It's a perennially fascinating statistic that Britain is one of the biggest markets for convertibles in the whole of Europe. So with that in mind, and with large tracts of the UK enjoying a sunny start to Spring, many motorists' minds will have started warming up to the idea of al fresco motoring.
Of course, you might be tempted by the idea of a drop-top for your next car, but you might not be able to stretch to the plush cabriolets or sporty roadsters that you've seen enjoying the sunshine over the last few days.
Never fear, though, because we've lined up five smashing soft-tops that'll get the wind in your hair the next time the sun comes out, but won't break the bank – because all of them are available to buy brand new today for less than £20,000!
Author: Alex Robbins
The 5 Best New Cabriolets On A Budget
The 5 best new cabriolets on a budget
It might be getting on a little now, but the cute Fiat 500 is still just as well-loved by buyers across the country for its perky, retro-inspired looks and funky interior. What’s more, the convertible version is actually the cheapest cabrio you can buy brand new in the UK today!
Price start at a whisker over £13,000, for which you get a 1.2-litre engine and a fairly basic specification, or if you can stretch to £16,000, you can get hold of the rather quick Abarth version.
The DS3 isn’t the most fun-to-drive of small cabriolets, but it certainly looks stylish – if retro isn’t your thing, this is the one for you! It’s slightly bigger than the Fiat, too, and offers more space in the back for passengers.
You can buy your very own DS3 Cabrio for a smidge over £15,000 these days, though if it were our money, we’d probably spend a little more and go for the faster, better-specified 1.6-litre petrol model.
Ahh, the Mini. You’ll find one on every street corner, but there’s a reason it’s so popular. A great chassis means it’s immense fun to drive, while cracking looks will make you the envy of all your neighbours, and the deeply retro interior means the fun continues inside, too!
A basic Mini convertible will set you back a little over £16,000, making it pricier than the similarly-sized DS3 – but for that, you do get a more fashionable car with a more entertaining driving experience. Or to put an even bigger smile on your face, you could spend a bit more and get the fantastic Cooper Convertible!
If you’re put off convertible motoring by the idea of having to deal with a fabric roof in winter, the 207CC could be the one for you. Its retractable hard top means you get all the joy of a convertible, but with all the protection and security of a coupé. In theory, then, it’s the best of both worlds!
The basic 1.6-litre petrol model offers enough go for most people, and you can buy one for around £17,000. However, if you fancy warm-hatch levels of performance, and you can stretch to a shade under £20,000, you can have the excellent 1.6-litre turbo model, which is extremely nippy!
If you’re after the sportiest convertible you can get for under £20,000, look no further. The MX-5 has been adored by sports car drivers for years now, thanks to its blend of low price, cheap running costs, reliability and – most importantly – enormous fun!
Even the entry-level 1.8-litre SE version comes with a decent amount of equipment and should be a real hoot to drive, and you can buy one for around £18,500. Or spend £500 more, and you can be behind the wheel of the Sport Venture model, which features better looks and more toys.