Convertibles: soft or hard top?
Bizarrely, considering the weather, the British have a remarkable love of open-top motoring. The proliferation of disused WW2 airfields where enthusiasts can enjoy compact sports cars on tight circuits might have something to do with it. Another factor could be the British appreciate a good blast down a sinewy back road because sunshine motoring comes around so rarely in the UK.
Whatever the case may be, an independent UK consumer motoring company, CAP Automotive, has released figures confirming Britain is the second biggest market for soft top convertibles or ‘ragtops’ in Europe and, interestingly, CAP’s figures suggest the open-top experience offered by metal folding roof coupe cabriolets doesn’t match that of a soft top’s value performance.
CAP say soft tops hold 50 per cent of their value after three years while a hard top folding metal roof is expected to lose closer to 65 per cent over the same period. This raises an interesting question because hard top metal roofs should be safer in the event of a rollover accident, but the added weight blunts performance and dynamics.
Do you agree that a simpler, lightweight soft top convertible should hold its value better on the second hand market? According to CAP Automotive the best performing soft top cabriolets in terms of second hand value are the Porsche 911 and the Porsche Boxster – a trend replicated in South Africa.