Swedespeed Driven: 2011 Volvo C30 R-Design
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    1. #1

      Swedespeed Driven: 2011 Volvo C30 R-Design



      In its few years out on the market, the Volvo C30 has always been a machine of mixed signals. On the one hand itís quite attractive, fairly roomy, and works great as a city car with small dimensions and great visibility, especially through the huge rear glass. But on the other hand, itís steering is overboosted and slow, its soft suspension and bouncy, short wheelbase are at odds with one another, and it has never been taken seriously as a sports coupe with space. At first we thought its 2011 refresh was a classic Hollywood lesson: a nice new nose wonít change oneís questionable personality. But then a new R-Design version was announced, and with it came promises of something more...

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    3. #2
      Member inteller's Avatar
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      huh? after reading this article I just went and configured an S40 R-design 6-spd manual
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    4. #3
      Quote Originally Posted by inteller View Post
      huh? after reading this article I just went and configured an S40 R-design 6-spd manual
      They probably haven't changed it yet. MY2011 Change Points - Volvo of North America

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      Member Blurry's Avatar
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      More reason to by a GTi.
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    7. #5
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      Steering is overboosted?

      IPD had a C30 project car of which they tweaked the steering!

      "The fully adjustable KW coil-over suspension provides 2 inches of ride height adjustment and 12-way rebound damping adjustment allowing a wide range of setup options for varying conditions. A rear anti-sway bar from IPD enhances the C30's crisp handling balance with just a bit more oversteer on tap for extra fun in the twisties and on the track."

      Does the C30 R design steering differ from the IPD model?

    8. #6
      Moderator Shomare's Avatar
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      Gets serious?! It's a shame that the C30 has been relegated to luke warm hatch rather than "hot hatch". Would it be so much to ask for Volvo to have incorporated the Focus RS setup as an offering for a truly improved C30 R?

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      Hello

      Do you mean the Revoknuckle or the whole RS (Volvo) engine and differential package?

      Revoknuckle is pure Ford so given the impending sale, I doubt they would licence it.

      Volvo can't do a genuine R model now due to average fleet fuel consumption.

      But there is a way round this via dealer installed ECU upgrades approved by Volvo (Polestar, K-Pax and Heico)

    10. #8
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      "Optional sports chassis
      The optional sports chassis (also available together with R-Design) has been modified in several areas. The steering is more precise owing to the installation of stiffer bushings. The steering ratio is lower, giving 10 percent faster response to steering wheel input. Spring stiffness has been increased by no less than 30 percent in order to improve the car's poise in enthusiastic driving. The dampers are also stiffer and the exclusive mono-tube technology builds up pressure much more quickly. The roll stabilizers are stiffer to reduce any leaning tendency when cornering.


      The new sports chassis makes the C30 a better-balanced and more agile car. Road contact is more distinct and feedback from the wheels is faster and clearer, promoting a more alert feeling while driving. This is something that also benefits safety."

      and

      "R-Design version
      The C30 is also available in an R-Design version featuring a redesigned front and rear. The body kit is colour-coordinated with the rest of the body, giving the impression that the car has been lowered more than the actual 10 mm reduction in ride height. The C30 R-Design is also equipped with five-spoke Cratus wheels that are the hallmark of the R-Design range. The interior is available with dramatic new black upholstery as an alternative."

      Both from Jun 17, 2010 | ID:33266
      Volvo C30 - model year 2011
      https://www.media.volvocars.com/glob...?mediaid=33266

      So sports chassis has a different steering setup to the standard cars Stev.

      Given this basis or from this, a K-Pax, Heico or Poelstar approved map developing cicra 300bhp gives you the C30R via dealer installed Volvo approved ECU maps. Those cars wouldnt be included in Volvo's corportate average fleet fuel consumption.

      Non-AWD means torque steering and front end traction is a risk especially in the absense of a revoknuckle setup.

    11. #9
      Moderator Sue Esponte's Avatar
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      Nice write-up. It seems like someone should be able to up the HP on this engine quite easily. Isn't the 2.5T basically the same engine that puts out 300hp in the P2R? Now, granted, 300hp to the front wheels isn't optimal but the parts should be readily available to get at least 250hp out of it without creating too much of a torque-steer monster and without crazy mods...no? It's too bad all of the other models are getting autos for 2011. I understand the reasoning but it's still too bad.

      -Eric

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      Quote Originally Posted by VolvoGoteborg View Post
      Non-AWD means torque steering and front end traction is a risk especially in the absense of a revoknuckle setup.
      Would a supercharger not help compensate for the absence of the revoknuckle? Having extra thrust at low gearing with a good set of sticky rubber would do the trick. Directional steering is another option not mentioned.

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      Stu, any chance you or any of the other vortex folks could find out more about the upgraded steering package? As you mention in your write up, the stock steering is a weakness that I'd love to be able to upgrade with OEM parts. I've managed to address every other stock issue with suspension and power upgrades. I've asked every Volvo tuner I can about it and none have responded with any info. Cheers.

