(WHTM) — A four-door, hatchback car is very practical for everyday use. Volkswagen has one that’s a blast to drive too.

For 20 years now VW has been making this little hotrod called the Golf R/

Those 19-inch wheels and performance tires mean business. Then notice the massive brakes and quad exhaust pipes in the back.

Badging for the all-wheel-drive hatch is very subtle, but performance is not, with a zero to 60 time under four and a half seconds.

Generating an impressive 315 horsepower from only two liters, the intercooled turbo-four still has decent gas mileage. Aha! I thought I detected something Audi-like under this hood.

This is a cockpit designed for spirited driving. Comfortable, deep leather buckets keep you in place during hard cornering.

VW has gone to almost zero control knobs on dashboards and the Golf R is no different. That makes doing simple things like adjusting audio a bit of a pain.

A six-speed manual shift is standard. A dual-clutch automatic is available at no extra-cost.

The four-door, hatchback configuration means lots of room for passengers in row two, and lots of room for cargo.

Acceleration, handling and braking are outstanding. While the suspension is firm, the ride is not rough.

So for the 2023 VW Golf “R” 20th anniversary edition I say thumbs up to impressive power, impressive handling, and hatchback practicality.

Thumbs down to only the touch controls on the dash.

I averaged about 24 miles per gallon in the Golf “R”. The as-tested sticker is $46,485.