Friday, May 31, 2013

First Drive: 2013 Volvo C30

At the 2001 Detroit Auto Show, Volvo unveiled a concept car called the Safety Concept Car. The concept car was a three-door hatchback that featured new safety technology from Volvo, including blind spot monitoring, lane straying alert, forward collision warning, and communication with the car via a mobile phone.  This concept car was the basis for the Volvo C30. The C30 is a front-engine, front-wheel drive, three-door hatchback with a 2+2 seating arrangement. The C30 was released in 2006. During one Friday in April of 2013, I decided to stop by four local dealerships, including a Volvo dealership. At the Volvo dealership, I only test drove the C30. The C30 is available with a six-speed manual transmission, but the version I drove came with a five-speed automatic transmission.

In the past, Volvos tend to be bland in the styling department. That is not the case with the C30. The C30 has a very sporty styling. This is one of the best looking Volvos I have seen. It has sleek profile. It is not bland. The C30 has a 2+2 seating arrangement. While I had plenty of leg room and head room behind the wheel, there was not much room in the back for adult passengers. The C30 has a simple interior. The C30 has a small screen for the radio. On the top of the dashboard, there is a pop-up screen for the navigation system. The C30 I drove had two-tone cloth seats. The C30 is available with leather seats. The seat was comfortable to be in.

The C30 is powered by a turbocharged 2.5L I5 engine that produces 227 hp and 236 lb-ft of torque. It goes from 0 to 60 mph in 6.4 seconds and reaches a top speed of 149 mph. The C30 has good acceleration. The C30 has a quiet smooth ride quality to it. The cars responds well when I turn the wheel or press the accelerator pedal. I was very comfortable during the test drive. The C30 is very fun to drive. Prices for the C30 start at $26,395. There are compact hatchbacks that cost less than the C30, but they do not perform like the C30.

The Volvo C30 has been featured on Fifth Gear, Irene Huss: Tatuerad torso, Irene Huss: Den krossade tanghasten, Glasdjavulen, Nattrond, Eldsdansen, Twilight, Twilight: New Moon, Clarkson: Supercar Showdown, and Vampires Suck. The Volvo C30 is playable in Freeway Fury 2, Car Town, BETandRACE, Volvo: The Game, City Racer, Race Driver: Grid, Forza Motorsport 3, Gran Turismo 5, Forza Motorsport 4, and Racing 2.

Overall, the Volvo C30 is a good car. It has good performance while continuing the Volvo tradition of being a safe vehicle. While there are compact cars that cost less than the C30, most of those car do not provide the driving experience that one would get while behind the wheel of a C30. This car is very fun to drive. On the same day I test drove the C30, I test drove four other cars. None of those cars were as fun to drive as the C30. If you want a C30 with more performance, there is the C30 R Design version and the C30 Polestar version. Volvo has stopped producing the C30 since Volvo will be exclusively making cars on the Volvo Y20 platform. Volvo has stopped using the Volvo P1 platform, which is used for the C30. Volvo has launched V40, which could serve as a replacement for the C30. However, Volvo has not announced any plans to bring the V40 over for the American market. That is a shame since it will feel like there will be a void in the Volvo lineup in the United States with the discontinuation of the Volvo C30. If the V40 drives anything like the C30, then I hope Volvo sells the V40 in the United States

Photo was taken by a camera phone.
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