With summer right around the corner, you might be thinking it’s finally time to get that convertible you’ve always wanted. Luckily, there are plenty of new models to choose from. Some offer more than others in terms of seating, power, and features, but they all feature that open-air driving experience you crave.
A convertible top on your car is a luxury. It’s the kind of unneeded amenity that isn’t found on practical and affordable cars. Convertibles, however, don’t have to be expensive. In fact, many of them come with reasonable price tags. The following are the most affordable new convertibles out there, spanning various budgets, starting with the priciest.
25. Chevrolet Camaro ZL1
The standard Chevrolet Camaro is a fine car to own, but the Camaro ZL1 will make you a truly proud owner. From a performance standpoint, the ZL1 is the best Camaro ever built by Chevrolet. It has the same monster 6.2-liter V8 engine that’s in the Corvette, which means you can go from zero to 60 mph in just 3.5 seconds. Aside from that, the car has an upgraded suspension, brakes, interior, and exterior. If you have the money, Chevrolet has the car that will keep you happy.
24. Jaguar F-Type Convertible
Interested in a beautiful high-powered British roadster? Jaguar has the perfect car for you: the F-Type Convertible. The F-Type comes in a number of different trim levels, but the most reasonably priced one comes in at $65K. That money gets you a powerful 3.0-liter supercharged V6 engine, an upscale interior, dastardly good looks, and a refined ride. If you’re after something a little different from what the American and German luxury automakers offer on this list, the F-Type is an excellent choice.
23. Mercedes-Benz E-Class Cabriolet
The Mercedes-Benz E-Class Cabriolet mixes muscular power with a soft, opulent interior, resulting in one of the best luxury convertibles you can buy. The car features a sleek design with attractive creases down its sides and a powerful 3.6-liter twin-turbocharged V6 engine under the hood in the base model. The soft top features three specially designed layers to make the car suitable for year-round use. When the sun’s out, it takes just 20 seconds to drop the top and feel the wind in your hair.
22. Audi S5 Cabriolet
The gorgeous new S5 Cabriolet takes the typical Audi A5 Cabriolet up a few notches. It’s high tech, offers world-class luxury, sports Audi’s famous quattro all-wheel drive, and a wicked 3.0-liter twin-scroll turbocharged V6 engine that puts the base Audi A5 to shame. The S sport-contoured seats and better brakes mean you can whip this car around bends faster than you could in the A5, too. If you want a high-performance Audi convertible for under six figures, this is the car for you.
21. Chevrolet Corvette Convertible
America’s supercar comes in a drop-top version. If you love Chevrolet but want a little more oomph than the Camaro offers, the Corvette Convertible is the way to go. The car has a large 6.2-liter V8 engine under the hood, some of the sexiest looks of any car at this price point, and some of the best driving dynamics out there. If you’re looking for something that will thrill you each time you get in it and catch the attention of anyone close by, this is your car.
20. Mercedes-AMG SLC43 Roadster
The AMG version of the standard Mercedes SLC is a whole other animal. It features a raucous 3.0-liter turbocharged V6 engine that turns this lovely roadster into a legitimate sports car. The engine isn’t the only thing updated; the sport-tuned suspension and specially tuned exhaust were refitted to be worthy of the AMG name. The SLC43 is a car will make you want to wring it out every chance you get.
19. Porsche 718 Boxster
The cheapest Porsche convertible these days is the 718 Boxster. The sleek-looking two-seater packs quite a punch from its 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine, and can sprint from zero to 60 mph in under five seconds. That’ll put a lot of wind in your hair with the top down. Also, the upscale interior and legendary fit and finish on the Boxster will keep you interested in this car summer after beautiful summer.
18. Land Rover Range Rover Evoque Convertible
When most people think convertible, they don’t think SUV. Land Rover is trying to change that with the convertible Range Rover Evoque. It brings together the luxurious interior and off-road capability that Land Rover is known for, and adds a drop top that allows you to enjoy a sunny day. The 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder gives you plenty of power to go adventuring with your top down.
17. BMW 4-Series
If the BMW 2-Series Convertible isn’t enough car for you, consider upgrading to the 4-Series Convertible. The 4 Series is bigger, more elegant, and still a hoot to drive. BMW placed a 2.0-liter twin-turbocharged four-cylinder engine under the hood. Pair that with an upscale interior and more space to stretch your legs than is in the 2-Series, and you can easily see why this car worth its $50K price tag.
16. Audi A5 Cabriolet
The Audi A5 Cabriolet has a lot of competition, but it’s such a refined and well-built sporty convertible that it manages to stand out. Sneaking in just under $50K probably doesn’t hurt either. This car offers a lot for the money, including a well-appointed interior, tons of up-to-date technology, and a powerful 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine. The car seats four people, and its power soft top can fold at speeds up to 31 miles per hour.
15. Mercedes-Benz SLC Roadster
The Mercedes-Benz SLC Roadster combines a luxurious interior with a sporty design. It’s one of the best experiences you can have for under $50K. The car keeps the classic roadster proportions intact, but brings everything else up to the modern age. Under the hood is a 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine that moves the little car from zero to 60 mph in just 5.8 seconds. It’s not exactly cheap, but the SLC Roadster is worth its price tag.
14. Audi TT Roadster
If you want something a little sportier than the Audi A3 Cabriolet, consider the Audi TT Roadster. The TT at this point is a very well-respected sports car. In roadster form, it is one of the most enjoyable cars on the road. A 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine that puts power out to all four wheels moves the car down the road. You’ll have a hard time not falling in love with this car in any driving environment.