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      Quote Originally Posted by Sue Esponte View Post
      Nice write-up. It seems like someone should be able to up the HP on this engine quite easily. Isn't the 2.5T basically the same engine that puts out 300hp in the P2R? Now, granted, 300hp to the front wheels isn't optimal but the parts should be readily available to get at least 250hp out of it without creating too much of a torque-steer monster and without crazy mods...no? It's too bad all of the other models are getting autos for 2011. I understand the reasoning but it's still too bad.

      -Eric
      Power's pretty easy to upgrade in the C30. Between my upgrades (Rica Stage 3, 3" DP, 2.5" exhaust) I figure I'm somewhere around 270-280 hp / 290-300 lb ft torque).
      Handling is also easy.
      Steering is the bitch, because no tuner seems to want to tackle it. I could really use that 10% reduction.
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    15. #13
      Senior Member Johann's Avatar
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      Quote Originally Posted by VolvoGoteborg View Post
      Volvo can't do a genuine R model now due to average fleet fuel consumption.

      While putting guzzling GT T6's in almost each and every model.

      Just bring back the 5 cylinder plus a manual transmission. RS version preferred.

    16. #14
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      Yes I referring to the Revoknuckle system. While Ford doesn't own Volvo anymore, that is recent history so no excuses.

      Could have been done and would have changed the character of the car completely.

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      The C30R was completed some time ago based on the phase 1 C30. 350bhp and AWD.

      So generally, the RNC 5 cylinder 2.5 T developing 300bhp+ is available. Ford took the RNC block and fitted S60R internals.

      It isnt just the T6 weighing the corporate average. Even Ford needed to restrict sales volumes of the RS and they make small Fiesta and Ka models too

    18. #16
      Senior Member Johann's Avatar
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      No they didn't. They expected to sell 7-8000 RS's but made much more than that. I believe they are currently topping 12000. Extended production until end of this month afaik. Huge succes in the UK btw.

      Even a 300 HP C30 without AWD would do well. Little effort needed. The RS's platform designation is C307 btw..
      Last edited by Johann; 07-07-2010 at 10:15 AM.

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      Ford would have to keep an eye on RS volumes compared to the rest of the range they are selling.

      So, ask the question. If the RNC 300bhp engine is complete (Ford use a different turbo to the S60R) then why is Volvo not launching the C30R FWD with Revoknuckle or AWD? How does the Polestar Concept being based on the phase 2 C30 fit into this (if the car is cancelled). C30R is finished. Development work complete. Minimal cost to launch....

      Hmm.......

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      Also factor in the move and comprehensive engineering time and focus to make the S60 and V60 the sporty cars they are plus the fact those models have a 300bhp T6 AWD..... It isnt like the C30R is alien to the brand direction. Not was it when the C30R project started....

    21. #19
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      I know this is blasphemy to say here at Swedespeed but the lack of a true performance variant of the C30 contributed to a loss of my enthusiasm for the car. Couple that with the redesigned front end (blah) and a sale to the Chinese and I've all but given up on ever owning one.

      Instead, I'm keeping an eye on what the blueoval has to offer in the upcoming 2012 Focus. Lots of rumors about a RS like variant coming to our shores (finally). If it's a true performer, I'll be in a hurry to get one in my driveway ASAP.

    22. #20
      Junior Member cdauerer's Avatar
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      Quote Originally Posted by VolvoGoteborg View Post
      Also factor in the move and comprehensive engineering time and focus to make the S60 and V60 the sporty cars they are plus the fact those models have a 300bhp T6 AWD..... It isnt like the C30R is alien to the brand direction. Not was it when the C30R project started....
      Of course it is doable. It is a lack of risk taking that is the cause.
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    23. #21
      Senior Member Johann's Avatar
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      Quote Originally Posted by VolvoGoteborg View Post
      Ford would have to keep an eye on RS volumes compared to the rest of the range they are selling.

      So, ask the question. If the RNC 300bhp engine is complete (Ford use a different turbo to the S60R) then why is Volvo not launching the C30R FWD with Revoknuckle or AWD? How does the Polestar Concept being based on the phase 2 C30 fit into this (if the car is cancelled). C30R is finished. Development work complete. Minimal cost to launch....

      Hmm.......
      Oh but it has been minimal cost to launch since 2004, the year Volvo started producing most of their 5 cylinder short blocks fully RNC prepared. The B5204T5, B5244T5 and also the B5254T4 blocks are only 4 holes and a crank pan away from being RNC. The head is a similar story. It's all there and nothing new to develop.

      Polestar's C30 PCP unfortunately was never build with Volvo production in mind. It was a showcase of Polestar's craftsmanship. It used an RS block yes which is nothing more than a B5254Tx RNC With some new developments. Afaik SkŲvde is even producing that engine.

      So.. Volvo could have offered a 2.0 5 cylinder also. If Volvo hadn't fallen asleep some 8 years ago this engine could have been on par with the competitions 4 cylinder developments. In other words, 2.5T power out of 2 ltr.

    24. #22
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      Quote Originally Posted by Shomare View Post
      Yes I referring to the Revoknuckle system. While Ford doesn't own Volvo anymore, that is recent history so no excuses.

      Could have been done and would have changed the character of the car completely.
      Even the Revoknuckle suspension is inferior to the double wishbone in FWD setup, and Volvo doesn't need Ford to put double wishbone into their cars.

