Which country builds the best convertibles?
Personal preferences aside, we wanted to know which of the four car manufacturing countries (Japan, Germany, US and UK) builds the best convertible. We don’t want to break the bank, though, so we’re talking about the best convertibles in a more affordable era these days. In the 1990s, convertibles such as the Mercedes-Benz 500SL and the Jaguar XK8 crept across the road. We also had drop-top versions of the Nissan 300ZX and the 4th generation Ford Mustang GT. In this series called “Stud to Dud”, we pit these four against each other to see which got the best deal – and which country best represents the convertible lifestyle.
Before you get into that though, you should know how much we paid for each of these machines. The most points go to whoever paid the least, and that prize goes to Nathan in the 2002 Jaguar XK8. Now, the $6,500 spent on that vehicle plays a part in the Boulder discount (long story, read more on that below). He did get four points in that category. Next up are Roman’s 1994 Nissan 300ZX and Tommy’s 1997 Ford Mustang GT, for $8,500 each. The Nissan didn’t have a check engine light though, so Roman gets three points from Tommy’s two. In last place, Andre’s $9,000 1992 Mercedes-Benz 500SL scores just one point on the price front.
After going through each purchase, the guys take the four convertibles up the drag strip in a bracket style race. The 300ZX and 500SL are first, with the winner taking on the Mustang and then the Jaguar XK8.
Find out which convertible is the fastest below, and we throw too another (modern) sports car in the mix: