T-top

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T-top on a Corvette Stingray

A T-top (UK: T-bar) is an automobile roof with a removable panel on each side of a rigid bar running from the center of one structural bar between pillars to the center of the next structural bar. The panels of a traditional T-top are usually made of auto grade safety glass.

The T-top was patented by Gordon Buehrig on June 5, 1951.[1] It was used in the design of the unsuccessful TASCO sports car.[2]

The 1968 Chevrolet Corvette coupe was the first U.S.-built production automobile to feature a T-top roof.[3] This increased the popularity of the coupe, such that it outsold the convertible and later led to the discontinuation of the Corvette convertible after 1975 until it was revived in 1986.[citation needed] Post-C3 models were built with a targa top instead of a T-top.

The T-top was made famous in the movie Smokey & the Bandit, mainly because the 1977 Pontiac Trans Am driven by Burt Reynolds in the movie was outfitted with a T-top.

Examples of traditional T-Top[edit]

T-Top variations[edit]

  • Suzuki Cappuccino - has an optional solid roof which can be converted into a T-top
  • Triumph Stag - has the underlying T-Top structure, but has a one piece, non-glass, roof panel which passes over the central front-to-back bar when in place.

See also[edit]

References[edit]