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Volvo C30 and V50 DRIVe 2012

14 July 2011

The Volvo C30, available from £14,995 on the road for the 2.0P ES, has attracted a number of changes for the Model Year 12. Day running lights are introduced, located in the lower bumper below the headlamps. Two new colours are introduced into the range, Caspian Blue and Hello Yellow. SE specification is now available with new style 17" 'Spider' wheels and audio streaming becomes available with the Bluetooth option.

On top of a generous level of standard specification, the V50, available from £19,495 for the 2.0P ES, has a number of changes to each of the trim levels which are detailed below:

ES - Gains full body colour co-ordination and silver roof rails. Up to an additional £550 worth of additional benefits.

SE - Gains High Performance audio, rear park assist, leather upholstery, Bluetooth, LED day running lights and chrome bootlid handle. Newly designed 17" alloy wheel Spider now fitted as standard. Up to an additional £2,170 worth of equipment.

SE Lux - Gains integrated satellite navigation, high performance audio, rear park assist, Bluetooth, LED day running lights and chrome bootlid handle. Up to £2850 worth of additional equipment.

R-Design - Gains high performance audio, rear park assist, Bluetooth and LED day running lights. Gaining up to an additional £1685 worth of equipment.

Both the C30 and V50 are equipped with a special set of efficiency-enhancing features and marked with the DRIVe emblem to signal their uprated environmental credentials. Production of these models is currently underway and they are key players in Volvo Car's environmental vision of "DRIVe Towards Zero".

The DRIVe models (available in all trim levels except R-Design) use the same upgraded 1.6 diesel engine available in the D2 but with a number of electronic, mechanical and aerodynamic modifications. The modifications help improve the CO2 emissions and fuel economy from 114g/km to 99g/km and from 65.7mpg to 74.3mpg respectively.

"We've cut another five grams of CO2 compared with the previous 104g/km versions of DRIVe. This means that the C30 and the V50 are at the very top of their respective segments in terms of fuel economy," says Peter Mertens, Senior Vice President Research and Development at Volvo Cars.

"Developments have proceeded swiftly since we presented our first three 119 gram models in Paris in autumn 2008. The fact that we have seven models (C30, S40, V50, S60, V60, V70 and S80) below 120 g/km, and three with emissions below 100 grams, shows that few of our competitors can beat us in the drive towards increasingly eco-efficient cars," he concluded.

These reductions have been brought about by meticulously analysing each of the cars potential for more efficient, more economical driving. Three areas were identified which were:

1. Reduced air resistance:

  • Chassis height reduced by approximately 10 mm to help reduce drag
  • A front spoiler on the V50 which is the same spoiler currently on T5 models
  • Covered radiator grille. Behind the characteristic Volvo grille there is a wind-deflecting panel that provides better aerodynamics inside the engine compartment
  • Wind deflectors in front of the front wheels to steer the airflow
  • Aerodynamically optimised wheels with a unique "Libra" rim. The diamond cut finish adds to the unique design and the large unobstructed area that goes all the way out to the tyre makes the rim look considerably larger than it actually is. The total drag reduction of 10-15% is due to the design of the Libra rim
  • Underbody panels on the Volvo C30 for more efficient airflow under the car
  • A unique rear spoiler has been developed for the Volvo C30 which adds both to the aerodynamics and to the visual appearance
  • New rear bumper on the Volvo C30

2. Lower rolling resistance:

  • All the cars are equipped with a new generation of Michelin tyres with low rolling resistance.

3. More efficient driveline:

  • Gearbox with longer gear ratios for the six speed gearbox
  • Optimised engine cooling, engine management and power steering
  • Transmission oil which creates much lower friction is used in the gearbox
  • Gearchange indicator in the information display to tell the driver the ideal time to change gears
  • Start/Stop technology that allows the engine to stop when the vehicle is at a standstill and automatically restart when required

These changes have meant that Volvo can now offer the V50 as the largest and most versatile sub-100g/km estate car currently on sale in the UK.

The DRIVe models are available on the road from £18,495 for the C30 and £21,995 on the road for the V50 in ES specification. On the road prices for the top SE Lux specification start from £21,245 for the C30 and £24,495 for the V50.

Volvo's DRIVe badge is attached to those models that deliver the best environmental performance in their respective size classes. The DRIVe range has been commended by many publications and in the past, has been 2009's Green Car of the Year from What Car? for the S40 DRIVe with Start/Stop. The C30 DRIVe with Start/Stop was also named Green Car of the Year from

In the UK, these further DRIVe enhancements take on added significance as Volvo Car UK continues its Emissions Equality campaign, which has already been successful in persuading London Mayor Boris Johnson to reconsider the alternative fuel exemptions from the Congestion Charge Zone.

Under the previous rules, hybrid models were exempted from the Charge despite some models having significantly higher CO2 emissions than some petrol and diesel models - a situation Volvo Car UK believed to be unfair. With the new 2011 legislation, all vehicles with emissions under 100g/km are exempted from the charge. The C30 and V50 DRIVe now qualify for Congestion Charge exemption under these new rules, potentially saving London-based owners more than £2,500 per year.

Volvo Cars' commitment to environmental care extends beyond better fuel economy and driving down CO2 emissions. With its Emission Equality campaign, Volvo Car UK is calling for an automotive air pollutants environmental label to sit alongside the already established CO2 label displayed in new and used car showrooms.

Volvo Cars aims to put air quality at the forefront of peoples' minds on a continued basis and has also launched an iPhone application that gives information on complete emissions of any vehicle to properly inform new/used vehicle purchasers.

Volvo Cars is also investigating range extenders, hybrids and full battery propulsion. The C30 Battery Electric Vehicle has started full production and is available on a lease scheme in certain European countries. A V60 plug-in hybrid diesel is due for launch in 2012.

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