2011 Volvo C30 Hatchback Review | Edmunds.com

2011 Volvo C30 Hatchback

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Certified Pre-Owned (CPO) is a category of used car. Often late-model vehicles, they have been inspected, refurbished, if necessary, and are under warranty by the manufacturer.
Volvo C30 Features and Specs

Features & Specs

  • Engine 2.5 L Inline 5-cylinder
  • Drivetrain Front Wheel Drive
  • Transmission 6-speed Manual
  • Horse Power 227 hp @ 5000 rpm
  • Fuel Economy 21/29 mpg
  • Bluetooth Yes
  • Navigation No
  • Heated Seats Yes

Review of the 2011 Volvo C30

  • The 2011 Volvo C30 lacks the sharp handling of some rivals, but it's got style and comfort in spades.

  • Safety
  • Pros

    Distinctive styling, firm yet supple ride, excellent front seats, capable turbocharged engine.

  • Cons

    Not as sporty as some rivals.

  • What's New for 2011

    The 2011 Volvo C30 is treated to a refreshed exterior, including an all-new front end.

Gas Mileage


  • 21
  • cty
  • 29
  • highway
Calculate Yearly Fuel Costs
What Others Are Saying

Customer Reviews

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

Brilliant automobile

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Vehicle: 2011 Volvo C30 R-Design 2dr Hatchback (2.5L 5cyl Turbo 6M)

This car is absolutely fantastic. I've had the R-Design for about 6 months now and love driving it. The handling is very tight and the acceleration is good for its class. The body styling sets you apart from the crowd and the interior styling is comfortable and very functional. The ability to customize features and options hits the mark. The only drawback is that the exterior r-design styling features seem a bit flimsy - we'll see how they hold up over time. I couldn't be happier with this car - at least until the polestar version is available.

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

Hot!! volvo c30 r-design

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Vehicle: 2011 Volvo C30 R-Design 2dr Hatchback (2.5L 5cyl Turbo 6M)

I test drove several cars to include the Volkswagon GTI and Mazdaspeed 3. I wanted something with a European feel when driving and this car nailed it. The Car has more than ample horsepower. Exterior Styling is a attention grabber.....Going to a new drive thru window always has the kids commenting on the car. It really is a wonder why there is not many on the road, but it sure does get attention....Interior is a BIT BORING, but I spiced it up with amplifiers. Kinda upset that door sills are not dressed up like other "luxury" brands. If you want something with performance and not just a kiddie compact tuner cars this will get attention. My first Volvo and I love it. Hatch is small.

Mistake ?

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Vehicle: 2011 Volvo C30 R-Design 2dr Hatchback (2.5L 5cyl Turbo 6M)

WIND NOISE - drive it and pay carefull attention and make your own informed decision. The C30 has major wind noise issues. This gas milage is aslo poor - 21 in combined city/highway driving. After 3 months and 1300 miles, had to take the car into the dealer - hissing noise under hood. Leaking either coolant or refrigerant. Only good thing so far is it comes with 5 year 60-month bumper-to-bumper warranty and it looks COOL. If only my wife had chosen a another car or I had waited for the LEXUS CT-200! So buyer beware.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

Dare to be different

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Vehicle: 2011 Volvo C30 R-Design 2dr Hatchback (2.5L 5cyl Turbo 6M)

2011 C30 R-design auto. Drives sporty, has adequate power, very unique shape, interior is one of a kind, decent stereo, bluetooth works flawlessly, USB port picks up all music on USB drive. This car is a real roomy for its size. With rear seats folded it has plenty of cargo room more than a MINI or CRZ. Road noise is above average but somewhat expected with 18 in wheels/tire combo and a smaller car.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

Nice daily driver

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Vehicle: 2011 Volvo C30 R-Design 2dr Hatchback (2.5L 5cyl Turbo 6M)

Recently purchased the C30 with 6 speed manual to use as a daily driver. It has a very nice balance between handling and comfort with a bent toward the fun side. The acceleration is decent and the car is nice and solid. For such a small car, I feel safe (I guess typical Volvo) -- the doors are sturdy and the car is heavy for its class. The car is unique in appearance and is general a joy to drive (have put 2,000 miles on the car - so beyond the "honeymoon" period. Demerits include slight rattle from both windows when partially down and horrible whistling wind noise from the seatbelt outlets when fully open. Decent but not great Dynaudio sound; manual not up to par with other European cars.

2011 c30 r-design

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Vehicle: 2011 Volvo C30 R-Design 2dr Hatchback (2.5L 5cyl Turbo 6M)

We traded in our 2005 Volvo S40 T5 AWD for this new C30. The C30 is even more fun to drive than the S40 was. I was concerned about ride stiffness from the R-Design with the lower profile tires but while the ride is firmer it is not uncomfortable at all on the roads we drive daily. Our choice of styling was confirmed when a new VW GTI that still had the paper tags on it had the driver and two passengers admiring the C30 when we were running side by side on the expressway.


Full 2011 Volvo C30 Review

What's New for 2011

The 2011 Volvo C30 is treated to a refreshed exterior, including an all-new front end.