      Btw, Renault has put something similar to Revoknuckle into their R26 hot hatch, but still - double wishbone is the best you can get for FWD. Regarding the open diff - Quaife anyhow makes them for M66 gearbox, so all Volvo has to do is start ordering them..

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      Re "So.. Volvo could have offered a 2.0 5 cylinder also. If Volvo hadn't fallen asleep some 8 years ago this engine could have been on par with the competitions 4 cylinder developments. In other words, 2.5T power out of 2 ltr"

      Whilst making sense from an economies of scale point of view, it is unfortunate that Volvo had to drop their own RN 4 cylinders and instead adopt the Ford Sigma 1.6 and the Ford-Mazda MZR 1.8 and 2.0. I'm sure like many Volvo fans I would have rather seen the P1 range use Volvo's 4 cylinders (plus see the D4 and D6 launched!).

      Anyway, that's the past now and Volvo now has a new 2.0 co-developed Ford-Volvo DI unit. Don't underestimate Volvo's involvement in the whole Ecoboost project including the V6 (which Volvo will never use). However, what doesnt make sense is why the SI6 DI is sooooo delayed.

      Volvo does now have a 2.0 producing 240bhp with better fuel consumption than the 2.5 T. So there's the engine you mention they are missing.

      You have a 2.5T output out of a 2.0 4 just as Magnus Jonsson says.

    26. #24
      Senior Member Johann's Avatar
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      Quote Originally Posted by VolvoGoteborg View Post

      You have a 2.5T output out of a 2.0 4 just as Magnus Jonsson says.
      Yes only now and not a 5 cylinder. Added to that, first 2.0T's 203 hp reached the market and from what I read and hear it is a nice engine but not a real replacement for the 2.5T which still comes with a much wider torque band. 2.0T only "starts" near 2K RPM where the 2.5T starts 500 to even 700 rpm sooner.
      Added to that, and I must say the engine's are pretty new, the real life consumption is pretty much equal to the 2.5T.
      From a development point of view the 2.5T as it is should have been near 260 HP by now, the "former" HPT over 300 only reached this level in Ford's hand apparently.
      The 3.2 ltr NA.. Rather pathetic as it is.
      The 3.0 T6 is even 30-50 HP short for what it is. From a development point of view these engine's should be capable of developing well over 100 hp per liter.

      The new 4 cylinder no matter how much effort Volvo put in to it will become a future deal breaker in the more upscale models. It will make Volvo lose the premium batch.
      I really hope someone over at Volvo will wake up, they have been sleeping for to long now. I mean.. naughty without a manual gearbox is like John Wayne shooting with a transparent plastic pink water gun.

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      >Yes only now and not a 5 cylinder.

      Correct. Ford is late to the DI party but oh what woes the early entrants have had! I'd rather Volvo's tech was a little later to the market but was better engineering and avoided problems of the early adopters.

      Regarding the 5 cylinder, Volvo was very unique in offering the 5 cylinder in the 850 in the first place when everyone else did and does get on with having 4 cylinders and 6 cylinders. They have been alone in the 5 cylinder party since 1992.

      The 2.0T 5 cylinder did reach 200bhp but the 2.0 DI 4 will have better fuel consumption. It's DI so that's a given of the technology.


      >Added to that, first 2.0T's 203 hp reached the market and from what I read and hear it is a nice engine but not a real replacement for the 2.5T which still comes with a much wider torque band. 2.0T only "starts" near 2K RPM where the 2.5T starts 500 to even 700 rpm sooner.

      We need graphs of each to compare and then the real comparison comes from driving each back to back. Maybe neglible difference in reality.

      >Added to that, and I must say the engine's are pretty new, the real life consumption is pretty much equal to the 2.5T.

      Hmm.... DI offers better consumption so why hang onto the 5?

      >From a development point of view the 2.5T as it is should have been near 260 HP by now, the "former" HPT over 300 only reached this level in Ford's hand apparently.

      Well the 2.5T has been at 250, 275bhp before in R form so Volvo has already been there. The R had 300bhp anf Ford struggled to get the engine to 300bhp before coming back to Volvo asking for help! Volvo had originally offered to do the 300bhp RS (RNC) engine for Ford. But, Ford wanted to do it and then couldnt get past 275bhp. So, only then did they ask Volvo for help. Ford's RS press releases make it sound like they did sooooo much bespoke design for the RS. That's rubbish, they adopted Volvo parts which were "new" to Ford but simply Volvo's efforts!

      >The 3.2 ltr NA.. Rather pathetic as it is.

      I've heard similar complaints given the litreage, it should be more powerful.

      The 3.0 T6 is even 30-50 HP short for what it is. From a development point of view these engine's should be capable of developing well over 100 hp per liter.

      I dont disagree that the new T6 should be 350bhp but should also be DI. That version is completed already.

      >The new 4 cylinder no matter how much effort Volvo put in to it will become a future deal breaker in the more upscale models. It will make Volvo lose the premium batch.

      I totally disagree. Volvo was unique in having the 5 cylinder. Everyone else got along fine with 4s and 6s. So why is Volvo dropping the 5 and comforming with what everyone else is doing going to somehow drastically affect Volvo's image? BMW and Merc are launching 3 cylinders too!!! Even in the C-class and 3 series. Consumers need to adapt to judging the driving experience and performance and not relying on now outdated judgements based on cylinder number and litreage. Who thought the 1.6D would work in the V70 and S80. Press seem to think in reality it works a treat with great fuel consumption as a result.

