Convertibles, soft tops, cabrios. Whatever you choose to call them, they are a cornerstone of the automotive world.
When they are done well, they can be one of the best experiences of your driving life. Open to the elements, hearing every sound nature has to offer and enjoying the engine note of your choice.
On the flip side, you have convertibles that just don't work and should never have come to market. Big, horrible, flimsy, ugly things that bring no aesthetic or performance joy into your life.
There is however, a third breed of convertible. The type of convertible that makes you stop and go “huh, didn’t see that coming”.
The five convertibles listed below kind of make sense, kind of…if you squint and look hard in a certain light but some could really have been left on a designers floor as a cool idea and nothing more.
Micra c + c
Launched in 2003, this convertible took cute to the next level. It was affordable, well built, comfortable and had a glass roof that made the C + C feel pretty big in the cabin. Not a terrible car by any stretch of the imagination but the question is, did we really need a comfortable Micra?
I’ll be honest, this is a car that by rights should have been long forgotten but thanks to Amazon Prime adding the US Office onto the roster, Michael Scotts otherwise painfully boring ride is back on the radar and cool again.
Ford have a long history of making some fantastic convertibles. The MK3 Escort Cabrio, the Mustang, the Focus. Wait, the Focus? All the history, pedigree and ability that Ford have shown over the years to produce a super cool, super fun convertible was totally forgotten with the Focus CC. It looked hideous, it suffered roof trouble and hardly anyone went out to buy one. The Focus could well have been a brilliant cabrio but alas it wasn’t to be.
It is very VERY important to state this is my opinion and my opinion alone.
This car should not have happened.
I love a Kei car. Well thought out, surprisingly useful and impossible to dislike, the Japanese Kei cars are great examples of cars that solved the very real problem of space in Tokyo and other busy cities. The cherry on the top of these compact chariots was the Copen. This convertible looks great, lets you enjoy the big wide world outside of your mini Japanese cabin and is just an all round bundle of fun. Which is exactly what a convertible should be.