The 2011 Volvo C30 isn't your typical "hot hatch." Sure, it's got a powerful turbocharged engine and an available sport-tuned suspension, but this Swede is about a lot more than just speed. Don't get us wrong -- the C30 actually drives nicely and has more dynamic capabilities than most drivers will care to exploit. But with its chic interior and a classic hatchback design that evokes Volvos of yore, the C30 is also the closest thing in this segment to automotive art.

A product of the Ford era at Volvo, the C30 (like the related S40 sport sedan) shares its basic platform design with the Mazda 3 and the latest Ford Focus. That's a good thing, as we've applauded these underpinnings in virtually every application. Power comes from Volvo's familiar turbocharged five-cylinder engine, which cranks out a healthy 227 horsepower and 236 pound-feet of torque. The C30 ultimately gives up a bit of sportiness to the competition, but it compensates with superior sophistication and refinement.

And then there's its unique aesthetic appeal, which is particularly evident in the distinctive sloping rear end's oversized window and trademark vertical taillights. Inside you'll find the "floating" center stack familiar from the S40 and other Volvos. Debuting for 2011 is a new front fascia inspired by the XC60 crossover. We like the idea -- the C30 previously shared the S40's rather plain front end -- but we're not sure about the execution, as the C30 now appears a bit nose-heavy. Still, there's no disputing that Volvo's little hatch has maintained its distinctive looks.

Compared to hot hatches like the 2011 Mini Cooper S or 2011 Subaru Impreza WRX, the 2011 Volvo C30 is a different kettle of Swedish fish. It certainly goes fast and handles well, but Volvo has refused to sacrifice comfort for performance, even in sport-tuned R-Design trim. The result is something refreshing in this segment: a capable hatchback that remains perfectly pleasant to drive on a daily basis. Other than the 2011 Volkswagen GTI, no rival can match the C30's refinement -- and aesthetically speaking, the C30 is in a class of one.

Body Styles, Trim Levels, and Options

The 2011 Volvo C30 is a four-seat, two-door hatchback offered in two trim levels. The base T5 includes 17-inch alloy wheels, height-adjustable seats, a trip computer, cruise control, a 50/50-split-folding rear seat, full power accessories, a tilt-and-telescoping steering wheel with audio controls, Bluetooth and an eight-speaker CD audio system with an auxiliary audio jack. The T5 R-Design trim level adds 18-inch wheels, foglights, a sport-tuned suspension, a quicker steering ratio, sporty exterior trim, partial leather upholstery, blue-face gauges and metallic interior trim.

The Preferred package tacks on power front seats, bi-xenon headlamps and keyless entry/ignition, as well as foglights and aluminum interior trim on the T5. The Multimedia package adds a 10-speaker Dynaudio surround-sound audio system and satellite radio. The Climate package includes heated front seats, headlamp washers, automatic climate control and rain-sensing wipers. Stand-alone options include leather upholstery, a sunroof, a blind-spot information system and a navigation system with real-time traffic.

Powertrains and Performance

The front-wheel-drive 2011 Volvo C30 is powered by a turbocharged 2.5-liter inline-5 that produces 227 hp and 236 lb-ft of torque. A six-speed manual transmission is standard, and a five-speed automatic is optional.

In performance testing, we hustled a manual-equipped C30 to 60 mph in a fleet 6.4 seconds. Fuel economy checks in at 21 mpg city/29 mpg highway and 24 mpg combined for the manual; the automatic has a 21/30/24 mpg rating.


The 2011 Volvo C30 comes standard with antilock disc brakes with brake assist, stability control, front-seat side airbags, full-length side curtain airbags and front seats with whiplash protection. Volvo's Blind Spot Information System (BLIS) is optional.

Interior Design and Special Features

The C30's front compartment comes straight out of the S40 sedan, which means it has Volvo's trademark floating center stack -- a cool flat-panel bridge of buttons and displays between the dash and the center console, with extra storage space beneath. Most controls are straightforward and attractive, but the confounding optional navigation system has a steep learning curve. The front seats are exceptionally comfortable (though more side bolstering would be helpful on a curvy road), and the telescoping steering wheel accommodates drivers of all sizes.

Rather than attempt to shoehorn a fifth passenger into the C30, Volvo went with two rear bucket seats. It's actually quite comfortable back there for average-sized adults, though legroom can be cramped. Rearward visibility is excellent thanks to the tall and wide all-glass hatch. The cargo area can accommodate 13 cubic feet with the 50/50-split rear seatbacks up and 20 cubes when both are lowered -- hardly impressive by hatchback standards.

Driving Impressions

The 2011 Volvo C30 has ample grip and accurate steering, particularly the R-Design model with its extra rubber and a quicker steering ratio. It's a fun car to drive. The Mini Cooper S may be more entertaining on tight roads, but the C30 has a smoother ride and a quieter cabin. The turbocharged five-cylinder delivers a confident rush of power from low rpm, and its distinctive soundtrack adds a little extra spice.


Talk About The 2011 C30

2011 Volvo C30 Discussions See all Started By

I got a great deal on my C30. It’s a 6 speed, with the climate, sunroof, metallic paint, etc. and it is wonderful. It was a 2010 (produced in 2009) that was still on the lot when they were ju...

Here's the information that you're looking for. According to the latest information that I have seen, if you were to lease a 2010 Volvo C30 R-Design through US Bank right now for 36 months with 15,00...

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