Peugeot 308 GTi vs VW Golf GTI vs Skoda Octavia vRS

As sizzling hatchbacks have change into ever extra tough, providing as a lot oomph as some out-and-out sports activities automobiles, costs have risen inevitably, too.

There are a handful of those fashions that experience resolutely remained inexpensive, even though, whilst additionally advancing efficiency, convenience, practicality and potency. So they ship precisely what a sizzling hatchback will have to.

• Best sizzling hatchbacks on sale

The facelifted 308 GTi through Peugeot Sport is one instance, that includes some styling tweaks and an up to date infotainment machine just like the common fashion to make it extra usable, with out affecting the attractive chassis and function that made its predecessor a success.

If you’ve were given round £30,000 burning a hollow for your pocket, or however a £three,000 deposit and the per 30 days funds to manage to pay for such a automobiles, the trio we’ve assembled listed below are the solution to the query ‘how can I go as fast as possible for my money?’. However, the manual-only 308 GTi may have its paintings lower out in opposition to the brand new, DSG auto box-equipped, Volkswagen Golf GTI Performance and Skoda Octavia vRS 245, either one of which ship ruthlessly efficient tempo.

All 3 fashions on this check boast large brakes, artful differentials and targeted chassis generation, having not too long ago been up to date and honed to ship most motive force thrills and skill with out a lot compromise. Which is the most efficient answer? 

Peugeot 308 GTi

Model: Peugeot 308 GTi 1.6 THP 270 through Peugeot Sport
Price: £28,590
Engine: 1.6-litre 4cyl turbo, 268bhp 
Zero-60mph: 6.Zero seconds
Test financial system: 34.6mpg/7.6mpl 
CO2: 139g/km  
Annual highway tax: £140

Some delicate revisions to Peugeot’s maximum targeted circle of relatives hatchback have observed it come again with the prospective to overcome Volkswagen’s up to date Golf GTI and the Skoda Octavia vRS of their maximum competitive specs. So has Peugeot progressed what it had to with this £28,590 308 GTi?

To extract the Peugeot’s most efficiency you need to rev the 1.6-litre turbo, nevertheless it’s a excitement to take action. It truly begins coming alive at round four,500rpm and ramps up strongly to its 6,000rpm energy height. However, even supposing you don’t wish to thrash it there’s nonetheless sufficient urgency decrease down within the rev vary.

The gearbox isn’t a vulnerable hyperlink subsequent to its competitors, both. It’s no longer the nicest-shifting unit, nevertheless it doesn’t impede development. Instead, its shifts punctuate the stress-free attack from the engine because it revs arduous against its limiter for a turbo engine.

With the limited-slip differential serving to traction, the 308 GTi speeded up off the road to 60mph in an impressively fast 6.Zero seconds for a handbook, making it the fastest automotive right here. In-gear efficiency used to be excellent, too, with the Peugeot accelerating between 50 and 70mph in 5th in four.2 seconds.

The brakes are mighty and feature the nicest really feel, whilst the guidance is fast, thank you partly to the 308’s small guidance wheel. It’s higher on this GTi than the common automotive, for the reason that higher monitor width, sticky tyres and more impregnable suspension imply that there’s sufficient grip for the chassis to stay tempo together with your inputs. It’s additionally properly adjustable with a boost of the throttle mid-corner.

The trade-off for this agility and guidance reaction within the 308 is a company journey. You really feel suspension and wheel actions extra violently, however they’re nonetheless rounded off with a luxurious edge over maximum surfaces; solely potholes truly clonk in the course of the chassis.

This center of attention does imply that there’s extra highway noise and not more convenience on a protracted adventure, nevertheless it’s some distance from insufferable and at the proper highway the 308 is essentially the most entertaining and involving automotive of the 3 on check.

Testers’ notes: “Updates to the infotainment are the main changes, while some styling tweaks have kept the GTi looking fresh. Coupe Franche paint still splits opinion, yet the car’s core is unchanged and is as good as ever.” 

