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Design your Ultimate Hatchback!

revkarevka Posts: 1,750
edited March 2014 in BMW
to design your ultimate hatchback!

You can list a combination of features and options you've seen in other make/models..., or create a whole new list of your own.

Perhaps your ultimate hatch is already on the market, or even the one you're driving now! Tell us what the perfect hatch would be for you.... Who's game?

Thanks for your participation!

Hatchbacks & Wagons Host


  • hamproofhamproof Posts: 241
    1. Offer it in 3 or 5 door configuration
    2. All Wheel Drive
    3. Xenon/HID
    4. 6 speed/SMG
    5. 240HP
    6. "Premium" content (HomeLink/Lighted switches/soft touch plastic/moonroof/leather)
    7. Side curtain and head airbags.
    8. $22k (yeah, I'm wishing hard here)
    9. Generally as reliable as "Honda"

    VW Golf R32 comes close but some will say VW is not reliable. Any takers? Of course 17" rims and summer tires w/ 3 spoke steering wheel standard.
  • qbrozenqbrozen Posts: 22,652
    Alfa 147


    '17 F150 Crew 2.7; '67 Coronet R/T; '14 Town&Country Limited; '09 LR2 HSE. 44-car history and counting!

  • -3 or 5 door
    -RWD w/traction and stability control
    -6 speed SMG (BMW style with automatic modes, in case I don't feel like shifting)
    -Full set of airbags
    -front and rear sunroof (maybe SCION CCX style?)
    -cabin-adjustable suspension (throw a switch to go from soft ride to sport handling)
    -Interior like a VW Polo (the latest one HAS to have the best interior I've ever seen pics of, even if they aren't yet available in the US)
    -MP3 player
    -alarm system (kinda necessary)
    -gauge cluser mounted ABOVE THE STEERING WHEEL!! (I hate center-stack pods)
    -4 cyl engine for fuel efficiency, but force feed the sucker, or let BMW make it, or both (no 9000 RPM VVTI-L headache-inducers)
    -Have it ACTUALLY ABLE TO CARRY CARGO!! After all, if the GTI, Civic Si, and MINI can do it....

    No leather, no HomeLink, and the necessity of AWD is kinda iffy. Lighted switches would be nice, but not critical.
  • What I'd be happy with would be essentially a modernization of the pre-1990 Audi Coupe GT or VW Quantum Hatchback, with a few additional tweeks here or there. A modern equivalent would probably be the 2002 Audi S3 or BMW 325ti (Europe only hatchbacks), with the following elements of emphasis.

    1. Add ~15" to the length. Europe may need stubby little urban cars, but for the USA, we need to make sure that the car has a solid amount of rear seat legroom (and roofline) to make its back seat actually usable by adults, as well as a healthy trunk. For the latter, I'd say making as deep as a VW Sirocco 2 (production years 1983-1988) and 20 cubic feet should be the target value...this will be roughly an 8-12" increase.

    2. Make sure the engine's not an embarrassment. The horsepower level's not usually the problem, but the lack of low end torque was the mistake made by BMW with their 1995-98 318ti. Figure this to mean dropping in at least a 328i motor.

    3. While we're working on the motor, let's check the compression so that it doesn't have to run on Premium. Afterall, a hatch is philosophically supposed to retain some level of day to day practicality. Similarly, it should be reasonably be expected to break 30mpg on the highway through the appropriate top gear selection.

    4. For poor weather driving, AWD isn't an absolute necessity, so long as it has a posi-rear differential included in its standard equipment. Let me emphasise that electronic "Traction Control" is not a satisfactory alternative to a real differential.

    5. All of the modern electronic gizmo's and basic luxury items - - but let's include dashboard override switches for the gizmo's too, for those occasions when we know that we're better off without them, or when Club Racing rules require them to not be used in competition.

    6. Finally, hatchback practicality also include the pragmatics of value. So it needs to be delivered at a reasonable price. Based on a basic template of the MB C230K and BMW Ti, this car should retail out at around ~$30K and be easily recognized as having sufficient content to be worth that much.

