Over the last 50 years, Americans have purchased millions upon millions of compact hatchbacks. Just about everyone drove some kind of small car when they were young, and many continue to choose a smaller, more economical car throughout their lives.
Two of the most enduring models in the hatchback market are the Honda Civic and the Volkswagen Golf. The Civic has been sold in America since 1972, and the Golf (or Rabbit) since 1974. Over the years, both brands have gained loyal followings and spawned high-performance models in addition to the basic economy trims. If you’re considering a new compact hatchback for 2019, here’s our comparative evaluation of these two market leaders. Because the Golf is available only as a hatchback while the Civic is available as a hatch, sedan, or coupe, we limited the comparison to the hatchback models only.