Choosing the best hardtop convertible cars is not easy for a number of factors. First, today there are more hardtop convertibles models in the market than ever in the automotive history. Second, many automotive manufacturers started to make that kind of cars quite recently, some models are totally new, so little feedback on them is available. Best hardtop convertible cars are not necessarily luxury cars or the most expensive ones. I would recommend to opt for time-proven models or those based on time-proven models without significant constructive overhaul as the best hardtop convertible cars. For example, Volkswagen Eos, Volvo C70, BMW 3 Series and Mazda MX-5 Miata have already proven to be reliable choices of many satisfied drivers.
Mazda MX-5 is a sporty 2-seater rear-wheel drive car with the price as low as $24,000, currently the lowest price notch for hardtop convertibles. In fact, the 2008 model was awarded the “Best Deal for Sun Lovers” title by 2008 Lifestyle Awards in the Cars.com. So if you are in your twenties and/or don’t have a family yet, love convertibles and is open for a free and sunny lifestyle and romance, you should probably buy this one now because the chance that you venture to go for a sporty 2-seater just 5 years later is not so large.
Volkswagen Eos C70 is the next on the price mark. For additional $4,000, you can get a family 4-seater, a less romantic but more practical choice. This is one of the few front-wheel drive hardtop convertible cars.
2007 Volvo C70 hardtop convertibles and the second generation of this models. The 3-fold roof takes less than 30 seconds to raise or lower.
After a series of crash-tests, 2007 Volvo C70 landed in “Top Safety Pick” category. This model beats all of the above from safety viewpoint and with tis larger cargo and interior space. However, there are a few complaints about frequent and costly repairs. The lowest price mark is around $39,000.
BMW 3 Series is the most expensive, powerful and the largest of all of the four model. Among the disadvantages are being rear-wheel drive, which many be a serious con for some drivers sensitive to climate conditions, and low front bumper which catches curbs.
The choice for the best hardtop convertible coupe car primarily depends on your needs. If you are not sure if want a 2-seater sport car for romance, or a 4-seater family model, take into account how many cars you already have, if your family is going to grow in the nearest future, etc. For example, sport cars a “now-or-nevers”. I’ve heard many options like “yes, I love this one and it’s is probably the best hardtop convertible car for this price but I should have bought one 10 years ago”.
Knowing which non-convertible model is in the basis of the one with the retractable roof can help make some conclusions as to whether that could be one of the best hardtop convertibles. Brands or models that used to have rigidity issues will not be a good basis for making a convertible because the retractable roof is an extremely precise and sensitive mechanism. Shaking and vibration will precipitate the need for servicing the roof, which is by the way very costly. One of the widely discussed examples is 2011 Chrysler 200 Convertible, a re-designed Sebring convertible car notorious for frame and suspension issues and creaking, the problem that killed the popularity of this model and the reason why many experts wouldn’t include 2011 Chrysler 200 Convertible in the list of best hardtop convertibles of 2011.
Used convertibles are also probably not the best convertibles to buy, for the same reason as pointed in the previous paragraph. Roof maintenance in very expensive and retractable roofs tend to be the first part that fails, and it’s the retractable roof that you want.