"Correcting CNET"4.5 starson by jonasaukerland
Pros: price, european delivery, pep
Cons: fuel economy, lack of integrated bluetooth
Summary: I just purchased a C30 last weekend and will be picking it up in Europe this fall. I test drove both the 1.0 and the 2.0 with the automatic and manual transmissions respectively. Here's what I found:
Version 1.0 - from the rubber bumpers, cheesy customized interior finishes, and automatic transmission this car was not very impressive. The transmission seemed to resist taking advantage of a pretty powerful engine. The interior was cheesy and uninspired (though I have to admit that some of this is Volvo's rather questionable decision to send each dealer a 1.0 with a big Swedish flag roof and metallic blue interior paint finishes).
Version 2.0 - Sitting in this car was like sitting in an entirely different world when compared to the 1.0. The sound system is truly amazing...especially for a car in this price rage. But I do have to correct the CNET review.
When I built my 2.0 to order, I learned that the American C30s will not have integrated bluetooth in the traditional sense. It's going to be a dealer add-on...and a cheesy one at that. They're just repurposing a very ugly Motorola kit and bludgeoning your dashboard with a cheap plastic button. The European versions have the integration, but you'll not get this feature State-side.
And the manual transmission and sports suspension made a huge difference driving the car. It was the most fun I've had driving a sub $30k in my life...and by fun I mean a very nice balance of pep and interior luxury.
Finally, I decided to purchase the car through Volvo's Overseas Delivery Program. Check it out.