      Volvo loosing the 5s will make them loose their premium image but BMW and Merc selling bucket loads of 4 cylinder variants is fine? Come on Johann, this makes no sense. We all love the 5 cylinder (Volvo accoustic engineers hold it and the V8 as their best sounding engines) but with DI and the drive for fuel consumption, we have to move on. The Redblock had to retire too and there were complaints then when the N series pushed them out.

      >I really hope someone over at Volvo will wake up, they have been sleeping for to long now. I mean.. naughty >without a manual gearbox is like John Wayne shooting with a transparent plastic pink water gun.

      I know there are some petrol-head lovers of the manual box but the volumes sold just dont simply justify it. The desire expressed on forums, doesnt match what actually happens at dealers. With higher volumes, Volvo could soon give manuals to satisfy the low volume sales from enthusiasts and avoid this backlash. With the adoption across the board of Powershift the question still remains if the manual option sales volumes justifies building it.

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      One also needs to add to all this the background at Volvo and an explanation for the patchy approach. The reality is Ford's on-off-on-off sales situation damaged product planning abilities. Volvo couldnt neatly plan engine lineups with this uncertainty. The 4, 5 and 6 cylinder Volvo DI units were cancelled in 2000. Then Ford made Volvo drop the Volvo 4s. Volvo already knew in 2000 that the 5s needed an upgrade in fuel consumption. They had it, DI and the ISG and Ford cancelled both! Pathetic! The D6 was complete! Ford cancelled. The N3 was upgraded to the SI6 but for some reason it wasnt DI. Bit odd that. No budget to make the SI5 etc. So the upper engines are SI6 and Volvo and then the 4s all come from Ford. Not good. Eventually Ford gets on (catching up with Volvo) with DI and ropes Volvo in for the 1.6 DI and the 2.0 DI

      So, keep the 2.5T soldiering on or launch the more efficient 2.0DI 240bhp? It's a no brainer.

      I love the fact Volvo now has its own 2.0 D3 5 cylinder. That's a short cut via restroking to what everyone else is doing with a 2.0 4 cylinder.

      I look forward to Volvo being able to fully plan and develop its own powertrains again under Geely. NB, they have no engines they can force on Volvo

      The 2.5T then appeared in more markets for the V70 and S80. The new 2.0 DI will replace it. A traditional V70 with a 5 cylinder petrol

      "4 cylinders arent premium" is a situation everyone faces but Volvo is no worse off.

      So if you walk from a 4 cylinder Volvo because it isnt a 5, what you gonna get? A 4 cylinder Audi, Merc or BMW??

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      points re 2000, DI and ISG have been made elsewhere on this site in other discussions but other people. But, I've also heard them from Swedish sources directly

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      Quote Originally Posted by VolvoGoteborg View Post

      So if you walk from a 4 cylinder Volvo because it isnt a 5, what you gonna get? A 4 cylinder Audi, Merc or BMW??
      No, a 6 cylinder Audi, Merc or BMW. You have to have high-end engine(s) in this class even if you are not making big money out of it, this is part of image making. You don't have to chase the Germans for each HP they add, but you cannot afford to stay too much behind either..

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      ...and Volvo has 6 cylinders even in the S60 now!!

      I disagree that not having the 5 cylinder will break many Volvo sales deals...I mean what else are people going to buy to get their "5 cylinder"

      BMW and Merc dont offer them. (audi has the TT RS with the unusual choice of a standalone 5 cylinder engine just for that. As if VW Group can follow and pay for any whimsical idea that comes along. Their 5 cylinder isnt a broadly available across their range). The real premium contenders dont have 5s (BMW and Merc).

    32. #30
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      Volvo never reached 300 HP with their R's.. 285 was about as high as they could get. I know from personal experience they put a tremendous amount of effort in denying those facts.
      Better said the engine never reached it's torque spec in a P2 car. Maybe in a test lab it did. (At one or two occasions..)

      Not offering a manual because the numbers don't support such a decision is bull. If Volvo were smart enough to develop an engine with a manual gearbox which actually fits a newly designed chassis they would have.

      There is plenty market for manual transmissions if you want. Volvo doesn't want to because they can't so they come up with excuses.

      Why sell diesels with manual transmissions (and AWD)? Because there is no market for manuals?
      Why sell practically ever other engine with manual? Because there is no market for manuals?
      Why offer, with some models, manual only in one model and AT only in another while using the same engine and practically the same chassis?

      I think someone over at Volvo was stupid enough to commit to some killer contract from Aisin Warner.
      They'll probably be selling GT's for the next decade or so.

      Now if Volvo could come up with a good functioning modern automated gearbox it wouldn't be so bad and they might get away with it but the way Volvo is acting now with their top models is way below par. They might smell premium but their GT will be like a huge fence and premium is on the other side of that fence.

