Volvo's presence at the Paris Motor Show next month will center around three new ultra-efficient diesel-powered models that maximize fuel efficiency and, in turn, reduce carbon dioxide emissions. The DRIVe C30, S40 and V50 models are all motivated by a 1.6-liter turbo-diesel inline-four mated to a five-speed manual transmission with longer gear ratios in 3rd, 4th and 5th to maximize efficiency. While that's nothing new (the 1.6-liter has been around for some time), what's unique is the attention to aerodynamics, most of which were originally previewed on the C30 ReCharge concept from the 2007 Frankfurt Motor Show.
The trio of Volvos all benefit from a 10mm lower ride height, a covered radiator to reduce air turbulence, wind deflectors ahead of the front wheels and unique rollers wrapped in low rolling resistance Michelin tires. The S40 and V50 cribbed the T5's front spoiler and the C30 gets a new rear bumper design, hatch-mounted spoiler and underbody trays.
All this adds up to 76 mpg in Europe's combined cycle testing, and, perhaps just as important to customers abroad, emissions of less than 120 grams of CO2 per kilometer.
After the three models debut in Paris, production will begin in November and sales will start in Europe at the beginning of 2009. Best of all, the DRIVe equipment only commands a 150 to 450 euro premium over the standard 1.6-liter diesel model. Check out Volvo's full press release below the fold.