Convertible Roof Replacement FAQ’s: Your Most Common Questions Answered

When you make the decision to replace your soft top roof, it can be an exciting time. However, it can also be a time filled with many questions and uncertainties, especially if you have never been on this journey before. Whether your soft top has obvious wear and tear, or you are just interested in an upgraded aesthetic, you will likely have some queries. This month, we will explore some of the most common questions that we get about convertible roof replacement, and provide you with all the information you need to make an informed decision about replacing your soft top roof.

soft top convertible roof

1: When Should I Replace my Convertible Roof?

While the need for roof replacement on soft top convertibles varies due to factors such as usage, climate, and maintenance, there are some clear signs that mean replacement is necessary. These include: obvious wear and tear, leaks, fading, and visible damage. In addition, convertible tops have a typical lifespan of around 5-10 years, so if your roof is nearing the end of this period, that is also a good indication to consider replacement.

2: Can I Replace the Convertible Top Myself?

It is possible to replace your convertible roof yourself, however, this is a task that requires a great deal of patience and attention to detail, as well as a level of skill when it comes to mechanics. If you are going to undertake this DIY project, it is necessary to follow the instructions of the manufacturer, and to have the correct tools and materials, to ensure that the job goes smoothly and you are satisfied with the end result.

3: How Long Does it Take to Replace a Convertible Roof?

The answer to this question depends greatly upon who is carrying out the replacement project. Experienced professionals can typically complete such a job in a day or two. If you are a novice undertaking a DIY replacement, then it may take longer than this. DIY enthusiasts who have experience in replacing their own convertible roof can likely expect a shorter replacement time.

4: What Tools and Materials are Needed for a DIY Replacement?

The basic tools needed for a roof replacement are screwdrivers, pliers, and a set of sockets, though specific tools may vary depending upon the model of your car and the replacement kit. You will also need the replacement top itself, a good adhesive, and sometimes additional hardware.

5: Should I Replace the Frame Along with the Convertible Top?

In most cases, the frame does not need replacing along with the soft top roof. However, if the frame is showing signs of damage like rust, or obvious wear and tear, then it will need to be replaced. Generally though, when the frame is in good condition, it can be reused.

6: How Much Does Convertible Roof Replacement Cost?

The cost of replacing a soft top roof can vary widely based on factors such as the make and model of your vehicle. Other factors can include the quality of the replacement top, and if you are choosing professional installation. On average, the cost can range from a few hundred to a couple of thousand dollars.

7: Can I Upgrade to a Different Material or Colour?

Yes, many convertible top replacement kits offer a variety of materials and colours. If you are looking to upgrade the aesthetic appeal of your soft top at the same time as replacing the roof, then you can choose from the different options provided by the replacement kits available for your particular vehicle. Just ensure that you select a material that is compatible with your car model, and with your maintenance expectations.

8: What is the Difference Between Cloth and Vinyl Convertible Tops?

Cloth and vinyl are two of the main materials used for convertible roofs. Cloth provides a luxurious and classic look, and also offers better insulation and thus a quieter ride. Vinyl tops, on the other hand, are more affordable, easier to clean, and often have a sleek and elegant appearance. It is your decision to select between them depending on your preferences, budget, and desired aesthetic.

9: How Can I Prevent Premature Roof Wear and Tear?

Here, regular maintenance is the key. Preventing premature wear and tear involves maintaining your soft top roof by cleaning it regularly to remove dirt and debris. You should always ensure that you use the right cleaning materials, such as a soft brush and an appropriate cleaning solution specifically designed for your roof’s material. In addition, UV rays can fade and damage convertible tops, so aim to store your vehicle under shelter, and also use a UV protectant to prevent deterioration caused by exposure to the sun.

10: Do I Need Professional Installation for a Replacement?

While we have outlined that DIY installation is certainly an option, it is true that the professional expertise of soft top installation experts cannot be matched. These professionals will ensure that your new roof is fitted and secured properly, and they can expertly handle any challenges that may arise during the replacement process.

Do You Need Convertible Roof Replacement?

Look no further than Prestige Soft Tops. We are proud to be the experts in convertible roof replacement in Australia. Backed by 10 years of industry experience, we bring you a nationwide network of professional soft top installers alongside our exceptional customer service.

When you need professional soft top replacement, get in touch with us at or fill out our online contact form and we will get back to you.

