Convertible cars are notoriously fun cars to drive. Oftentimes the imagery associated with the thought of a convertible car is a couple driving across the country, sightseeing with the wind in their hair and the sun at their back – the freedom of the open road unfolding before them.
The draw towards convertible cars is apparent for obvious reasons. Convertibles are generally considered the luxury item of the car world and owning one is thought by many to be a sign of success and power.
Hardtops vs. Soft Tops
Convertibles, generally, come in two models: hardtops and soft tops. While hardtop cars are inherently safer, they require some work to remove the top and have less trunk space due to the storage of the hardened top. Softtops usually have retractable roofs, but are unable to support the weight of the roof of the car making them far more unsafe in the event of a rollover accident.
The practical nature of the hard top can also be meshed with the soft top in the form of a roll cage or roll bar. These additions are often added for the sole purpose of allowing the vehicle to support its own weight in the event of an accident and protecting the driver from injury.
But is a Convertible Car in your Budget?
Convertibles come in a wide variety of prices and with an, equally, wide-array of convenience and luxury features. Some of the typical luxury features include windshield headers to keep excess wind from the cabin as well as heated seats, special head restraint vents and automatic retractable roofs. With a typical starting cost of $20,000 and a variety of customizations available – your dream car is very affordable.
Being that convertible cars do not carry any additional costs above their sedan or coupe cousins, there are no financial considerations regarding ongoing maintenance above and beyond any other car. The exception to this rule would be with maintenance problems encountered with a soft top, automatic retractable roof. Problems encountered by the mechanics of these roofs may prove to be costly.
Pros and Cons
Convertibles come with a variety of pros and cons. Some positive considerations include the complete elimination of blind spots, the ability to transform your vehicle according to your mood or weather and a ridiculously fun driving experience!
Some negative considerations of convertible ownership include potentially excessive road noise, wind inside the cabin (if lacking a wind bar or deflectors), safety considerations and the determination on whether to purchase a roll cage or roll bar, the difficulty and expense associated with repairing or replacing a damaged retractable top or retraction mechanism and problems encountered with weather.
The Bottom Line
Convertible cars are a blast to drive on a warm summer’s day and provide you with a feeling of fun, uninhibited freedom! If the opportunity to drive one presents itself, you should take it under heavy consideration. Advancements in safety technology and luxury features make this style of car safe, affordable and an essential part of your next road trip!