The first signs of spring are just around the corner. With the clouds starting to part and warmer temperatures on the horizon, you may well be thinking of finally splashing out on that convertible. So, what are your options on the used market?
Data from AutoTrader covering the first seven months of 2021 suggest all 10 of the most enquired upon used open-tops in South Africa come from German brands – bar the MINI, which, although British, is owned by the BMW Group.
“The premium German brands have long been known for building desirable convertibles, so in a country with a climate such as ours, there are numerous options on the used market,” said AutoTrader’s CEO, George Mienie.
Mercedes-Benz has three representatives in the top five, with the SLK proving the most enquired about the convertible model. The compact luxury roadster – which went out of production in 2020 after switching to the SLC badge four years prior – has an average mileage of over 100,000km and an average registration year of 2007.
Despite bearing the oldest average registration year (2002) on the list, the larger Mercedes-Benz SL is the fourth most enquired upon model with dealers, featuring an average list price just short of R800,000.
AutoTrader noted that the E-Class Cabriolet has a similar average mileage at around 80,000km but a far later average registration year of 2014.
BMW is even more broadly represented than its Stuttgart-based rival, with the 1 Series Cabriolet (this drop-top model was later shifted into the 2 Series range) and 3 Series Cabriolet (similarly, this convertible model was eventually pushed into the 4 Series line-up) featuring the most affordable average list prices of R187,713 and R204,239, respectively.
The BMW-built MINI Convertible isn’t far behind on R206,848, while the 2016 average registration year of the 4 Series Convertible sees its average list price more than doubling that of the 3 Series Cabriolet that preceded it. The Z4 roadster, meanwhile, placed second on the most enquired upon table, with an average list price of R412,850.
Porsche makes up the two remaining spots in the top 10, with the 718 Boxster placing sixth and the 911 Cabriolet eighth. As you might have predicted, these two have the highest average list prices of all ten models (and are the only two in seven digits), with figures of R1,270,215 and R1,115,529, respectively.
The wider convertible segment in the new market is under pressure as some manufacturers have started to shy away from the open-top body style, with smaller models such as the Audi A3 Cabriolet and larger vehicles like the S-Class Cabriolet having been recently axed. Handily, the used market still boasts a broad selection.
Top 10 open tops
BMW 1 Series
Porsche Boxster (718)
BMW 3 Series
BMW 4 Series