Why do we never see Toyota convertibles anymore?

August 21st, 2020 by

If you really sit and think about it, when was the last time you saw a Toyota convertible out on the road? The answer is probably not for a while – not a new one, at least. And in all actuality, you probably haven’t seen many of them at all, new OR used. Why, though? Toyota convertibles and convertibles in general used to be exceptionally popular drive time solutions here at Toyota of Orlando and across the market, but the desire for this submodel has died off. We’re here to examine why.

Toyota Solara convertible

What happened to Toyota convertibles?

Back in the 1990s and 2000s, Toyota convertibles were a hot commodity on the market. The Orlando Toyota Solara was a fun and sporty way to hit the road in style and get your daily dose of fresh air and vitamin C. And it wasn’t just Toyota convertibles that were on the must-have list – convertibles of all makes and models were popular drive time solutions. The Mazda Miata was released in 1989 and sold over a million units, making it the most popular convertible ever sold.

So what happened? Why did convertibles fall off the map, including the Toyota Solara convertible? Here’s what we think at Toyota of Orlando.

They were not that safe. 

When you think about it, convertibles from that time period, in general, were not very safe vehicles. Their roofs were usually soft top or retractable tops that left you and your passengers vulnerable if you got into an accident or worse, rolled over. Additionally, because they didn’t have a roof, this type of Orlando Toyota also had compromised structural integrity. This made them even more dangerous to pilot on the open road. If Toyota were to introduce a new convertible model onto the market today, we have a feeling they’d go back to the drawing board to redesign it for majorly improved safety and structural integrity.

old Toyota models

They’re not very fuel-efficient. 

Let’s talk aerodynamics really quickly. Take cars like the Orlando Toyota Prius for example – this sleek hybrid was designed in a shape that would allow air to easily flow over it. This means it can move through the air at a constant speed without having to use more power (or fuel) to maintain that speed because of wind resistance. Toyota convertibles, on the other hand, are anything but aerodynamic. As you drive them, they get pockets of trapped air that create drag and in turn, lower your fuel efficiency. Additionally, convertibles are heavy cars – this is intentional to counterbalance the lack of a roof. This extra weight in the design lowers your fuel efficiency even further.

Will we see an Orlando Toyota convertible in the future?

Like we said, we don’t foresee this type of submodel coming back to the market anytime soon at Toyota of Orlando. But that doesn’t mean we don’t have tons of fun and sporty options for you to hit the road in – come shop our wide selection of new AND used cars today! We’re open seven days a week at 3575 Vineland Road, just off I-4 near the Millenia Mall. Call us to schedule your test drive at (407) 298-4500.

 

Posted in New Toyota