  • It would suck if it did. This is a place where we can really be creative about the cars we'd like to drive. And one never knows if a car company might be watching...
  • This may be a multiple post after what I stated in Mazda 6 hatchback.
    It should be the size of a Saab 9-3.
    Must have all the Euro-standard safety features such as:
    Folding side mirrors (heated of course)
    Repeat turn signals for added lane change safety.
    Real rear seat head rests.
    Active front head restraints.
    Super comfortable seats that will hold me in place
    in 60 mph off ramps.
    6 speed gearbox
    High fuel economy with either a hybrid or diesel powerplant that also has a nice amount of torque.
    Front passenger seat should fold flat for that maybe chance I will transport a ladder or shelves.
    It should have sleek styling and come in a distinctive color such as copper, yellow gold or ice green
    Lots of cubbies and arm rests made of vinyl...NOT cloth!
    Lights on insides of doors
    Full size spare
    Sequential, fiber optic taillights
    large roof panel that slides open
    8 mph bumpers that have the color in them... so they don't scratch
    OK... plastic body panels too
    Reliable and and easy to fix
    under $25000

    I can dream... can't I?
  • big_guybig_guy Posts: 372
    Mazda 6 MPS . . . in hatchback form.

    2.3L, 4 cyl turbo charged engine
    280 HP/ 266 lb-ft
    All Wheel Drive
    6-speed manual tranny
    safety airbags all round
    sweet looking
  • mikusmikus Posts: 109
    I will base my "ultimate" hatchback on Toyota Matrix, because it is the closest to my understanding of properly designed car.

    1. Driver-oriented pilot-style dashboard with soft plastic (not just soft-look!) Take current BMW, SAAB or Volvo as an example. And do not say it is outdated.
    2. No faux anything. Especially faux carbon, aluminum or crome. No real crome, too. I can take either anodized aluminum (real!) or titanium (absolutely unnecessary inside cabin). No flashy stuff. No shiny Pontiac-style gauges. Should be simple, classy and modest.
    3. FWD and AWD versions.
    4. Any engine with any gearbox and any trim level. No stupid compulsory plastic stuff all around only because it is sporty. No only auto because it is AWD.
    5. Drop old-fashioned autobox. Either manual or CVT. If tight on money, then CVT only with manual mode (real one, so "3" means third gear only, not 1,2 or 3)
    6. Easy to fold-flat trunk with durable plastic lining. See Matrix -- the best trunk ever. I want to change nothing. But I do not care much about separately opened rear window.
    7. Full-size spare for those who would like one, or slim-size for city guys.
    8. Availability of: black/gray non-painted scratch-resistant bumpers, non-painted door handles, mirrors. No crome outside. For _any_ trim. I want to be able to get the most powerful sporty version with big wheels and black bumpers. Why not?
    9. Rear sprinkler is a must! Along with wiper.
    10. Headlight adjusters (like in Europe) is a must.
    11. Xenon option.
    12. Side blinkers on fenders.
    13. No ugly separate side markers (see Protege5 or even Impreza, ugh!)
    14. Powerful inline 4. I do not live V engines, they are complex and heavy. So, 2.0 to 2.3 would be a nice range. Also, smaller displacement engine must have VTEC/VVTi version for fighter pilots with wider usable range, say from 5000 to 8500. Diesel also should be included. So far, 4 engines: 2.0 (maybe GDI) "economy", 2.0 (VTEC) "sportivo", 2.3 (long stroke) "torquey" and 2.x turbo diesel "ultra-frugal".
    15. ABS probably should be a must, but Traction Control or ESP do not. All electronic helpers should be able to be turned off -- except ABS.
    16. 5-door version is a must and should have all the amenities as 3-door. Ford SVT is a good example.
    17. Should have at least (at least!!!) 30mpg in city and 35-38mpg on highway.
    18. And the biggest thing: modern production site, so anyone can really build a car for his own taste, using the common parts bin. And more colors.
    19. Ability to have wiring only for stereo, or wiring and speakers (without head unit).
  • revkarevka Posts: 1,750
    It's too soon to be archiving this discussion. ;-)

    Hatchbacks & Wagons Boards
  • Unfortunately, my heart isn't in it....seems like no one in Europe wants to import a decently priced hatch here, and the Japanese seem to be giving up on hatches here.

    The fact that we're not going to be getting the true BMW 1-series cars or the new VW Golfs is a bit of a blow.
  • qbrozenqbrozen Posts: 22,652
    Not Mazda, apparently.

    oh, yeah, and not Honda.

    uh... and not Toyota...

    what japanese manufacturers are we talking about?

    '17 F150 Crew 2.7; '67 Coronet R/T; '14 Town&Country Limited; '09 LR2 HSE. 44-car history and counting!

