Classic Iron: 507 HP Volvo C30 Evolve Concept

With a unique style that has held up remarkably well over the years, the much-loved Volvo C30 is definitely a future classic. That wasn’t immediately obvious, however, when the car was launched. In fact, Volvo was criticized for making its compact “hot hatch” too sensible. To combat that image, Volvo enlisted a trio of car customizers to help show the world what was possible using the then-new C30 as a starting point. One of those concepts is the car you see here. Meet the 2007 Volvo C30 Evolve.

In the Evolve, the standard 2.5 liter T5 engine is force-fed by a massive turbocharger. The result is an astonishing an estimated 507 horsepower at 6,100 RPM and 468 TQ at just 3,800 RPM– more than enough, in other words, to put The Fear into just about anything the Volvo C30 Evolve driver is likely to come across.

Putting that power to the ground is a custom-fabricated All-wheel Drive system (the standard C30 is front-drive only), which helps to ensure clean launches off the line and superior mid-corner traction, as well. An overbuilt, one-off brake package serves to slow things down, when called for, but also allowing the driver to “load” the turbochargers for absolutely brutal acceleration from a standstill.

An aggressive set of three-piece, forged alloy Evolve wheels (19 x 9 inches in front, 19 x 14 in back) are tucked neatly into the Evolve’s widened rear fenders, which feature high-mounted exhaust tips outboard of the taillights. All of which is to say that Evolve didn’t make many choices here that were purely aesthetic– everything you see, then, is there in the service of speed.

What do you guys think? Does the 2007 Volvo C30 Evolve belong in the pantheon of great custom Volvos, or is that yellow just a step or three too far? Take a look at the pictures, then let us know what you think in the comments section at the bottom of the page.


Source | Images: Volvo, via TopSpeed.

I've been in and around the car industry for over twenty years. Sometimes racing, sometimes selling, sometimes fixing- sometimes, even just washing!- but Cars and Trucks and Things That Go are what I'm all about.