabias) and a keyless start are included with the Fabia. There's also a good suite of autonomous safety features and excellent fuel economy. In summary, this hatchback is a high-end option with a focus on comfort and quality.
Despite recent price hikes, Skodas continue to offer excellent value. They are dependable, solidly built cars from the VW stable. Much of their tech is cutting-edge, and their modern interiors are plush and have an exclusive feel. If you're looking for a reliable, family run around that offers a high-end spec for the price tag, the Fabia is a good choice.
3. Toyota Corolla
According to Toyota, the Corolla is the best-selling vehicle line of all time. It's been a consistent best-seller here in Australia. Despite some upgrades for 2022, the Corolla remains primarily a dependable, well-built, family car. It provides a reliable, comfortable way for families and their luggage to get from a to b.
Key features of the Corolla include an 8" colour touchscreen and the option of a hybrid engine. A JBL sound system, active safety and the option of add-on packs such as the Protection Pack and Lifestyle Pack provide further appeal. Reviewers love the way the Corolla drives, and drivers are thrilled by the space and comfort inside.
The Corolla has long been a best-seller here, mainly because it ticks so many boxes. It's not the cheapest vehicle in the sector. That said, considering what you get (as well as Toyota's excellent reputation for reliability), it's a strong choice.
4. Mazda 3 Evolve
Beautifully styled inside and out, this Mazda hatchback has a premium feel that's extremely attractive for the price. Features include an 8.8" infotainment screen and plenty of intelligent tech.
This includes a 360-view monitor, an LCD multi-information display and an active driving display. Bose speakers, heated seats and an excellent range of safety features are further advantages of the Evolve.
As well as a petrol engine, there's also a hybrid on offer. The Mazda 3 doesn't benefit from a turbo, which is a shame. That said, Mazda's focus on performance means drivers enjoy excellent handling. There's also enough power to make driving the 3 a rewarding experience.
The Mazda 3 Evolve is towards the more expensive end of the hatchback range. That said, if you want a car that's beautiful to look at and drives like a dream, you can't do much better than the Evolve for the price.
5. Suzuki Swift Sport
The best things come in little packages, which is why the Suzuki Swift Sport is attracting a good deal of attention.
Despite its small size (think supermini), it manages to be big enough to seat rear-row passengers comfortably. It also utilizes a "Booster Jet" 4-cylinder turbo-charged 1.4l petrol engine that delivers 103kw of power and 230Nm of torque.
Although that may not sound like much, the Swift is also extremely lightweight, which means the power to weight ratio is excellent. The suspension has also been retuned for 2022, improving handling and increasing comfort.
For owners that want a practical little hatch that's also fun to drive, the Suzuki Swift Sport has got plenty to offer.
6. Toyota GR Yaris
Australia's best-selling "light" hatch, the Yaris is available in both petrol and hybrid variants. The Yaris has a sporty, fun design vibe that's enormously appealing. There is a head-up display that projects onto the windscreen. There's also an infotainment screen that's compatible with Apple Carplay and Android Auto. High-end speakers and paddle shifters add value to the driving experience.
The Yaris includes Toyota's Safety Sense suite of autonomous safety features, ensuring a high level of safety.
Drivers can personalise their Yaris with accessories such as a bike carrier, a snowboard carrier or a kayak carrier. There are also a number of other additions such as a rear USB charging point and front parking sensors. If required, a bonnet protector can be purchased as an add-on.
For drivers who want an economical hatch that's versatile, attractive and fun to drive, the Yaris is ideal.
7. Kia Picanto
The pint-sized Picanto occupies a space in the select "micro hatch" category. One of the smallest cars on the road, what the Picanto lacks in size it more than makes up for in sporty, modern good looks and attractive handling. It's ideal for urban travel where tight cornering, small parking spaces and the need for strong fuel economy are all priorities.
Picanto drivers can select a 1.25l 4-cylinder, naturally aspirated engine that provides 62kw and 122Nm of torque. Alternatively, a sportier 1.0l 3-cylinder turbo that delivers 74kw and 172Nm of torque is also available.
A good suite of tech and positive performance reviews suggest the Picanto is an attractive solution if you need a nippy little city car. Note that, to date, it only has a 4-star ANCAP rating.
Hatchbacks are a diverse bunch of vehicles that offer something for every driver. If you're looking for a versatile, economical driving option that still offers plenty of features, comfort and performance, a hatchback could work really well.