  • Honda. No standard Civic or Accord hatch..the only hatch they sell here is the Civic Si. It's EXTREMELY niche.

    Toyota, no Camry hatch. THEIR only hatch is the torqueless Matrix, which is pushing wagon territory. If only Pontiac would shove an Ecotec down the throat of the Vibe version....

    Nissan, no hatches whatsoever.

    Mazda and Mitsubishi are the only ones coming with hatches (Mitsu's Lancer sportback and the Mazda line) so they're the only odd ducks (Suzuki's an odd duck too, but the Aerio is odd anyway...heh). Mazda's 6 series hatch has yet to appear though...besides, there isn't a Mazda dealer within 100 miles of me. :)

    The Mitsu might be interesting...Lancer is a nice platform. But I'd like to have a hatch with the quality of a Honda or Nissan.
  • qbrozenqbrozen Posts: 22,652
    But Honda does have a hatch regardless. The only thing that really keeps it from being a big seller is the lack of automatic.

    The Toyota I was actually referring to is the Prius hatch.

    '17 F150 Crew 2.7; '67 Coronet R/T; '14 Town&Country Limited; '09 LR2 HSE. 44-car history and counting!

  • In YOUR opinion the only thing that keeps it from being a big seller is the lack of an automatic. That certainly hurts it, but there's the other fact that it's one of the more expensive Civic models, and is intended only to fill their "hot hatch" niche, and not intended to be a big seller or a normal model at all. Remember, Honda wants hatch/wagon shoppers to go buy the CR-V.

    I'll give ya the Prius, even though that's kind of a niche vehicle too. But at least they designed it as a hatch, and not a sedan. :) It's still a little expensive, but where I wouldn't even have bothered looking at the old Prius, the new one is somewhat interesting.
  • qbrozenqbrozen Posts: 22,652
    of course its my opinion and a total theory since it doesn't exist in that form.

    Oh, so you're looking for a CHEAP hatch? There is always the Hyundai Accent. ;)

    '17 F150 Crew 2.7; '67 Coronet R/T; '14 Town&Country Limited; '09 LR2 HSE. 44-car history and counting!

  • Well, I think under $20k is reasonable for a decent car. Problem is, most car companies don't seem to agree, not with all the "Great deal at only $30k!" commercials that have been on lately...heh.

    Accent's getting replaced soon, from what I couple of years or so. My mother has handles pretty nice, but the engine runs out of breath after about 45 MPH or so, it seems. A little more horsepower, and the power/weight ratio would be pretty good. That and the pitiful armrest were my only problems with's not a bad design.
  • qbrozenqbrozen Posts: 22,652
    interesting to hear some positive comments on the Accent. I never drove one but just assumed it would be a powerless tin can. Nice to hear that $10K might still actually buy something livable these days.

    of course, i'd go used market and only spend a few grand on one with low miles, but that's another story.

    '17 F150 Crew 2.7; '67 Coronet R/T; '14 Town&Country Limited; '09 LR2 HSE. 44-car history and counting!

  • Actually, that's why Hyundai resale value is so low...if you buy one used, you don't get that 100k powertrain warranty.

    I still keep thinking an Accent with the 2.0 Beta engine would make a heck of a pocket rocket...assuming that engine would FIT under the hood. And some ABS would be nice, though it's not critical.

    I was surprised myself...I had to drive it when my car was in the shop for a couple days. As far as handling goes, I was preasantly surprised. Handling seemed pretty tight, and it seemed to have enough low-end grunt (though I was in the car by myself, so who knows what happens when you put something else in the car). And if you'd like another little shock, I was driving one with a slushbox. :)
  • Ladies and gentlemen,
    I have created a petition that I intend to send to BMW of North America. I am attempting to get them to understand that there is a market for hatchback, 4 cylinder, and diesel BMWs here in North America. Please sign it if you would like to see a larger variety of BMW models available here. Please encourage friends and family to sign it also.
    Thank you,
    David Bullman
  • vocusvocus Posts: 7,777
    Cross the functionality and room of a Chrysler PT Cruiser with the power of a 1.8T Jetta, and the luxury and safety features of a Mercedes C230.

    I don't ask for too much, eh? ;)
  • mikusmikus Posts: 109
    Modern European diesels do not take american high-sulphur diesel fuel.

