Volvo airs its small car
Makers of small cars had better look out for the forthcoming Volvo C30. At least that’s the impession you could take from remarks made by the Swedish car maker’s design boss Steve Mattin.
Unveiling the C30 Design Concept at the 2006 Detroit Motor Show, he said Volvo’s aim was “to give the Volvo C30 Design Concept a hefty dose of muscles in a sporty and compact package”. And the concept car was described as a precursor to the production C30. The concept was finished in a two-tone scheme, Quite White and Very Bronze.
The car’s front end features angled headlights and a low, wide grille. Defined wheelarches and the sloping roofline give the C30 a fast silhouette. Curvature through the rear shoulders is very pronounced to give the car a presence far larger than its actual size.
The glass tailgate was inspired by the classic Volvo P1800 ES sports car station wagon.
The interior has individual rear seats with generous legroom making the car a genuine four seater. The rear seats are slightly centred, which gives the passengers an aura of space along with good visibility to the front. “The space between the seats also showcases Volvo’s super-thin, visually floating centre console, bringing it into full view from behind through the glass tailgate,” says Mattin.
But C30 Design Concept was designed for a customer category that mostly uses the front seats only. The luggage space behind the attractive glass tailgate is designed for everyday loads such as briefcases and sports equipment, but can swallow far larger loads if one rear seat or both rear seats are folded flat. At 4240mm in overall length, the C30 Design Concept is 228mm shorter than the Volvo S40, but looks more muscular. The C30 is also 10mm wider – at 1780mm – than the S40.
There’s plenty of muscle under the bonnet. The C30 Design Concept has an inline five-cylinder 2.5-litre turbocharged engine delivering 190kW at 5500rpm and peak torque of 350Nm between 2100 and 5000rpm. The concept has a six-speed manual gearbox (Volvo says a manual box is expected in an athletic car). Volvo says the C30 Design Concept will accelerate to 100km/h in six seconds and has at top speed electronically limited to 250km/h.
Its 19-inch aluminium wheels wear Pirelli Corsa 225/35 R19 tyres. There are four-pot Brembo brakes with aluminium callipers and 330mm ventilated disc rotors front and rear.