Just imagine slipping behind the wheel of your car, lowering the top, and cruising down the open road. The sun is shining, the wind is in your hair, and you are experiencing what it means to delve into the joy of driving.
Isn’t it time you said goodbye to your fixed roof vehicle and enjoyed a drop top convertible? There are two types, soft and hardtop convertibles. The hardtop version gives you the freedom you crave with the top down and the security you need when it's up.
This list of the top ten hardtop convertible cars will have you considering trading in your car for one of these convertible models.
1. Porsche 911 Targa 4
Ok, so we cheated a little with this one. Porsche's 911 Targa is part hardtop, part softtop convertible since it uses a reinforced fabric section that folds underneath the glass canopy of the rear hatch. There is a reason Porsche continually ranks at the top of luxury sports car rankings.
The 911 Targa 4 is sure to impress you with its roaring engine performance, high-quality interior, and agile handling. This roadster may not have a lot of cabin room, but all you need to do is hit the button for the folding hardtop. Once you have the top down, you will have all of the headroom in the world.
The twin-turbo six-cylinder engine produces 379 horsepower in the base Targa 4, and 443 horsepower in the more powerful Targa 4S; both models comes with four-wheel-drive.
2. Mercedes-Benz SL
The Mercedes-Benz SL-class is a perfect blend of performance and pedigree. Throughout the six generations, this convertible comes with either a retractable hard shell or manually removable roof panels. The SL Series convertible has a cushioned ride and posh interior, making it the convertible for the sophisticated driver. This distinguishes it from the SLK, which is designed to be a two-seater roadster meant for sporty performance.
You have the option of a twin-turbo V6 or V8 to power your convertible. Both engines are paired with a nine-speed automatic transmission, giving you a smooth as silk acceleration experience. The V6 is light and quick, but the V8 has noticeably more power.
The retractable roof on your SL includes a glass panel and it can be lowered while driving at speeds of up to 25 mph. The car also comes with Mercedes' Magic Sky Control, which lets you electronically adjust the glass panel’s tint. This enables you to control how much light comes in.
3. McLaren 570 Spider
If you are ready to invest in a rare convertible, then consider the McLaren 570 Spider with its retractable hardtop and carbon mono cell tub structure. It also comes in a coupe version. It takes 15 seconds for the car to transform into a top down cruising machine, and you can operate the folding mechanism while driving up to 25 mph.
Powering this supercar is a 3.8-liter twin-turbo V-8 that has been tuned to produce 562 horsepower. This gives you the ability to achieve a hair raising 196 mph. The storage space is carpeted for a finished look to the entire interior of the car. However, unlike the Corvette, the cargo area in the McLaren is low profile, limiting what you can stow in it.
Lift the butterfly doors and slip inside to admire the luxurious materials. There is hand-stitched leather, Alcantra, and carbon fiber. Everywhere you turn, there is expert craftsmanship to marvel at.
4. Ferrari Portofino
Why not choose to drive a convertible from a company that is known for producing some of the top supercars in the world? The Ferrari Portofino has a power-retractable hardtop that stows away in 15 seconds. Then you are ready to hit the gas and power up the twin-turbo V8 that can achieve zero to 60 mph in just over three seconds.
There isn't much storage space, but then many Ferraris have never been known for that. A pleasant surprise is the fuel economy. Despite the powerful engine, the Portofino achieves real-world gas mileage at 16 mpg in the city and 22 mpg on the highway.
You will appreciate the luxury Ferrari has built into the interior. The sumptuous leather will wrap around you as you sink into the perfect driving position with the 18-way power-adjustable seats. There is an oversized 10.3-inch touch screen with an infotainment system that feels modern.
5. Chevrolet Corvette
You cannot go wrong with this all-American two seater sports car. There are two convertible options. There are the traditional soft top and the hard top coupe with a removable roof panel. With either Corvette, you will enjoy responsive handling, attractive styling, and an engine that is sure to impress.
What makes this sports car stand out is the spacious interior. Unlike other convertibles on this list, you will have plenty of leg and headroom. There is also ample storage space. You could easily take your Corvette on an epic road trip with your luggage in the trunk.
