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Old 12-31-2008, 05:36 AM
 
Location: Beautiful place in Virginia
2,675 posts, read 10,818,587 times
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I am looking for a reliable 4 seater convertible. I am looking for a pre-owned vehicle since we may not keep it too long (maybe 2-3 years). I am interested in the Camry Solara Convertible but I am reading that they have some design issues regarding leaks:

Toyota Solara Convertible Top Issues - CarSpace Automotive Forums

Aside from the leaks, it sounds like a great car.

Now, I am looking into any suggestions. I am still looking but a V8 Mustang Convertible (retro-version) is another consideration - however, I question reliability.

Any other suggestions?
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Old 12-31-2008, 12:15 PM
 
Location: Eastern Washington
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With most convertibles you have *a little* leakage in heavy rain, I would consider this just normal for a convertible. If you garage the car rather than leave it outside all the time it should not be an issue.

Offhand I would think the Solara would be much more what you want than the Mustang.

VW makes a nice cabrio but I have heard comments on less than stellar reliability.

Really, if reliability is your main concern, Toyota is your brand, along with maybe Honda, Nissan, and Subaru.
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Old 12-31-2008, 01:02 PM
 
Location: San Antonio
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Quote:
Originally Posted by titaniummd View Post
Now, I am looking into any suggestions. I am still looking but a V8 Mustang Convertible (retro-version) is another consideration - however, I question reliability.


Fords are reliable, don't worry about that.

Some say the Toyota ragtop is real loose and a wobbler, Mustang ragtops are pretty stiff and tight.

I have a Saab convertible that has about 60,000 miles with only one problem though many doubt Saab reliability. It's kind'a loosey-goosey though, not near as stiff and tight as my son's Mustang convertible.
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Old 12-31-2008, 01:07 PM
 
Location: Fly-over country.
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Car geeks, in general, or at least performance geeks have a real problem with most 4 seater convertables since most of them started life designed as a hard top auto.

For example, Top Gear recently applied their brand of review (and over the top humor) to the Audi TT, Chrysler Crossfire and Nissan 305 convertibles. They all agreed something serious was lacking and each car, while having good points pales in comparison to a car that was built from the design phase to be a convertible. Plus, in the magazine Top Gear, they joke that ANYONE who rides in the back seat of a 4 passenger convertible "looks like Hitler" (I'm not fond of Hitler jokes due to his horrible legacy, but the point was that you look like a tin-pot dicator back there-- I guess.)

I suppose if you had to have a rather large back seat and put the top down that the choice of a Solara from Toyota or the BMW 3 series would be the best bet since they have the biggest back seats (or are at least true mid-sized sedans).

If you don't need a back seat, the S2000, the Miata, the Boxster S all seem to get decent reviews, but with the exception of the Miata, that's a lot of coin for a 2 seater. You have to pay to play I suppose.
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Old 12-31-2008, 01:25 PM
 
Location: San Antonio
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The thing is, the 4 seat ragtops are also the ones that have decent sized trunks. We've taken 2-week vacations in our Saab and had room for luggage, beach chairs and other items, room that a 2 seat ragtop would've lacked. Though now with the trend to convertibles with hardtops even 4 seaters can have terrible trunk space, none of those types I looked at had a decent trunk---not the Pontiac, the Volvo or the VW.
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Old 12-31-2008, 02:10 PM
 
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Never forget that a rag top is very noisy compared to other vehicles also. Also about tHE only ragtop that is reasonable to replace the top now days is the jeep because they have so many and after market suppliers like Besttop.
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Old 12-31-2008, 02:56 PM
 
Location: Southwest Nebraska
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How about those old 70's or 80's model Chevy convertibles, Impala etc. Or Cadalac or Lincolns. Thats what I think is a true comfortable large convertible is but not sure if you are willing to give up some of todays safety equipment.
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Old 12-31-2008, 03:58 PM
 
Location: Eastern Washington
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Yeah, being an old car guy myself, if I wanted a big convertible, I'd go with a well-kept or partially-restored 1960's Chevy, depending on size wanted, anything from a Camero or Chevy II to an Impala. Or similar vintage Caddy (although with a good vintage Caddy, you are talking nearly new car money anymore). These cars are only slightly more complicated than a ball-pein hammer, if well kept, they are at least as reliable as a new car, maybe better.

And if well cared for, you have a decent chance to sell on at a *profit* rather than lose money on the mug's game that is late model used cars...

Same can be said for an early Mustang. Or various Mopars.
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Old 12-31-2008, 05:15 PM
 
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Audi A4 Cab
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Old 01-01-2009, 08:25 AM
 
Location: Beautiful place in Virginia
2,675 posts, read 10,818,587 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by caution View Post
Car geeks, in general, or at least performance geeks have a real problem with most 4 seater convertables since most of them started life designed as a hard top auto.

For example, Top Gear recently applied their brand of review (and over the top humor) to the Audi TT, Chrysler Crossfire and Nissan 305 convertibles. They all agreed something serious was lacking and each car, while having good points pales in comparison to a car that was built from the design phase to be a convertible...

I suppose if you had to have a rather large back seat and put the top down that the choice of a Solara from Toyota or the BMW 3 series would be the best bet since they have the biggest back seats (or are at least true mid-sized sedans).
Great points! Thanks. I do need the trunk space for when we go to the beach or if I play golf. The Camry Solara fit my one golf bag and it appears to be able to fit 2 -4 bags or my bag + a golf push cart.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Irishtom29 View Post
The thing is, the 4 seat ragtops are also the ones that have decent sized trunks. We've taken 2-week vacations in our Saab and had room for luggage, beach chairs and other items, room that a 2 seat ragtop would've lacked. Though now with the trend to convertibles with hardtops even 4 seaters can have terrible trunk space, none of those types I looked at had a decent trunk---not the Pontiac, the Volvo or the VW.
Great point.

The main purpose would be for my wife to commute, pick up groceries or go to the beach. A 4 seater is more practical.

I will look into a BMW but I don't like the repair costs of German Cars ( I spent over $5k in a 7 week period on my old Benz).
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