Volkswagen Golf GTI

Model: Volkswagen Golf GTI Performance 2.Zero TSI DSG 5dr
Price: £31,505
Engine: 2.Zero-litre 4cyl turbo, 242bhp 
Zero-60mph: 6.1 seconds
Test financial system: 33.7mpg/7.4mpl 
CO2: 144g/km
Annual highway tax: £140

The Golf GTI is an iconic sizzling hatchback, and after greater than 40 years it’s returning right here in Mk7.five shape to take at the up to date Peugeot 308 GTi.

This DSG-equipped five-door Performance fashion prices from £31,505 (or £30,335 with a handbook gearbox, to check the 308), so whilst it’s costlier than the Peugeot through relatively some margin, is it value it?

In the dampers’ Comfort surroundings the GTI rides imperfections within the highway slightly sweetly. Heftier bumps are extra noticeable because of our automotive’s £990 19-inch alloys, however in essentially the most section the Golf handles deficient surfaces smartly, filtering out all however the most harsh intrusions.

It nonetheless feels sporty even on this mode, with numerous grip and nice guidance reaction, even supposing, unfortunately, the VW lacks the Peugeot’s guidance really feel. On the street, settling on Sport erodes one of the most automotive’s convenience with out including any further involvement. The guidance weights up, too, and the DSG field will dangle directly to gears for longer, however with the adaptive dampers fitted Comfort will have to be your default desire. (There’s additionally an Individual mode, so you’ll tailor the set-up for your liking; the Skoda has a an identical surroundings.)

Yet you’ll nonetheless exploit the engine’s eagerness; traction is robust because of the GTI Performance’s differential. The VW scrabbles for grip off the road in the beginning and doesn’t have the 308’s traction. The diff isn’t relatively as competitive, however the extra delicate persona fits the Golf’s on a regular basis, all-rounder way.

Despite its energy deficit to the Peugeot, the Golf recorded a good 6.1-second Zero-60mph time at our check monitor; only a 10th slower than the 308. It used to be helped through the DSG field, which handles gearchanges properly in auto mode. Take handbook keep an eye on the use of the guidance wheel paddles, even though, and the shifts aren’t as snappy as we think from VW’s DSG gadgets, slurring a bit of at prime revs below complete throttle. Keep your foot down and there’s a rewarding soundtrack, with a pleasing, gruff tone from the GTI’s twin-exit exhaust.

While it’s possible you’ll no longer realize the Performance fashion’s more 15bhp over the usual GTI at the highway, you’ll really feel the impact of that diff and the brakes that ship numerous preventing energy, even supposing the pedal really feel isn’t as great because the Peugeot’s. 

Testers’ notes: “The standard GTI gets a 227bhp version of the engine in this car. It still offers strong performance, but loses the bigger brakes and the front diff that make this car work so well as a performance model.”

Skoda Octavia vRS

Model: Skoda Octavia vRS 245 2.Zero TSI DSG Hatch
Price: £28,985
Engine: 2.Zero-litre 4cyl turbo, 242bhp 
Zero-60mph: 6.four seconds
Test financial system: 33.5mpg/7.4mpl 
CO2: 146g/km
Annual highway tax: £140

Skoda’s Octavia vRS 245 provides efficiency to check its competitors right here with the promise of much more practicality. At £28,985 in DSG hatchback shape (or £27,595 with a handbook field) it’s additionally keenly priced, so can its aggregate of attributes lead it to victory? 

The more period within the Octavia’s wheelbase when put next with the Golf and the quick guidance of the Peugeot imply the Skoda isn’t as agile as both of its competitors.

However, that is all relative. Point the vRS down a twisty highway and power it arduous and also you’ll be inspired on the degree of efficiency and composure on be offering from a circle of relatives hatchback of this measurement.

Still, the guidance isn’t as communicative because the 308’s and with a larger-feeling guidance wheel when put next with even the Golf’s, it feels a bit of slower, that means you need to paintings it ever so rather more difficult and/or quicker to get the Octavia to show.

