CHICAGO, July 28, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Cars.com, the premier online resource for buying and selling new and used cars, has named the 2015 Volkswagen GTI the winner of its first-ever "Cheap Speed Challenge." The challenge focused on compact coupes, sedans and hatchbacks that cost less than $30,000 and come with features popular among drivers looking for performance in a new car. Challenge contenders were the 2014 Fiat 500 Abarth, 2014 Ford Fiesta ST, 2014 Hyundai Veloster Turbo, 2014 Kia Forte SX, 2014 Nissan Juke NISMO, 2014 Scion FR-S, 2014 Subaru WRX and the 2015 Volkswagen GTI.
"Not only does the all-new 2015 Volkswagen GTI offer the best performance bang for the buck, but it is also one of the most comfortable," said Joe Wiesenfelder, Executive Editor at Cars.com. "The GTI outperformed most cars in just about every test we conducted. Also, unlike some of the other cheap speed competitors, the GTI offers an impressively roomy and high-quality interior in addition to being seriously fun-to-drive."
Experts from Cars.com, MotorWeek, USA Today and an actual car shopper in the market for an affordable performance car tested the eight contenders over a five-day period. "We typically test cars for three days during our multi-car challenges, but the athletic-nature of these cars required some additional performance-focused tests on racetracks," said Wiesenfelder.
- Zero-to-60-mph times and quarter-mile times and speeds
- 60 mph to zero braking distances
- Professional road course testing on a closed track
- 200 miles of driving on varying roads to test each car for real-world fuel economy
- Round-robin driving where each expert evaluated each car on the same street route, back-to-back, to gather overall impressions on drive, features and comfort
- Testing by a consumer in the market for a new car who evaluated each car in the same categories as the experts