The 2011 Volvo C30 is a distinct-looking, two-door hatchback that is aesthetically pleasing but relatively expensive for an economy car. The C30 has a controlled and supple ride according to reviewers. Other hatchbacks deliver more fun and more value, however, such as the highly regarded 2011 Volkswagen Golf (Base MSRP: $17,995 to $19,755) and 2011 Mazda3 (Base MSRP: $15,800 to $23,010). The only changes to the 2011 Volvo C30 are cosmetic changes to the exterior. Otherwise, the C30 is identical to the prior model years. For more information, see our report on the 2008 Volvo C30.
Fuel economy for the 2011 Volvo C30 is mediocre. The Environmental Protection Agency gives the 2011 Volvo C30's 2.5-liter, turbocharged four-cylinder a 21 mpg city/30 mpg highway/24 mpg combined rating when paired with the five-speed automatic. The six-speed manual performs similarly, save for a one mile per gallon reduction in highway mileage.
The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety awards the 2011 Volvo C30 its Top Safety Pick. This indicates that the C30 has the highest possible rating of Good for front-, side- and rear-impact occupant protection, as well as for roof strength. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has not tested the 2011 Volvo C30.
Volvos are renowned for their dedication to safety and the C30 expectedly comes with a host of standard safety equipment. This includes front airbags, full-length side curtain airbags, traction control, electronic stability control and seats with whiplash protection.
The base MSRP for the C30 is $24,600 for the T5 model and $26,950 for the sporty looking R-Design trim.
The 2011 Volvo C30 receives cosmetic updates, but not much else, for this model year. The editors say the C30 has "style and comfort in spades" but that rivals have a more engaging driving experience.
Review: 2011 Volvo C30, Editors of Edmunds.com
ConsumerReports.org rates most economy cars, including the Volvo C30, on many attributes and provides for easy comparison among different models. Reliability data is provided when available.
Review: New Cars: Small Cars, Editors of ConsumerReports.org
3. Insurance Institute for Highway Safety
The IIHS names the 2011 Volvo C30 as a Top Safety Pick. The C30 scores the highest possible rating for front-, side-, and rear-impact occupant protection, as well as for rollover roof strength.
Review: Midsize Moderately Priced Cars, Editors of the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety
Fuel efficiency is middling for the 2011 Volvo C30. The EPA-estimated rating is 24 mpg in combined driving with both the automatic and manual transmissions. Other cheaper hatchbacks fare better.
Review: 2011 Volvo C30, Editors of FuelEconomy.gov
Many links to expert sources can be found here in our last full report of the Volvo C30, which covers the 2008 model year. The C30 has only seen minor updates since then, so these findings are still applicable.
Review: 2008 Volvo C30, Editors of ConsumerSearch.com