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There’s something about driving a cabriolet that adds another dimension to driving. It’s like the difference between attending a live football match or watching it on TV. Instead of looking at the beautiful scenery as you glide by in your glass-and metal bubble, a cabrio allows you to participate and interact with your surroundings.
If you have ever wanted to rent a cabrio, but have been stymied by thoughts of chilly temperatures or inclement weather, think again. Cabrios are not just for sunny destinations and summer road trips. There’s nothing cosier than driving through the snow-capped Alps in winter with the top-down, windows up and the heater on. It creates a cosy insular glow of wrap-around comfort as you do something ridiculous…and discover it’s FUN!
If you’re taking a road trip in spring or fall and are worried about showers, don’t let that stop you for a minute. The difference between raindrops and dry cover is less than 20 seconds in most modern cabrios, and you can even raise the hood while driving at slow speed on most models. What’s more, if you hit a light passing shower, the raindrops generally deflect right over the top of the car, leaving you grinning while other drivers stare at you aghast. Hey, let’s face it – cabrios are not for the dull and humdrum! They are designed for those who want to kick over the traces, rebel against the status quo and embrace life to the full!
Most luxury hire cars deliver super-comfortable seats that adjust to support you perfectly. Minimal roof pillars and high driving positions provide great all-round visibility (especially with backup cameras and blind-spot mirrors). When it comes to sound, you can enjoy the latest high fidelity audio sound systems and minimal road noise while smooth rounded gear knobs and soft-touch buttons pander to the sense of touch. But when you drive top-down, you get more.
Cabrios have the advantage of totally unobstructed 360-degree visibility, but that’s not all. The rush of air breezing through your hair at 50 mph and the sensation of being at one with your surroundings are hard to imagine – unless you’ve driven a luxury cabriolet. Top-down, you can work on your sun tan, stargaze at night, or give a cheery wave to boaters and barge masters on a nearby canal.
Then your olfactory senses come into play. Smell the seashore, a waft of woodsmoke on the gentle breeze, pine-scented forests, new-mown hay, Provencal lavender fields or perhaps the scent of night jasmine as you reach your journey’s end. There are a thousand smells you miss as you sail along in air-conditioned coolness in a typical saloon or SUV.
So, here are six of the most in-demand cabrios available for rental in Europe – take your pick and go have fun!
Cabrios don’t come meatier than the twin-turbo Ferrari 488 Spider. The best of it is that you can really appreciate the powerful v8, 661 hp engine with the top down. Racing from 0-60 in 3 seconds, this is a car to have fun in and the retractable hardtop raises or lowers at speed of up to 25 mph.
While other cabrios focus on performance, the Mercedes E-class Cabriolet delivers stately opulence. This comfortable 4-seater convertible seems to have been designed in a wind tunnel so the rear wind deflector really does “do what it says on the tin”. It also has a unique AirCap deflector that eliminates turbulence at high speed. For winter driving, the heated seats coupled with the heater contain you in a tropical bubble, so even wimps can enjoy driving with the top down!
Convertibles don’t necessarily mean retractable metal panels or folding fabric roofs. Targas are a great compromise as they have a removable roof section and a partially retractable roof. Being a Porsche, the 911 Targa has stellar road handling and delivers perfect-pitch engine noises that can be enjoyed all the more without the hindrance of a hard top. With an impeccable build quality, spacious seats for two and front and rear luggage space, the Porsche 911 Targa is understandably a top cabrio car hire choice.
Designed as a two-door coupe for four, this aerodynamic GranCabrio is the ultimate in luxury. State of the art technology naturally extends to the soft top, which opens and closes without a murmur. And it goes without saying that this convertible comes with all the usual comfort and performance that Maserati is known for.
This top-of-the-range Audi truly knows how to impress, not least with its World Performance Car Award 2016. Luscious to look at, this sporty cabrio is marvellous to drive, and the interior includes WiFi hotspot capability for staying in touch.
Combine sleek Mustang shapeliness with a power-operated soft top and this pony will comfortably canter along with its throaty performance and head-turning physique. This 2+2 has plenty of pep and top-down motoring is delivered at the touch of a button.
Next time you need to take a road trip, give in to the daredevil in you and opt for a cabrio. It turns the ordinary into the extraordinary at the simple touch of a button!
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