Why does nobody want hatchbacks…but us?

Why does nobody want hatchbacks…but us?


The highly effective backdoor does not have a good press outside the borders of Europe. In major developed markets, trunk cars are preferred … for the image.

Find the place of the first trunk car in the Top 100 best-selling models in Europe! You will have to use “scroll” to find it. In 2021, he is in the 25th place. This is the BMW 3 Series, which sold more than 116,000 copies. Even the Skoda Octavia, which is however a sedan of the third volume, has a tailgate. But why this desire for this configuration? practical side, of course! The tailgate provides more open and wide access to the trunk. And then, the tailgate generally makes it possible to reduce the overall length of the car, with the same amount of boot. In short, just points. But why are we the only ones who love them?

China, the United States, Russia… these bigots

Americans are more “Jetta” than Golf©Volkswagen

The most striking example is the United States, where hatchbacks are not very popular. In 2010, General Motors’ design director summed it up well: “despite its obvious performance, this vehicle has a bad reputation among consumers”. And it’s clear that hatchbacks sell very little across the Atlantic, where they are associated with cheaper models of the car, or even “used” cars. Furthermore, compact hatchbacks suffer from the same popularity problems as station wagons, which do not appeal to Americans. Which mainly buys notchback sedans, pick-ups and… SUVs. These are the only cars with tailgates and are popular there, but that’s because they are bigger, and more “gifty”!

However, you will have noticed that Volkswagen, just to name a German brand, sells the Golf in the USA. But … only in GTI and R version! Picture question, there again…

In China, a similar observation: the back gate has bad press and is not “legal”. Customers prefer long cars, and very bad for external congestion. Moreover, it is not for nothing that many top brands offer their sedans with extended wheelbase in China. Even if, initially, these cars already exceed five meters!

It has been published 08/29/2022 Updated 08/29/2022