The list of power retractable hardtop convertibles with starting prices under $40,000 is very short. And unfortunately, that list is about to get even shorter, as Volkswagen announced that 2015 will be the last year of the 4-seat Eos. If you need more seats than the Miata offers (two) and the outgoing 2014 Chrysler 200 convertible doesn't pique your interest, you may be looking at soft-tops from this point on.

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We said farewell to this last Eos--appropriately named the 2015 VW Eos Final Edition--by taking the convertible on a tour of country roads in Virginia. While the Eos' pricing begins at a bit over $36,000 for the "Komfort" trim level, the Final Edition is a 2015-only model that replaces the midrange Sport, and ours was priced at almost exactly $40,000.

Elegant Looks, Smooth Drive

The Final Edition Eos is attractive, whether the top is up or down, and there are advantages to both. When the top is down, in addition to having the pleasure of enjoying the feel of the breeze on your face and the sun warming your skin, you also show off the beautiful Final Edition-exclusive beige and black two-tone leather seats. When the weather gets to be too much, after less than 30 seconds the top goes up, but you still have a sunroof to let in some of the elements--and the Eos is the only retractable hardtop that offers that.

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The Eos' 200-horsepower turbo four and its 6-speed automatic transmission are well paired. The engine provides smooth, subtle acceleration, to the point where you have to keep an eye on the speedometer before attracting the attention of the local authorities. The only complaint with the powertrain is that at times, there was a slight delay in the transmission's shifts at lower speeds. The ride is comfortable, and the Eos is just the right kind of car to take on a Sunday drive.

It's too bad the Eos is going away, because it offers luxury at a much lower price than you can get in an Audi, BMW or Mercedes-Benz. While it mostly flew under the radar during its lifespan, as its pricing straddled the line between affordable midrange and luxury convertible,  at least for one more year the Eos will continue to make all-season convertible driving a pleasure.

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