So, we've finally been blessed with a proper British summer. You've been to a record breaking amount of barbecues in the space of four weeks, there has been enough Cornettos consumed to border on a national shortage and it's the only time of year you gain a minor bit of jealousy for those that drive a convertible. You've had enough of being char-grilled on your way home from work and fancy seeing whats available to you, here is our roundup of cars ideal for the heatwave that won't break the bank!
Mazda MX-5 - The Fun Option
One of the world's most popular roadsters, the MX-5 brings rear-wheel drive pleasure combined with a lightweight body to create a driving experience ideal for purists. While it won't beat most modern hot-hatches off the line, the MX-5 isn't about straight line speed - It's about the enjoyment of driving and leaving a smile on your face without running the risk of getting an ASBO. That being said, both engine choices available to the MX-5 have a respectable enough 0-62 time, with the 1.5 litre achieving a time of 8.3 seconds and the 2.0 litre achieving 7.3 seconds. Now in its fourth generation model, the most recent face-lift brought heaps of modern technology to the car, it now has blind spot monitoring, adaptive LED headlights, cruise control and even a limited slip differential (though this is only standard on models with the 2.0 litre engine). It's also available in two variations, a standard soft-top convertible or a retractable fastback (RF) which is an automatically operated hardtop, it's also the most stylish choice of the two, but will add some extra weight and eat away at boot space.
Mini Convertible - The Sensible Option
The Mini Convertible is the best choice for those who do short journeys, the Mini will allow you to effortlessly cruise around small British roads and towns in style. Just recently given a face-lift, the Mini now has an updated infotainment system for 2018 along with quirky yet stylish union jack rear lights. Its four seats mean you can fit your friends or luggage in the back however being a convertible the boot space is rather minimal; if you don't need the full extent of a family hatchback, choosing the Mini Convertible over the Mini Hatchback will give you a great little daily driver. You can get the Mini in two variants - Cooper or Cooper S; there isn't a whole lot of difference between the two speed wise, with the 'Cooper' models' 1.5 litre petrol engine you can get from 0-62 in 8.8 seconds and the 'Cooper S' 2.0 litre variant will do it 1.6 seconds faster (7.2 seconds).
Mercedes-Benz C-Class Cabriolet - The Luxurious Option
Being the drop-top variant of the popular C-Class Saloon, this four seater cabriolet is designed to be more elegant than obnoxious, it shares the same premium interior as the other C-Class models - minus some boot space of course. As the C-Class range has been given a face-lift for 2018, this means that the latest C-Class Cabriolet model will sport the new high-tech infotainment system seen in the new 2018 A-Class, giving it the option for an augmented reality sat-nav. Unlike other models in the range, the Cabriolet is only available in the 'AMG Line' trim, with a choice of 5 engines before entering into full-fat AMG territory, you can choose between a C180, C200 and C300 petrol or C220d and C300d diesel.
BMW M240i Convertible - The Jack of all Trades
One of the best all-rounders for the money is the BMW 2 Series Convertible M240i - it's essentially a baby M2, you get extremely capable performance, four seats, excellent build quality, drop-top action along with a luxurious interior. It's rear-wheel drive, available with both a manual or auto gearbox and its enormous 3.0 litre engine puts out 340 horsepower, completing the 0-62 sprint in just 4.7 seconds in the auto and 4.9 in the manual. The only real let-down with a car of this calibre is the fuel economy; official figures suggest an average MPG of 38.2 combined however if you prefer a more spirited style of driving it won't be long before you're on first name terms with your local petrol station cashier.
Interested in a car that's cool in every sense of the word? Check out the above or our full range of lease deals on our special offers page.