NEW FOR 2009:

– New R-Design package
– Standard heated front seats, fog lights, and upgraded eight-speaker stereo system with wheel-mounted controls
– T5 adds standard Bluetooth hands-free connectivity
– Larger rear logo
– Improved optional navigation system with Real Time Traffic, Remote Control and Map Care

For 2009, the Volvo C30 receives several new standard features, along with a new R-Design Package, available on both the 2.4i and T5, which adds 18-inch alloy wheels, dual Xenon headlamps, colour-coordinated or complimentary skirt kit, rear spoiler and chrome mirror caps, along with power driver’s seat, aluminum inlays, sport pedals, sport instrument dials, two-tone sport seats and, on T5 models, a power passenger seat. The R-Design models include an emblem on the grille and steering wheel, and embossed on the front seats.

An all-new model in 2007, the C30 is based on the S40 sedan and V50 wagon, as well as on the Mazda3 platform. It is available as the 2.4i, with 2.4-litre five-cylinder engine, and as the T5, with turbocharged 2.5-litre five-cylinder. The 2.4i bases with a five-speed manual, the T5 with a close-ratio six-speed manual; both can be optioned to a five-speed automatic transmission.

Features on the 2.4i include 16-inch alloy wheels, air conditioning, keyless entry, front and rear fog lights, heated mirrors with integrated turn signals, "T-Tec" fabric upholstery, 45/45 split-folding rear seatbacks, heated front seats, cruise control, illuminated vanity mirrors, floor mats, outside temperature gauge, auto up/down on all windows, tilt and telescopic wheel, variable intermittent wipers, and CD/MP3 stereo with auxiliary input.

The T5 adds dual-zone automatic climate control, three-spoke leather-wrapped wheel, aluminum inlays, Bluetooth hands-free connectivity, and trip computer.

Dynamically styled, the C30 is the company’s entry in the premium compact segment, and holds its place there very well. Both engines perform well, although some many find that the naturally-aspirated engine is smoother for everyday city driving in this small package. Handling is nimble if a bit bland, but the brakes are good and the buttery-smooth clutch is a Volvo trademark. Roomy for front-seat passengers, the C30 is comfortable in the rear seat but naturally tougher to access than a sedan. Definitely order the cargo cover, as the glass hatch leaves valuables visible to all.

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