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5 of The Coolest & Quirkiest Convertibles of All Time. And It's All SUVs!

Forget sleek sports cars! Discover the weird and wonderful world of convertible SUVs. From quirky crossovers to head-scratching oddities, these open-top vehicles defy expectations.

The term convertible conjures images of sleek sports cars, wind-in-your-hair freedom, and two-door designs that please the eyes and the soul. But what happens when automakers get the urge to chop the roof off something a bit... bulkier? The result is a collection of strange and wonderful convertible SUVs, reminding us that even the most practical vehicles can get a dose of impractical sunshine. Buckle up and prepare to be baffled as we explore some of the most unusual drop-top SUVs ever to grace the roads, or more likely, the grassy knoll at your local Cars and Coffee.

1. Nissan Murano Convertible

Nissan Murano Convertible - official press image

Image source: Nissan 
You wouldn't expect a midsize crossover like the Nissan Murano to shed its top, but that's exactly what Nissan did in 2011. The Murano CrossCabriolet was a curious experiment, with its bulky proportions and awkward roofline. Think of it as the automotive equivalent of wearing shorts with a tuxedo jacket. Under the hood lurked Nissan's trusty old 3.5-liter VQ V6 engine making around 265 horsepower, sending power to all four wheels via Nissan's signature CVT transmission, which was not only the biggest and most powerful CVT-powered production vehicle ever, it also made a lot of purists unhappy. This was no sports car, but hey, at least you could tan all four passengers at once.

2. Land Rover Freelander Convertible

Land Rover Freelander Convertible - official press image

Image Source: Carsdata
The British have a knack for quirky vehicles and the Land Rover Freelander Convertible is a shining example. Essentially a three-door Freelander with a chopped roof and a soft top, this oddity aimed to offer ruggedness and open-air adventures. Surprisingly, it was offered in two-wheel drive and all-wheel drive variants because even Land Rover knew and understood the fact that the clientele for this vehicle wasn't going to be hardcore off-roaders. Power came from a rather underpowered 2.0-liter four-cylinder making a measly 98 horsepower and 155 pound-feet of torque that barely got this 1.3-tonne brick-shaped convertible moving. Unsurprisingly due to its underpowered drivetrain, questionable quality, and high price tag, the Freelander Convertible wasn't a sales success, so if you wanted a truly unfiltered British off-roading experience, complete with sunburn and a good chance of getting stuck, then you'd be better off with a used 90-series Defender with the detachable soft-top. 

3. Range Rover Evoque Cabriolet

Range Rover Evoque - official press image

Image Source: JLR

Land Rover, clearly not content with just one oddball convertible SUV, decided to double down with the Range Rover Evoque Cabriolet. Taking the already stylish Evoque and removing the roof seemed like a recipe for disaster. Yet, somehow, it kinda works. The Evoque's proportions lend themselves slightly better to the convertible treatment. It still looks somewhat ungainly when the top is up, but hey, there's always the power soft-top to remedy that. Under the hood, you'd find a turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder good for about 240 horsepower driving all four wheels. Though not an astounding sales success like the regular four-door Evoque, but luxurious enough to make its occupants forget just how strange this whole idea is.

4. Kia Sportage Convertible

Kia Sportage Convertible official press image

Image Source: CarsWP 
The Kia Sportage was a plucky little SUV, known for its affordability and no-nonsense attitude. So naturally, someone in the '90s decided it would be a fantastic idea to create a convertible version. The results were predictably bizarre. This tiny beach buggy on stilts featured removable doors and a roll bar... for safety of course and continued to use the standard four-door SUVs drivetrain powered by a 2.0-L four-cylinder lump making a modest 130 horsepower. It's the perfect machine for anyone who finds regular convertibles just too darn sophisticated. Adding to the rough-and-tumble appeal was its dual-range transfer case and limited-slip differential which came together to give it decent off-road cred and more importantly the ability to enjoy fine drop-top motoring on all terrains.  

5. Suzuki X90

Suzuki X90 - official press image

Image Source: Suzuki
The Suzuki X90 is in a league of its own when it comes to automotive weirdness. Not quite an SUV, not really a sports car, the X90 was a two-seater with a removable T-top roof and a surprisingly spacious trunk. According to its creator, Suzuki, the X-90, made between 1995-97 was the world's first two-seater SUV coupe, but you could call it the lovechild of a Geo Tracker and a bathtub. Since the X-90 was largely based on the Suzuki Sidekick, it shared its tiny 1.6-liter four-cylinder produced a meager 95 horsepower, making the X90 about as sporty as a lawnmower. But that's not the point here, is it? The X90 was all about quirky individuality with its free-revving 16-valve engine, its floor-mounted 4WD selector, and lightweight body, it was a hoot and a half and possibly more fun than any of its competitors back in the day thanks to its ability to go anywhere. It's the kind of car you either love with a fierce passion or stare at with horrified fascination.

Here we have a glimpse into the delightfully strange world of convertible SUVs. These automotive anomalies prove that carmakers aren't afraid to push the boundaries of practicality (and sometimes good taste). While some of these open-top oddities are charmingly weird, others are downright puzzling. But one thing's for sure – they're all guaranteed to turn heads and generate a good chuckle or two.

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Author Bio

Bhavik Sreenath is an automotive expert, writer, and founder of Motolog Studio. With a Master's in Automotive Journalism and experience in publications like Bodyshop Magazine, he delivers compelling stories about the cars we love. From designing magazine layouts to reporting on eco-conscious practices, he brings a multifaceted perspective to automotive writing. His experience in Automotive Journalism makes him a vocal voice for car enthusiasts and industry insiders. Follow Bhavik on XLinkedInInstagram, and Facebook, to stay in touch and up-to-date with the latest EV and battery development news.