Which would you prefer to hire, cabriolet or coupe?

There are pros and cons for both - so which do you think is right for you

Cabriolet or Coupe Hire

After a long and damp February here in the UK, we’re finally seeing signs of spring. With better weather on the way, is it time to get excited about getting away in an amazing cabriolet and enjoying the sunshine?

The Pros for hiring a Cabriolet

Feel the wind in your hair - There is nothing quite like whizzing through a leafy English country lane with the wind rushing around you and the sun in your face. The sense of freedom and escape is one of the main reasons why cabriolet drivers love their cars.

Connect with the car and your environment - With no roof to dampen the sound you can really experience the sounds and the smells of your journey. We should consider moments during the day to introduce more mindfulness. There is nothing like capturing that special moment as you open up the accelerator and hear the magnificent engine and really take time to consider how you managed to be in such an amazing supercar.

Visibility - When the roof is down, there is no fixed frame to limit your view. This adds to the overall feeling of connection with your surroundings. Some supercars can struggle to offer rear visibility, but coupes with the top down have no such problems.

Mix it up a bit - If you’re stuck with a sensible car most of the time, there is so much fun to be had by hiring something totally different. If you’re worried about the practicalities of owning a cabriolet, then just using one for the weekend might be just what you need before returning to the boring company work horse.

London Street

Would like the wind in your hair when driving a supercar?

Faraday bag for supercar keys

Some cabriolets still have space for adults in the rear

The Pros for hiring a Coupe

Space - The technology behind the retractable cabriolet roof is outstanding, but even the most lightweight and streamlined need to go somewhere. This does have an impact on rear space which means the coupe models are able to offer more storage area. With storage already at a premium with supercars, this could make a difference if you plan to travel with luggage.

Better handling - At higher speeds, there is a notable difference between a coupe and cabriolet when cornering. The extra rigidity of a coupe makes for a cleaner ride.

Lighter - Coupes are lighter than their cabriolet siblings as they don’t have to carry the extra weight of the retractable roof mechanisms. This also affects the overall handling characteristics of the car.

The design and shape - All supercar designs start with the perfect coupe silhouette. The shape and lines are what makes these cars beautiful. Cabriolet versions can still look stunning, but will never fully match up to the coupe version.

For anyone wanting to buy a supercar, there are also additional considerations such as insurance, maintenance, resale value, plus the additional cost of a cabriolet over a coupe. Fortunately, these are of no concern to our hire customers who just have to decide what they prefer.

Wedding car hire

As you would imagine, a large number of customers hire the cars for their special day. So, what is best for weddings?

Cabriolets have the flexibility to allow brides to choose on the day which they would prefer - top up or top down. One thing to consider with your wedding car hire is who is travelling in the car and where people will sit. Cabriolets tend to be slightly more limited for rear passengers. Cars such as the Bentley GTC Speed are fantastic for weddings, but we do need to consider how comfortable the bride will be. Large dresses, with long trains would need to be accommodated. Cars like the Bentley GTC have ample room for adults in a normal situation, but any substantial wedding extras could cause discomfort, and that is the last thing we want.

Some brides prefer the enclosed space of a coupe over a cabriolet. Not all brides are totally comfortable with being on show all day and the wedding car is one of the only places they can find a little quiet time away from the crowds.

We love to hear that our cars will be part of a celebration, and for customers that need peace of mind, we are more than happy for couples to pop in and take a look at our cars before they commit to hiring to make sure the car is right for them.

Faraday Bag for Supercars

Cabriolets are a popular choice for weddings

Jaguar Land Rover Security

Would a cabriolet be right for your special day?

Why are some Cabriolets called Spyders, and some Roadsters?

The etymology of the words associated with topless cars is fascinating. The word Cabriolet is derived from the French Cabrioler, which means ‘a leap in the air’. It was often used by furniture makers to describe cabinets which had four curved legs that resemble a jumping motion. It was then associated in the 17th century with small two seat horse drawn carriages that due to their light nature would leap about on the tracks. The word cabriole means ‘to leap like a goat’, which comes from the same derivation and could be another reason why these small, topless, carriages become known as cabriolets. Furniture makers were heavily involved in early car manufacturing, so it is understandable how the term was then transferred over to topless cars.

The term Spyder is used by a number of supercar marques to market their convertibles, most notably Ferrari and Masterati. The word has a similar history to cabriolet, in that these small carriages often had larger wheels with numerous thin spokes to compensate for the extra movement. They were referred to as ‘spiders’ in some quarters, and the name then transferred over to cars that didn’t have a fixed top as they resembled these small nimble carts.

There is an alternative theory which is that a misheard phone call by an Italian journalist referring to a Porsche ‘Speedster’ was mistakenly reported as a Spider. This could account for why so many Italian cars use the term spyder.

Roadster is the term most commonly used in the USA to describe what we would call a cabriolet. A roadster was a horse which was used to travel with, as opposed to a working horse for the land. The term then jumped over to cycles and then cars, in particular those that had the open air feeling of horse travel. In the UK we do use the word roadster, but it tends to refer to a small two-seater such as the Morgan Roadster or weekend fun cars such as the Lotus Seven.

Supercar Biometrics

A early spoked carriage, possibly giving it's name to the Spyder

Supercar App

Vintage US roadster

Are cabriolets a popular choice on the UK roads?

Certainly with our supercar hire customers, the cabriolets are very popular. Is this the same for general supercar sales?

There has been a significant drop in cabriolets being sold in the UK over the last 10 years and the number of new convertibles registered in the UK reached an 18-year low in 2022. Looking at figures released by the Department of Transport UK, there were only 16,486 new cabriolets registered in the UK in 2022 compared to 94,484 in 2004. That is a drop of over 83%!

The factors that influence car sales are numerous, so it is difficult to pin down why this might be. Residual effects from the pandemic, a reticence to spend money on a cabriolet that would only get use at weekends and increased pressures in storage might be considerations.

One reason could be the lack of choice. In 2023, only 24 new convertible models were available from the UK's 30 most popular manufacturers. This is compared to 54 models that were available in 2010. In 2005, there were even more available with all but 6 manufacturers offering a convertible option for at least one of the top level cars.

Which will you hire?

There are also very few electric cabriolet options as manufacturers focus on getting their base models to market. Maybe the extra weight of a roof mechanism or aerodynamic considerations are preventing new cabriolets getting the green light for production. There might also be an indirect effect as many of the manufacturers concentrate on the electric market and development time and budgets are no longer being spent transforming their range into convertibles.

Take a look at our current supercar hire range and see which of these amazing cars you would like to take out. We have a mix of both coupes and cabriolets from many different marques. If you have any questions, then do please drop us an email, or call us and we will be more than happy to help.

The pros of Cabriolet Hire

PB Supercars are a cost effective, reliable, and most importantly, friendly supercar hire company offering Ferrari Hire. Established in 2006, we have a track record and many customer reviews attatining to our superb customer service. We are a supercar hire company operated by supercar enthusiasts for supercar enthusiasts, and we thrive on customers referrals. Today 70% of all our hires come from either referrals or repeat hirers, something we are very proud of.

Call us on 0207 241 6854 or Email for a hire quote and availability - we are open from 7.30am to 10pm 7 days a week.

Years of Dedicated Great Service

PB Supercars are proud to have hired to over 6000 satisfied supercar enthusiasts with amazing customer reviews.

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