Don't Want A Toyota Corolla GR? Try These 300 Horsepower Hot Hatches

Don't Want A Toyota Corolla GR? Try These 300 Horsepower Hot Hatches

Here's every 300-horse hatch you can buy new and their used alternatives.

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2023 Toyota GR Corolla Circut Edition
2023 Toyota GR Corolla Circut Edition
Image: Toyota

Hot hatch: It’s probably one of, if not the, most ideal vehicle configurations. Take a performance-tuned drivetrain setup and dump it in a cheap unassuming commuter, price it within reach of most buyers and watch the money roll in. At least, that’s how it used to be. The fun stuff isn’t that accessible anymore. You have to pay to play if you want performance. And while hot hatches still exist, they’re an endangered species with just a few automakers still offering them.

Toyota surprised many with the GR Corolla, something many enthusiasts have wanted for years. But what if the GR Corolla doesn’t really work for you? Here are a few other alternatives, both new and used, if you want a 300 horsepower AWD hot hatch.

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Audi RS 3

Audi RS 3

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Image: Audi

While not technically a hot hatch (at least here in the U.S.), the RS 3 more than meets the requirements: Quattro AWD system, boy racer design, and most importantly, its 2.5-liter turbocharged I5. With a whopping 401 horsepower, it’s probably the most powerful “hot hatch” you can buy. The 2022 RS 3 is set to go on sale in the U.S. this summer with a starting price of just under $60,000.

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Used RS 3

Used RS 3

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Image: Infiniti Of Clearwater, Florida

Can’t wait for, or afford the new RS 3? Pick one up used!. You get the same AWD setup and 400 horsepower engine, its just you know, used. Higher mileage examples can be had for the high $40,000 to the low $50,000 range. Like this example in Florida. Just under 50,000 miles for $49,394.

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Honda Civic Type R

Honda Civic Type R

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Image: Honda

The Civic Type R is in a bit of a limbo. It’s not on sale anymore, but the next gen is coming. It will be based on the recently introduced Civic hatchback. While details are still sparse, I hope we get more than the current car’s 306 horsepower.

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Used Civic Type R

Used Civic Type R

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Image: Earnhardt Toyota

Used Type Rs are holding their value with a death grip. And you have to be careful when searching for one. With the kind of driver that these things attracted, a lot of them are starting to show up with salvage titles on their records, which you should look out for if you see one that has a price that’s too good to be true. Expect to pay in the mid $30,000s for examples even with high miles. This example in Arizona has over 87,000 miles, and the dealer still wants $34,981.

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VW Golf R

VW Golf R

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Image: Volkswagen

Want Audi-like refinement at VW prices? That’s the Golf R. Always viewed as the premium, grown-up hot hatch, the Golf R is all-new for 2022 (along with its GTI brother.) You still get a 2.0-liter turbocharged I4. This time around it makes 315 horsepower and routes that power through a 6-speed manual or 7 speed DSG transmission to a torque vectoring AWD system. That refinement doesn’t come cheap. The Golf R starts at $44,090.

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Used Golf Rs

Used Golf Rs

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Image: BCS Auto

Don’t want to pay those new prices? Go used. Golf R’s can be found easily under $20,000 if you’re willing to drive one with over 100,000 miles that’s nearly 10 years old. Newer models, based on the Mk 7 Golf can be found in the low to mid $30,000s range. This example in Quincy, MA is a 2016 with just over 31,000 miles for $32,690.

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Wild Card: Hyundai Veloster N

Wild Card: Hyundai Veloster N

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Image: Hyundai

Yes I know, it doesn’t have AWD or 300 horsepower, but it’s damn close. Its spec sheet reads like a proper hot hatch: 275 horsepower turbocharged I4, six-speed manual (with rev matching) or eight-speed wet dual-clutch transmission, corner-carving eLSD, weird three-door hatch back body. And it’s relatively cheap given the competition. The Veloster N starts at $32,500. They’re even more of a steal used.

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