2009 Volvo C30 vs. Its Competition

2009 Volvo C30

TheCarConnection.com editors have previously tested all of the competitors for the Volvo C30.

The two most relevant competitors are the MINI Cooper and Volkswagen GTI.

Both are two-door hatchbacks that have sporty yet practical personalities.

The Cooper is the extrovert of the group, seemingly always yelling, "Look at me, I'm cute!" Style aside, the turbocharged Cooper S will run circles around the C30 in terms of outright performance.

The GTI is certainly more Germanic in character, and it handily outperforms the C30 dynamically and in straight-line acceleration.

However, living with the GTI means you'll be seen as the driver of a VW Rabbit econo-car in the eyes of some, which makes it less appealing than the 2009 Volvo C30.

The Audi A3 and TT lead in interior style, with the A3's wagon body style offering greater practicality than the Volvo C30 (interior volume and access to that space).

Both Audis are more expensive than the hatchback Volvo.

The BMW 1-Series is dynamically superior to the Volvo, but it is a completely different and more expensive animal.

The Bimmer is also the only rear-wheel-drive entry in this group.

2009 Volvo C30 2009 Volvo C30Browse Used Listings2009 Audi A32009 Audi A3Browse Used Listings2009 Volkswagen GTI 2009 Volkswagen GTIBrowse Used Listings2008 Audi TT 2-door Roadster Auto 2.0T FrontTrak Angular Front Exterior View2008 Audi TTBrowse Used Listings2008 BMW 1-Series 128i2008 BMW 1-SeriesBrowse Used Listings
Quick Specs
The 2009 Volvo C30 connects "small" and "premium" in most of the right ways in an attractive, high-quality hatchback.
The 2009 Audi A3 is more than a spruced-up VW hatchback, thanks to the fabulous interior, S-tronic transmission, and V-6 bark.
The 2009 Volkswagen GTI is the most conservative-looking of sporty hatches—and a bit pricey for a dressed-up Rabbit—but it redeems itself with the driving experience.
The TT is a little more engaging to drive than before, but it doesn’t stand out in the crowd quite like the original one did when it was new.
The 2008 BMW 1-Series makes a true Bimmer available for under $30,000 (but just barely).
MSRP From    
Gas Mileage    
19 MPG City / 28 MPG Hwy18 MPG City / 30 MPG Hwy21 MPG City / 31 MPG Hwy17 MPG City / 31 MPG Hwy17 MPG City / 28 MPG Hwy
I5 TurboGas I4Gas Turbocharged I4Turbo Gas I4Gas I6
EPA Class    
CompactSmall Station WgnCompactMini-CompactSubcompact
Style Name    
2-Door Coupe Manual4-Door HB MT 2.0T FrontTrak PZEV2-Door HB Manual2-Door Coupe Automatic 2.0T FrontTrak2-Door Coupe 128i SULEV
Front Wheel DriveFront Wheel DriveFront Wheel DriveFront Wheel DriveRear Wheel Drive
Passenger Capacity    
Passenger Doors    
Body Style    
2 Door Coupe4 Door HB2 Door HB2 Door Coupe2 Door Coupe
ManualManual w/ODManual w/ODAutomatic w/ODManual
Detailed Spec Comparison
 2009 Volvo C30 vs. 2009 Audi A32009 Volvo C30 vs. 2009 Volkswagen GTI2009 Volvo C30 vs. 2008 Audi TT2009 Volvo C30 vs. 2008 BMW 1-Series