Volvo C30 Polestar: A (moderately) special edition with 250 hp

2013 Volvo C30 Polestar special editionConservative Swedish carmaker Volvo recently shocked the world with the S60 Polestar, an electric blue all-wheel drive sports sedan with 508 hp. Unfortunately, that car was just an engineering exercise for Volvo and aftermarket parts company Polestar. The S60 may have been a one-off, but Volvo is bringing a bright blue performance car to production. Meet the C30 Polestar.

As the name implies, the C30 Polestar is based on Volvo’s compact C30 hatchback. With a rear end that evokes the 1960s P1800ES, the C30 was intended to be a fashion item. That hasn’t been working out, so Volvo decided to give the C30 some amphetamines.

The C30 Polestar has a tuned 2.5-liter turbocharged inline-five, producing 350 horsepower and 273 pound-feet of torque. That’s an increase of 23 hp and 37 lb-ft over a stock C30 T5.

Volvo did not release any performance numbers, but it did say that the C30 Polestar will have the same EPA mileage ratings as the regular C30: 21 mpg city and 29 mpg highway.

For the C30 Polestar to be taken seriously, it will need to do 0 to 60 mph in the low six second range. The Volkswagen GTI, the benchmark for front-wheel drive hot hatchbacks, does it in 6.1 seconds; a stock C30 takes 7.1 seconds.

To improve handling, the C30 Polestar gets the “sport chassis” from Volvo’s R Design line. That means 30 percent more spring stiffness and a 10 percent quicker steering ratio.

To distinguish the Polestar from lesser models, Volvo added the R Design’s body kit and some new matte black wheels. It’s topped off by that hard-to-miss exterior hue, which Volvo calls Rebel Blue.

The Polestar also comes loaded with a sunroof, power seats, HID headlights with LED daytime running lights, and Volvo’s Keyless Drive. A 650-watt, 10-speaker sound system and a navigation system are optional.

The C30 Polestar seems like a decent bit of kit, but it could have been so much more. Like the S60 Polestar, the first super-C30 was a one-off concept. That car featured 415 hp and all-wheel drive packed into the body kit from a Swedish Touring Car.

The production C30 Polestar isn’t that extreme, but it will be almost as exclusive. Volvo will only build 250 of the cars, one for each horsepower they produce.

Normally, exclusivity is expensive, but the C30 Polestar will only cost $32,445, only $1,000 more than a loaded C30 T5 R Design with the Premium Plus package. Buyers get everything the latter has to offer, plus the extra 23 hp. That’s not a bad deal for a potential collectible.

The C30 Polestar may not be as crazy as either of the Polestar concepts, but it’s a step in the right direction. Someday, Polestar could become Volvo’s equivalent of BMW M or Mercedes-Benz AMG.

Cars

Lamborghini transforms the Urus SUV into a dual-purpose race car

Breaking stereotypes and tradition, Lamborghini has turned the Urus SUV into a race car that's equally at home on a paved track and on a dirt trail. The ST-X concept gets bigger air intakes, a full roll cage, and center-locking alloy…
Cars

Our favorite fuel-efficient cars are as frugal as they are fun

You don't need to opt for a hybrid or an all-electric ride in order to achieve good fuel economy. These vehicles pack both performance and style, whether you're in the market for a luxury sedan or a game-changing pickup truck.
Cars

From Rolls-Royce to Lamborghini, these are the most expensive cars in the world

If you recently discovered an oil reserve in your backyard, you probably have some extra cash to spend. Look no further, because we’ve rounded up the most expensive cars in the world.
Cars

BMW’s 2020 M340i will show off mix of tech and luxury at the Los Angeles show

The 2020 3 Series represents the seventh generation of BMW's bread-and-butter luxury sedan. Where previous generations emphasized the driving experience, the 2020 3 Series focuses more on tech than ever before.
Digital Trends Live

DT Daily: Waymo’s driverless cars, ‘Fallout 76’ tips, and Racella

In today's episode of DT Daily, we discuss Waymo's foray into the ridesharing sector, along with various tips for making the most of the recently launched Fallout 76. We also sit down with singer Racella to chat about her new EP, Waves.
Cars

Want to keep connected on the road? Here are 5 ways to add Bluetooth to your car

The best way to make an old ride feel young again is to bring it up speed with the 21st century. Here's how to properly add Bluetooth to your vehicle, via independent kits, vehicle adapters, or aftermarket head units.
Cars

Many adults believe fully self-driving cars are already traversing U.S. highways

The American Automobile Association tested cars with features such as lane-keeping and adaptive cruise control and found them lacking in real-world conditions. Forty percent of surveyed U.S. adults think self-driving cars exist now.
Cars

Jeep’s outdoorsy Gladiator pickup truck bares it all ahead of schedule

Jeep will introduce the long-promised Wrangler-based pickup truck at the 2018 Los Angeles Auto Show. Named Gladiator, the model was designed to conquer the great outdoors, not for the construction site.
Cars

The hamster-friendly 2020 Kia Soul will rock out at the Los Angeles Auto Show

Kia has released a teaser image to preview the next Soul. Scheduled to make its debut at the 2018 Los Angeles Auto Show, the 2020 Soul will keep the outgoing model's boxy proportions but it will wear a sharper design.
Cars

2020 Toyota Corolla sedan aims to offer sharper handling, better tech

The 2020 Toyota Corolla sedan gets the same upgrades as the recently-introduced Corolla hatchback, including a firmer foundation, new engine, and more tech features. Will that be enough to keep the long-lived Corolla nameplate relevant?
Cars

Startup Rivian exits stealth mode with a bold promise to electrify off-roaders

Electric car startup Rivian has finally turned off stealth mode and provided details about what it's been working on since 2009. It will build battery-powered off-roaders instead of taking on Tesla and others in the luxury EV segment.
Cars

Honda will squeeze another model into its SUV lineup at the Los Angeles show

Honda will introduce a new SUV with a familiar nameplate at the 2018 Los Angeles auto show. It envisioned the 2019 Passport as a five-seater alternative to the eight-seater Pilot. The two models will share a platform and many tech features.
Cars

Uber rolls out rewards program that lets its most loyal riders lock in prices

Uber launched a new loyalty program today called Uber Rewards. It offers frequent riders credits to Uber Eats, car upgrades, and the ability to lock in prices on their most traveled routes.
Cars

The world’s first 3D-printed titanium wheels are so intricate they look fake

HRE Performance Wheels and GE Additive have teamed up to create the world's first 3D-printed titanium wheels. They are not only impressively durable, but extremely lightweight as well.