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Design by Request
2008 Volvo C30 T5 Version 2.0
by Alain Gayot
Volvo C30 T5 Version 2.0

In short: A sporty, grown-up city car.

There's no doubt that everyone's minds are on fuel efficient cars today. Some of us try to be politically correct and might even drive a Prius, but let's face it; we still want to be lively and arrive with a bit of style. The Volvo showroom might not be the first stop en route to buying your next hip car, but you might be surprised with what the Sweden-based company has come up with. The C30 is the perfect city car that is not afraid to tackle some highway and a plethora of other automobilian tasks.

Three-door hatchbacks have been all the rage in Europe and around the world for decades, but in the U.S., odd memories of the AMC Gremlin, Chevy Vega and Ford Pinto put them in the horror category. We certainly hope the C30 will make a bit of a difference. The three-quarter rear view best shows off this not-so-little hip mobile. Coming from the front end, you might mistake it for the Volvo S40 that’s it’s derived from. Yes, it’s only got three doors, but you can fit four adults – no problem.

Volvo C30 Gearshift Volvo C30 Interior
Volvo Engine Volvo C30 Trunk

It has a solid stance on the open road and it’s a charm to maneuver in the city. It's not a racer at heart, but has plenty of pep to get you in trouble with the law if you don’t watch it. It’s got a turbocharged five-cylinder motor packing over 220 horses. The cabin is spacious and can be enhanced with a suite of design options. This car is built for new generations with iPod integration, massive sound systems and surf/tattoo-reminiscent optional style patterns. It has a designer approach, the way shoes or sunglasses would come. “It's actually more a car you buy with your heart than with your head,” says designer Simon Lamarre.

The good thing is that it comes with Volvo's legendary safety systems. The steel is reinforced with WHIPS (Whiplash Protection System) and BLIS (Blind Spot Information System). As part of the enhanced designed solution, you’ll be able to tap into a solid accessories program to boot!

With the introduction of the C30, Volvo hopes to attract a whole new breed of customers and those considering a Mini, a VW GTI and Audi A3. We urge you to check one out, up close and personal. Who knows, perhaps its design, sportiness and fresh personality might seduce you.

Learn more about Volvo Overseas Delivery

Volvo C30

Warranty/Service: Four-year/50,000-mile basic, four-year/50,000-mile drivetrain, four-year/unlimited-mile roadside, four-year/unlimited-mile rust.

Base Price: $25,700/As Tested: $26,745

Technical Specifications

Vehicle type: two-door hatchback

Engine: T5 Five-cylinder turbocharged
Horsepower: 227 hp @ 5000
Torque: 236 lb-ft

Curb weight: 2,970 lbs
Wheelbase: 103.9 in
167.4/70.2/57 in
Turning circle: 34.9 ft

Brakes: ABS

Safety: energy-absorbing interior and front-end structure, dynamic stability traction control, emergency brake assist, driver head restraint, dual front airbags, engine immobilizer

0-60 mph:
6.2 sec
Top Speed: N/A

EPA City: 19
EPA Highway: 27

A 2008 Volvo C30 and a 1971 Volvo 1800ES Hatchback sit outside La Casa del Zorro Resort in Borrego Springs.

The brand new Volvo C30 on the left, with its distinctive rear deck, emulates the 1971 Volvo 1800ES Hatchback. The two cars are parked at La Casa del Zorro Resort in Borrego Springs, California.

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Photography: AlphaMedia

(Updated: 07/07/08 SCV)