It’s a well-known fact that, despite our variable climate, we Brits love a convertible car. It seems we rejoice in throwing caution to the wind, as we buy more of them than just about any other country in Europe. What is also well-known about the people of our sceptred isle is that we love a bargain. So what better thing for us to do than put the two things together and see what we can come up with? Read on, then, for our top 10 recommendations for convertible cars all available on the used car market for no more than £5000. See if you can be tempted into a little bargain-basement, wind-in-the-hair fun.
Best used convertible cars for less than £5000
Nothing clips the breeze with as much style as an open-top, two-seat Mercedes-Benz roadster. Alas, the first-generation SLK, despite being a bit of a cutey to look at, wasn’t actually that great to drive. This second-generation version changed all that, though, by being at least as good to drive as it was to look at. Make no mistake, this is still more of a cruiser than a sports car, despite the 1.8-litre engine’s supercharger. But on the right sort of day, it’s a lovely place to be, and on the wrong sort of day, you can always erect that electric roof in less than 30 seconds.
Compact convertibles based on existing hard-top cars don’t always turn out well, with some of them feeling more stodgy to drive than their more sober-sided siblings. The Mini Convertible is different, though, being at least as much fun as the regular hatchback model and retaining all the familiar go-kart agility. It rides well, too, and the high-quality interior features one of the better infotainment systems in this class, based as it is on BMW’s iDrive. It’s even quite pleasantly refined with the roof up.
The CLK is an impressive and often overlooked car. What you get here is a classy open-top Merc that is both good to drive and can seat four in comfort, as well as having a boot big enough to carry all their luggage if they fancy a quick dash across Europe. There’s a good choice of engines – from the 1.8-litre supercharged four-cylinder up to the more explosive V6s and an impressively powerful V8 – and it rides and handles with aplomb. That fabric roof can be raised or lowered in seconds, which makes it a pretty practical car, too.
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