Hooniverse Asks- Which do You Like Better: Closed Coupe or Topless?

As we try and keep the site SFW, we spared you the image of manboobs
As we try and keep the site SFW, we spared you the image of manboobs

Some people like the feel of the wind in their hair, the sun on their shoulder, and the visceral experience of being one with the elements that a convertible affords. Others like the stiffer chassis, lower level of distraction, and greater security of a closed car. While both offer pros and cons, some people just have a preference of one over the other.
Roadster, Drop Head Coupe OTS, Spider, there’s lots of names for them- cars with unlimited headroom and the propensity for finding a cat curled up inside.  Driving a convertible is a different experience from a car with a solid roof, it brings the sounds, smells and occasionally bugs into the mix. It also, typically means a more flexible chassis, softer suspension and the chance that somebody might steal the ice scraper you keep in the glovebox just by slashing the top.
On the other hand, a Coupe, or Hardtop, or. . . well, they don’t get to have quite so many cool names, but they have merits as well. As noted, they tend to be stiffer than the drop top version. Frequently lighter too. They also do a better job of keeping out cats, bugs and zombies. But they lack some of that elemental engagement with the road- compare driving a carburetored 308 GTB to a GTS, the roar of those four Webers behind your head is intoxicating.
So, what’s your poison- do you like the idea of driving the equivalent to a full-face helmet? Or, do you prefer the freedom that going topless affords?
Image source: [Allthingsjeep.com]

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23 responses to “Hooniverse Asks- Which do You Like Better: Closed Coupe or Topless?”

  1. citroen67 Avatar

    I will say coupe. I have never been a huge fan of convertibles. I have always been more of a fan of t-tops.

  2. joshuman Avatar

    If vehicle history is any indicator, I choose coupe. I have never owned a convertible or a topless car but I will whenever I can embark on my next project car. Right now, the closest I get is on my bicycle. To be fair, I do reach decent speeds (between 40 and 50 mph) on the downhill sections of my commute.

  3. Alff Avatar


  4. PowerTryp Avatar

    I like'm hard and fast just like my cars.
    P.S. That picture is great.

  5. scroggzilla Avatar

    The rational, risk managment professional wants a roof on his car. The hoon wants a F1-67 and a helmet.

    1. Deartháir Avatar

      Leather helmet. Go big or go home.

  6. FuzzyPlushroom Avatar

    Coupe with a sunroof or T-tops. Barring that, either a full hardtop or no roof at all. Soft-tops can suck it, and most retractable hardtops are worse.
    I think Skitter's comment above really sums it up for me – my driving style as winter approaches has been "window at least halfway down, heated seat on, heater on low/medium, driver and left-centre vent blowing on my hands, other vents closed".

  7. Deartháir Avatar

    <img src="http://www.worldclassicautos.com/pcfiles/images8/1959olds98conpink.jpg&quot; width="500">
    Let's face it, coupes and convertibles are wonderful and everything, but there's nothing quite like the experience of navigating traffic in a two-door convertible that's slightly smaller than a WWII aircraft carrier, with the top down, sucking back fuel like Elvis sucked back cheeseburgers, feeling like JFK himself… minus the whole grassy-knoll-schoolbook-repository business, of course. My personal choice is above, a 1959 Oldsmobile Ninety-Eight.

    1. Target29 Avatar

      Exactly, like JFK with a few babes like Jackie O beside and around you.

  8. Tim Odell Avatar
    Tim Odell

    I can probably count on one hand the number of days I've run my Jeep with no top. The novelty wears off really quick with the sun beating down on you.
    My favorite configuration is no doors, no side windows, just the soft-top. Safari-style.

    1. JeepyJayhawk Avatar

      I love running the Jeep with no top in the spring, but usually run safari style for the shade. Drop the doors off for more of an elemental experience.

  9. Maymar Avatar

    Can I cheat and say T-tops?
    If it's a black and white decision, I'd lean towards topless. As much as I like stiffness, I don't have the driving skill to really put it to use, so it's all about the ambiance.

    1. FTGDHoonEdition Avatar

      T-tops all the way, if you HAVE to get an open top.
      But I for one will not get a convertible (there will always be exceptions like the S2000 of course) till I hit at least 40yrs old. At least I won't look like such a twat in one. Coupes for me all the way.

    2. P161911 Avatar

      I'll say targa top. A little more of a pain to remove, but better weather protection. I've had a 77 Corvette with t-tops (they ALL did) and a 94 C4 Corvette with a targa top. I preferred the targa top. GM could have made some latches instead of the stupid bolts, but it offered more structure when installed and better weather protection. The 94 had the option of the smoked glass top or the body color top. I preferred the smoked glass version because it gave a couple of more inches of head room. Just make sure you always remember to bolt the top back on (Hello, State Farm……), yes that is from personal experience.

  10. SeanKHotay Avatar

    While I do like the wind-in-the-hairpiece ‘verts…
    …this pasty-white IronCurtain-Irishman burns to a crispy lobster even if he sticks his arm out the window.
    Dunno how I survived that dropped top ‘vert Mustang ride down from the Grand Canyon to Flagstaff to Sedona to Fenix.

  11. skitter Avatar

    On the one hand, windows down (and they always are) is sufficient for me; I will not select a convertible if a hardtop variant is available. On the other hand, a windscreen-free Ariel Atom is the stuff dreams are made of, and driving a convertible with the top folded and snow coming down is one of my favorite memories.

    1. joshuman Avatar

      That sounds like great fun as long as the heater works well.

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