2011 Volvo C30 vs. Its Competition

2011 Volvo C30 2-door Coupe Auto Angular Front Exterior View
Bengt Halvorson Bengt Halvorson Deputy Editor

Especially with its new face for 2011, the Volvo C30 still looks fresh and different from any other hatchback on the market.

The most obvious rival to the C30 is the MINI Cooper; the turbocharged MINI Cooper S offers more satisfying performance and a sprightlier driving feel, while its interior is also more useful and real-world spacious.

On the more sophisticated, refined side there's the BMW 1-Series, which is dynamically superior to the C30 but can be quite pricey when well-equipped.

The Volkswagen GTI was redesigned last year and offers a slightly more exciting driving feel than before, though it still looks almost exactly like the affordable Golf.

That's the same issue with the MazdaSpeed3, which looks similar to the Mazda3 but offers a rorty turbocharged engine and friskier driving feel while still reserving enough comfort for day-to-day driving.

The Audi A3 remains a more exciting, distinctive choice with an especially spacious, versatile interior layout and available all-wheel drive, though to some people, it's a station wagon.

2011 Volvo C30 2-door Coupe Auto Angular Front Exterior View2011 Volvo C30Browse Used Listings2011 Audi A3 4-door HB S tronic 2.0T FrontTrak Premium Angular Front Exterior View2011 Audi A3Browse Used Listings2011 BMW 1-Series 2-door Convertible 135i Angular Front Exterior View2011 BMW 1-SeriesBrowse Used Listings2011 Mazda Mazdaspeed32011 Mazda MAZDASPEED3Browse Used Listings2011 Volkswagen GTI 2-door HB Man Front Exterior View2011 Volkswagen GTIBrowse Used Listings2011 MINI Cooper2011 MINI CooperBrowse Used Listings
Quick Specs
8.0
The 2011 Volvo C30 provides a stylish look and feel, but that means plenty of sacrifices inside.
8.0
The 2011 Audi A3 is stylish, refined, and versatile—and nearly as good for the city as for the highway.
8.0
Power, style, and attainable luxury are all part of the 2011 1-Series' repertoire, though the appearance and BMW's fourth-gen iDrive may not be everyone's cup of tea.
8.4
7.8
A punchy turbo engine, crisp handling, and a dual-clutch gearbox give the 2011 Volkswagen GTI a performance profile that's anything but stodgy.
8.6
The 2011 MINI Cooper/Convertible runs the gamut from smart econobox to thrusty sports convertible--all with unmatched driving feel and expertly interpreted styling heritage.
MSRP From     
$24,700$27,270$29,450N/A$23,695$19,400
Gas Mileage     
21 MPG City / 30 MPG Hwy21 MPG City / 42 MPG Hwy18 MPG City / 28 MPG Hwy21 MPG City / 32 MPG Hwy25 MPG City / 37 MPG Hwy
Engine     
Turbocharged Gas I5Gas I4Gas I6N/AGas Turbocharged I4Gas 4-Cyl
EPA Class     
CompactSmall Station WgnSubcompactN/ACompactMinicompact
Style Name     
2-Door Coupe Manual4-Door HB Manual FrontTrak 2.0T Premium2-Door Coupe 128i SULEVN/A2-Door HB Manual2-Door Coupe
Drivetrain     
Front Wheel DriveFront Wheel DriveRear Wheel DriveN/AFront Wheel DriveFront Wheel Drive
Passenger Capacity     
454N/A54
Passenger Doors     
N/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/A
Body Style     
2 Door Coupe4 Door HB2 Door CoupeN/A2 Door HB2 Door Coupe
Transmission     
ManualManual w/ODManualN/AManualManual