Around six months ago, we took a look at the most expensive hatchbacks on South Africa’s new vehicle market. Now, due to a few new additions and plenty of price hikes (thanks in part to exchange rate woes), we’ve decided to revisit the topic.
This time, we’re listing the 10 costliest hatches in the land. Check them out below.
10. Mini Cooper SE Hatch 3-door Trim L: R722 000
The new Mini Cooper SE may arrive as South Africa’s cheapest electric vehicle (thanks to the R642 000 Cooper SE Trim S variant) but the Trim L model makes it onto the list of SA’s most expensive hatchbacks. The three-door Cooper SE’s electric motor offers 135 kW and 270 N.m to the front wheels via a single-speed transmission (and an integrated differential), facilitating a sprint from zero to 100 km/h in a claimed 7,3 seconds. Top speed is limited to 150 km/h and range is a claimed 217 km.
9. Volkswagen Golf R: R727 400
There may be a new, eighth-generation Golf on the way but the Volkswagen Golf 7 R is still a strong seller locally. As a reminder, in February 2019, the SA-spec Golf R’s turbocharged 2,0-litre unit was upgraded from its previous detuned output of 213 kW to the full-fat 228 kW (and 400 N.m), sent to all four corners via a seven-speed DSG transmission. That’s enough, claims VW, for a blast from standstill to three figures in 4,6 seconds. Its price has increased from R684 400 in February 2020.
8. Honda Civic Type R: R741 900
One of the most competent front-driven hatchbacks around has breached the R700k mark in South Africa (six months ago, it was R699 900). While a lightly facelifted version is due to arrive locally later in 2020, the turbocharged 2,0-litre four-cylinder engine is unchanged, still sending 228 kW and 400 N.m to the front axle via a six-speed manual for a claimed zero to 100 km/h time of 5,7 seconds. The extreme Limited Edition and stealthier Sport Line variants aren’t, however, on the cards for the local market...
7. Audi S3 Sportback quattro: R772 189
Like the closely related Golf 7 R above, the current-generation S3 Sportback is late in its lifecycle (indeed, a new-generation S3 has already been revealed but it’s due to arrive locally only in the third quarter of 2021). But it’s still a capable performer, employing the same engine (and peak outputs, plus 0-100 km/h sprint time) as its Golf-badged cousin. Still, for a little extra cash over the VW, the Audi gains a premium badge and a maintenance plan rather than a more basic service arrangement. However, its standard wheels are an inch smaller in diameter. The price has increased from R696 189 in February.
6. BMW M135i xDrive: R773 788
While BMW’s F40-generation 1 Series has switched to a front-wheel-drive platform, the flagship M135i employs the Munich-based firm’s xDrive all-paw system. It’s also ditched the old (rear-driven) M140i’s six-cylinder in favour of a turbocharged 2,0-litre four-cylinder unit generating 225 kW and 450 N.m, channelled via an eight-speed Steptronic Sport transmission. The result is a sprint to three figures in a claimed 4,8 seconds (or one-tenth quicker with the upcoming M Performance package specified). Over the past six months, the price has been increased from R711 452.
5. Renault Mégane RS 300 Trophy EDC: R799 900
In June 2020, Renault South Africa announced the arrival of the Mégane RS 300 Trophy, offered in six-speed manual (R774 900) and dual-clutch guise. Interestingly, just seven units have been set aside for the local market, with the dual-clutch RS 280 Lux and manual RS 280 Cup having been discontinued. The RS Trophy uses a 1,8-litre turbocharged four-cylinder engine tweaked to provide the front wheels with 221 kW (up from the 205 kW in the aforementioned models) and 420 N.m. The result is a blast from zero to three figures in a claimed 5,7 seconds and a top speed of 255 km/h.
4. Mercedes-AMG A35 4Matic: R850 000
On paper, Mercedes-AMG’s A35 hot hatch looks evenly matched with BMW’s M135i (watch the two battle it out on the drag strip), with its turbocharged 2,0-litre, four-cylinder petrol engine sending 225 kW and 400 N.m to all four corners via a seven-speed dual-clutch transmission. The result is a sprint from zero to 100 km/h in a claimed 4,7 seconds, a tenth quicker than its Bavarian foe despite a 50 N.m deficit. In February 2020, the price was R758 946.
3. BMW i3s eDrive REx: R874 600
While most of the other vehicles on this list employ a 2,0-litre petrol engine, the rear-driven BMW i3s REx counters with a 120 Ah lithium-ion battery and a synchronous electric motor (admittedly plus a small range-extending petrol unit that functions as a generator when the battery nears depletion). The electric motor in the i3s boasts 135 kW and 270 N.m, allowing the electric hatch to hit three figures in a claimed 7,7 seconds (with the range extender fitted). What was the price in February 2020? Some R804 600.
2. Audi RS3 Sportback quattro: R1 019 500
Audi South Africa recently confirmed the outgoing RS3 Sportback was back on sale locally thanks to the arrival of a “final production allocation” (in December 2018, the hot hatch had been pulled from the local market). It employs an unchanged turbocharged 2,5-litre five-cylinder petrol engine sending 294 kW and 480 N.m to all four corners via a seven-speed dual-clutch transmission. That's enough, says Audi, for a 4,1-second sprint to 100 km/h and a top speed of 250 km/h (or 280 km/h, should you tick the appropriate box).
1. Mercedes-AMG A45 S 4Matic+: R1 113 840
Yes, the most expensive hatchback in South Africa is still Mercedes-AMG’s A45 S, which will now cost you seven figures (before you’ve added any options, too). Affalterbach’s hyper hatch employs a turbocharged 2,0-litre four-cylinder petrol engine offering a whopping 310 kW (making it the most powerful four-pot in a series-produced vehicle) and 500 N.m to all four wheels via an eight-speed dual-clutch transmission. The result is a sprint from standstill to 100 km/h in 3,9 seconds. In February 2020, it was priced at R995 108.
See Full Audi S3 Cabriolet price and specs here
See Full Honda Civic Type-R price and specs here
See Full BMW i3 price and specs here
See Full Volkswagen Golf price and specs here
See Full Mercedes-AMG A-Class Hatch price and specs here
See Full Renault Megane price and specs here
See Full BMW 1 Series price and specs here