Types of Car Doors


Most cars have some sort of door to provide a secure way for the driver and passengers to enter and exit the vehicle. Manufacturers use different styles of doors, and many people do not realize there are multiple types of car doors on the market to choose from. Most door types can be added to any car if you want to invest the time and money necessary to complete the project.

Conventional Doors

  • Conventional car doors are the doors that are factory installed on most vehicles. This type of door has the hinges on the leading edge of the door, and, when opened, it swings toward the front of the car.

Suicide Doors

  • Suicide doors are the reverse of conventional doors, which means that they have hinges on the back of the door, and, when opened, they swing toward the rear of the car. Suicide doors have not been used on factory cars for many years, but they can be special ordered if desired. Suicide doors were said to be unsafe because they would pop open in a crash, leaving the passengers subject to ejection from the vehicle; hence the name "suicide" door.

Butterfly Doors

  • Butterfly doors get their name from the fact that they look like butterfly wings when opened. These doors are hinged at the top and front of the door. When opened, the door initially pops out and then lifts up and rotates out. These types of door are factory-installed on some high-end sports cars. They can be designed for many different cars, but they can be very expensive.

Scissor Doors

  • These car doors are similar to butterfly doors, but they lift slightly away from the body of the car and then rotate straight up, with less movement. This type of door is typically used on wide-body sports cars because they require less space, yet when open they have as much open area as butterfly doors. Like butterfly doors, scissor doors can be found factory installed on high-end sports cars, but they can also be installed on other cars.

Gull-Wing Doors

  • Gull-wing doors are hinged at the roof and open straight up from the bottom of the car. The name derives from the fact that when the doors are open, the car looks like a seagull in flight. These doors also became popular because of their use on sports cars.

Sliding Doors

  • Sliding doors are mainly used on vans, because they offer a lot of room for passengers to get into and out of the vehicle with luggage and other items. This type of door is mounted on a track at the top and bottom of the door, and, when opened, it will slide toward the rear of the vehicle.

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  • Photo Credit red car image by Tammy Mobley from Fotolia.com
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