The Volvo C30 is a stylish compact hatchback that is aimed at premium car shoppers interested in a balance between looks, comfort and performance. The two-door, four-passenger Volvo C30 offers as much as 20 cubic feet of cargo space with the rear row folded forward, and the automobile can be had with the kind of high end safety gear that has become the Swedish automaker's trademark. Full-length side curtain airbags protect occupants front and rear while those riding in the first two positions also benefit from front-seat side airbags and forward airbags as standard equipment. A blind spot monitoring system can be specified with the car as an option.

The Volvo C30 starts out in T5 trim (MSRP $24,950), which comes with Bluetooth connectivity, a CD player with USB support, 17-inch alloy wheels, cruise control, power windows and door locks and adjustable front seats. Moving up to the Volvo C30 T5 R-Design (MSRP $27,450) adds a suspension system that is designed for better handling and road-holding, 18-inch wheels, a more aggressive steering ratio and an exterior trim treatment that screams 'performance.'

Either version of the C30 has access to several different options packages called 'trims' by Volvo. The Premier Plus trim installs LED running lights, a sunroof and power adjustments for the front seats, while the Platinum trim includes each of these features plus a navigation system, a higher quality stereo system and a memory feature for the driver. Heated seats, automatic climate control and rain-sensitive wipers are all available through the selection of the Climate package.

The Volvo C30 comes exclusively with a 2.5-liter, turbocharged five-cylinder engine under the hood. This unit can be relied on to generate 227 horsepower and 236 lb-ft of torque. Front-wheel drive is standard, and buyers can choose between either a six-speed manual transmission or a five-speed automatic. Fuel mileage for the Volvo C30 is rated at 21-mpg city and 30-mpg highway.

A list of cars similar to the C30 includes the 2012 BMW 128i, 2012 Mini Cooper S and 2012 Lexus CT200h.

See more details about the 2012 Volvo C30.