Car Wall: Summer Convertibles

Welcome to an old favourite from The Lowdown radio show.  When we wheeled the Car Wall out of storage what we did was rate cars based on how cool they were with cool being how much that a given car would help or hinder you in trying to pick up women.  The rankings are (from least to most cool): Seriously Uncool, Uncool, Cool, and Sub-Zero.  Sounds familiar doesn’t it?  Well, it shouldn’t be so let’s move along.

Mazda Miata (MX-5)


The Miata, which is known outside of North America as the MX-5, is the original tiny summer-only roadster from Japan as far as North America is concerned.  The Miata is a throwback to the popular bare-bones British roadsters of the 60’s.  It’s lightweight, has great handling and doesn’t look too bad either.  Its big problem has always been this reputation for being sort of a girl’s car.  I can understand where the reputation would come from.  It’s a small car, very rounded exterior lines, the performance isn’t drag strip worthy and it doesn’t sound like the world is coming to an end every time you start the engine.  The only time I’ve ever considered that a plausible reputation was when a former boss of mine drove his because it seemed a bit small for him.  The Miata is one of the best and most underrated cars in the world and if it is a girl’s car, then it can only help you at the bar.

Verdict: Cool



BMW’s are always well built cars.  They’re designed with driving in mind so you have a car that’s balanced so it can handle and the gearbox and engine are expertly designed so you can speed off into the distance.  Unfortunately, all the craftsmanship that goes into the unseen parts of the car is completely undone by the exterior of the car.  BMW has this annoying habit of designing cars that only a blind person could love.  The looks alone are enough to ruin any chance this car has of being cool.

Verdict: Uncool

Saturn Sky


The Saturn Sky is the same thing as the Pontiac Solstice (which is already on the wall as Cool when we did this on the radio show) and the Opel GT.  Looks are the only thing that differentiates the three cars.  The Sky is my least favourite of the three but that doesn’t mean that it’s not a good looking car.  It draws some inspiration from the old Vauxhall VX220 which was a nice looking car in its day.  Unfortunately for the Sky, the big strike against it is the manufacturer.  Saturn’s reputation for safety and common sense was built on the power of plastic door panels.  That’s all anyone sees when they look at a Saturn is a giant pile of plastic bit.  GM shot itself in the foot over ten years ago but it still means that an otherwise good car is a joke.

Verdict: Seriously Uncool

Lamborghini Gallardo Spyder


Lambo is the be all and end all of clinically insane supercars.  They grab everyone’s attention from a mile away whether it’s the looks, the fluorescent green paint or the howl of the V10 placed right behind the driver’s head.  Sadly, this is the most sane Lambo on the market (an oxymoron if ever there was one) because it is fairly well built, is easy to drive and its doors open normally.  But still, a Lambo is a Lambo.  It’s impossible not to draw a crowd with one of these and that’s the whole point.

Verdict: Sub Zero

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