9 Ways to Get Your Soft Top Ready for a New Convertible Top

The saying goes that nothing good lasts forever, and this is true of soft top roofs, which require proper maintenance and care and then replacement when needed. When it comes to soft tops, it’s a fact that due to general wear and tear and the passage of time, your beloved car will need a new convertible top at some point in its lifetime. There are two options when it comes to this replacement, and those are professional installation or DIY, and both have their own virtues. This month’s article focuses on the information that you need to prepare your soft top for a DIY roof replacement. Plus, keep reading to discover our most important bonus tip. Hint: it’s all about the importance of finding a soft top professional to source your replacement roof.

new convertible top

1: Get Your Tools and Materials Together

When you set out to start any DIY project, it’s so important that you set yourself up for success by organising all the tools and materials that you will need. First, ensure that you have all the necessary equipment on hand, and if not, you will need to acquire them. There are some basic things that you will need for a soft top replacement, including pliers, a set of screwdrivers, and an appropriate adhesive or sealant. Most importantly, however, is a high-quality soft top replacement kit from an expert.

2: Set Up a Workspace for Yourself

When undertaking a roof replacement project, it is also important to find an appropriate space in which to work. The ideal space area is a garage or another covered area like a carport. This is so that both your soft top, its replacement roof, and your tools and materials are protected from the elements. You should also ensure that you have enough room to move and work comfortably around your vehicle. In addition, you should do your best to make sure that the space around your soft top is clean and tidy, and that the surface is level.

3: Remove the Original Soft Top

The next step is to remove the old soft top. You can start near the rear window, and then gently peel the roof away from the frame. Then, you can detach the old top from its frame, making sure that you do not damage the underlying structure. The key to this stage is patience, as you need to work carefully in order to unnecessarily damage the vehicle.

4: Inspect and Clean the Frame

After the old soft top is removed, you will be left with the roof frame. Now is the perfect time to inspect the frame and clean it, ready for its new roof. You will need to look out for rust, corrosion, and any potential damage to the frame that will need repairing before you can install the new roof. Next, clean the frame carefully by removing dirt, debris, or any remnants of the old roof.

5: Measure and Align

Next up, it’s time to measure. Ensure that the new roof fits and aligns correctly aligns with the mounting points of the frame. Taking time with this stage is crucial to avoid misalignment issues later on.

6: Test the New Top

Before you secure your new soft top, you should test that it functions correctly. This means operating the top, ensuring that it opens and closes smoothly, and securely latches. This step allows you to identify any potential functional issues with the top before you install it.

7: Apply the Sealant or Adhesive

After you are satisfied with the alignment and functionality of the new roof, you should apply the sealant or adhesive as directed by the manufacturer. Ensure that the bond between the top and the frame is secure and even, and also make sure that you follow expert advice regarding the correct adhesives and sealants.

8: Secure the Top

Next, secure the top to the frame using the appropriate hardware and fasteners. Ensure that you follow the manufacturers advice, and that you work from the rear of the vehicle to the front. Make sure that you tighten all fasteners securely, but do not over-tighten because this can damage the top or the frame.

9: Final Testing and Adjustments

After the roof is secured, it’s time to make the final adjustments. Test how the top operates, and ensure that it opens and closes smoothly and locks securely. Now is the time to check for any fasteners that may be loose, or other final areas that need additional attention.

Our Bonus Top-Tip:

The most important tip that we can give is to source your replacement roof from a soft top professional and reputable supplier. This is a critical step in the process, to ensure that you are not only getting the best value, but the best quality soft top roof replacement available.

Do You Need a New Convertible Top for Your Soft Top?

Look no further than Prestige Soft Tops for all your new convertible top needs. As experts in soft tops in Australia, we are proud to bring you the best in expertise and customer service. Plus, remember that if you don’t want to tackle a DIY replacement, you can always rely on the professional experience and training of our expert soft top installers.

If you need soft top experts, get in contact with us at, or fill out our online contact form and we will be happy to get back to you.  

