And the coolest convertibles ever designed are ...
1964 Chevrolet Impala Convertible (restored 2012)
Average current value: $42,000 (425 horsepower model)
I think the Chevrolet Chevelle convertible was a mistake. It worked better as a coupe. But when it came to the Impala convertible, this one had a natural look.
1964 Mini Cooper Convertible (restored 1999)
Average current value: $23,973 (sedan model)
This one supposedly doesn't exist, but it does. There are two in the world. I own one of them. It weighs less than 900 pounds. Because of its size, it's the ultimate clown car.
1963 Lincoln Continental Convertible (started restoration in 2008; ongoing)
Average current value: $24,524
This four-door convertible (with its famous "suicide doors") was an exercise in luxury and options, with features way ahead of its time. But, it's nightmarishly hard to work on. Aside from appearing in many TV shows and movies, a 1961 Continental is the car President John F. Kennedy was shot and killed in.
1959 Cadillac Eldorado Biarritz Convertible
Average current value: $123,297
General Motors executives originally said "no way" to the now-famous double-bulleted wings, which were extreme—even for the time. I've worked on the '59 Biarritz, but never have restored one.
1963 Chevrolet Corvette Split Window Convertible (restored 2012)
Average current value: $77,734 (360 horsepower fuel-injected version)
I think the 1963 Corvette coupe is the most beautiful Corvette of all time. What we've done at Fantomworks is take the '63 Corvette convertible—and created a removable hardtop for it.
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Former WWE and WCW Wrestling champion, and avid car collector
1965 Shelby Cobra
Average current value: $1,298,000 (427 semicompetition model)
A perfect combination of elegance and power … providing a terrifyingly wonderful experience! Not to mention famed racer Carroll Shelby's relationship with Ford.
1959 Ferrari 250 GT California
Average current value: $4,677,050 (LWB closed headlight version)
Drop-top Italian beauty.
1935 Peugeot 402 Eclipse Decapotable
Average current value: N/A
First production model with power-operated retractable top
1971 Plymouth Barracuda
Average current value: N/A
Only 11 convertible Hemi models were ever built. Pinnacle of American muscle collectibility.
1961 Jaguar XK-E
Average current value: $92,178 (flat floor model)
Distinct and unparalleled lines. I feel like I'm cheating on my wife when I wash ours! And then there's the fact that Enzo Ferrari once remarked, "this is the most beautiful car in the world." Enough said.
1932 Ford "Deuce" Roadster
Average current value: $35,800 (V-18 model)
This was a one-year only car. First low priced, mass produced V8.
1965 Ford Mustang
Average current value: $51,284 (271 horsepower, 4-barrel model)
Defined a new class of automobile dubbed a "pony car." Timeless design still produced today. When the car grew up, it transformed itself into my '67 Shelby GT500!
1967 Chevrolet Corvette
Average current value: $113,215 (435 horsepower L71 model)
Dubbed "America's Sports Car" the '67 was the big daddy on the block. I long for one to this day!
2009 Bugatti Veyron GS
Average current value: N/A (current model sells for approximately $2,5000,000)
255 mph drop-top!! Need I say more?
Average current value: $47,100 (Deluxe model)
The car played a pivotal role in the births of both NASCAR and the hot-rodding movement. When I think "moonshine," I think '40 Ford!
—By Robert Melstein, Special to CNBC.com