It does no less than imply it’s a slightly stress-free automotive to cruise in, regardless of its driver-focused set-up, and whilst the additional period within the wheelbase may compromise agility marginally over its shorter hatchback competitors right here, it does imply the Skoda’s frame appears to be extra composed over bumps.

In Comfort mode the dampers maintain tough roads relatively smartly, even supposing on usual 19-inch wheels you continue to really feel deficient surfaces. This is extra pronounced if you choose the Sport surroundings, the place the Octavia’s frame keep an eye on may be tighter. However, it feels harsher on this mode than the robotically an identical Golf.

In a immediately line there’s little or no to separate them, even though. While the Skoda used to be 3 tenths slower than the VW from Zero-60mph, taking 6.four seconds, its in-gear occasions had been widely similar to the VW’s, but traction is the same because of that VAQ entrance differential. It’s no longer as competitive because the 308 GTi, however you’ll really feel it operating for your merit on tighter nation roads the place you’re off and on the throttle.

Testers’ notes: “The Skoda’s £279 two-year servicing pack is good value given this is a performance hatchback. The Golf costs £288, while the Peugeot’s £13-per-month package makes it more expensive to maintain.”


First position: Peugeot 308 GTi

By the narrowest of margins the 308 GTi pips the Golf because of its awesome efficiency, larger grip and agility, and larger boot. The facelift is minor and the infotainment enhancements don’t cope with the machine’s primary flaw. But it’s nonetheless essentially the most involving automotive right here, with the best possible efficiency limits that don’t affect its usability, which counts maximum in a sizzling hatch.

Second position: Volkswagen Golf GTI

The high quality of the end method the Golf GTI shall be a ravishing sizzling hatch to are living with. Yet at the same time as a handbook, it’s dearer to shop for outright and on PCP, and doesn’t immerse you within the using enjoy just like the 308, whilst the VW lacks the Peugeot’s practicality even supposing its infotainment set-up is far better. Running prices take extra of a again seat right here, however there isn’t a lot to separate those 3, both. 

Third position: Skoda Octavia vRS

The Octavia vRS is essentially the most flexible choice of the trio, however its larger frame method it doesn’t really feel relatively as agile as its competitors, which is a huge consider a motive force’s automotive. Performance is on par with the Golf, nevertheless it doesn’t journey relatively as properly, even on adaptive dampers. Although it’s less expensive to shop for than the VW, it’ll be rather dearer to run. With 4 stars, 3rd position remains to be a robust outcome right here. 

Other choices on this class… 

Ford Focus ST-2 Mountune 275

Price: £27,310
Engine: 2.Zero-litre 4cyl, 271bhp

The Focus ST could be appearing its age, nevertheless it’s nonetheless a really perfect motive force’s automotive, made even higher through Mountune’s £1,395 271bhp improve. The chassis can simply take the additional energy, however easiest of all, it doesn’t void your guaranty.

Hyundai i30 N Performance

Price: £27,995
Engine: 2.Zero-litre 4cyl, 271bhp

Hyundai’s first effort at a correct sizzling hatch is carefully matched to the Peugeot, with a an identical degree of energy, a handbook gearbox and a artful diff. The i30 N is a smart, sensible efficiency automotive that’s full of persona and value a glance. 


