It is interesting to me how many people say they don't want the top to come down/off of their car even though they seem to have never tried it. The first time I drove a car with the top down, I was hooked. It is such a hugely different feeling. Someone in this thread said something about feeling more connected with their surroundings. I think that is spot on...and the best thing about a good sportscar is connection to the what is going on. So having the top go down seems like an obvious extention of that.
Sure, there are some little issues that are different in a car with its top down, but they are typically pretty easy to deal with. I'm 6'1" tall with long hair so I wear a cap or a bandana when I drive top down. Speeds on Chicago highways run up to and sometimes over 80mph and I drive 60 miles a day on those roads with no problems. Sometimes if it is very hot and humid I'll put the top up and turn on the AC...that's one of the things that is great about a convertable...you have a choice. Some people complain about the thermal insulation of a soft top. I can make my car downright cold inside on the hottest and muggiest days here in the midwest. I can also make the car unbearably hot inside on the coldest days.
Safety is another point people like to bring up. This point has some merit, although many of the non-convertable cars you drive have tops that will collapse easily in the wrong circumstances. It won't take you long to find many photos of examples of this on the Net. If you really are worried about safety, you should have a roll cage in any car you drive. Another way of looking at it: If you enjoy driving top down and there is some extra risk incurred, it might be worth it. We all do things that have risk associated with them, but we continue to do them because of the reward. For me, the risk associated with topdown driving is more than offset by the reward.
All of the rather minor issues in the care and use of a soft top are more than worth it for even one day a year of perfect weather with the top down...and nearly everyone gets a lot more than one perfect day a year.
For those who say they don't like convertables...I'll take you for a ride in the country on a warm clear starry night with the top down. I think you'd all enjoy that...you might even like it enough to do it again.
I suspect that the person who speculated that there is a gene associated with this may be somewhat on the right track...there are people who like it and people who don't. The only reason I think it is worth discussing is that there are people who haven't had the chance to try it and think they may like it. Those people shouldn't be scared off from something that they may very well find to be extreemly enjoyable. Of course, this is all a bit moot with respect to the Elise since it really doesn't give one quite the feel of being in a convertable...at least, it didn't give me that feeling when I sat in it.
On the other hand, if what you are looking for is a car that will insulate you from the sensations of driving, I'm not sure why you'd be buying an Elise.