      Back to the DI stuff, why DI? Maybe it is good for initial sales but once the warranty expires the customer is left with the messed up engine, repairs will be through the roof and the first conclusion after that is to not buy a Volvo again. The DI is an ugly engine. A technological nightmare.
      The Volvo/Ford DI in particular is one ugly mofo.. Praise the man who invented the plastic engine cover because underneath it looks like they haven't finished the design of that engine yet.
      What mess. And what a potential for catastrophic failures. Maybe they will burn as well or better compared to the PSA 2.0 diesel engine's?

      Why defend a 4 cylinder move while at the same time changing to a 5 cylinder noxbox?
      Why defend downsizing while introducing a 3.0 6 with exactly the same output as an already available 5? Which does better in fuel consumption compared to the 6 btw. A 6 with a very inefficient GT as the only option. How DrivE is that? Oh wait, Yannis promised new software which would clear up that whole issue..

      The 5 cylinder is an image thing btw. It is emotion. It is a reason why many people buy a Volvo and not a beemer or an Audi. Volvo is trying to hard to become an Audi. Some over at Volvo decided to kill everything which made a Volvo. Why?

      Saab almost became where Volvo wants to go at this moment it appears..

      Eventually it isn't a nice marketing campaign what is selling cars but it is the car itself.
      Volvo managed to screw up with the S60 already even before the car is available. A dull marketing campaign with lots of errors (Or lies depending on how you look at it.). Almost like Volvo themselves weren't very happy with the outcome so they desperately started a campaign to cover it all up.

      The sportiest Volvo ever. There is not a single review which wholeheartedly confirms that belief.

      There is no R but there now is R-Edition.. Milk it while you still can. 2012: What the heck is an R?
      There is no top of the line sportive model like there has been on and off starting 1994 with the T5 and T-5R and later on the R, also the early S80T6 for a short while until all those AT's blew up. Bummer there was no manual alternative to carry the image.
      In 1999 Volvo made the mistake to offer an AT only R model and sales went down. Everything the earlier R's stood for was sucked out of this model btw. Car never met it's expectations nor it's rated top speed.
      Next R was a bit better, a bit rushed to market and some flaws but enough platform to develop upon and at least it had a manual transmission again and what do they do? They slap their clientele in the face by selling no more R. And now R clientele have to expect a very quick 4 cylinder you are saying? For 6 cylinder money I guess? And 4 or 5 years after they stopped selling the last R? I don't think those people want to encounter the depreciation again, for the third time for some people.

      C30 phase 2 top range should have had some form of 250-260 minimum HP fun either AWD or mechanical or e-diff FWD. To carry the brand/model/image. Oh no, T5 doesn't sell well so we're thinking about stop offering it and offer a 1.6D start-stop instead. Oh no 1.6D doesn't sell so we go offer a 1.6D DrivE R-Edition. (What the heck is an R?)
      S40 could have done better if it weren't so boring. With some sort of wide body facelift and those 4 cylinders you love so much it could have been a very nice model below the S60.

      S60.. Should have been one or two entry 4's, midrange 5's and a top model either big 5 or 6 with a transmission choice and AWD.
      When giving cars away at the bottom customers aren't eager to pay big money for a top model which looks totally the same on the outside.

      Problem with the C30 is that it is to expensive. It doesn't have any edge over the competition. Compared to a similar except the sheet metal Ford Focus it can't justify it's higher price. There is no more Swedish robustness, no real safety advantage, no exterior exclusiveness. With the DTSTC and whatever safety features they do offer the driving has become so dull that the driver is becoming the biggest safety risk because there isn't any connection anymore. Oh wait.. Volvo introduced Driver Alert Control and Lane Departure Warning to wake up the driver ..

      I disagree that not having the 5 cylinder will break many Volvo sales deals...I mean what else are people going to buy to get their "5 cylinder"
      Well.. Not a Volvo I guess?

      In my case I bought a Ford.

    33. #31
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      Quote Originally Posted by VolvoGoteborg View Post
      ...and Volvo has 6 cylinders even in the S60 now!!

      I disagree that not having the 5 cylinder will break many Volvo sales deals...I mean what else are people going to buy to get their "5 cylinder"

      BMW and Merc dont offer them. (audi has the TT RS with the unusual choice of a standalone 5 cylinder engine just for that. As if VW Group can follow and pay for any whimsical idea that comes along. Their 5 cylinder isnt a broadly available across their range). The real premium contenders dont have 5s (BMW and Merc).

      5 or 6 doesn't make much difference, while 4 is "mainstream" for middle class. Finnaly, it's the power figure that metters.

      I spent reasonable ammount to tune my C70 T5 to 315HP with the stock turbo (measured on 2 independent dynos), so Volvo can do it with almost no effort at all. The same goes for 2.0 T5 engine, as I already explained it's not the number of cylinder that counts, but the power does. You have to have it, to prove that you mean business.

      It's just the company policy that is restraining them. The fact that we don't have 350HP (or even 400HP) AWD C30 based on the Focus RS engine speaks for itself. As I already said, I don't expect Volvo to enter "HP race" with the German trio, but I do expect them to keep up with the power, otherwise I won't percieve they are in the same class, and I might not be alone on that perception. T6 engine seems like a step in right direction for S60 and S80, but for C30 and C70 I believe some "sporty" options should become available, like power upgrade (with 2.0 T5 engine), double wishbone suspension, etc. Maybe the right way is to offer it via "official" tuners like Polestar..
      Last edited by kova; 07-09-2010 at 11:54 AM.

