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Goodbye, Volvo C30

After the 2013 model year, you won’t be able to purchase a new Volvo C30 because Volvo is discontinuing the hatchback worldwide. In an email to Inside Line, Volvo Spokesman Jawanza Keita says, “We have made the decision to discontinue C30 production to better position Volvo for the future and the next stages of our model portfolio.”

The automotive press speculates that the C30’s low sales led to its discontinuation. “The C30 was head-turner, but its evocative styling wasn't enough to turn around sluggish sales; appealing to tweens didn't help either,” says Kicking Tires. “Trying to capture the eye of the youth market, Volvo made the C30 the official ride of the ‘Twilight’ saga's Edward character.” Volvo sold 206 C30 models in September 2012, which is a 35 percent decrease compared with the same month a year ago. Since the beginning of the year, the automaker has sold 2,173 C30s, which is a decline of 15.5 percent compared with last year.

“The C30 has never been a volume leader for Volvo,” says Automobile Magazine, who adds that Mini has sold 21,343 Cooper Hardtop models since the beginning of the year. The publication also thinks the C30’s high price contributed to its demise. The base 2013 Volvo C30 starts at $25,500, before destination charges, and reaches $32,850 for the C30 R-Design Platinum trim.

While there’s no word on whether there will be a C30 replacement in the United States, Left Lane News wouldn’t be surprised if Volvo’s U.S. model line shrinks a little more. “With the demise of the C30, it might be only a matter of time until the hatchback’s platform-mate, the C70 convertible, meets a similar fate.”

The C30’s main competitors, including hatchbacks like the Mini Cooper, Volkswagen GTI and Audi A3, make good alternatives, and many cost less than the C30. Starting at $27,270, the A3 is the most expensive model in the bunch, but it also has more cargo space, five seats as opposed to the C30’s four, and reviewers think it is fun to drive. The Mini Cooper and Volkswagen GTI, which start at $20,400 and $23,995, respectively, are also less expensive than the C30. Both are well-liked by critics for their strong engines and sharp handling.

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