4 Tips For Buying a Soft Top Convertible

For many people, owning a convertible, soft top or hard top, is a long-held dream. There are so many reasons to love soft top convertibles – from the allure of the open road, the wind and the sun in your hair, to the innate elegance and luxury of the convertible car. It’s no surprise that so many people aspire to become soft top owners. When finally making this dream a reality, it is important to note that there are many things to consider before taking the leap. From practicality, to being aware of essential maintenance like soft top replacement, keep reading to get some soft top buying tips.

soft top convertible

Consider Practicality

When thinking about buying a soft top, it is important to consider practicality. In general, convertibles can be smaller in size than your average car, and this difference in size could be particularly noticeable if you are making the change from large SUV to a convertible. A question to ask yourself is, will this soft top be your primary vehicle? Or is it to be a secondary vehicle? Considering that convertibles typically have less space overall, this is an important question to ask. If your dream soft top is going to be a secondary, or a leisure vehicle, then reduced boot space or smaller rear seats may not worry you at all. In fact, depending on a number of circumstances, the smaller size of a convertible may even be preferable.

Consider Security

Another important consideration is security for a soft top, which is different in some ways than thinking of security for a standard car. Keeping a soft top secure means taking into consideration the need for secure storage and parking. It also means keeping the convertible safe from the elements as well, which can involve many things, including considering where you park, and preparing and protecting your soft top roof for the different seasons, such as autumn and winter.

Another security consideration is ensuring that you can make it safe to leave your parked in public spaces. This can be done by getting a secure lock box, which can be attached to secure points in your car and are a safe place to leave valuables when your car is parked. Whether you do want to be able to leave your top down or not, a secure lock box can help to increase the security of your valuable belongings, even in the event of a break-in.

Test it Out with a Test Drive

When buying any car, it is always a great idea to consider taking potential models for a test drive. This helps you to become familiar with how the car drives and handles, with all its features and technology. What better way to know if a car is right for you, than sitting in the driver’s seat and actually taking a convertible for a spin? Whether you are struggling to choose between a couple of different models, or you are needing to ensure that your dream car really is your dream car, a test drive can be a great help.

Take Maintenance into Account

When it comes to considering buying a soft top, it is important to be aware of the regular soft top care and maintenance. Making yourself aware of all the required maintenance before purchasing your dream vehicle means that you will understand what you are undertaking, and avoid disappointment afterward.

When it comes to soft top roofs, there is care and protection, as well as soft top replacement to consider. Soft tops need regular care, cleaning, and protection with the appropriate products. This means choosing the care or cleaning product that suits the particular material of your roof, whether it is fabric, vinyl, or leather.

Further, it is also necessary to be aware that your soft top roof will need to be replaced from time to time. While your soft top may last several years, there are cases in which it may need to be replaced sooner. For instance, if there is wear and tear in the material of the soft top, like if the fabric is pulling at the seams. Alternatively, when there are problems with the raising or lowering of the roof, that is also a sign to replace your convertible roof.

Do You Need Soft Top Replacement?

We are as passionate about your dream soft top as you are, so if you have made your dream a reality, look no further than Prestige Soft Tops. When you need your soft top roof replaced, we are here to help with professional replacement and installation expertise. Backed by 10 years of industry experience, we offer a nationwide network of installers who are ready to help you with all your soft top needs.

If you need soft top replacement, make sure to get in touch with us here at Prestige Soft Tops. Email us at, or fill out our online contact form with your enquiry and we will be happy to get back to you.

3 Tips for Owning a Soft Top Convertible in Autumn and Winter

As a proud convertible owner, we know that you want to keep your soft top in tip-top shape throughout the entire year. What you might not know, is that as the seasons change, as the temperature starts to drop, and winter approaches, there are some important things you should know about convertible ownership. That’s right, as we go through autumn into winter, it is essential to note that there are steps you can take as a soft top owner to help your convertible through the colder months. That’s why we have put together this list of tips for you this month, as the change of seasons rapidly approaches. Keep reading to find out our tips for the chillier seasons, from preparation and protection, to convertible top replacement. This advice will be sure to help you keep your soft top looking and performing its best throughout this autumn, winter and beyond.

soft top convertible covered in ice

Make Sure to Prepare for the Colder Months

You can prepare for the colder temperatures in several ways, and similar to most things in life, when it comes to soft tops and winter, preparation is key. One important way to protect your convertible car is by giving it proper soft top care with good cleaning and condition using a high-quality product designed for such a purpose. The Bowden’s Own cleaning range is full of premium products that are made for use on soft tops. Take fabratection – designed specifically to protect your fabric roof, or Vinyl Revival, which protects and restores vinyl soft tops. Giving your soft top a thorough once-over with the relevant product will help to condition and protect your convertible roof from the rain, as well as any icy mornings, or even any snow you might encounter.