    34. #32
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      Hi Johann and Kova,

      You make some good points so I've copied your replies and answered below

      >Volvo never reached 300 HP with their R's.. 285 was about as high as they could get. I know >from personal experience they put a tremendous amount of effort in denying those facts.
      >Better said the engine never reached it's torque spec in a P2 car. Maybe in a test lab it did. (At >one or two occasions..)

      Canít comment on that but I can see both sides. On the one hand, at certain ambient temps the engine can develop 300bhp and in certain climates it thus canít. Problem is how many customers across how many markets live somewhere where you canít get 300bhpÖ..

      >Not offering a manual because the numbers don't support such a decision is bull. If Volvo were >smart enough to develop an engine with a manual gearbox which actually fits a newly designed >chassis they would have.

      I think we need to defer to someone with access to total market volumes for each segment and car and then see the numbers of manuals sold. Even if a small market exists, you then need to factor in the cost of development and recouping that for those volumes.

      The SI6 could be a manual but the lack (until nowÖ) of sportier models means the preference for manuals back when these projects started means we donít have them now.

      >There is plenty market for manual transmissions if you want. Volvo doesn't want to because they >can't so they come up with excuses.

      I see your point. You say volumes do justify then need for a manual, Volvo says market doesnít. Factor in that their decision also depends on recouping those development costs and that overall Volvoís market volumes arenít big enough for them to do everything they want right now. Hopefully soon that will change. (Even) Geely has noted Volvoís R&D spend is the same as much bigger OEMs but Volvo has smaller volume. Volvo has needed higher volumes for the last 30 years. Hopefully soon they can really begin to expand.

      >Why sell diesels with manual transmissions (and AWD)? Because there is no market for manuals?

      A point here is that diesels sell based on their better fuel consumption so a manual doesnít eat into that like an auto does. But, you make a relevant point. If the D5 can come with the M66 why canít the SI6. The SI6 sells in lower volume than the D5 mind.

      >Why sell practically ever other engine with manual? Because there is no market for manuals?

      Well, the 1.6, 1.8 and 2.0 petrols are Ford-Mazda units (1.6 is a Ford Sigma). The 1.6D for the DRIVe needs manual (only has) for the low fuel consumption as in that market every 1mpg counts for advertising and ďbeating the rivalsĒ. All these and the 2.0D have Ford gearboxes so thereís no development cost to Volvo here. Those units come under Fordís balance sheet.

      So really, we are only missing a manual SI6??

      >Why offer, with some models, manual only in one model and AT only in another while using the >same engine and practically the same chassis?

      One for product planning but a market based decision.

      >I think someone over at Volvo was stupid enough to commit to some killer contract from Aisin >Warner.

      Well, Aisin ****ed up the P2 gearbox quality for Volvo! Those in the 850/V70 etc were ok. So, no it isnít a killer contract. Rather, the sale by Ford and the lack of funds due to the downturn have delayed the Powershifts for the Volvo engines. But donít worry, they are on the way to replace current automatics across the range.

      >They'll probably be selling GT's for the next decade or so.

      No

      >Now if Volvo could come up with a good functioning modern automated gearbox it wouldn't be so bad and they might get away with it but the way Volvo is acting now with their top models is way below par. They might smell premium but their GT will be like a huge fence and premium is on the other side of that fence.

      Powershift is late

      >Back to the DI stuff, why DI? Maybe it is good for initial sales but once the warranty expires the customer is left with the messed up engine, repairs will be through the roof and the first conclusion after that is to not buy a Volvo again. The DI is an ugly engine. A technological nightmare.

      You could say the same of common rail diesels with their delicate injectors and HPP which are expensive. But, DI offers the next step for the petrol engine and the Otto cycle and will be adopted by all OEMs. Port injected units just cannot compete with downsize DI units. Itís the next thing.

      >The Volvo/Ford DI in particular is one ugly mofo.. Praise the man who invented the plastic engine cover because underneath it looks like they haven't finished the design of that engine yet.
      What mess.

      Canít comment on that.

      >And what a potential for catastrophic failures. Maybe they will burn as well or better compared to the PSA 2.0 diesel engine's?

      Please elaborate? Whatís the risk?

      >Why defend a 4 cylinder move while at the same time changing to a 5 cylinder noxbox?

      You mean the D3 and D4? Because Volvo needed a 2.0 diesel ASAP and didnít want the Ford-PSA 2.0 4 cylinder anymore.

      >Why defend downsizing while introducing a 3.0 6 with exactly the same output as an already available 5?

      A very good point. I donít understand why the SI6 wasnít DI from the start as Volvo was working in RN DI 4,5 and 6 cylinder units way back in 1999 alongside their adoption of the Mitsubishi GDI engine in the S/V40 range. Press releases or interviews at the time had Volvo people saying Volvoís own DI engines were in development. That was true but Ford ended the programme in 2000. Shame on them!!! But, we also need to consider that the SI6 was intended for Ford, Jag and Land Rover products so maybe they were not as forward thinking as Volvo and pushed the programme to be port injected.



      >Which does better in fuel consumption compared to the 6 btw. A 6 with a very inefficient GT as the only option. How DrivE is that? Oh wait, Yannis promised new software which would clear up that whole issue..