    Put 2.0 into Matrix, and it will be the best "short hatchback" ever. Well, Mazda3 seems promising. Mazda6 will be the only "long hatchback" now, when Saab gave up hatchbacks. Mazda also has Miata (though aging) and RX8. Zoom-zoom :)
  • qbrozenqbrozen Posts: 22,652
    Saab has been showing a new 9-3 hatchback/wagon design and rumors are it will be built.

    '17 F150 Crew 2.7; '67 Coronet R/T; '14 Town&Country Limited; '09 LR2 HSE. 44-car history and counting!

  • Well I really like the Mercedes C230 Sport Coupe, but that is out of my price range.

    I just bought a 2003 Mazda Protege DX (base) sedan, and would definitely have bought a hatchback had one been available. Just as the Protege is two generations evolution of the 1990-1994 Protege and the 3 is another generation still, I would have loved a 1999-2003 323, improved along the same lines as the sedan.

    The Mazda 3 is nice, but the hatchbacks are all loaded 5 doors with all the luxo-stuff and the big engine. What I would like is a two door hatchback version with the smaller 2.0 liter, big enough tires and a firm suspension, at a price of about $13000 with AC.
  • jchan2jchan2 Posts: 4,956
    I want.....
    5 door configuration
    leather seats
    Bluetooth/Smart Start/Navigation System/ Power Sunroof
    Automatic Climate Control
    Power Liftgate
    Alloy Wheels
    Decent Warranty
    All for $26K (wishful)
    The Toyota Prius comes close, but I want factory leather and that Power Liftgate. I'll compromise though and I'm thinking whether to line up at the dealer and give them my order.To keep prices affordable, maybe I'll need to not order a few items listed.
  • conallconall West TexasPosts: 91
    How about the Lancia Delta Integrale!? Not exactly a great passenger car, but definitely one of the ultimate hatchbacks. Unfortunately not sold in the U.S. Last model was a '94. Rival to the Audi Quattro after '85, it owes its existence to the competition Audi brought to offroad rallye racing.
  • Something like a Scion xA (i.e. well-equipped, stylish, cheap), but with a 2.0 liter engine and about a foot longer (for a bigger trunk) would be about perfect. And oh yeah, cruise control.

    Matrix would almost be it if the base model was equippped like the Scion, had a better engine than the 1.8, and got rid of the 'funky' dashboard/controls. Ew.
  • dhanleydhanley Posts: 1,531
    If you could have made my old saab 900 turbo move like my 328i, you'd be doing pretty good.

    Toss in bmw's 3.0L diesel and you're doing REALLY good. You could do donuts while burning soybean oil.

    Of course, looking just now i spy the c320 sport coupe. It doesn't look too bad. The 20/26 mpg though, is not that great.

  • My ulitmate hatch is as follows:

    (whisper this just loudly enough so that Mike Mauer [spelling??] at Saab hears this). "I want a 3-door version of the Saab 9-3x SportHatch."

    3-doors 'cause I'm big and need a long side door.
    4-wheel drive.
    Plenty of low end torque/high end pep.
    Ergonomic interior to rival any Honda product.
    Subwoofer standard....yes I'm an audiophile.
    Soft-touch leather.
    No shiny,plasticky dashboard.
    Standard cooler in the back
    6-speed stick
    Sport suspension/wheels/all-season tyres.
    Durable as can be.
    Glance'n'go dash/instrument center stack.

    In other words, a thoroughly modern Volvo P1800 with all the Swedish blessings mixed with the best Japan offers and sold to this American. I love to drive; I love to look good; and sometimes I have to haul stuff. And no, I don't want an SUV, pickup, or another minivan. 90% of my time in it would be commuting, 5% hauling, and 5% playing.

    If anyone is up to the task, it's Saab.

    But, that is just a pipe dream. But that's what this thread is, isn't it?? :-)))

    Dr. Daryl
  • dhanleydhanley Posts: 1,531
    The 9-3 sporthatch looks REALLY cool. 250hp, 260lb-ft. 15% better fuel economy. Glass roof, integrated bike carrier. I worry about the expense of all those bells and whistles i don't need ( like a DVD player, camcorder, and hydraulic rear gate ). But it looks good.

    A mercedes sport copue with their diesel v6 wouldn't be bad either.
  • qbrozenqbrozen Posts: 22,652
    what is the 9-3 sporthatch? where can i read about this?

    '17 F150 Crew 2.7; '67 Coronet R/T; '14 Town&Country Limited; '09 LR2 HSE. 44-car history and counting!

This discussion has been closed.