This two seater boasts a 490 or 495 horsepower V8 engine with an automatic transmission. Chevy has achieved the impossible by giving you a car that is hair-raising when you want it to be and laid back when you need it to be. This makes it perfect for commuting around the city during the week and taming the open road on the weekend.
6. Mercedes-Benz AMG SLC Roadster
The AMG SLC 43 Roadster is a composed and sophisticated machine that embodies the classic Mercedes-Benz luxury styling. The cabin is small, but it is full of high-end materials. Pair this with a balanced ride and responsive handling. The result is a car that is a pleasure to drive and ride in. You will want to drive it everywhere, from weekly errands to weekend getaways. Good fuel economy means you can drive this convertible as much as you want.
This car is the perfect machine for someone looking for a smooth ride in an easy to drive car. The snappy acceleration helps it to get off the line, and the responsive handling makes it easy to navigate the road.
There are two drivetrain configurations to choose from. Select either the 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine or the 3.0-liter twin-turbocharged V6. Both are paired with a nine-speed automatic transmission and rear-wheel drive.
7. Jeep Wrangler
Not all convertible models are supercars. The Jeep Wrangler has a removable roof panel that technically makes it a convertible. It is even better, though, because it is a power-retractable hardtop convertible. This means you can go from open drop top to top up in seconds.
Unlike other convertibles on this list, you can conquer the off-road in your Wrangler. The manual transmission gives you driving versatility and the ability to climb hills, rocks, and rough terrain. You are able to do all of this from spacious and supportive seating.
There are also several engines to choose from. The turbocharged four-cylinder engine gives you plenty of power (270 horsepower) for exploring while also giving you impressive fuel economy: 20 mpg in the city and 24 mpg on the highway. The V6 offers 285 horsepower, while a four-cylinder plug-in hybrid and a V8 model are also available.
For the most off-roading power, you will want the off-road performance trim package that comes with a full-time all-wheel drive, locking differentials, transfer case, and skid plate.
8. Ford Bronco
The Ford Bronco is another hardtop convertible on this list that is not a sports car. It has an impressive 32.5 cubic feet of storage space, making it perfect for families or those who need to carry a lot. The interior throughout this SUV is spacious, with plenty of head and legroom. It has a higher profile for the driver’s seat, giving you a commanding view of the road and terrain around you. Combine this with the removable roof panels, and you will have plenty of viewing ability.
You will find luxury lacking in the Bronco, with the interior better-suited for a rugged lifestyle. Most of the interior is outfitted in hard plastic. This makes the inside of this convertible easy to care for and keep clean.
What is truly impressive about this SUV is that it doesn't slack when it comes to performance power. The Bronco comes standard with a 270-horsepower turbocharged four-cylinder engine and four-wheel drive. If that is not enough for you, you can choose the optional 310-horsepower turbocharged V6.
9. Mazda MX-5 Miata
Other hardtop convertibles are called sports cars; the Mazda MX-5 is actually sporty. This little roadster could be better described as a grand touring car. It is not the most powerful of cars on this list, meaning you can go all out and push the car to its limits while on the road. It comes in both an automatic transmission and six-speed manual transmission.
The roof panel is a retractable hardtop convertible that neatly folds away with a simple button push. Unlike soft top sports cars, once this hardtop is closed, it is virtually indistinguishable from the fixed roof model.
The interior of this Mazda MX-5 Miata is a bit small, which means the storage space is also small. This is paired with a minimalist approach to the interior materials and styling. Mazda keeps things simple. This reduces the weight of the car, helping it to be more agile and responsive.
10. BMW 4 Series
From the top down, the BMW 4 series convertibles have classic styling for the refined driver. There are the 430i and the 440i models. The 430i convertible has 255 horsepower, and the 440i boasts 382 horsepower. Both convertible models are sure to get your heart racing with their turbocharged engines and responsive handling.
There may be only two doors, but the cars are four-seaters. However, do not expect there to be much room in the rear seats.
The interior does not disappoint with traditional BMW styling and quality. You will appreciate the high-end materials throughout. Technology is packed into the car with a user-friendly infotainment system and an 8.8-inch touch screen. Choose to listen to music, and you will have no problem hearing it with the top down thanks to the ten-speaker stereo system.
For 2021, the 4 Series gets a complete redesign that switches to a softtop convertible, so if you have your heart set on a hardtop version, be sure to get something from 2020 or older.