Gti is probably the most luxury you can get out of a cheap sporty car. If you don't care about luxury, wrx is prob the best choice. Focus st is pretty awesome and almost like a cross between the two. If you have the money, the new golf r is going to be amazing.
If we are talking about Benz/BMW/audi., don't even waste your time. Cadillac ats is the best choice out of that category, hands down. 2.0t in the caddy pushing out 272hp, with a nicer interior, superior sound system and better handling, for less money than the competition.