Convertibles continue to offer a fun in the sun motoring experience no other vehicles can. Drop the top on a beautiful day, begin driving, and let all your troubles fade away. For 2016, a few notable new entries have arrived at various price and performance points.
What’s New in Convertibles for 2016?
Although the Porsche Boxster may not be new, the Spyder has returned for 2016. More than just a badge job, the Boxster Spyder features unique body work, a lightweight canvas top and more power. The latter is achieved by dropping the 3.8-liter six-cylinder engine from the Porsche 911 into the Boxster Spyder.
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An icon in the convertible world is all-new for 2016, the Mazda MX-5 Miata. Smaller and lighter than the outgoing model, the MX-5 is actually smaller than the original 1990 model. Power comes from a 2.0-liter engine that makes 155 hp. Although that is less power than the 2015 MX-5, thanks to a lighter weight and short ratio gearing, the new 2016 MX-5 is actually faster in a straight line.
For the first time in what seems like forever, Buick is introducing a new convertible this year called the Cascada. Essentially a rebadged version of the Opel Cascada, the Buick version will come powered by a 1.6-liter turbocharged engine making 200 hp that powers the front wheels through a six-speed automatic transmission. The four seat Cascada begins at a price just more than $33,000.
Now entering its third generation, the Audi TT is all new for 2016 and will once again be offered as a convertible. Available with a choice of turbocharged engines, the TT S is the more powerful offering making nearly 300 hp from a 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine.
What’s Next in Convertibles?
The 2017 model year looks like it’s going to be a busy one. On the performance front, expect the drop top version for the 2016 Chevrolet Camaro to go on sale this year as well as Fiat’s version of the Mazda MX-5, called the 124 Spider. Audi’s flagship R8 should also go topless later this year.
A swarm of luxury convertibles will also go on sale this year including the Range Rover Evoque convertible, the Mercedes S-Class Convertible and the replacement for the Mercedes-Benz SLK roadster, now called the SLC.