13. Nissan 370Z Roadster
If you’re looking for a sporty roadster with a little more oomph than the Mazda Miata or Fiat 124 Spider can provide, there’s the 370Z Roadster. Granted, the car comes at a much higher price than those two cars, but that’s because its more powerful 3.7-liter V6 engine amplifies the fun. The engine paired with the 370Z’s well-known handling abilities means you’ll never get bored.
12. BMW 2-Series Convertible
BMW’s little sporty 2-Series is exactly what many convertible shoppers are looking for. It’s attractive, comfortable, fun, and fast. The 2-Series has a 2.0-liter twin-turbocharged four-cylinder engine and some seriously good driving dynamics. It also has a lovely drop top that folds down in just 22 seconds at speeds up to 30 mph. As BMW says on its website, the 2-Series Convertible is for people who don’t like to slow down.
11. Audi A3 Cabriolet
Although MINI is technically built by a German manufacturer, it’s owned by BMW. If you’re really after a German-engineered drop top, you should check out the Audi A3 Cabriolet. The convertible version comes with a couple of engine options, plenty of amenities, and a power folding top that opens the car up to the world. Pair that with Audi’s legendary quattro all-wheel drive and you have a real winner.
10. Buick Cascada
Buick aims to surprise with the Cascada. The brand best known for making your grandma’s car branched out recently and introduced a striking convertible. It has a turbocharged 1.6-liter four-cylinder under the hood and still retains Buick’s reputation as a luxurious car thanks to an upscale interior and plenty of amenities. This is a classy convertible you shouldn’t overlook.
9. Chevrolet Camaro
Chevrolet’s muscle car comes in many forms and can be had with a slick looking drop top. It also comes with your choice of a 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine, a 3.6-liter V6 engine, or a 6.2-liter V8 engine. As you may have guessed, the V8 is the most exciting, but even the bottom of the line four-cylinder moves this car along nicely.
8. Ford Mustang
Ford’s pony car, the Mustang, comes in convertible form, allowing you to get all the sports car fun you need while still soaking up some rays. The base engine in the Mustang is the V6. Once 2018 rolls around, Ford will put the already available turbocharged four-cylinder engine in the base car, getting rid of the V6 altogether. Both of those engines are great, but everyone knows the real fun comes from the V8 engine. Mix tons of power with a power folding drop top and attractive good looks, and you have a highly sought after American sports car for a reasonable price.
7. MINI Cooper Convertible
The MINI Cooper is one of the most iconic cars on the planet. The retro styling and good driving dynamics have made it well loved. So what’s better than a typical MINI? A convertible, of course. And for a bit under $26K, you can get all the sun you want. The soft top on this car drops in just 18 seconds. Its peppy engine will scoot you around town or down a beautiful country highway with ease.
6. Fiat 124 Spider
To make the Fiat 124 Spider, the Italian automaker did something interesting. It turned to Mazda and asked for the bones of the MX-5 Miata. Fiat added new sheet metal to the outside, dropped a turbocharged four-cylinder engine under the hood, and made some other small changes. Because the Fiat 124 Spider uses a lot of parts from the Miata, it still has the donor car’s lovable character, Fiat just added some Italian flare. The cars are roughly the same price, so you might have trouble choosing between the two.
5. Mazda MX-5 Miata
The Mazda MX-5 Miata brought roadsters back to the American market in a big way in the early 1990s. The car has always been about enjoying the drive and that’s still true today. Part of its experience is top-down motoring. The car features a moderately powered 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine and a manually folding soft top that goes down in seconds. It’s affordable, fun to drive, and the latest generation is quite fetching.
4. Jeep Wrangler
Love that wind in your hair feeling but also want to crawl over rocks or power down a muddy country road? You really only have one affordable option — the Jeep Wrangler. The Wrangler is an American icon that’s been updated for the modern buyer, and it now hosts a tried and true 3.6-liter V6 engine under the hood. When the weather’s nice, you can pull the soft top right off the vehicle for some sunshine.
3. Volkswagen Beetle Convertible
The Volkswagen Beetle is one of VW’s best-selling models in history. It has unique, retro styling, is a pleasure to drive, and can be had in convertible form. The S trim level is the cheapest and comes with a 1.8-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine. While the latest version of the Beetle doesn’t have as much flower power as the classic car, you can still start your own summer of love with one.
2. Smart Fortwo Cabrio
Yes, Smart makes a convertible. It takes 13 seconds for the soft convertible top to fully open. The rear pillars of the car stay in place, but the soft top slides all the way to the back of the car, opening up the little cockpit to the sky. This allows you to soak up the rays while you dodge potholes and whip into tiny parking spaces. Powered by a small turbocharged three-cylinder engine, the car isn’t exactly fast, but it’s not supposed to be. It’s about having fun, and it can be a hoot in the right environment.
1. Fiat 500c
The Fiat 500c’s top simply slides back to the rear of the car, leaving the door frames and A and B pillars in place. You can retract it about halfway, similar to a sunroof, or you can put it all the way back to the rear of the car. With the roof open and the windows down, you get plenty of wind in your hair. It also makes the 500’s cute factor skyrocket. The car seats up to four people so you definitely won’t be lonely on warm summer days, and the 1.4- liter four-cylinder engine provides enough power to scoot the little car along at a good pace.