Friday, May 22, 2015

Getting Your Convertible Ready for Summer

With spring cleaning behind us and those hot summer days becoming visible on the horizon, there are lots of things that you ought to be doing to get your convertible ready for long drives with the top down. Whether you are going to the beach or to the mountains, use this list to help ensure that you spend more time at your destination and not broken down on the side of the road.

  • Check Your Tire Pressure: When the temperature dial goes up, suddenly road trips to visit extended family or long drives to the lake that once sounded tiresome sound inspired! Before setting out with your bags packed, be sure to check the tire pressure on each of your wheels – including the spare. The summer heat can make blowouts more likely, which would certainly put a damper on your excursion.

  • Inspect/Replace Your Wiper Blades: This is something that many of us likely do not do often enough. Once the sun comes out, it is wishful thinking to believe it will stay that way forever! Your wiper blades should be replaced every 12 to 18 months, and this is an affordable fix to ensure your safety on the road. But don’t worry – those summer storms have a way of passing through, and before you know it, you can be back to having the windows and soft top down.

  • Cleaning the Top: Just like waxing your car before the winter, it is important to clean and condition your soft top at the beginning of summer, before it is exposed to prolonged sun exposure. First, while parked in the shade, mix a little bit of shampoo with a bucket of water, lightly scrub away the dirt and grime from your soft top and rinse thoroughly with some clean water. Next, repeat the process with a soft top cleaning agent like our RAGGTOPP Cleaner, available for both fabric and vinyl tops. Beware of products that contain abrasive powders or chlorine based bleaching agents that can seriously damage your convertible top and cause seam threads to deteriorate. 

  • Cleaning the Rear Window: It may not occur to some drivers that their plastic rear windows must be cleaned differently than glass windows. Instead of using Windex or other cleaners for glass, spend a few dollars for plastic window cleaner, and gently clean using a microfiber cloth. A rougher fabric or sponge might scratch the plastic, harming your visibility when driving. Rinse and repeat the process for optimal visibility.

Job well done! If you follow these simple steps, your convertible will be ready to zoom down the road for your summer vacation in no time. Where are you headed this year? Share with us in the comments below or on our Facebook page!

Monday, May 11, 2015

Our Three Favorite Luxury Convertibles of 2015

Convertibles naturally have an air of luxury about them – there you are, cruising through the city streets with the top down, feeling like you’re the envy of every driver that’s sulking in their non-convertible hardtop. Slap on a $35,000+ price tag and you’re pretty much guaranteed to turn more than a few heads. Luxury convertibles may be pricey, but with powerful construction and extravagant interior comforts, they promise a driving experience unlike any other. To pay homage to some of the more expensive rides of the year, we have compiled a list of some of our favorite luxury convertibles of 2015. All vehicles have scored high with regards to performance, interior, safety and reliability, so when you’re ready to drop upwards of $35,000 on your new car, you know the exact level of luxury and quality that you’re paying for.

1. Porsche Boxster 
With an overall ranking of 9.3, the Porsche Boxster has proven to impress both reviewers and drivers alike with its overall appearance and performance. The Boxster packs a six-cylinder engine for quick acceleration and the body build and road grip gives it outstanding handling capabilities even when travelling at high speeds. With an estimated 20/30 mpg city/highway, the Boxster offers a great mpg for its class. This vehicle also features exceptional responsiveness in the steering wheel and brakes so you can maintain control at all times. While it has little cargo space for large items, the Boxster does have a stylish and sophisticated interior crafted from high quality materials to match its sleek exterior.

The average base retail price for the 2015 Porsche Boxster starts at $51,400 and can reach upwards of $71,000 for higher end models.

2. Mercedes Benz E-Class
Unlike sportier convertible models, the Mercedes Benz E-Class provides ample passenger space while still maintaining the sleekness and speed of a luxury convertible. The base E-Class model comes equipped with a turbodiesel four cylinder engine to provide a powerful yet smooth and quiet ride. Several other engine options are available depending on the model. While it’s not necessarily the fastest, a feature that sets this Mercedes apart from other vehicles in its class is its diesel E250 model’s 28/42 mpg city/highway, which is incredibly efficient. The interior features a sleek design and a roomy cabin, so you get all the luxury of a convertible with the creature comforts of a more spacious vehicle class.

Ranking at a score of 8.9 overall, the average base retail price for the 2015 Mercedes Benz E-Class starts at $51,800 and can reach $103,200 for higher end models.

3. Jaguar F-Type
A standard supercharged V6 engine powers the Jaguar F-Type, which is perfect for those who love the feel of driving a sports car. This vehicle features exceptional handling capabilities and precise steering to allow for a strong grip out on the road, although the steering may feel a little weighted when driving in certain modes. Like other convertible models, the Jaguar F-Type has limited cargo space, but provides ample room for passengers in the cabin. Although the interior is made from quality materials, the dash is more driver-centric and focuses less luxury accommodations, so the F-Type is a great choice for those who live for the drive.

The 2015 Jaguar F-Type scored 8.7 overall with the average retail price ranging from $65,000 to $99,000.

Which luxury convertible is your favorite this year? Let us know in the comments below!

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