The Focus and Golf are both enjoyable to drive, and they do the everyday stuff extremely well. They’re nippy around town, easy to park, stable and soothing on motorways and very capable on country roads.
But the Focus is more engaging because it makes you, the driver, feel like part of the machine, not just its operator. The Golf isn’t boring to drive by any means, but it feels more relaxed. So which is best to drive depends on what you want from a car. If you really enjoy driving, the Focus is better. If you want a car that’s more relaxing, the Golf is the one to go for.
Both cars are available with a wide range of engines that are strong enough for high-speed driving. There’s a plug-in hybrid Golf available, too. The sporty Focus ST-Line and Golf R-Line have bigger wheels and firmer suspension that gives a slightly harder ride, but they’re by no means uncomfortable. The high performance Focus ST, Golf GTi and Golf R are among the best hot hatchbacks.