Buying a new car is an exciting yet often stressful process. Will you make the right choice? Will you get the best deal? Will you end up with a lemon?
There are some standard car buying tips that every motoring website worth its salt should have somewhere in its blog archives. But when buying a convertible there is one extra thing you need to think about: the hood.
So, if you’ve never bought a convertible before, here are a few practical tips to consider when choosing your next car…
1. Take a good look at the overall condition of the car.
Sounds simple but you’ll get a really good feel for how this car has been cared for and that will include the hood.
2. Inspect the outside of the hood.
Look for any fading, wear, creases, mould spots or anything that doesn’t look quite. If you see any sagging or bulging then you might have a problem
3. Take a look (and a smell) inside the car.
Again look for anything that signifies a problem or lack of care.
One key sign that a convertible hasn’t been taken care of is how it smells when you’re sitting in the driving seat (and the roof is up). Even a faint whiff of mustiness or mildew so have your alarm bells sounding off like crazy! Whatever reason you may be given this smell is a no no.
4. Get the roof working.
Again sounds obvious but you really need to see that roof go up and down a good few times to make sure the mechanism is working and more importantly consistent and fault free. Any issues with this process should make you want to walk away.
5. Trust your instinct and listen to your head.
If something feels off then it probably is and you’ll want to give that particular a miss. Even if you have fallen in love with the specimen in front of you, don’t be ruled by your heart or your wallet might never forgive you. Have a think – go away and come back if needs be – but don’t get swept away by convertible fever.
Here’s an extra tip for free…
If you have decided on the make and model of your next convertible, do some research on common problems (or ask your friendly car hood experts if they know of any) before you go buying.
Oh and if you do happen to get over-excited and find you have a hood with a problem, it’s not the end of the world because you can always ask us for help.