My push towards the Rabbit came from shopping around in its class. For what you get for your money there is not a better choice. Although my engine is far from broken in, the car handles fun roads like a dream. The manual transmission is seamless. Even though there is only 150 horses, the engine is torquey yet quiet.
My true favorite feature is the amount of extras that I got for under $20,000. 30+ mpg (easy enough to tweek for higher too), ultra safe, great sound, windows and moonroof, comfy seats, and the stereo itself. And the feature my R32 owning friend is most jealous of the trunk emblem hatchback latch!