When designing a car, there are a thousand and one good reasons to keep the doors simple. Here are ten examples chosen by jalopnik readers from when conventional car doors just weren't good enough.
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Photo Credit:Bertone, Alfa Romeo
10.) Butterfly Doors
Suggested By: unhcampus
Why it's awesome: Rather than hinge its doors like any other Toyota, the Sera kept a hinge up at the windshield. Just like that, an anonymous sporty coupe became a memorable curiosity. Such are the power of awesome doors. If you think the Sera was a one trick pony, don't forget that these are the doors you'd find on the McLaren F1, the Enzo, and even the Alfa Romeo 33 Stradale.
9.) Doors fixed with the seats
Suggested By: SennaMP4
Why it's awesome: I have absolutely no idea what engineering efficiencies are involved in molding your seats and doors into one single, perplexing mass. However, I can't turn my eyes away, and sometimes that's what weird doors are all about. Check out this Peugeot EX-1 back here, at Jalopnik.
8.) Suicide Doors
Suggested By: nurik.xix
Why it's awesome: Appearing on everything Rolls-Royces to custom Dodge Chargers, suicide doors make it immediately clear that you have the money and the luxury of choosing style over practicality. Few carmakers did such a good job as Lincoln did with its convertible 1960s Continentals, seen here trying hard to mix high class with chop shop cool.
Photo Credit:H. Tang
7.) Front Hinged Door
Suggested By: rawtoast
Why it's awesome: Whether they're on a diminutive Isetta or a charging Stratos Zero, front-hinged doors are all kinds of awesome. Necessitated by the car's packaging, the whole front of these little Isettas open up, pulling the steering wheel with them. It might look cute here at a car show, but pulling straight up to a curb and stepping out onto the sidewalk is a sight to see.
6.) Kaiser Darrin Sliding Doors
Suggested By: Blze001
Why it's awesome: Sometimes you have to sacrifice convenience for style, and we're seeing that happen a lot on this top ten list, perhaps nowhere more so than on this mid-Fifties Kaiser Darrin sportster. You wouldn't mind the complete lack of windows as you pulled up to your country club and riled up the Joneses by electrically retracting your doors into the front fenders.
Photo Credit:Harvard Avenue
5.) BMW Z1's Sliding Doors
Suggested By: rawtoast
Why it's awesome: Much like the Kaiser Darrin, the BMW Z1 had sliding doors, only these dropped down, into the sills. The Z stood for Zukunft, or future, and the car promised the world a fantasy of open top, open-sided driving that is little seen outside of Jeep meet-ups. The Z1's little doors aren't much more than a gimmick, but they needn't be anything more than that.
Photo Credit:Phil W Shirley
4.) Scissor/Lambo Doors
Suggested By: Addidas
Why it's awesome: From the pioneering Alfa Romeo Carabo to Buick Rivieras sittin' on 26s, the scissor door is a surefire way to make your car stand out. It doesn't matter if you're driving a real Lamborghini, because you've put your money and your time into having more style, shown here cruising through Miami, doors open.
Photo Credit:Nick LeFors III
3.) A Canopy
Suggested By: Kate's Dirty Sister
Why it's awesome: If funky doors are all about making the impression that you're not driving an ordinary car, then why not imply that you're not driving a car at all, but rather a fighter jet? Full canopies are great when you're spotting for MiGs, but there's little reason for them on the road, other than to be pure awesome.
2.) Rolling Doors
Suggested By: Barely Awesome
Why it's awesome: I don't know if you can drive this aftermarket sliding-door Lincoln Mark VIII, seen here at Jalopnik back when the only one was for sale, while its massive doors are open, but I can only dream of cruising down the road, all seats filled, with no doors present whatsoever.
1.) Gullwing Doors
Suggested By: Kaiser-Machead
Why it's awesome: Because I know you can blast down highways with the doors reaching for the sky. It is true, that the Mercedes-Benz 300SL's doors were a wonderful exercise in out-of-the-box engineering, cutting a door into the roof to clear the high side sill, and you might praise the car's tight-spaces practicality, or its presence at the curb. But these are all secondary. I want to drive with my feet in the wind in a top-dollar supercar. Gullwing doors keep that dream alive. Get the full story, and a healthy dose of jealousy with Sam Smith's very Jalopnik review.
Photo Credit:Sam Smith