Convertible Cars


Convertible Car


Convertible cars are an evolution from the phaeton cars which were open vehicles without glass side windows, sometimes with removable panels for weather protection. The first retractable hardtop system was invented in 1922, and the first power operated retractable roof was produced by Peugeot in 1934.


The biggest benefit to driving a convertible car is obviously the roof. When the sun peeks out from behind the clouds there is no better way to travel the open road with the wind in your hair and sun on your shoulders. Without any window panels to block your vision you have almost no blind spots, and visibility all around is vastly improved. For taller passengers, there are no headroom limitations, and this also allows you to carry large objects without the interference of a roof, much larger than you could in a standard hard top car.


Other benefits include multiple entry options and, if parked with the roof down, the ability to eliminate the risk of locking your keys inside the car (with reduced security). With the option of also having the roof up, you can protect yourself against the elements and can adapt your vehicle to almost all weather conditions.


There are several disadvantages to owning a convertible. Firstly, the prices tend to be between $5000 USD and $30000 USD higher on average than comparable sedans and coupes. Soft top convertibles are often very noisy from the inside, even with the roof up, and produce more wind resistance which results in higher fuel consumption and slower speeds. It is also very difficult to talk to fellow passengers above the noise of the wind when travelling at substantial speeds.


While improvements are always being made, a watertight convertible is harder to find than a watertight hardtop, and snow and rain can create very expensive leaks in your automobile. Also, if you happen to be out enjoying the road with the roof down and you get caught unsuspected by some flash weather, between the time it takes to pull over to the side of the road to stop and to put up the roof, you can easily have damaged electrical and personal items inside the car, as well damaging your mood as you spend the rest of your journey drying off. Exposing the interior to the elements also means that it ages quicker, although careful maintenance can minimise this effect.


Convertibles also have compromised security as it is much easier to break through a soft fabric than a hard metal, and have become easy targets for thieves.


Although they come with a number of disadvantages, it is hard not to have a huge smile on your face when driving on convertible with the roof down, which arguably compensates for the lack of security, the risk of leaks and the higher prices associated with the cars. Most convertible owners are enthusiastic about the classic retro style of their cars and the sporty feel. It is hard to think of a greater place to be than behind the wheel of a classic convertible car on a warm summer afternoon.



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