Clutch travel, narrow front seats for some, reliability.
The GTI is one of the best performing and most practical choices among affordable sporty cars. It is agile and quick, with a gutsy 2.0-liter, turbocharged four-cylinder that sounds good. It is fun to drive but not at the expense of comfort or practicality. Handling is taut and precise, with good steering. The ride is fairly civilized and relatively quiet, and the hatchback adds versatility. Fit and finish is very good, and the seats are comfortable. Clutch-pedal travel is a bit long, which affects the driving position. Two- and four-door versions are available. Reliability has dropped to below average. A redesigned GTI arrives in 2014.