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QUALITY | 8 out of 10
ample headroom and legroom
struggle to sit in tandem
bucket-style back seats are actually roomy enough to comfortably seat a six-footer
The 2009 C30 is spacious and comfortable enough for most reviewers to pleasantly spend time inside the Volvo.
Car and Driver calls the 2009 Volvo C30 an "easy-wearing runabout for two" with space for two more passengers in the back as long as "their inseam doesn't stretch more than 30 inches." The front bucket seats are firmly bolstered, which may "prompt complaints from the broad beamers among us." Shorter people might find that it seems like an unusually long reach to access the shoulder belt, especially with the seat adjusted forward. Apart from that quirk in the C30, Volvo’s two-door hatch is "a handy little mobile unit, about two inches longer than the VW Rabbit, so it's easy to park."
Observations on the C30's seating run the gamut, indicating that the C30 might fit some, while leaving others uncomfortable. Consumer Guide notes that in front there's "ample headroom and legroom," and the seats "are firm yet comfortable and nicely bolstered for spirited cornering." TheCarConnection.com editors add that the available sunroof reduces headroom significantly.
Automobile says, “The bucket-style back seats are actually roomy enough to comfortably seat a six-footer”—an observation that TheCarConnection.com's editors haven't found true. Other reviewers note that legroom can be cramped in the backseats—especially if the front seats are set all the way back. According to Edmunds, the C30 Volvo provides more interior room than the Audi TT, but adults will find the rear seats "adequate for short journeys," and a pair of six-footers will "struggle to sit in tandem."
"Some of the testers disliked the 2009 Volvo C30's all-glass hatch, which leaves cargo plainly visible from the outside—and no cargo cover is available," warns Consumer Guide Auto. Trunk capacity is modest, and golfers will have problems stowing their clubs, although the rear seats fold down to increase cargo space.
"Folding the seatbacks increases cargo capacity from 12.9 to 20.2 cubic feet," reports Kelley Blue Book. But the 2009 Volvo C30's small and oddly shaped glass hatch restricts loading and unloading. Motor Trend estimates the cargo space to be smaller (8.2 cubic feet) with the seats folded up and larger (30.9 cubic feet) with the seats folded down.
The cabin overall is definitively upscale with high-quality materials and all controls within easy reach. Ride quality might be a little too harsh for some tastes. With the R-Design's stockier wheels and tires, Volvo’s tuning "makes for an always-firm ride with abrupt vertical motions over sharp bumps," says Consumer Guide.
After spending some quality time with the 2009 Volvo C30, TheCarConnection.com’s editors find its cabin roomy for two passengers and a good amount of cargo—provided you've no desire to keep that cargo private. And it's a package that looks anything but cheap.
The 2009 Volvo C30 is a well-crafted automobile with a plush interior that's roomy in front.