convertible

convertible

  A convertible is a car body style with a folding or retracting roof. The collapsible roof section is typically made from flexible canvas or vinyl, although plastic, aluminium and steel have occasionally been used in elaborate folding designs.

Already 10 years old, the Aston Martin DB9 will continue to be around until 2016, when the British automaker will unveil its successor. Whether the next-gen model will still carry the DB9 moniker or not is still unknown, but a report coming from Autocar claims Aston Martin has submitted trademark filings for names DB10 through DB14.

Although these trademarks could be used for five different models, Aston Martin is expected to pick the DB10 name for the next-generation DB9. The Brits are known to move forward with the numerical denomination of its models to emphasize the advances made in terms of design and performance. However, Aston Martin skipped on the DB8 name, jumping from DB7 to DB9 in 2004. That being said, the next-gen DB could very well be launched as the DB11, with the DB10 trademark filed just to protect the numerical denomination.

Scheduled to go on sale for 2017 model year, the next-generation DB9 will ride on a brand-new modular platform and feature a twin-turbocharged V-8 engine built by Mercedes’s AMG division.

Click past the jump to read more about the Aston Martin DB9

Source: Autocar UK

The Corvette hit showrooms in 1953 with a petite six-pot under its hood and a sluggish 10-plus-second 0-to-60-mph time. Sure, it was slow and rather un-Corvette-like, but it was the model that launched the greatness that is the Corvette. The C1 Corvette was also the last time we saw a production model without pop-up headlights before the C6 generation debuted in 2005. In 2014, the C7 hit the market with heavily revised styling. Following that up was the Z06 in 2015 that made all the Euro supercars stand up and take notice and now we have a convertible version of the mighty Z06..

The big deal about it is that this is the first factory-built Corvette Z06 Convertible since 1963, when Chevy introduced the said package as a performance update for endurance racing. It was actually called "RPO Z06" and included a larger-diameter front anti-roll bar, a vacuum brake booster, a dual master cylinder, larger shocks and stiffer springs.

Because it also came with a gas tank that was nearly double the size of standard 20-gallon tank, the package was only available on coupe models at first. However, the manufacturer says that one convertible was fitted with the Z06 bundle that year.

Getting back to the newly-revealed model, Chevrolet claims the Z06 Convertible represents "the culmination of more than four years developing an all-new, all-aluminum structure." You see, because the new structure is much more stiffer than the previous Z06, the drop-top sports car needed no structural reinforcements, which means its curb weight won’t be affected by missing a fixed roof.

Update 8/22/2014: GM has revealed the Corvette Z06 Convertible’s base price of $83,995. See all of the details after the jump.

Click past the jump to read more about the 2015 Chevrolet Corvette Z06 Convertible.

Another live episode of the TopSpeed Podcast has come and gone again. We hope everyone enjoyed this extra-large episode celebrating 25 jam packed casts of automotive mayhem.

We start this week out with the return of Mark, and a little talk about pumpkins and drunken hand grenade safety. It’s a strange story, but we are sure you will find it entertaining. Once the show proper gets started, we get things moving with Weekly Wheels. This week we cover the Ram 1500 EcoDiesel , the Toyota Rav4 and the Fiat 500c Abarth . Two of the three are considered to be amazing, and two of the three are considered to be kinda terrible. Good luck figuring that out without watching the show.

For the news we start with the new Shelby-bodied Renovo supercar, and discuss whether or not this electric car deserves that supercar title. After that we move on to a BMW that is covered in bullet holes, a Corvette system that records your valet’s every move, and the return of the mid-engined Vette rumors. We also take just a second to touch on the possibility of Hyundai making a luxury SUV to compete with Lexus .

The Question and Answer segment of this show was pretty amazing thanks to some incredible questions from you guys. We talk about what kind of dream car we would build if we could put any engine and any interior inside of any other car’s body. We have some pretty varied responses. After that we talk about what cars we would buy if we only had $40k; the catch is we have those cars for the rest of forever. Finally we talk about some of VW’s greatest creations that they refuse to bring to US shores, and talk about why that is.

We finish things out in our traditional manner with an Own, Drive, Burn that features three limited run cars from the 1970s and 1980s. One of them is so awesome, it can go back in time.