Peugeot 308 GTi 1.6 THP 270 through Peugeot Sport Volkswagen Golf GTI Performance 2.Zero TSI DSG 5dr Skoda Octavia vRS 245 2.Zero TSI DSG Hatch
On the street worth/general as examined £28,590/£30,750 £31,505/£35,364 £28,985/£30,975
Residual worth (after 3yrs/36,000) £11,976/41.nine% £15,025/47.7% £13,075/45.1%
Depreciation £16,614 £16,480 £15,910
Annual tax legal responsibility std/upper price £1473/£2,947 £1,687/£three,375 £1,609/£three,218
Annual gasoline value (12ok/20ok miles) £1,875/£three,124 £1,925/£three,208 £1,936/£three,227
Insurance staff/quote/highway tax value 36/£697/£ 140 33/£506/£140 29/£768/£140
Cost of servicing £13 per 30 days (3yrs) £288 (2 products and services) £279 (2 products and services)
Length/wheelbase four,253/2,620mm four,268/2,626mm four,670/2,680mm
Height/width 1,457/1,804mm 1,482/1,799mm 1,448/1,814mm
Engine 4cyl in-line/1,598cc 4cyl in-line/1,984cc 4cyl in-line/1,984cc
Peak energy/revs  268/6,000 bhp/rpm 242/five,000 bhp/rpm 242/five,000 bhp/rpm
Peak torque/revs  330/1,900 Nm/rpm 370/1,600 Nm/rpm 370/1,600 Nm/rpm
Transmission  6-spd handbook/fwd 7-spd DSG/fwd 7-spd DSG/fwd
Fuel tank capability/spare wheel 53 litres/restore equipment 50 litres/restore equipment 50 litres/£100
Boot capability (seats up/down) 470/1,309 litres 380/1,270 litres 590/1,580 litres
Kerbweight/payload/towing weight 1,205/585kg/N/A 1,415/550/1,600kg 1,390/542/1,800kg
Turning circle 10.four metres  10.nine metres  10.five metres 
Basic guaranty/restoration 3yrs (60,000)/1yr 3yrs (60,000)/1yr 3yrs (60,000)/1yr
Service periods/UK sellers 20,000 miles (1yr)/283  Variable/223 Variable/135 sellers
Driver Power producer/broker pos. 13th/ninth 14th/20th 2d/fifth
NCAP: Adult/kid/ped./help/stars 92/79/64/81/five (2015) 94/89/65/71/five (2012) 93/86/66/66/five (2013)
Zero-60/30-70mph 6.Zero/four.eight secs 6.1/four.five secs 6.four/four.eight secs
30-50mph in third/4th 2.five/three.three secs 2.five/three.7 secs 2.four/three.6 secs
50-70mph in fifth/sixth/seventh four.2/five.2 secs/N/A five.three/7.Zero/nine.2 secs five.2/6.nine/nine.1 secs
Top pace/rpm at 70mph  155mph/2,800rpm 154mph/1,800rpm 155mph/1,800rpm
Braking 70-Zero/60-Zero/30-0mph  45.2/31.7/nine.7m 44.four/32.7/eight.9m 48.7/35.2/nine.7m
Noise outdoor/idle/30/70mph 73/52/66/73dB 71/51/61/71dB 72/51/62/73dB
Auto Express econ (mpg/mpl)/vary 34.6/7.6/403 miles 33.7/7.four/371 miles 33.five/7.four/368 miles
Govt. city/extra-urban/blended 34.nine/57.6/47.1mpg 34.four/54.three/44.8mpg 34.Zero/53.three/44.1mpg
Govt. city/extra-urban/blended 7.7/12.7/10.4mpl 7.6/11.nine/nine.9mpl 7.five/11.7/nine.7mpl
Actual/claimed CO2/tax bracket 189/139g/km/26% 194/144g/km/27% 195/146g/km/28%
Airbags/Isofix/park sensors/digicam Six/sure/sure/sure Seven/sure/sure/£265 Seven/sure/sure/£375
Auto field/steadiness/cruise keep an eye on/AEB No/sure/sure/no Yes/sure/adaptive/sure Yes/sure/sure/sure
Climate keep an eye on/leather-based/heated seats Yes/part-leather/no Yes/£1,750/sure Yes/no/sure
Met paint/LED lighting fixtures/keyless access & move £1,300/sure/sure £570/sure/£365 £380/sure/£400
Sat-nav/USB/DAB radio/Bluetooth Yes/sure/sure/sure Yes/sure/sure/sure Yes/sure/sure/sure

Peugeot 308 GTi vs VW Golf GTI vs Skoda Octavia vRS

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