The cabin of the Volvo C30 has been designed in a way that puts front-seat occupants far higher up the food chain than those in the back. Being a rear passenger is a fairly thankless task. It isn’t that the rear cabin is small – headroom is tight for the tall, but because there are only two seats, shoulder room is generous, and adults will find enough legroom. Getting in and out is awkward, however.

The front seats tip and slide, but are hard to return to their original position, while the front-seatbelts slide on runners across the door opening, making a trip hazard.

Hilton Holloway

Associate editor
The radical styling has compromised practicality

The boot is poorly sized. The sill is high, the floor shallow and the opening small. Volvo claims boot space is 364 litres with the rear seats up, and that hollows at the sides make it wide enough to swallow a set of golf clubs.

That’s true, but you can’t get a set into the boot in the first place without dropping one of the rear seats. An average pushchair is a squeeze.

Most frustrating is the loadbay cover, which needs to be opened once the tailgate is lifted – it’s a two-part manoeuvre that is frustratingly tricky when weighed down by shopping bags.

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Still, it’s better than early models, which had a flexible vinyl cover secured by two sprung bars, a loose flap and some elastic loops.

Cabin storage elsewhere is inadequate, too. The door pockets are measly, the glovebox is big enough solely for the handbook, and there are just a couple of cubbies in the centre console.

Still, fit and finish are excellent. There are soft-feel finishes to most surfaces and the switchgear feels of genuinely good quality.

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