When you have access to a truckload of information about classic cars and their owners,…
By the Numbers: Convertibles vs. Coupes in America
What states have the biggest preference for convertibles? Using Hagerty’s data of insured vehicles and comparing the ratio of convertibles to two-door coupes, we discovered some interesting and surprising trends.
When it comes to classics (and neo-classics) insured by Hagerty, coupes outnumber convertibles in every state. Delaware comes closest to an even split with a convertible share of 47 percent, making it the state with the strongest preference for drop tops despite its cold winter weather. Of course, Delaware doesn’t have the most Hagerty-insured convertibles. That honor, predictably, goes to California. The Golden State is followed by New York, Michigan, Florida, Texas, Delaware, Hawaii, South Dakota, Maine, and Idaho.
The five states with the highest preference for coupes are the District of Columbia, Alaska, North Dakota, Illinois, and Mississippi. Despite that coupe preference in Mississippi, those who own convertibles lean toward nicer ones—the Magnolia State has the highest average Guaranteed Value for convertibles at $32,969. Maine, Idaho, Kansas, and Utah also have average convertible values in excess of $32,000.
Hawaii, despite its abundant sunshine and popularity of droptops, insures the most valuable coupes—the average Guaranteed Value there is $28,480. Coupes in Virginia, Delaware, the District of Columbia, and Montana also have an average value exceeding $27,400.
Our graph shows a low of just 41 percent convertibles, but that’s only against coupes. When you include all body styles, convertibles represent 24 percent of the collector car market. That’s astronomically higher compared to new convertible sales, which were just 0.7 percent of retail sales in 2016.
Jessica Caldwell, Edmunds director of industry analysis, explains, “Interest in convertibles has waned in recent years as larger, more functional vehicles have become increasingly popular among car buyers. However, convertibles make up a significant share of exotic vehicle sales and are still strongly represented in the luxury and sports car segments, which tend to be the kinds of vehicles enthusiasts like to collect.”
So convertibles are more collectible, in part because convertibles are more likely to be collectible cars. The brand leading that charge is Ferrari, with a 64.5 percent convertible mix, followed by Rolls-Royce at 50.4 percent. It’s not just exotic cars, however. Fiat, Smart, and Mini are all in the top 10 with double-digit convertible percentages so far in 2017.