Jaco Van Der Merwe

Compiled by Jaco Van Der Merwe

Head of Motoring


VW Polo, Golf and BMW 1 Series top hatchbacks for R8k a month

Intersection between price, mileage and body type shows hatches offer the best value for money.


Hatchbacks are a popular vehicle body style as they often offer the gateway into most brands.

The Citizen Motoring joined forces with AutoTrader to try and determine exactly which pre-owned hatchbacks are the most sought after in South Africa. And for these purposes, we’ve worked on hatches which monthly repayment will be R8 000.

George Mienie, AutoTrader CEO, says that R8 000 a month is the most used search parameter for monthly car repayments.

“Budget-conscious consumers like to shop for a car that they can actually afford. Rather than spend time looking at models that are more pricey,” says Mienie.

“The good news for budget-conscious consumers is the value for money proposition hatches offer. The intersection between price, mileage and body type shows that hatchbacks continue to offer the best value for money. Given that, on average, they have the lowest mileage.”

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VW Polo on top

An analysis of the top 10 hatch enquiries from 1 January to 31 May 2023 on AutoTrader reveals that hatches with good credentials are up for grabs.

Topping the list are two South African favourites. The Volkswagen Polo and Golf.

The VW Polo was the most viewed pre-owned hatch in Mzansi last year. It is listed on AutoTrader for an average price of R261 284, with an average mileage of 6 543km and average mileage of 2019.

Making the VW Polo an attractive offering is its 1.0-litre TSI engine, which consumes only 4.5 litres per 100km.

South African favourite

The VW Golf was the second most-viewed used hatch in South Africa last year. Listed on AutoTrader for an average price of R253 348, it features an average mileage of 124 431km. Average year of registration is 2014.

The BMW 1 Series is number five on the list, but was the third most-viewed hatch in 2022. The 1 listed on AutoTrader have an average price of R238 116. Average mileage is 117 159km with an average year of registration of 2014.

The 1.6-litre diesel derivative sips a mere 5.6 L/100km.

Top 10 pre-owned hatches

The top 10 most enquired hatchbacks on the AutoTrader website during the first five months of 2023 was (average price, mileage and registration):

1 VW Polo (R261 284, 61 543km, 2019)

2 VW Golf (R253 348, 124 431km, 2014)

3 Mercedes-Benz A-Class (R267 016, 115 097km, 2014)

4 Audi A3 ( R255 262, 106 567km, 2016)

5 BMW 1 Series (R238 116, 117 159km, 2014)

6 Mini Hatch (R239 531, 86 567km, 2015)

7 Suzuki Swift (R195 856, 30 908km, 2021)

8 Audi A1 (R213 618, 100 377km, 2015)

9 Audi S3 (R288 426, 130 631km, 2013)

10 Toyota Starlet (R231 512, 26 663km, 2022)

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