Hot Hatch Showdown: Compare the New Volkswagen Golf to the New Honda Civic Hatchback


The Honda Civic Hatchback is a relative newcomer in the Jacksonville and Orange Park areas, but it's making a statement. The Volkswagen Golf, on the other hand, is quieter and subtler, but it's a well-known daily driver in Florida, beloved for its iconic design and its surprising versatility. These two cars are on opposite ends of the personality spectrum, but they have more in common than you might think.

Both of these cars are powered by a small, efficient turbocharged four-cylinder engine standard. Both are about equal in terms of horsepower, torque, and fuel economy. Both Civic and Golf lines offer a huge variety of available configurations, powertrains, and body styles. But, if you're looking for an efficient hatchback to spice up your commute, start with these--and see why the Golf Hatchback has the edge.


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Compare Style, Design, and Exterior Features

  • The Golf is designed with a quiet, German feel that ages gracefully
  • The Civic Hatchback's dual spoilers and busy personality will get stale quickly in a competitive class
  • The VW Golf is 10" shorter than the Civic Hatchback
  • Both models offer available LED headlights and LED Daytime Running Lights

The new Volkswagen Golf is a classic, clean, and well-rounded hot hatch that complements the Jacksonville Beach lifestyle with its confident, bold design. New LED lighting at the front and rear serves a dual purpose: to improve illumination and to give a modern twist to a legendary style. Strong character lines and a muscular, square stance make the Golf a constant favorite. The Civic Hatchback uses sharp angles, fake air intakes, and too many spoilers to create an aggressive look that doesn't really pan out. It's a busy, trying-too-hard look that doesn't fit well into a category of affordably priced and economically performing compact cars. When put side-to-side next to the Golf, it's clear to see which hot hatch was made to last.

Compare Comfort, Cargo, and Interior Features

  • Volkswagen Golf interior: distinctly German
  • Honda Civic Hatchback interior: modern and sporty
  • The Golf offers 17.4 cubic feet behind the 2nd row, 53.7 cubic feet behind the 1st
  • The Civic Hatchback only offers up to 46.2 cubic feet
  • VW's infotainment system is more user-friendly than Honda's

In the same way that these two cars' exterior personalities are on opposite ends of the spectrum, their interior personas are different, too. The Golf is cool, collected, calm, and solid. Everything feels like it's really meant to be there; like all of the parts and pieces are meant to work together perfectly. Like most things about it, the interior of the Honda Civic Hatchback is all flash, no substance. Its cabin is sharp and snappy, with neat cubbies and cool buttons. It can even offer up to 25.7 cubic feet of storage space behind its second row--slightly more than the Golf. But, for drivers in Saint Augustine who want practicality and versatility where it counts, the Volkswagen Golf's larger total cargo space, better cabin quality, cleaner infotainment system, and presence of a real volume button makes the Golf the clear choice.

Compare Warranty Coverage, Security, and Safety Features

  • Volkswagen offers a standard 6 years/72,000-mile New Vehicle Limited Warranty
  • Honda only offers a standard 3-year/36,000-mile New Vehicle Limited Warranty
  • Both models received a 5-Star safety rating from the NHTSA
  • Both models offer a variety of driver-assistance features standard

Volkswagen's warranty covers twice as many years, and twice as many miles, as Honda's warranty, speaking to the confidence that the automaker has in the quality of their vehicles. If you're looking for a hatchback that's going to last, consider the Golf first. But if safety and security are a priority for you in Riverside, FL, the Honda Civic Hatchback and VW Golf are neck-and-neck. Both have received 5-Star safety ratings from the National Highway Traffic and Safety Administration, and both come standard with a variety of great safety features. The VW Golf offers Forward Collision Warning, Rear Traffic Alert, Autonomous Emergency Braking with Pedestrian Monitoring, and a Blind Spot Monitor. The Civic Hatchback offers Collision Mitigation Braking System, Road Departure Mitigation System, Adaptive Cruise Control, and Lane Keeping Assist System.