Is an Electric Volvo C30 In Our Future?

The turbocharged 2.5-liter I-5 under the hood of Volvo’s C30 isn’t a bad engine, but sources suggest the hatchback could make like Bob Dylan and “go electric.”

While the Swedish automaker is already testing with plug-in hybrid versions of its V70 wagon, which should reach the market by 2012, sources purportedly close to the company suggest electrified versions of the compact C30 could be in the works. “Am I reasonably confident the battery EV is a go?” the source told The New York Times. “Yes.” Although Volvo has yet to confirm or deny the possibility, it wouldn’t be too surprising. The company has launched a number of green initiatives in the past few years, including its European-only e-Drive range, which include aerodynamic modifications and clean-burning diesel engines designed to improve fuel economy. Volvo’s also toyed with the idea of a C30 powered (at least in part) by electricity. The ReCharge concept (pictured), first shown at the 2008 Paris motor show, fitted a modified C30 with a plug-in hybrid system with in-wheel electric motors. The system, which worked much like that in the new Chevrolet Volt, is substantially different than the one presently being tested in V70s. That said, if an electric C30 comes to fruition, it could share a number of components--batteries, for instance--with the V70 hybrid. The Times suggests Volvo could sell nearly 5000-10,000 examples of the green cars annually. Source: New York Times

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