1. Renault Mégane RS 265 (2012-2014)
Taking a regular front-wheel-drive hatchback and turning up the wick can be a great way to create an affordable, usable driver’s car. One of the best of the hot hatch breed, this Mégane is as much at home on a track as it is on the road.
A responsive 261bhp 2.0-litre four-pot engine provides impressive performance: 0-62mph in less than six seconds and a 158mph top speed. There are two different chassis set-ups: the superb Sport or the stiffened-up Cup, which is even better. Expect exceptional steering, awesome grip and adjustable, truly delightful handling.
Seek a Cup if you can, although you’ll enjoy any version. A tidy 2013 example should cost about £18k.
2. Audi TT 2.0 TFSI (2006-2014)
The TT is no longer just a fashion item; it’s a design icon. In Mk2 form, it’s also an accomplished sports coupé.