Any better used Warm Hatch for under 20k than Holden Astra RS/RSV?

Hi OzAutoBargainAdvice,

Been looking to buy a used warm hatch.

Preferably not a lemon, good safety and fuel economy. Manual transmission is a must (I miss it okay).

So far been looking at the newer Holden Astra RS/RSV 1.6 model as they have been hit hard by depreciation however being a euro-made vehicle I suspect parts would be harder to get. I'm aware the Holdens are generally known for bad reliability hence I'm also looking at alternatives.

Alternatives I'm looking so far is only the Hyundai Veloster Turbo. I know there are other options like the Volkswagen GTI however the prices of those cars have gone up due to them being more status-symbols. Is there anything that should deter me from the last gen Astras or are there any better options?


  • Fiesta ST?
    Kia Rio (whatever their sport model is)
    Mazda 3 may have older some older AWD turbo models as well

    • +1

      Is their a Rio factory hot hatch?

      GT is just a trim level isn't it?

      • I think I confused it with the sexed up Picanto's they're selling now.

    • +1

      The Mazda 3 SP25 with the 2.5L is about the same kw/tonne as the Astra Rs-v.
      108 vs 110…
      So you wouldn't even need to go to an older MPS to be similar to that Astra.

    • I don't recall any AWD Mazdaspeed models.

  • +5

    hyundai i30 sr / nline?

  • +2

    Yeahnah Wouldn't touch a used VW Golf GTI/R, the DSG's combined with the likelihood they've had a hard life (and complex electronics) would put me off them. Although i guess one of these purchases are an emotional purchase and not a practical one.

    My pick would be a subaru Impreza or Mazda MPS.

    Never really found Fiesta's interesting, Renault Megane RS look good, but then again it's French…

    • +1

      Always wanted a WRX but have been put off the 2.5L versions by all the ringland failure issues

      • +3

        Vape bros blame Subaru, I blame their $#!ty Cobb access port and OTA E tunes.

        Had modded WRXs for 20 years including EJ257, no issues because get a protune from a engine builder.

    • +1

      Golf GTI dsg is wet clutch, which is very reliable, as is the turbo 2.0. OP wants a manual anyway.

  • +5

    Kia Pro_cee'd GT

    Basically; Veloster turbo drivetrain, Renault Megane RS clone body, with Kia reliability. Have one as a daily and I love it, my WRX STI is covered in dust because I rather drive the Kia in city.

    Did quite a few quality of life mods to it, just a nice car to drive 150kw with a 6 speed is fun, Recaro seats even and most impressive for me is a multilink rear suspension.

  • If you go for a Veloster turbo it needs to be 2015+ as the early models were plagued by a few big issues.

    • I didn't actually see this during my googling. Can you link more details of the pre-2015 veloster turbo issues?

      • Google Hyundai Veloster blown connecting rods or con rods.

        You’ll find many a complaint of people blowing up engines completely at random. Seems to have been a big issue for the 2012-14 models (turbo and Na) and happened a lot between 50-100k kms.

  • Megane RS or 308 GTi.. but good luck finding the latter for under 20k

    • Trying to avoid Renault and french cars here to be honest.

  • 10 year old Honda Civic Type R?

  • +1

    Megane RS. Lots of the meg 3 in the $12-$18k bracket.

    Not warm either. 👍

  • +2

    Swift sport?

    • +2

      very underrated, super light with 100kw + 6 speed and better on fuel then a turbo. (assuming older model)

      • Don't need much done either. Swap the head unit for something with Carplay/Android Auto (standard double-din in the later previous gen), and make sure she's on good tyres :)

    • +1

      Great cars

  • +6

    Am I the only one who didn't know wtf a warm hatch was?

    Am I so out of touch?

    • +3



    • Apparently it’s a car.

      • Honestly the first thing I thought of was a layman’s term for a bain-marie 😅

        • A bain marie under $20k? Feels like there should be a number of options.

  • +1

    Stay away from Renault's if you do not want a money pit. I had a renault sport, a friend of mine had one too. Both full of expensive issues.

    Get something Japanese, a WRX?

    If going Euro I would go for a VW purely based on the fact there are a lot of parts and documentation out there. They may still be unreliable, but at least you can find out how to fix them.

  • +3

    Toyota Blade Master G, basically a Corolla with a V6, bigger brakes and luxury features. It's a bit older now but Toyota reliability and something very unique and unassuming.

  • +2

    I love my 2018 RSV, manual. It's super reliable as it's fully imported Opel just with a Holden badge. Not to be confused with the Cruze that preceeded it and was junk.

    Very responsive and fun to drive and packed full of features for that price bracket. Has already taken a big depreciation hit due to Holden's exit from the market, so much better value than competitors. I plan to drive mine into the ground before replacing it

    • Same here, I've got a 2016 RSV manual, super refined and still really comfortable and enjoyable to drive.

      • How has the maintenance been in general?

    • How do you cope with all that piano black interior trim?

      I looked into one about 4 years ago but that trim would do my head in and also timing chain NA engines suit my requirements better.

      • I'm not sure how one in supposed to cope with the interior?! Doesn't bother me in the slightest

        • Maybe it's just me but the fingerprints and dust on the demo car piano black surfaces was not appealing.

  • (older) Abarth 500?

    • I plan to occasionally fit passengers taller than me (I'm short) at the back so probably not useful.

  • wow haha i didn't even know 'warm' hatches were a thing c.f. hot hatches. pretty cool

  • IMO a warm hatch is pretty much a regular hatch with an S badge and slight suspension tweaks.

    Buy anything that takes your fancy and throw a few $ at suspension, wheels and maybe a brake upgrade. can have a lot of fun in a slowish car that handles well.

  • Value for money they are fantastic.

    I am in the same boat, looking for a manual one. Spewing they stopped making manuals in 2018 because the later 2020 model Astras in auto only have a much improved dash and speedo.

    PDrive TV on youtube tested the 0-100 at 6.4 seconds in the 1.6 Astra, pretty much same as the VW GTI. Yet a 2017 GTI will cost you $35-40k. Yes I get there's probably a few other things going for it like better suspension, interior, the name etc but you do get all the modern safety features in an Astra.

    I was looking at either this or a 110tsi trendline 7.5 golf but the prices on those have even gone up, sitting at 20k and not much stock of them in manual.

    The only thing of concern is the PCV valve which has been known to commonly go. Unfortunately and stupidly the valve is fixed onto the engine cover and this $30 valve cant be replaced on its own (most cars it sits on its own and a 1 minute job to replace). You have to replace the whole thing and it will set you back about $1000-1500 reading based on comments from others on facebook and forums. And not many people stock them so they may have to import it from the UK and could be a wait.

    • The PCV valve issue is new too me. Didn't find out about that during my research

  • Thank you all for your suggestions and tips. Appreciate it

Login or Join to leave a comment