Volvo C70

Engineered and built by TWR Engineering in Britain, Volvo C70 is the company's first attempt in coupe market for 30 years (a dozen years ago there was a 2-door 740 called 780 selling in America, but it was not a real coupe.) Since the production volume cannot afford the development cost of an all new car, TWR built this car based on S70 sedan, which is currently the most dynamical Volvo. 

All exterior changes are so logical. Stylists preserve the traditional angular look, with tilter windscreen and rear window plus lower roof line to establish a sleeker shape. C70 cannot be described as a stunning design.  

The platform and drive train are nearly carried over from S70 T5. 2319c.c. inline-5 with 20 valves and a single turbo which is quite laggy under 2500rpm. Torque, however, is strong at bottom and mid range. According to American magazine Road & Track, it has understeering, even severe than S70 T5. Unluckily, buyers for that sports sedan can choose the optional AWD to reduce understeering and relieve the torque steering. In C70, sorry, no such option. British magazine Autocar did not reported understeering, but it criticise its ride as too hard for a luxurious coupe. Perhaps the european version has different suspensions setup, who knows?  

Cabin is beautifully trimmed with leather. The front seats are comfortable and spacious. Rear seats are less spacious than Peugeot 406 Coupe and Mercedes CLK, although short journey for adults is still acceptable.  

Inevitably, I have to ask myself a question : why not a S70 T5? The sports sedan has overwhelming more comfort, better steering, an option of AWD and Estate....all others are the same. The coupe cannot outperform it much, nor out-beauty it ( at least according to my taste ). If I have to buy a sporty Volvo, I will pick S70 T5 without hesitation. 

The above report was last updated in 1998. All Rights Reserved.


Front-engined, Fwd
L / W / H / WB: 4720 / 1820 / 1410 / 2660 mm
Inline-5, dohc, 4v/cyl, turbo.
2319 c.c.
240 hp
243 lbft
F: strut / R: multi-link
225 / 45 ZR17
1450 kg
Top speed
148 mph*
0-60 mph
6.6 sec*
0-100 mph
15.1 sec*
* Tested by Autocar

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