The Volvo C30 is a stylish used purchase for anyone who craves a practical coupé. This four-seater lifestyle statement is robustly constructed, comfortable enough to be driven every day, and has reasonable luggage capacity for a vehicle of this class. It is therefore a genuinely desirable alternative to its Germanic rivals.
The fashionable C30 is available with a choice of eight engines. They start with (take a deep breath) the 1.6, 1.8, and 2.0-litre four-cylinders, then progress to the five-cylinder 2.4 and 2.5-litre turbocharged models. Sensible Swedes may also choose a diesel in 1.6, 2.0, or 2.4-litre guise. The most thrilling unit is the 2.5-litre turbocharged petrol, but the 'practical' compromise between performance and economy is the 2.4-litre diesel. This pocket rocket produces 177bhp, hits 60mph in 7.5 seconds, and returns a highly respectable combined average of 45mpg.
Whichever engine you choose it will be perfectly suited to the C30's excellent chassis. There is plenty of traction for enthusiastic drivers and the handling is sporty, responsive, and hugely entertaining. The ride is arguably rather firm and the 'self centring' steering too heavy, but these are small criticisms of an excellent coupé. A used 2007 Volvo C30 2.4-litre diesel costs approximately £14,000.