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7 Sporty CPO Compact Cars

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author photo by Doug DeMuro May 2016

If you're interested in a sporty, new compact car, you might find yourself facing a dilemma: New models are too expensive, but used ones can be unreliable and troublesome.

The happy medium? Consider a certified pre-owned (CPO) model, which offers a pricing discount from new vehicles but includes a manufacturer-backed warranty. To show you what we mean, we've listed some of our favorite CPO compact cars that have a sporty flair.

2015 Audi A3

2015-2016 Audi A3

Although it's no longer offered as a hatchback based on the popular Volkswagen Golf, the Audi A3 4-door sedan remains a compact car, albeit a luxurious one, coming in at just 175.5 inches in length. It's also impressively sporty, touting spry handling and a 0-to-60 time of around 6 seconds regardless of which of the sedan's turbocharged gas-powered engines you get.

Icing on the cake: While the pricing of a new A3 ranges from around $32,000 to nearly $50,000 with options, the average price of one of the 472 certified pre-owned 2015-2016 models on Autotrader is just $31,000. That figure includes Audi's excellent 6-year or 100,000-mile bumper-to-bumper CPO warranty.

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2015 Ford Focus ST

2013-2015 Ford Focus ST

The Ford Focus ST has been one of our favorite hot hatchbacks since it originally debuted in 2013. It has all the right ingredients: eye-catching styling, sports-car-like handling and a 252-horsepower turbocharged 4-cylinder that makes it among the fastest and most powerful cars in its class.

But while a new Focus ST can be expensive, shoppers interested in a CPO model can choose between 90 different examples listed on Autotrader across the country with an average asking price of just $21,700. And each comes with the peace of mind of Ford's CPO warranty, which offers up to 7 years or 100,000 miles of powertrain protection.

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2015 Honda Civic Si

2012-2015 Honda Civic Si

Offered in both coupe or sedan form, the 2012-2015 Civic Si touts an impressive 205 hp, 174 lb-ft of torque and a standard 6-speed manual transmission, all of which work together for a 0-to-60 time of under 7 seconds. The Civic Si also offers sporty styling cues and a performance suspension setup.

Plus, a CPO 2012-2015 Civic Si can offer you a great deal. Not only will you get 7 years or 100,000 miles of powertrain coverage through Honda's excellent CPO warranty, but you can also choose from 200 different examples listed on Autotrader with an average price of just $21,000.

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2015 Hyundai Veloster Turbo

2013-2016 Hyundai Veloster Turbo

The Hyundai Veloster Turbo is an unusual hatchback with eye-catching looks, an odd asymmetrical door setup and excellent performance thanks to a 201-hp 1.6-liter turbocharged 4-cylinder, which is mated to a 6-speed manual or quick-shifting dual-clutch automatic.

If you pick up a model with Hyundai's CPO warranty, you get excellent bumper-to-bumper coverage for up to 5 years or 60,000 miles and powertrain protection for 10 years or 100,000 miles. You can choose from almost 100 examples currently listed on Autotrader with an average price of just $17,800 -- not a bad discount compared to a new model.

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2015 Mazda3

2012-2015 Mazda3 s

The Mazda3 s is one of our favorite compact models. It combines excellent technology, handsome styling, great driving characteristics and impressive fuel economy. While we've highlighted any 2012-2015 Mazda3 s model, the compact car received a major redesign in 2014, so you'll have to decide which version fits your budget and your priorities.

Regardless of which you pick, choosing a CPO version will give you 7 years or 100,000 miles of powertrain coverage. And you'll see a substantial discount compared to a new model, as there are currently more than 130 CPO Mazda3 s examples listed on Autotrader with an average price of just $21,300.

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2015 Subaru WRX

2011-2015 Subaru WRX

The 2011-2015 Subaru WRX is a high-performance compact car that features standard all-wheel drive, excellent handling and a turbocharged 4-cylinder engine. Although the WRX was fully redesigned in 2015, any CPO model will likely satisfy drivers interested in a thrilling ride, especially if they want the peace of mind that comes with a factory warranty -- Subaru's CPO program touts 7 years or 100,000 miles of coverage.

If you're interested, you shouldn't have any trouble finding a WRX that meets your needs, as there are currently 170 different certified WRX and ultra-high-performance WRX STI models listed on Autotrader with an average asking price of around $29,500.

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2015 Volkswagen GTI

2011-2015 Volkswagen GTI

The Volkswagen GTI is one of our favorite sporty compact cars, as it combines hatchback practicality with sports-car-like handling and acceleration. Get a certified pre-owned GTI, and you'll also benefit from Volkswagen's comprehensive CPO program, which touts 2 years or 24,000 miles of bumper-to-bumper coverage once the original factory warranty ends.

Of course, you'll also get a good discount: There are currently more than 300 different CPO 2011-2015 GTI models listed on Autotrader with an average price of $21,100.

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If you're looking for a small, sporty, stylish vehicle you can rely on that won't break the bank, a CPO version of any of these great models is well worth a spin.

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Used 2015 Volkswagen GTI S
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This image is a stock photo and is not an exact representation of any vehicle offered for sale. Advertised vehicles of this model may have styling, trim levels, colors and optional equipment that differ from the stock photo.
7 Sporty CPO Compact Cars - Autotrader