Having four full seats is a distinct advantage and there is adequate legroom for adults in the back. Getting in and out, however, can be a bit of a problem for the less agile. I took the elderly but fairly able-bodied parents out for a trip and while they found getting into the back seats a challenge, getting out with some decorum was even more difficult. With the roof down, it was easier, of course, as there is no height restriction and there are no ‘B’ pillars to get in the way. However, the lengthy, steeply raked windscreen caught both of them out. The base anchor for the front seat-belts slides along a narrow rail to avoid tripping and the electric front seats slide slowly fore and aft, making access a bit easier.
The C70 is definitely a four-seater as the rear seats are divided by a full-length centre console with louvre-lidded storage compartments containing cupholders. The narrow middle section of the seat back hides the compressor for the roof and a ski-flap. Rear occupants are well shaded from the wind by the high sides of the car, which also offer a feeling of security.
When topless driving in this country, it is inevitable that at some point a sudden shower is going to catch you out. As it takes almost 30 seconds to close the roof once you’ve found somewhere to stop safely, Volvo have sensibly upholstered the test car’s seats in Haverdal Leather T-Tec. Basically, this is a type of Neoprene with leather inserts for ventilation.
The rear centre storage console continues under the front centre armrest, through to the front of the cabin where the lidded compartments are repeated before the thin, sensuous, ‘floating’ centre stack. In the test car this was in aluminium and looked like a TV remote control but is also available in wood effect. This houses all the major controls while the fascia is an exercise in Scandinavian design clean lines and simple functionality.
The steering wheel is manually adjustable for rake and reach and the electrically-controlled seats have 3-position memory settings, which, where fitted include the door mirror settings as well.
The test car was the entry-level 2.4i Sport, bearing a price tag of £26,225. Sport buys Electronic Climate Control (ECC), 17-inch polished alloys, cruise control, leather-covered sports steering wheel and gear-knob, front fogs and a 6-speaker radio/CD audio system that can be changed for the £1,750 but extremely good Dynaudio sound system. Satellite-Navigation with RDS and TMC is also available at £1,850 and the integrated, dual band GSM telephone adds £500. Alternatively, both are available as part of the Communications Pack, along with other goodies for £2,150.
There are two other trims to choose from; SE and SE Lux. All are available in combination with the 2.4i and 2.5-litre, 220PS (217bhp), turbo’d, T5 petrol engines and a 2.4 turbo-diesel unit, which produces 180PS or 177.5 bhp. The diesel is mated to the Geartronic automatic transmission only, which is an option on the petrol versions.
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