Another way to prepare for winter is to get your hands on a top-quality car cover. This is a smart investment, because a quality car cover can help to protect your convertible from rain during winter, and from the sun during the hot Aussie summer. Remember: a car cover is likely to be a bit of a financial investment because what you’re looking for is a quality, breathable cover that will protect your car.

Careful Parking

During autumn and winter, it’s important to be aware of where you park your convertible, both at home, and when you are out and about. Ideally, you will keep your convertible parked under a carport or in a garage during the winter months in order to protect it from the elements. However, not everyone has the luxury of a garage or a carport, so it is important to remember to park carefully. For instance, try to avoid parking under trees that could be damaged by storms and end up damaging your convertible. When out of the house, consider trying to park under cover, to further protect your soft top from damage.

Replace Your Soft Top When Necessary

The ultimate protection for your convertible car is to keep up with maintaining your soft top, which means replacing it when necessary. There are multiple signs that can tell you that it’s time for a soft top replacement, for instance, if the soft top fabric is pulling at the seams. This can indicate that a rip in the material is imminent, which leads to the need for replacement.

More signs that you may need to replace your soft top include any discolouration of the fabric, vinyl, or canvas roof, as well as the presence of a hole. Further, your roof could need replacing if there are any issues with it when it is being raised or lowered.

If you think that your convertible roof may need replacing, it is important to call in the experts. When your soft top roof is compromised in any of the ways listed above, this can compromise the overall health and performance of your car, especially in winter. That’s why roof replacement could just be the key to protecting your convertible in the winter months.

Do You Need Convertible Top Replacement?

If you are thinking of your own prized convertible now, you might be considering convertible top replacement or installation. When you need your soft top replaced, look no further than Prestige Soft Tops. We are just as passionate about your soft top as you are, which is why we are proud to provide professional soft top replacement and installation expertise. Backed by 10 years of industry experience, we offer a nationwide network of expert installers, who will be able to assist you with all of your soft top roof needs. From vinyl to fabric, we are the soft top convertible experts, and we are here to help.

If you are looking to get the most out of your convertible by replacing your soft top roof, make sure to get in touch with us here at Prestige Soft Tops. Email us at, or fill out our online contact form with your enquiry and we will be happy to get back to you.

Soft Tops History: 5 Interesting Convertible Makes and Models

Convertible cars are synonymous with luxury, elegance, and the excitement and  exhilaration of the open road. Soft tops in particular have their own advantages, including flexibility, ease of operation, and the fact that the convertible roof sports less weight when compared to a hard top. These elements combine to result in greater efficiency, yet the finished vehicle retains all the luxury and comfort of any other convertible car. 

As convertible enthusiasts, we are always interested in sharing information about these vehicles with you, which is why we have put together this list of convertibles throughout history. Join us as we discover facts about the cars, from the Nash Rambler to the Roadster, that preceded the convertibles we know and love today.

soft top convertible

The Peugeot 601 Eclipse

This Peugeot model is often regarded as the first convertible with an automatically retractable roof. The 601 Eclipse did indeed feature a retractable roof, and even though the roof was of the hard-top variety, it laid the groundwork for the state-of-the-art soft tops that have followed since.

Initially released in 1934, the Peugeot 601 Eclipse was seen as the height of luxury at the time. One of the main drawcard features of this vehicle was that the roof was self-storing, meaning that when retracted, it folded in on itself and into a compartment behind the passenger seats. This feature provided the basic blueprint for the convertible models that would follow in the 1950s and 1960s.

The 1950 Nash Rambler

This two-door convertible was produced by Nash Motors, a division of the American Nash-Kelvinator Corporation. Introduced in 1950, the Nash Rambler was a type of convertible that had a retractable fabric roof. The Nash was originally dubbed a landau, a term which is derived from the carriage of the same name. Both the Nash Rambler and a landau carriage feature a similar foldable fabric roof. The Nash came into the market at a slightly lower price point than comparable convertibles from competitors and had a number of included features at that price point, such as an electric clock, and an AM radio.

The Roadster

Also known as a spider or spyder, the name Roadster originated in the US and was first used to describe horses that were able to travel distances. By 1916, the term roadster came to describe an open-roof car. While roadsters in the UK were typically known as an open two-seater, this name still referred to the convertible cars we know as a roadster.