      Iíve heard very similar things from Volvo staff myself. The 5s should have been upgraded instead of the port injected SI6. But, factor in that other PAG companies needed the SI6 so Volvo couldnít go it alone with the SI5.

      >The 5 cylinder is an image thing btw. It is emotion. It is a reason why many people buy a Volvo >and not a beemer or an Audi. Volvo is trying to hard to become an Audi. Some over at Volvo >decided to kill everything which made a Volvo. Why?

      From a general automotive industry perspective, the decision to adopt 5 cylinders for the 850 was an unusual one where 4 cylinders could have done the trick. Volvo has been unique in that respect and its become a trademark of the brand since 1992. But, there are many many calls and complaints for Volvo to be ďmore like everyone elseĒ with a broader model lineup and competitive engine options. Lets just say Volvo was to have stuck with the 5s even in SI5 format and there wasnít a SI6, I guarantee the calls from customers and the press of ďwhy isnít Volvo offering a conventional engine lineupĒ. Thereís a balance between uniqueness and being pushed aside for being odd. Ok, weíve had almost 20 years of the 5 cylinder now and sales show they are popular. But, as Volvo realigns to plan for downsizing and new trends, things need to move on. Indeed, the major redesign of the N3 to the SI6 can be seen as an odd choice but it was taken in a background of no options for Volvo to launch their own 4 cylinder petrols or diesels and the pressure of other PAG groups wanting and needing a new 6 cylinder. Hence, the 5s continued with little amendment and the funding went into the new D5s and the SI6. The D6 was lovely but sadly didnít make it. The D5 was deemed powerful enough. Adaquate for the market but not competitive enough with the more powerful premium brands. However, Jag was the glass ceiling to Volvo in PAG hence another reason to hold Volvo in the middle ground and not let the S80 move upwards with the D6.

      >Saab almost became where Volvo wants to go at this moment it appears..

      It terms of being unique and different. Well, in the 80s and 90s they were with their turbos but now Saab is bland and doesnít have that edge. I appreciate the need to be something different. Volvo is going for Scandinavian design, thoughtful design and conventional powertrains.

      Now the brakes are off with the sale from Ford and the downsizing begins at Volvo and across the industry start to think outside the box. SI6 DI for the T8 range? SI5 to replace the current SI6 bhp range. Keeping the unique 5? SI4 and SI3 for mid range and the SI2 for the ReCharge range extended and the P20 (like the new Fiat 2 cylinder). SI2, 3 and 4 shared with Geely. D5 to be D3 and D4. Emisions reduction technology may restrict on a cost basis a D2 (too expensive for the market).

      >Eventually it isn't a nice marketing campaign what is selling cars but it is the car itself.
      >Volvo managed to screw up with the S60 already even before the car is available. A dull >marketing campaign with lots of errors (Or lies depending on how you look at it.). Almost like >Volvo themselves weren't very happy with the outcome so they desperately started a campaign >to cover it all up.

      Care to elaborate a bit more?

      >The sportiest Volvo ever. There is not a single review which wholeheartedly confirms that belief.

      Itís relative to what has been before. The focus of the S60/V60 project shows.

      >There is no R but there now is R-Edition.. Milk it while you still can. 2012: What the heck is an R?

      Because Volvo had to choose with a limited budget to develop the DRIVe or the R series. Given the market then and now, a lack of DRIVe diesels would have been a killer for Volvo. Iíd personally rather see sales growth via DRIVe and miss the R series for a model time.

      The R was a very good and well accepted sub-brand at Volvo. It needs to come back when they can.

      NB the background in the early 90s when we had the 440,460, 940 and 960 to then launch the sporty 850 and then the BTCC and then the R was more of a shock to the system than an R series launch now. All the work of a driven board member keen to move Volvo forward. Need more driven people like that who love the Volvo brand.

      >There is no top of the line sportive model like there has been on and off starting 1994 with the T5 and T-5R and later on the R, also the early S80T6 for a short while until all those AT's blew up.

      You need to slap GM for that

      >Bummer there was no manual alternative to carry the image.

      Well, the T6 development cars for the S80 were manuals! But, with the S60 and V70R coming, Volvo wasnít going to do an S80R as well so the T6 became the rapid executive saloon with an auto box.

      >In 1999 Volvo made the mistake to offer an AT only R model and sales went down. Everything >the earlier R's stood for was sucked out of this model btw. Car never met it's expectations nor >it's rated top speed.

      I didnít and donít understand that decision.

      >Next R was a bit better, a bit rushed to market and some flaws but enough platform to develop >upon and at least it >had a manual transmission again and what do they do? They slap their >clientele in the face by selling no more R. >And now R clientele have to expect a very quick 4 >cylinder you are saying? For 6 cylinder money I guess? And 4 or >5 years after they stopped >selling the last R? I don't think those people want to encounter the depreciation again, >for the >third time for some people.

      As above, R series funds were diverted to the DRIVe programme. It was one or the other. Ideally, weíd have both!

      Yes, the market will adjust and rapid 4 cylinders will become the norm. Just watch the other OEMs.