Thanks again to everyone who listens and watches us banter about cars every week. We really appreciate you. Make sure to let us know if you like the show, and if there is anything we should change. We also need more questions and Own, Drive, Burn suggestions for every show, so keep those coming. You can reach us in the comments below, on Twitter @TopSpeedPodcast, or by email at Podcast@TopSpeed.com.

Have a great weekend, and we will see you next Thursday.


Launched in 2013, the Opel Cascada is a midsize convertible underpinned by GM’s Delta II platform. The European drop-top is available with a lineup of three turbocharged engines, including 1.4-liter and 1.6-liter gasoline unit, and a 2.0-liter diesel. Output ranges between 118 and 167 horsepower, while the diesel benefits from 280 pound-feet of torque. Also offered with Vauxhall and Holden badges in the United Kingdom and Australia, respectively, the Opel Cascada is getting ready to arrive Stateside under the Buick marque for the 2016 model year.

According to GM Inside News, Buick has already showcased the Cascada as a future product to dealerships in August 2014, with an official launch set for 2015. Opel has already trademarked the Cascada name in the United States, meaning the convertible is only months away from receiving a Trishield badge.

Note: Photo is of the Opel Cascada

Click past the jump to read more about the Buick Cascada

Things aren’t looking so good for Aston Martin’s future if the automaker fails to get an exemption from the U.S. government’s crash test standards regarding its DB9 and Vantage models. More specifically, both models fail to comply with the new side-impact crash standards coming into effect next month and therefore would not qualify for sale within the U.S. Bloomberg reports Aston Martin filed for an exemption for the two cars last year, but the word is still out on whether the automaker will be able to continue selling the two models without making significant structural changes to meet the higher standards.

The exemptions would allow the DB9 to be sold through August 2016 and the Vantage through August 2017. Without such leeway, the automaker could suffer tremendous financial losses to its dealer network, resulting in many lost jobs and closed franchises.

With the independently owned Aston Martin already in a tight financial bind, the automaker likely cannot afford to significantly alter the DB9 and Vantage to comply with the new legislation. Since Aston Martin isn’t a part of a larger organization of automakers, it cannot simply borrow technology or shift funds to fix the problem.

The new side-impact crash standards taking effect next month are designed to heighten a vehicle’s ability to protect occupants against impacts with solid objects such as utility poles and trees.

Click past the jump to read about the Aston Martin Vantage and DB9

Source: Bloomberg

We’ve known about the 458 Speciale Spider — or whatever it name ends up being — since June 2014, and we all know that it’ll essentially be mechanically identical to its coupe sibling. This means that it’ll carry a 4.5-liter, V-8 engine with 605 cv (596 ponies) and 398 pound-feet of torque. This should translate to a 0-to-60-mph time in the low-three-second range. What we didn’t know, until today, is just how limited it will be.

According to 4WheelsNews, the 458 Special Spider will be limited to exactly 458 units. The website does not list a source, other than the typical "insider," so a grain of salt may be in order.

Other details that 4WheelsNews learned while talking to a "friend" who attended a special unveiling of the Spider include some styling variations between this and the coupe model. The main variances of note are the different stripes that come on the Spider model and two new wheel options. Like the report of the number of units, the source is an unnamed "friend," so this could end up not being the case.

We should learn all the juicy details soon, as we expect to see the 458 Speciale Spider in the flesh at the 2014 Paris Motor Show in October.

Click past the jump to read more about the Ferrari 458 Speciale

Source: 4WheelsNews

It really was just a matter of time before the BMW 4 Series Convertible received the same BMW M Performance parts as its coupe brother. It surprisingly took more than a year for that to happen — the 4 Series Coupe received its goodies in July 2013 — but better late than never, right?

The modifications bear a lot of similarities to the M Performance parts on the 4 Series Coupe and while that shouldn’t come as a surprise, BMW could have used a little more spice in decking out the convertible version with new goodies from its own M division. At least that’s my take on it.

For what it is worth, the 4 Series Convertible does come away with a handful of M Performance upgrades. They’re mostly of the aesthetic variety on the exterior and interior, but there are also subtle performance modifications in the pipeline, including a new sports muffler and engine upgrades.

