Volvo C30 (2006 – 2009) Review

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Volvo C30 (2006 – 2009) At A Glance


+Really good looking coupe, on theme of 1800ES and 480. Best with 2.5 turbo engine and 17-inch wheels. Outstanding handling. 2.0D Powershift auto works well.

-Not so good with D5 diesel and Geartronic autobox. Expensive problems with diesels more than three years old.

If the idea was to turn a Ford Focus into a rival for the Audi A3, then Audi must be worried.

First the looks. The C30 isn't just a good looking car, it's exquisite. A lot of people will buy it for the styling alone. With its simple glass rear hatch, it harks back to the 480ES of the 1980s, and the P1800ES before that.

Volvo C30 2006 Road Test


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Satisfaction Index

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Ask Honest John

Volvo C30 needs a need engine - where do I get one?
"My daughter owns a 2008 Volvo C30 1.6 diesel. Our local garage has told us that a shell on the crankshaft has disintegrated and the quickest and cheapest thing to do would be to replace the engine at a cost of £1995. If this is the case, to who and where do we go? "
This is a PSA/Ford 1.6 litre HDI/TDCI. Very common engine. £1995 is reasonable if the engine supplier is a member of If not, be careful. More crooks in the replacement engine business than in prison.
Answered by Honest John
C30 alternatives with decent rear legroom
"I just looked at a Volvo C30 (2008). I very much liked the car and could cope with 2 doors but I found that when I was comfortable in the driver's seat there was very little rear legroom. What alternatives would provide better legroom in a car of generally similar size and price (around £7000)? I also rather like the slightly quirky looks."
Obviously a more upright car. The C30 is based on the Focus, so there will be more rear legroom in a Focus and more still in a C-Max.
Answered by Honest John
Tempted by a Volvo C30 - good idea?
"I'm tempted by the Volvo C30 2.0D Powershift accepting that every few years I might have a big-ish bill with the DPF. Are the engine and transmission reasonably trouble-free otherwise? Alternatively is there anything else like it that you'd recommend? I'm not that keen on the 1 Series and I'd have an A3 if it weren't for the DSG issue."
Ford/PSA's 2.0TDCI/HDI has been quite reliable. Certainly better than VAG's 2.0TDIs. Maybe a Honda Civic 1.8iES or SE with the 5-speed torque converter auto (not the i-shift).
Answered by Honest John
I'm tempted by a little Volvo
"I'm tempted by a Volvo C30 or an S40 to do 8000-10,000 miles per year. But it has to be automatic. Pity they don't do a 1.8 or 2.0 petrol auto. The choice seems to narrow down to a 2.0D Powershitft or a 2.4 petrol Geartronic. Which would you recommend (and ideally why)?"
For 8000-10,0000 a year, neither. Trouble with DPF of diesel. Trouble with fuel economy of 2.4 petrol Geartronic. They might offer a 1.6 Ecoboost with Powershift.
Answered by Honest John

What does a Volvo C30 (2006 – 2009) cost?