2005 Convertible Comparison Test
Four-passenger drop top fun for about $30,000
Summertime and convertibles go together like Grandma and apple pie. With long, steamy days and hot, muggy evenings, summer affords convertible owners the opportunity to loosen their ties and catch the sun’s setting rays on the ride home, made all the more perfect if driving the road less traveled. But what if it’s your turn to drive for the carpool? Dan in Contracts needs plenty of legroom, Cindy from Human Resources could use a little extra hiproom, and Henry from Accounting will need trunk space for those mysterious filing boxes he’s always taking home. And, you? Well, student loans from a previous life and a debt from Vegas that you don’t remember accruing keep your car budget at $30,000 or less.
For you, and others like you, we evaluated four popular convertibles that, in base trim, run less than $30,000 and will accommodate (to varying degrees) three coworkers; a husband and two kids; two large or several small dogs; or, if you’re in the entertainment industry and live in southern California, your ego.
Our evaluations were thorough, covering powertrain performance, visibility, noise levels, front and rear comfort, material and build quality, power top operation, cargo capacity, and overall design.
The results may surprise you; some sure as heck surprised us. However, the numbers don’t lie, and final rankings reflect what we consider to be the best choices, given the criteria listed above.