This is the first in a series of blogs about driving and enjoying your car with style. Today’s installment: Convertibles. Owning a convertible immediately tells the world you have style and like to have fun. Congratulations. Driving a convertible, especially on a daily or semi-daily basis, proves that you value style over utility. You are more concerned with form over function, willing to sacrifice some trunk space and deal with a little more road noise for the sake of having fun and looking stylish. Bravo to you! How much style you present to the world while driving a convertible depends on how much attention you pay to the details.
Details, you may ask? Oh yes. Here are a few tips to enhance your convertible driving experience and look exceptional.
1 – Keep your car clean. Dirty cars are not attractive. Just as a gentleman pays attention to his hair cut and wardrobe, he must keep his car reasonably clean. This includes the interior. The only thing that belongs in your car’s interior is you. No water bottles, coffee cups, cell phone charging cords, etc. Some of these things must be used while driving, but should be tucked out of sight when parked.
2- Windows. When the top is down, so should all the windows. If it is cold, and you are on the highway, you may have the windows up, but ALL the windows up. When rolling at slower speeds, all windows should be down. Nothing is more unsightly than seeing a nice American convertible cruising down the road with a quarter glass raised and nothing else, or just the passenger glass up and the rest down. Disgraceful. Simple rule: Top down, windows down.
3- Boot cover. Some cars feature a top that is automatically fully concealed when the top is down (i.e. Thunderbirds and Corvettes), but many others use a boot cover to cover the top when in the lowered position. Having the boot cover installed does two things. One is that it protects the top from wind buffering and dirt, and secondly, you guessed it: style. Having the boot cover in place makes the whole car look more finished and sleek. No one wants to see the bunched-up material, metal frame and inner panels of the top well. No sir. Installing the boot cover shows your attention to detail, and is infinitely more stylish.
4- Music. You are going to be more noticed when you drive with the top down. Convertibles are sporty and turn heads. What will turn those smiling admiring glances into looks of disgust and scorn is loud music. Turn the dam music down when you are in a parking lot or at a light.
5- Headgear. The sun can be hot and sunglasses and a hat can keep you more comfortable. Be sure to choose a hat and sunglasses that are appropriate for the car and the era from which it comes from. Wearing a bright baseball cap and a pair of Oakley wraparound mirrored sunglasses completely ruins the look of a 1930’s automobile. Consider a tweed cap or Gatsby cap instead. Sunglasses of a retro design such as a Ray-Ban Wayfarer or Persol will look for more elegant and stylish. Remember, you are part of the car when you are behind the wheel and therefore part of the aesthetic.
I hope these tips will help you enjoy your convertible while achieving a level of taste and style that you desire, and others will admire. Ciao!