As their UK moniker suggests, these vehicles were two-seater cars, and they were typically designed to be sporty in appearance. This is due to the fact that roadsters also used to be used as racing cars in the United States Auto Club Championship Racing contests such as the Indianapolis 500. Though the roadster was initially simply an open-air convertible, by the 1970’s, the term had evolved to encompass any two-seater convertible. The Mazda MX-5 is a modern-day roadster that has been incredibly popular since its release in 1989.

The Cabrio Coach

Also known as the semi-convertible, this type of vehicle is known for its retractable fabric roof, which makes it very similar to a traditional cabriolet, or convertible. The thing that makes a cabrio coach stand out is that these vehicles still have all of their bodywork, such as the door and window frames, and the only open section is the roof itself. While convertibles often retain the pillars known as B-pillar and C-pillar, the cabrio coach has more bodywork or retains more of its metal structure. This is what gives the car the alternate name of the semi-convertible because it is different in structure than a traditional soft top.


This is a type of convertible that is characterised by a convertible roof that covers only the back seat of the vehicle. Meanwhile, the driver and front passenger of a landaulet are covered by a traditional roof. Also known as a landaulette, the origin of these vehicles is the type of horse drawn carriage called the landau, which, as mentioned above, were known for their convertible roofs. By the mid 20th century, landaulets were built for a specific use – for royalty, heads of state, or other public figures to use in events like parades so that they may be seen easily by gathering crowds.

Looking for Soft Top Experts?

Has this article got you thinking about your own treasured convertible? Do you need a soft top replacement or installation? Look no further than Prestige Soft Tops! We understand and share your passion for your car, and we are experts in helping our customers to maintain and preserve both the beauty and functionality of their roofs. Backed by years of industry expertise, we are proud to offer exceptional customer service alongside professional replacement and installation services.

So, when you’re in need of convertible roof experts, don’t hesitate to email us at or fill out our online contact form and we will happily get back to you.

5 Soft Top Care Do’s and Don’ts

Here at Prestige Soft Tops, we are passionate about convertibles, especially soft tops! If you are a convertible owner, and particularly if your car has a vinyl or fabric roof, you probably understand the importance of caring for and maintaining your convertible roof. But, doing so is not exactly as simple as you might initially think.

Convertibles cannot be maintained in the same way as a regular car, and your particular roof needs special care and attention regularly, in order to preserve both its appearance and its functionality. This involves not only choosing the right products for your roof but also applying the right cleaning methods, as well as taking other measures to protect your pride and joy.

At Prestige Soft Tops, we love talking all things convertibles and convertible roof replacement, so we are happy to share these cleaning and care dos and don’ts with you.

convertible car with soft top roof

Do: Clean your Roof Properly

This means choosing the best products to work with the material of your roof and applying and using them correctly when it comes to cleaning. For everything, you will need to clean your convertible roof, check out our range of recommended cleaning products.

For vinyl roofs, you need to use a great vinyl, fabric, and canvas cleaner, and all you need to do is gently brush the solution onto your roof with a soft-bristled brush. Take a look at this Wikipedia page about vinyl roofs, for more information about vinyl.

The same Bowden’s Own solution can be used for fabric roofs, though a brush with slightly firmer bristles would be handy.

Important: NEVER use a solvent-based cleaner on either your vinyl or fabric soft top.

Don’t: Use an automatic car wash

In order to be safe when you own a soft top convertible, it is best to stick to handwashing only. When you hand wash your vinyl or fabric roof, you can ensure that you apply the correct amount of pressure during cleaning, whether you use a hose, a high-pressure sprayer on a lower-pressure setting, or a brush.

In contrast, an automatic car wash may be too harsh for your roof and use water pressures that could be harmful to your roof. While the official word from some manufacturers may be that automatic car washes are okay for these roofs, we recommend hand washing at all times to be on the safe side.

Do: Protect Your Vinyl or Fabric Roof

Just as prevention is key to maintaining anything valuable, protection is key as well when it comes to your roof maintenance. A vinyl or fabric protectant is an essential step after cleaning and is designed to act as a sort of sunscreen, protecting your roof from the harsh UV rays of the sun.

