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As temps heat up, car tops go down. Hard top or Soft top? | News

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As temps heat up, car tops go down. Hard top or Soft top?
News, Transportation
As temps heat up, car tops go down.  Hard top or Soft top?

With summer right around the corner and and spring temps on the rise it means the start of one season in West Michigan. No, not boating season. Convertible season! Whether is is 2 seater or 4 seater, roadster or cabriolet, soft top or retractable hard top, it is a top down experience. With all of the different choices out there which one is the best? Hardtop or Soft top?. The answer is well, both. There are pros and cons to both. it really just comes down a a simple decision like choosing your favorite brewed adult beverage, light or dark?  Cloth or vinyl drop tops have been around for years and have been the staple in the marketplace for years. Most of them started out with the wonderful plastic rear window that over time, faded like a bad episode of Jersey Shore. Then soft tops graduated to glass rear windows with a window defroster so you melt the ice and snow and drive your convertible in West Michigan winters. Recently, over the past 10 years or so there has been an influx of car companies producing retractable hard top convertibles that give you a coupe when the top is up and a convertible when the top is down. So why pick one over the other? Here are some pros and cons of each type.

Soft Top;

Pros

  • Lighter vehicle weight.
  • More trunk space when the top is down.
  • Cost is less than the Hard Top version of the same car.

Cons

  • Fabric can tear or fade.
  • Easier to break into
  • Smaller rear window.

Hard Top;

Pros

  • Car looks like a coupe with the top up.
  • Less road noise.
  • Less aerodynamic drag

Cons

  • More moving parts.
  • Very limited storage when the top is down.
  • Needs more clearance room when opening and closing the top.

 

Who builds them?

Soft;

Audi, Saab, VW, Porsche, Mazda, BMW, MINI, Chevrolet, Ford, Chrysler, Jeep and Toyota.

 

Hard Top;

Volvo, Chrysler, Lexus, Mercedes-Benz, VW, Jeep*,Mazda, BMW and Infiniti.

*Jeep's hardtop is removable but not power

 

Where can I get one?

North end of Town;

Kool Toyota and Chevrolet, Tony Betten Ford, Keller Ford, Gezon VW and Nissan, Van Andel and Flikkema Chrysler Jeep.

 

East end of Town;

Fox Saab, Ford and Nissan. Berger Chevrolet, Courtesy Chrysler Jeep, Harvey Lexus, Toyota of Grand Rapids, Delta Audi and Porsche, Betten VW/Volvo/Mercedes Benz, Sharpe BMW and MINI and Pfeiffer Infinity.

 

West side;

Borgman Ford and Mazda, Harold Zeigler Chrysler Jeep and Todd Wenzel Chevrolet.

 

 

So if you are in the market for a convertible this summer the choice is up to you.  Consider why you are looking at a convertible in the first place. It is to enjoy the wind-in-your-hair experience of roofless motoring.

 

 

 

 

 

 

News, Transportation