2016 is certainly the year of the slahla, with Mercedes-Benz leading the charge with the C-Class Cabrio, SLC and SL in the last two months. And while British manufacturer Land Rover doesn’t have model volumes, its new Evoque Convertible will certainly have the most impact on the industry, especially in the SUV segment.

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After months of teasing with publicity pictures, we finally clapped eyes on the Evoque drop top at the SA Festival of Motoring currently underway at the Kyalami Grand Prix Circuit.

Admittedly, we were sceptical of the concept of a convertible SUV. But the world’s first compact SUV works, evocatively so.

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The convertible combines the sensual and bold design of an Evoque with a folding soft-top roof that creates a silhouette which remains faithful to the five-door. The roof folds in 18 seconds and can be raised in 21 seconds at speeds of up to 48km/h, and boot space has not been severely compromised with 251-litre capacity, making it a very practical convertible.

The vehicle has Roll-Over Protection with bars deployed from the rear within 90 milliseconds in the event of a rollover situation. Land Rover says the roof has a layer of acoustic insulation to ensure the same comfort and low road noise of the five-door.

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Inside, the interior remains the same but with a much-needed upgrade to the infotainment system. The convertible now has Land Rover’s all-new 10.2-inch touchscreen with super fast and responsive InTouch Control Pro as well as wireless and 3G Connectivity.

At the end-September launch, only the four-cylinder turbocharged petrol with 177kW of power and 340Nm of torque will be available. A 2.0 litre diesel is rumoured to be arriving in mid-October.

Prices begin at R1 002 400