Johannesburg: If you were in any doubt about the popularity of the Volkswagen brand in South Africa when it comes to the hatchback body style, even a cursory glance at the table below will put that notion firmly to bed.
Yes, the Wolfsburg-based carmaker positively dominates the list of most searched for hatchback variants on the used market (when using the body-type search filter), according to the latest AutoTrader data.
Taking a closer look at the figures for the first quarter of 2022, we see VW occupies the four highest positions, as well as another four lower down in the top 10. That means the Kia Rio 1.4 in fifth and the Mercedes-Benz A200 in eighth are the only non-VWs to make the cut.
Interestingly, the locally produced Polo 1.0 TSI is now the most searched for hatchback variant overall, moving up from the third place it held in the first quarter of last year. Its average list price has grown from R296 087 in the first reporting period to R333 378 in the second, an increase of just under 13 percent.
The likewise Kariega-produced Polo GTI climbs two spots to second, with the B-segment hot hatch’s average list price swelling nearly 25 percent year-on-year to around R355 000.
Fascinatingly, the Golf GTI drops from first in the opening quarter of 2021 to third in the same reporting period this year, with its average list price virtually unchanged at just shy of R350 000 (despite the average registration year shifting from 2011 to 2008).
Meanwhile, the all-wheel-drive Golf R falls further still, dropping from second in Q1 2021 all the way down to seventh in Q1 2022, sporting the loftiest average list price here at more than R530 000. Other high-performance hatchbacks that featured last year but dropped out of the top 10 in 2022 include the Ford Fiesta ST and Audi RS3 Sportback.
“South Africa’s love of VW-badged hatchbacks – those with GTI insignias and those without – shows no signs of abating, with our unique variant-level data proving the German marque continues to dominate online searches for this still-popular body type,” said George Mienie, AutoTrader CEO.