By KBB.com Editors - Updated Date: 3/25/2011
Designed to cloud the distinction between station wagon and hatchback, the 2011 Volvo C30 combines the best of both. With the inspiration for its design drawn from both a safety concept car and the classic '70s-era Volvo 1800 ES fastback, there is plenty of heritage to satisfy even the most finicky Volvo enthusiast. Volvo, however, hopes to lure people who would otherwise purchase hatchbacks from Volkswagen and Honda. While the 2011 Volvo C30's premium-car status and price tag places it more in line with the Audi A3, the 2011 Volvo C30's stylish good looks easily trump the conservative A3. The styling advantage places the 2011 Volvo C30 more in league with the Mini Cooper and BMW 1 Series.You'll Like This Car If...
If you're looking for a stylish and seldom-seen premium two-door coupe, and you don't mind a hatchback design, the 2011 Volvo C30 makes an appealing choice.
If you're looking for a hatchback with sports-car-style handling, a roomy rear seat and the ability to comfortably carry four adults, the four-door Volkswagen GTI or Audi A3 would be better choices. Those who want a two-door coupe with the security of a trunk should consider the BMW 1 Series.What's Significant About This Car?
The 2011 Volvo C30 receives a new grille, hood and front fenders and headlamps. A slight reshuffling of the equipment packages adds new features to some, while removing others to the stand-alone options list.Driving It Driving Impressions
The personality of the base 2011 Volvo C30 T5 is shifted towards those who prefer a comfortable ride over a taut, sporty suspension. If, however, your idea of a weekend well spent is one carving up deserted back roads, consider the C30 R-Design.
With a 30-percent stiffer suspension, lower ride height and upgraded wheel and tire package, the R-Design delivers quicker steering response and less body roll during aggressive cornering. Both C30 trims are powered by a turbocharged five-cylinder engine that gives them the same spirited acceleration. Even with its stiffer suspension, the C30 R-Design returns a more civilized ride than rivals such as the Mini Cooper and BMW 1 Series. However, with respect to absolute sportiness, the C30 falls behind both the Mini and BMW, as well as the GTI and A3.
This modern-day reinterpretation of one of Volvo's most memorable models has a distinctive visual presence that sets it apart from the competition.
Responsive Turbocharged Engine
Its wide, flat torque curve makes the Volvo C30's potent turbocharged five-cylinder engine a perfect match for this petite hauler, injecting a major dose of pure driving delight whether paired with the standard manual or optional automatic transmission.