Volvo will discontinue the C30 by the end of 2012

Article by Christian A., on October 17, 2012

Volvo will discontinue offering the C30 hatchback by the end of 2012, a spokeswoman has confirmed via email. According to the statement, Volvo now has to reshuffle its lineup in order to get Volvo have a better position for the future. In 2007, Volvo had the launch of the 2008 C30 with hopes that the unusual hatchback would be liked by driving fans and those who are looking for stylish small cars.

For the driving enthusiasts, Volvo released a C30 powered by a standard 2.5-liter turbo-five engine with 227 hp and 236 lb-ft of torque. Volvo claims that it has a top speed of 149 mph. For those in the market for small cars, Volvo played up the large glass liftgate used by the Volvo 1800ES as well as its interior features such as a waterfall-style center stack.

In a statement, Volvo said that the C30 enabled the automaker to get connected with their fans. It also boosted Volvo’s image as a luxury brand. Unfortunately, its sales weren’t that impressive.

The C30 never recorded high volumes. So far in 2012, Volvo had sold only 2173 C30s in the U.S. It was in 2008 that its annual sales peaked with 4299 units sold. This was the second year that the model has been available in the market.

In 2007, sales fell to 4266. It sold 2906 cars in 2010. Last year, 3471 units were sold. In comparison, the Mini Cooper hatchback has sold 21,343 units so far in 2012. Last year, 28,067 units were sold.

Fiat 500, which had a difficult time in finding its niche in the U.S. market, sold 19,769 sales in 2011. One major issue is its price. With a starting price of $26,395 (including destination costs), the 2013 Volvo C30 is more expensive than any of the stylish hatchbacks mentioned above, or performance models such as the Volkswagen GTI. Meanwhile, the range-topping C30 R-Design Platinum has a price tag of $33,745.

Ever since it was launched in late 2009, the Volvo CV30 has had the benefit of experiencing success. Fully utilizing this fact, the brand made big changes on the body panel of the new model in order to allow it to have a new and dynamic style. Volvo though made sure that it would still have the features that made the C30 well-known. Indeed, the front section has been redesigned to make it even more dynamic and just as expressive.

While the bumper has those angled lines, the headlights have been angled in an upward position and face towards the sides. With this combination, it helps highlight the athleticism and speed. It is in the rear section though that has the biggest difference. There are still the features though that many will remember were first seen on the 1800ES classic sports estate, the one released in 1971.

Under this particular model, its main defining feature was its deep glass tailgate. After the 1971 model, this feature was seen again on the SCC concept vehicle that was unveiled during the 2001 Detroit Auto Show. Later it was utilized as well for the C30 Design Concept, the same model first shown in the 2006 Detroit Show. According to the brand, the design language implemented by Volvo was first developed by then Design Director Peter Horbury.

However, this design language has reached its peak when Volvo launched the C30 in 2006. Chief Designer Simon Lamarre reveals that when the brand designed the first C30, they were less formal, somewhat more playful, and even more daring. He adds that the track of the C30 is wider than usual with the wheelbase being long. Meanwhile the window-line angles, he continues, have a nose-down position with the body having a wedge shape.

Chief Lamarre continues by saying that the shoulders start to go upwards to the back and compared to other models of the brand, are broader. Speaking of other models coming from the brand, many of them typically have shoulders that are level and even. Lamarre says that for the C30, the angle has been changed and reveals more movement.

Meanwhile Mr. Abrahamsson shares that Volvo decided to go for a two-door style since it had a more athletic look and its target customers were those who wanted a vehicle styled like a coupe. Further, he adds, the two-door configuration was chosen since these customers generally do not use the back seat so there was really no need to make compromises on the style. Still, he continues, customers who want the practicality offered by having rear doors can also go for the many four-door models that Volvo offers.

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