At Prestige Soft Tops, we recommend this vinyl restorer and protector for vinyl roofs, and this fabric protector for fabric roofs.  Remember to always use the correct product on your roof – that is, the one that corresponds with the particular material of your soft top.

Important note: you must make sure that your roof is totally dry before applying the protectant.

Don’t: Leave your Convertible Roof Down Overnight

It is important that you don’t leave your roof down overnight or for an extended period of time, for more than one reason. Leaving your roof retracted for long periods can expose the interior to the elements, such as rain, wind, and the harshness of the sun.

In addition, when you leave a vinyl or fabric roof retracted, (or folded down), there is the potential for folds or creases to appear in the material of the roof. It is even possible for cracks to form over a very long time, and in this case, it is possible that the only way to fix these imperfections is to replace the entire roof. So, our tip is when leaving your convertible, always remember to put the roof up!

Do: Replace your Soft Top When Necessary

All these tips and tricks will help to preserve and extend the life of your vinyl or fabric roof, but at the end of the day, after a number of years, your roof will need replacing. Check out our FAQ’s about convertible top replacement to understand more, and then choose experts in convertible roof replacement, and that means contacting Prestige Soft Tops.

Need Soft Top Replacement?

Don’t look any further than Prestige Soft Tops. We are experts in professionally installing and fitting soft tops, backed by 10 years of industry experience, and a true passion for convertibles. With a nationwide network of expert installers, we can help you with all your vinyl or fabric roof needs. Get in touch by emailing or alternatively, by filling out our contact form, and we will take care of your inquiry.

4 Things You Didn’t Know About Convertibles: History, Features and Soft Top Facts

Whether you’re a convertible owner, or maybe an aspiring one, here at Prestige Soft Tops, we understand your passion, and share it. We’re convertible fanatics and soft tops enthusiasts, and there’s nothing we enjoy more than some convertible facts. Keep reading to gain an insight into some of the history, terminology, features, and facts about the car we all know and love so much.

Close up of a soft top convertible

Convertible or Cabriolet?

What’s in a name? You have probably heard both of the terms “convertible” and “cabriolet” to describe a car with a retracting or foldable roof. So, which is the proper term? The simple answer is this: both.

Cabriolet is the term that came first and was originally used to describe a type of carriage. These carriages were first designed with two wheels, and a foldable roof, and were pulled by a single horse. Later designs had four wheels, and an extra seat for the driver. Have a look at Britannica for some interesting information about the origins of the word cabriolet.

The further you look into terminology, the more names and nicknames you get, from cabrio, open top, and even spider.

So, what is in a name? Well, when it comes to the convertible, almost anything goes!

Convertible Design Features

There are a number of structural and design features that work together in a convertible car, some of which may not immediately come to mind. Read on to learn about some of the lesser-known features of convertibles.

Rear Window: The rear window is an important part of the convertible car. In modern times, the rear window of a soft top convertible can be made of glass, though traditionally, they were made of plastic.

Wind Blocker: The function of a wind blocker can be found in its name: it acts to block wind from reaching the passengers in the car. Also known as a wind deflector, this feature attempts to solve one of the most common convertible complaints – exposure to wind and subsequent noise.

Tonneau Cover: A tonneau cover is commonly used to describe a hard or soft cover placed over the bed of a ute, though it also has another meaning. In the context of a convertible car, a tonneau is a cover that protects the passenger seats from the sun and other elements, when the soft or hard roof is retracted.

The Invention of the Soft Top Convertible

The history of the convertible is somewhat murky and some of the facts are a little hard to discern, but there are some things about the invention of convertibles that are clear. The very first cars invented were open-air cars, with no roofs and sometimes no sides, as they were modelled after horse-drawn carriages, or the cabriolets we mentioned above.

As early as the end of the 1800s, these first cars came to have roofs made of leather or fabric, that folded back to convert the car to its open-roof mode. It was not until the early 1920s that a manually retractable hard top roof was invented by Ben P. Ellerbeck, and not until 1934 that a fully mechanical retractable hard roof convertible was released by Peugeot.

It is these early 20th century models that paved the way for the convertible cars that we know today, and no doubt as technology keeps evolving and our needs keep changing, we will see many more advancements in these vehicles.

Types of Soft Tops

Did you know that there is more than one type of soft top? That’s right – your roof could belong in one of two categories. Read on to find out which one yours belongs in.

