By now you’ll hopefully have read our first drive on VW’s new Scirocco R, and watched it dealing an unexpected defeat to the previously untouchable Ford Focus RS.

Truth is, though, the Scirocco has also split the Autocar office – on the subject of whether it’s a coupe or a hatchback.

One band of staffers points out that the Scirocco has to be a coupe, purely because Volkswagen already has the three-door Golf GTI. “VW itself says that the Scirocco is a coupe,” they say. “And what would be the sense in having two three-door hot hatchbacks in your model range?”

There is a counter-argument, though, from people who’ve experienced the Scirocco (in general, not even the R). They argue that while it is lower than a Golf, it’s still a hatchback.

Perhaps this is a tribute to the extent to which VW has managed to preserve the Scirocco’s practicality – it would be a very easy car to live with, and that goes for even the ‘hardcore’ R – but the ‘hot hatch brigade’ say that as an everyday proposition, it’s little different from a Golf.

Me? I reckon both camps make valid points. But having been lucky enough to sample the R first-hand, I think the argument will soon subside when more staffers get to try it.

Whether or not its a coupe or a hot hatch becomes less relevant when you realise how good it is; the very best cars refuse to be pigeonholed.

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