C30 Manual c30 t5 - how do they drive

ab1Al (@ab1) Melbourne
edited July 29 in General

looking at buying a c30 t5 manual as cant stand the idea of an auto. just wondering as ive heard that they are bad to drive (clutch feel is non existent) if anyone could offer some insight into this. obviously i need to test drive one myself.


  • 240240 (@240) Canberra

    I have one.

    Not gonna lie, the clutch isn't great. The bite point is very high, and you need to be very precise if you want to drive smoothly or do a quick launch. That being said, it's quite light which is awesome for driving in traffic.

    There are aftermarket options though. I'm still looking into what the best option is, a lot of aftermarket ones are probably too stiff for a daily driver but that's a personal preference I guess.

    Also, I have pretty good tyres, but going around a roundabout in the rain can be pretty interesting if you go near the throttle. Aside from that, handling is pretty good, although the steering doesn't feel super sharp.

    I've driven autos too, they do actually have their advantages but I still prefer the manual.

  • Most modern manuals with dual mass flywheel and electronic throttle have reduced clutch feel.

  • carnut222Greg S (@carnut222) Daylesford VIC

    We have a 2008 C30 T5 R-design with 6-speed manual. It’s been a great car and love the way it drives...great fuel economy and power. Very reliable (few minor issues like fuel pressure regulator and torn CV joint boot). Depending on the wheel and tyre package (wheel size, tyre brand) you can get a lot of road noise. I put on new tyres recently - Pirelli Dragon Sport - and they’re a lot noisier than the previous ones unfortunately, but grippy vs. the old ones. As mentioned clutch is light, which is good for traffic but can take a bit of getting used to, and in the wet it can plow a lot through roundabouts.

  • carnut222Greg S (@carnut222) Daylesford VIC

    Oh, sunroof drains blocked up on ours too - something to check out if you get one with a sunroof.

  • Ex850RSnoopy (@Ex850R) Somewhere Over the Rainbow. Melbourne.

    And loose windscreen on these too?

  • carnut222Greg S (@carnut222) Daylesford VIC

    No dramas with the original windscreen on ours luckily, but I did have to have it replaced within the past year or so due to a stone breakage.

    Another problem I had was a stone hit the A/C condenser. The lower opening in the front bumper fascia has no protection against debris. After I replaced the damaged condenser, I put a piece of fairly coarse diamond-pattern plastic mesh in the opening to at least prevent larger stones from getting in there in future.

    Make sure maintenance is up to date, particularly timing belt 150,000 km or 10 years whichever comes first IIRC. Coolant is supposed to be flushed every 5 years, brake fluid every 2 years, and oil should be high-quality full synthetic IMHO.

  • ab1Al (@ab1) Melbourne

    all great advice. would love an r design if i can afford one. does anyone know the average price i was looking at one for 5.5k which sold but that seemed to be quite low priced.

    best way i can assess the clutch is test drive one. hopefully one turns up in my area

    also how common is the cracked cylinder liner problem.

  • Ex850RSnoopy (@Ex850R) Somewhere Over the Rainbow. Melbourne.

    Cracked liners are usually from big power but may be poor maintenance can lead to it.

    It's not that common.

    Of you want some R design parts to swap in @iceton1975 , Mark at Berry Motor Group has a c30R design for wrecking with all the bits you want, seats and suspension etc.

  • edited August 1

    For those in the know, is the clutch-feel similar to the same model of Focus?

    Because I've not driven a manual C1, but I've driven a couple of 2nd-gen Focii, and while they have a light & imprecise clutch-feel I didn't think it was significantly different to any other manual (FWD maybe?) car designed in the last 30 years or so. You get used to it pretty quickly & don't even think about it again, if it's the same as the Focus.

  • It would be very unlikely to crack a liner with the stock turbo. Maybe a very poor/ agressive tune could do it if factory safeguards were bypassed.

  • ab1Al (@ab1) Melbourne

    Id probably be only going for a stage 1 remap so wouldn't be pushing the block hard at all.

    Great to have the feedback. Will definitely test drive an s40 or c30 to see how they feel. Will just have to wait for a Black pre facelift one to turn up.

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