      >C30 phase 2 top range should have had some form of 250-260 minimum HP fun either AWD or >mechanical or e-diff >FWD. To carry the brand/model/image. Oh no, T5 doesn't sell well so we're >thinking about stop offering it and offer >a 1.6D start-stop instead. Oh no 1.6D doesn't sell so we >go offer a 1.6D DrivE R-Edition. (What the heck is an R?)

      DRIVe verses R again. NB, back in 2007 the C30Rs were finished with 350bhp and AWD. With the ST and the RS coming, Volvo was reined in. A more visionary owner would have let Volvo produce these cars (VW makes both Golf GTi and S3s for example).


      >S40 could have done better if it weren't so boring. With some sort of wide body facelift and those >4 cylinders you love so much it could have been a very nice model below the S60.

      Who said there isnít a new S40 ?

      >S60.. Should have been one or two entry 4's, midrange 5's and a top model either big 5 or 6 >with a transmission choice and AWD.

      4 cylinder DI will replace the 5s. DI verses port injection. No contest when it comes to fuel consumption and litres for equivalent bhp.

      >When giving cars away at the bottom customers aren't eager to pay big money for a top model >which looks totally the same on the outside.

      You want a R-design bodykit for the S60? Itís coming.

      >Problem with the C30 is that it is to expensive. It doesn't have any edge over the competition. >Compared to a similar except the sheet metal Ford Focus it can't justify it's higher price. There is >no more Swedish robustness, no real safety advantage, no exterior exclusiveness. With the >DTSTC and whatever safety features they do offer the driving has become so dull that the driver >is becoming the biggest safety risk because there isn't any connection anymore. Oh wait.. Volvo >introduced Driver Alert Control and Lane Departure Warning to wake up the driver ..

      The C30 was intentionally not meant to be a Ford Focus/ VW Golf /Opel Astra 3 door. It was more sporty that all of them. Note, the Megane Coupe copy and the Scirroco copy which is differentiated from the Golf. Does Volvo need a conventional 5 door hatch for this market? Sure!!! Is it coming? Yep, the V30. (Personally I also wish the S/V40 had the V30 version way back in 1997. Would love one of those now!).

      >I disagree that not having the 5 cylinder will break many Volvo sales deals...I mean what else >are people going to buy to get their "5 cylinder"
      >Well.. Not a Volvo I guess?

      >In my case I bought a Ford.

      Yeah but you got a 4 cylinder!!!!!


      Nice talking to both of you

    35. #33
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      2.0D for at least the Swedish market used to be available with an M56 5 speed gearbox with a special casting to fit this type of engine. It is possible to produce a manual gearbox for what seems to be a very small market. And to be honest, the way Volvo is applying it's technology across the model range there is hardly any development cost in a manual transmission. It is all available. Unless there is room for one of course.


      4 cylinder DI will replace the 5s
      Yes, a Duratec HE turbo.. How Volvo is that.

      As above, R series funds were diverted to the DRIVe programme. It was one or the other.
      DrivE is OK. Volvo jumped on it nicely but smack their head against the 3.0T6 GT..
      Your story about making the choice between DrivE and R doesn't hold here.
      Compared to the 3.0T6 GT the same engine with an MT would be DrivE and R at the same time. Not even talking DI here btw.
      Adding that R-Design bodykit doesn't make an R. (2012: What the heck is an R?)

      All that T6 power going straight to the wheels without an inefficient torque converter and added with predictable and reproduceable Haldex behavior and a unique bodykit or exclusive detail changes make an R.

      After that there is room for an R-Design bodykit..

      Scandinavian design
      Minimalistic design could also be experienced as cheap, very thin line here.

      but now Saab is bland and doesnít have that edge.
      See?

      Yeah but you got a 4 cylinder!!!!!
      Nope, a 5!
      Last edited by Johann; 07-13-2010 at 05:47 PM.

    36. #34
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      Quote Originally Posted by Johann View Post

      Nope, a 5!
      IF you bought Ford with 5 cylinder then it's either Focus ST or Focus RS, and both have Volvo engine. I choosed to buy Volvo (and not a BMW 335i cabrio) because driving Volvo is a metter of lifestyle for me.

      Anyway, I can hardly explain to myself why there is no C30 and C70 with RS engine, with AWD, LSD and decent double wishbone suspension. Hopefully this will change, because you simply cannot have coupes without that features in the class Volvo is targeting.

      It seems to me that somebody in Volvo doesn't understand that you cannot be "half-pregnant", either you are pregnant or you are not..

      Not to mention that I really doesn't understand the purpose of the Polestar concept - just another method of waving in front of the customers eyes with the proof that they can do it (and do it really good!), but doesn't want to. Why?

    37. #35
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      Quote Originally Posted by Johann View Post
      Volvo never reached 300 HP with their R's.. 285 was about as high as they could get. I know from personal experience they put a tremendous amount of effort in denying those facts.
      Better said the engine never reached it's torque spec in a P2 car. Maybe in a test lab it did. (At one or two occasions..)
      I don't know about the stock version of S60 R, but few of my friends have purchased Stage 1 ECU upgrade (without any other mods) and easily achieved 340HP/480Nm on the dyno.

      I'm speaking about the high quality software made by Sweden tuners, like this one: http://www.websitefolder.net/atechmo...10&iPageID=454

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