It was five years ago that I got to experience my first drive in a convertible, it was Hawaii and I couldn’t imagine seeing the place without a Mustang convertible. It wasn’t actually the first time I sat in one, my year 12 formal was made special with a ’65 Mustang convertible, but it rained so the roof stayed on. When I first sat in the Mustang in Hawaii and took the roof off it was like the sky drew closer, the wind grew stronger and the world simply seemed happier. It almost feels illegal when you drive with the roof off, almost like driving without doors on the car. It’s complete freedom.

2012 Ford Mustang convertible in Hawaii

Following that holiday my focus turned to Australia and what was a possibility. The Mustang wasn’t available locally at the time and I considered my options. I landed myself in a Volkswagen Eos. Now that might be a long way from a Mustang and in some ways it is and isn’t. The Eos is still the only convertible on the planet with a sunroof. It can open just the roof or retract the entire thing. The VW Eos was a great car, good on fuel and gave me everything I wanted in a convertible. It just didn’t have the same feeling as that Ford Mustang in Hawaii…

The best way to travel in the Hunter

The VW Eos overlooking the Hunter Valley

Since joining EFTM I’ve had the privilege of testing the new Mustang now that it is in Australia and found the hardtop V8 version a firecracker. If you miss the exhilaration of a soft top you’ll be pleased to have a V8 under your foot which is more than happy to deliver you power in spades. It’s a wild ride.

The Mustang is available in Australia in an EcoBoost version also, and also in a convertible. We put both of those together recently to experience a more efficient yet openly free Mustang. What we got was immediate flashbacks to Hawaii. A car which looks entirely like the V8 model on the inside with heated or cooling seats, climate control, Apple CarPlay and leather seats yet with a push of a button the roof packs away in seconds, revealing that stunning blue sky that we have in Australia and filling your lungs with the clean air we have so much of.

The EcoBoost was no slouch, despite not being the wild V8, which also sounded like a different animal entirely. The suck of the turbo breathing harder than after you’ve held your breath under water is a sound you could easily get used to. It performs admirably well also, able to perform an overtake with ease or still hold proud at a set of traffic lights.

The car handles the power extremely well which gives you some reassurance that you’re safer here, the car won’t try and kick you around. It’s planted and enjoyable. We took the Mustang to Gosford and there really isn’t much of a better place than the beach for a convertible. With a hat and sunglasses on we were staying cool with the seats powered on and the AC decreasing temperatures. The hours spent in the car were sensational.


There is something about a convertible that many don’t understand until they’ve tried it. Next time you are in your car I encourage you to look up. Now imagine no longer seeing a roof lining but maybe the stars, or the blue sky, or the autumn leaves on trees. Take a deep breath, are you inhaling recycled air or the Aussie oxygen? Almost like the Mustang symbol itself, no one put a roof on a horse, why would you do that to a car? As John Farnham would say, that’s freedom.