My guess is that these M Performance parts are just the start of more in-house upgrades on the 4 Series Convertible. The model’s popularity among buyers will likely sway BMW into expanding its offerings for all variants of the 4 Series.

Click past the jump to read more about the BMW 4 Series Convertible With M Performance Parts.

Source: Carscoops

When it comes to track-day toys, there is no shortage of companies vying for your money. Lots of companies like Caterham make Lotus Seven clones, the Ariel Atom provides good looks and brutal performance and the KTM X-Bow puts motorcycle acceleration into a four-wheel package. But what if instead of making an all-new car and then fitting it with a hodge podge collection of parts, you took a car that was already great and just gave it an ultra-light track-toy body?This is the Exocet from Exomotive.

For all intents and purposes it is merely a Mazda Miata that has gone on a 1,000-pound diet. It has the same wheelbase, weight balance and seating position as the world’s favorite roadster, but thanks to a tube frame chassis it weighs less than a pair of large motorcycles. You still keep that same Miata handling and reliability, you just get a lot more speed and grip.

To put it another way, it’s F@#%&*@ epic.

Read on to find out more about the Exomotive Exocet built by Flyin’ Miata

The Jaguar F-Type was launched for the 2013 model as a spiritual successor to the iconic E-Type . Bolted onto a shortened XK platform, the F-Type was initially introduced as a soft-top convertible . The Coupe version arrived a year later and went on sale for the 2014 model year. Both versions are powered by supercharged V-6 and V-8 engines with outputs ranging from 335 horsepower to 542 ponies. As we approach the 2014 Goodwood Festival of Speed, we’ve learned that Jaguar will actually produce the F-Type Project 7 that it rolled out as a concept in 2013.

Shortly after releasing the F-Type Roadster, Jaguar created the Project 7 design study. The concept car paid tribute to Ecurie Ecosse racing team that won the 24 Hours of Le Mans race twice with the Jaguar D-Type in the 1950s. The concept featured a D-Type -style rollover hoop behind the driver’s seat, as well as the race car’s white-striped livery. It showcased its astonishing looks at the 2013 Goodwood Festival of Speed before going into history as one of the sexiest concept cars of the 21st century.

Coming into 2014, Jaguar commissioned its Special Vehicle Operations division to transform the concept car into a production vehicle. Thus the F-Type Project 7 ditches its auto show queen status and goes to wander the streets and tracks in all of its Le Mans-inspired glory.

Updated 08/15/2014: Jaguar has officially revealed the pricing details for the F-Type Project 7. Each of the 250 models will base at $165,925 including the $925 destination charge.

Click past the jump to read more about the 2015 Jaguar F-Type Project 7.

Even the wet forces of Mother Nature couldn’t keep the Mercedes S-Class Cabrio from doing a few test runs in Germany. That much appears to be the case with these fresh batch of photos our spy photographers sent to our inbox recently. As expected, the S-Class Cabrio remains hidden in a maze of camouflage, preventing us from getting a full peek at what the new top-end cabrio looks like. But neither rain nor camouflage can stop us from pulling out our magnifying glasses and do a little inspecting of our own.

It’s already been established that the S-Class Cabrio will feature a retractable soft top and a modified rear section, but these new photos also show what appears to be a different front grille from the new-generation design found on the coupe version. We don’t know if Mercedes will mimic the new design with the production version, but we’re confident that it will.

Speaking of that rear section, we’re a little curious about what those red markers to the inside of the taillights are all about. The coupe version doesn’t have that and we won’t be surprised if those are part of the convertible’s taillight configuration. Other than these little bits and those fancy set of wheels, the S-Class Cabrio is looking more and more like a close-to-identical version of its coupe counterpart.

Even the cabrio’s expected engine lineup will be the same as the coupe, including a 4.7-liter, twin-turbo V-8 that packs 450 horsepower and 516 pound-feet of torque, a 5.5-liter, twin-turbo V-8 that produces 577 horsepower and 664 pound-feet of torque, and a big-boy, 6.0-liter, twin-turbo V-12 that churns out 622 horsepower and 737 pound-feet of torque.

Click past the jump to read more about the Mercedes S-Class Convertible.


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