Vinyl: The use of vinyl for convertible tops dates back to those early convertibles that were modelled after carriages. Vinyl is still used today as it is a durable material that looks visually appealing and is fairly easy to clean and maintain.

Cloth: Comparably a little more difficult to clean than vinyl, cloth tops are used today as they too are durable and deflect noise slightly better than vinyl. They require slightly more effort when it comes to maintenance.

Whether yours is a vinyl or cloth roof, Prestige Soft Tops can help with all your maintenance needs. Check out our cleaning guide for all the information you could need on safely cleaning your roof and to discover our range of recommended cleaning products.

Looking for Soft Top Experts?

Look no further than Prestige Soft Tops. We understand and share your passion for your car, and we want to help you maintain and preserve the beauty and functionality of your soft top roof. Don’t hesitate to email us at or fill out our contact form, and we will happily get back to you.

Changes in Soft Top Styles

As the leading experts in soft tops in Australia, the team at Prestige Soft Tops is always interested in the changing styles of top-down motoring. While the classic aesthetic of a two-door Mazda MX-5 with a black soft top and sleek lines remains timeless, there are many other soft top looks to explore!

Regardless of the changes in colour, materiality or surface weave, the lightweight appeal of driving in a topless roadster along the open Australian roads never changes.

Soft Top Car Australia

The original style limitations of soft tops

When soft top technology first began in the 1920s with vinyl materials in early coupes, the colour palette was limited to neutral shades with not a lot of variability between vehicles. However, over the next 50 years, different versions of the soft top style emerged including:

  • The halo style involved the vinyl ending short of the tops of the side windows and windshield, forming a “halo” around the windshield.
  • The canopy style covers the front half of the roof.
  • The landau style covers only the back cabin of the vehicle, as little as a quarter or a third of the roof.  
  • The full cover style protects the whole top of the convertible.

While the first models of soft tops were mainly limited to vinyl-like materials, now many soft tops on the market are comprised of a careful collection of material layers for lightweight usage. Earlier soft top styles were manually removed and refastened, but with technology improvements many soft tops can be automatically positioned, have compact storage options or include rear window defrosters. Now composed of innovative, lightweight materials, improvements in soft tops also include more modern style changes.

Soft top looks to explore

In today’s market, there is a range of fabrics and colours available to personalise your convertible with a premium soft top. With more textures and eye-catching colours available than ever, convertible drivers can be spoiled for choice when choosing a soft top design and are no longer limited to a muted or neutral palette. Now convertibles can feature soft tops in contrasting and rich colours for a brighter, more personal look. For those that have already customised aspects of their convertibles, this could be an opportunity to select a medium green to match the custom interiors or rims.

Improving the look of soft tops is also important to manufacturers with multiple surface weave options available purely for aesthetic appeal. For instance, the Twillfast CR available for the Rolls Royce Dawn features inner layers that are crease-resistant, for a smoother, seamless look when assembling the roof after being stowed for a long period.

Mixing colours is also an option when choosing soft tops in Australia. Both cloth topping types and vinyl soft tops are comprised of the exterior facing fabric and the interior backing cloth, which allows a wealth of colour combination opportunities. This allows darker vehicles to maintain a sleek exterior with a matching black cloth soft top and include a brighter interior with a bolder colour.

What is the future for soft top design?

In recent years, our experts have seen improvements to the performance, technology and longevity of soft tops with a more diverse range of colours available to convertible drivers and cleaning products for improved soft top maintenance.

With continued advancements to the textures and lightweight feel of the soft tops, perhaps the customisation options will continue to expand with more widespread patterns and prints available for the interiors and exteriors of convertibles.

Looking for a premium soft top in Australia?

The professional team at Prestige Soft Tops has a wide supply of high-quality soft tops in Australia in a range of different fabrics by international manufacturers. Our talented specialists are available for all your soft top replacement and care needs, with an Australia-wide network of dedicated and experienced soft top fitters for a unique, streamlined experience. By using Prestige Soft Top installers, you can ensure a perfect fit for a smoother drive.

Over 10 years we’ve established a nationwide network of specialists to professionally install your new soft top, whether it’s a BMWFordMazda MX-5 or Mercedes-Benz convertible, we have the soft top to suit your convertible and personal style.

To organise a quote or to receive more information on our extensive range, send an enquiry via our Enquiry Form or email us at or call us on 1300 308 600.