The Volvo C30 has been close to getting into this publication since its release in 2007 but until the introduction of DRIVe models in 2009 it always fell just short. Such is the pace of green car development that Volvo has managed to reduce CO2 emissions again making this the first Volvo to emit less than 100 g/km of CO2.
In the C30’s case this means reducing air resistance, fitting low rolling resistance tyres, increasing third, fourth and fifth gear ratios, reducing the drag on the engine through optimising cooling and power steering, the use of low friction transmission oil in the gearbox and the addition of engine Start/Stop.
In the process of giving the C30 a quick mid-life facelift Volvo has managed to reduce the weight of the DRIVe S model by 15 Kg which is good to see. The new sections of bodywork are confined to the front but we think it is a big success giving the C30 a more purposeful look and blending well with the existing shape.
Volvo has a well-earned reputation for safety and the C30 doesn’t disappoint with all C30s getting Dynamic Stability and Traction Control (DSTC), Side Impact Protection System (SIPS) and Whiplash Protection System (WHIPS). It will also come as no surprise to find that the C30 isn’t a cutting edge driver’s car but it is competent.
The Volvo C30 1.6 litre D2 ES Start/Stop is a refined, well built, safe and now very efficient premium hatch. We think it looks good and it is decent value too once you take into account the good basic specifications. The C30 proves that low CO2 emissions don’t have to come at the expense of safety, style or practicality.